First line: The policeman, with the slicked-back hair, stands at the bottom of my hospital bed, staring at me intently.
Summary: Rachel and Jack, along with their best friends, Paige and Noah, have traveled to Portugal for a wedding. Jack’s brother is marrying the young, beautiful and impulsive, Ali. Even before the trip starts secrets start to reveal themselves about who Ali really is. Jack says he had a coworker tell him about an affair he had with Ali. And as the trip progresses Rachel begins to believe that this is a cover story for an affair between Jack and Ali. As more clues come to light, Rachel is convinced that her marriage is not what she thought it was. Does she ruin the weekend and tell the secret or does she wait until it is too late?
My Thoughts: I was unbelievably disappointed in this story. It was like a high school drama. So many worries about someone kissing someone else, insinuations, flirting, innuendos and lots of drama! Rachel was worried just because she felt insecure. Then her friend continued to feed into the insecurity. It was a lot of hearsay and bad timing. I was just so done with it about half way through but I kept going hoping that it would redeem itself or bring it to a satisfying conclusion but it was a silly ending. Not Sandie’s best book.
FYI: Skip this one unless you love relationship drama.
First line: It was just an ordinary day.
Summary: Pete is a stay-at-home dad while his partner, Maddie, works. One day after arriving home from dropping his son, Theo, off at the daycare he gets a visit from a man who tells him that Theo is his son. It is a lot to take in. Miles tells him that there was a mix-up at the NICU when Theo was born. It seems that Pete and Maddie’s son was switched with Miles’ son. They have each been raising the others’ child for the last two years.
As the couples meet and discuss the situation they feel like they got lucky that each is so amendable. They are getting along well and working out the details. But can they trust this other couple with their son? As time goes by they see that things going on in the Lambert’s house is not as they seem.
My Thoughts: I think this is Delaney’s best book so far! It was really fast and had a good story. It’s terrifying but a real worry that sometimes mistakes like this may happen. With understaffed hospitals and so many children to be taken care of, it could easily happen.
I knew from the beginning when everything was going so well that there was going to be a lot of drama hitting Pete and Maddie soon! It kept me guessing and shaking my head as more craziness continued to appear. I was so shocked with the way every little interaction was spun and twisted to fit the needs of the Lamberts.
And I loved the ending. It wasn’t exactly mind-blowing but it was satisfactory and gave perfect closure. I would highly recommend this to anyone who wants a book they can easily finish in a weekend. It is easy to lose yourself in the drama and need to find out what happens next.
FYI: Check out J.P. Delaney’s other books for more great reads!
The Immortalists by Chloe Benjamin
First line: Varya is thirteen.
Summary: Four siblings sneak out one night to find a local gypsy woman who is said to be able to tell their futures including their date of death. With these revelations, the siblings begin to live their lives with the knowledge hanging over them. Their stories span over fifty years from San Francisco to Las Vegas. The introduction of the AIDS virus to the war in Iraq. This story shows how knowledge of the future can shape our lives.
Highlights: I really enjoyed Simon’s story. I think he was my favorite character. I was sad when his story was over. However, the plotline for the book was very intriguing. Would I want to know when my death date was? I cannot imagine that I would. It would bring dread as each day passed. On the other hand, would this give me reason to enjoy each day? The author really gives the reader lots to think about while reading. A good author can do this and Chloe Benjamin did a great job.
Lowlights: Simon and Klara were the characters that kept my attention. However, I felt that the story slowed after that. Especially with Varya’s story. Varya had to deal with the loss of each of her siblings and wrapping the story up. I felt like she deserved more. There was a little twist for her but it was not as big as I would have hoped for.
FYI: There is some sexual content and language.
One of Us Is Lying by Karen M. McManus
First line: A sex tape.
Summary: Five students are in detention. All were put there because they were caught with a phone on them in class. However, when one of the students, Simon, dies during detention the others are all suspects. Simon is the school gossip. He posts all the rumors and secrets of his classmates on the internet making him one of the most hated kids in the school. Each of the “Bayview Four” know that they were being framed but by who?
Highlights: This has been compared to The Breakfast Club meets Pretty Little Liars and I think that is spot on. I love both and together they are great. I really enjoyed this debut novel. The mystery is good with little twists. The characters are great representations of teens and the problems that they deal with. Problems with family, friends, relationships, sports, and school. There was the jock, the brain, the popular girl and the burn out. It was a fun fast-paced novel. I will definitely keep a look out for the author’s next book.
Lowlights: Nearing the end I started to guess at the conclusion. It felt like all the likely scenarios were too easy so the better option was the not so obvious one.
FYI: Great for younger readers who want a good thriller.