Daughters of the Lake by Wendy Webb
Inhuman Resources by Pierre Lemaitre
Good Samaritans by Will Carver
Then She Was Gone by Lisa Jewell (audiobook)
Snowblind by Ragnar Jonasson
Doctor Sleep by Stephen King
Circe by Madeline Miller (audiobook)
Cockroaches by Jo Nesbo
The Last Time I Lied by Riley Sager
Bleak Harbor by Bryan Gruley
Bonfire by Krysten Ritter (audiobook)
11 books (3 audiobooks)
Top 3 Reads: Good Samaritans, Doctor Sleep, & The Last Time I Lied
I had pretty low expectations for getting much reading done this month after a rather slow start, but I’m actually very pleased with what I accomplished reading in November.
Let’s begin with some of the new releases I read in November. I started off the month with DAUGHTERS OF THE LAKE by Wendy Webb, which was November’s selection for Instagram’s Black Hearts Reads book club. This was one of those books that I really fell into and got sucked away to both of the dueling timelines, with my favorite being the historical flashbacks. I rarely read crime fiction that includes historical elements, but I actually greatly enjoy historical fiction reads, so this was a great combination.
Bryan Gruley’s BLEAK HARBOR is another book that I absolutely fell into right away. This one centers around an abduction of a teenage son with autism on the surface, but what’s lurking below is an incredibly tangled web of connections between so many characters that ultimately lead to or impacts the kidnapping. Gruley kept me on my toes the whole time!
I revisited Pierre Lemaitre, who I absolutely loved reading early this year with BLOOD WEDDING. His latest release, INHUMAN RESOURCES, was a bit slow for my liking. The story also went a bit off course from where I saw it taking things based off the synopsis. I still really enjoyed the writing style of Lemaitre, so I will definitely continue researching his work. I’m thinking of tackling his Camille Verhoeven series next year, as I’ve heard it’s very good.
Aside from being a month for entertaining new releases, November also was a month where I took advantage of having limited commitments and read from my backlist. My favorite part about limiting my review commitments has been getting back into reading Nordic Noir. Last month I kicked off starting my journey through Jo Nesbo’s Harry Hole series, so naturally this month I picked up book two, COCKROACHES. While I didn’t find this story to be nearly as captivating as THE BAT, I still really enjoyed getting to learn more about Hole and experiencing his all in attitude for solving crimes.
I also decided it was time to tackle Ragnar Jonasson’s Dark Iceland series, as I’ve owned the entire set of currency available titles for months now! I started off with SNOWBLIND this month and tell in love. I absolutely could not get enough of Jonasson’s writing style and I may have fallen hard for the main character, Ari Thor. I’m definitely looking forward to picking up book two, NIGHTBLIND, next month!
One of this things that makes my backlist and unread shelf consistently long are my Book of the Month club selections. I never can just pick one and I can rarely accomplish the feat of reading my picks in the same month I buy them. Enter audiobooks to save me here! My first audiobook pick of the month was Lisa Jewell’s THEN SHE WAS GONE. I’ve never read Jewell’s work before, but I know so many people who loved this book, so I bumped the priority up and am so happy I gave it a go! This book centers around a missing daughter who vanished many years ago. It is now present day and her mother is finally attempting to rebuild her life when strange things start bringing the past back to life for her. Such a fascinating story and the narrator was excellent!
BONFIRE was another selection that had actually been on my shelf for about a year now. I picked this one up on a whim at the end of the month when I knew I wanted something shorter. I’m sorry I waited so long to pick up Krysten Ritter’s debut novel, because I was absolutely blown away by this story! It reminded me a lot of Erin Brockovich (shoutout to Janel for calling that!) meets SHARP OBJECTS. I adore small town mysteries and this one was definitely exactly what I was looking for to entertain me on my work commute.
November also saw me step out of my comfort zone with CIRCE by Madeline Miller. I adore Greek mythology, so I knew I wanted this book the moment I saw it as a selection. What I didn’t know was how much concentration this book really needed from me. Once I got that into my mindset, I did a lot better with absorbing the story and ended up really enjoying what this book offered.
Now let’s talk about my favorite reads for November! First up is GOOD SAMARITANS by Will Carver. I had fangirled over this book before I even opened it because it just sounded absolutely amazing! I was not disappointed. I was creeped out, on the edge of my seat, and completely stunned by the storyline! The characters were all delightfully awful and the ending was absolute perfection.
THE LAST TIME I LIED was another favorite for the month. I adored Riley Sager’s FINAL GIRLS last year, so I knew I would love this book. I had some minor struggles with the main character and then immediately proceeded to binge read this book over the Thanksgiving weekend. This story was everything a thriller should be!
Lastly is the brilliant DOCTOR SLEEP by Stephen King. I know each month I gush about King’s books, but I’m having such a fantastic journey through his books this year that I truly can’t help myself. This is the sequel to THE SHINING, but it deserves recognition it’s own right and not as a follow up. The story was unique, Danny Torrance was back in my life, and I was hooked from the first page.
I’d love to know what you read this month! Have you read any of these titles? Let’s chat!
Here’s to December! Happy reading!
Disclaimer: Thank you to Orenda Books, Quercus USA, and Amazon Publishing for sending me free review copies in exchange for an honest review.