TUESDAY EXCERPTS: “SAFE HOUSE”

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events: First Chapter/Intros, now hosted by  Socrates Book Reviews; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by The Purple Booker.

Today’s feature is a new book:  Safe House, by Jo Jakeman.

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INTRO:  (Prologue) Interview Room 3

Wednesday, November 28, 2018, 10:18 a.m.

Conor Fletcher slams the palm of his hand on the table between them and says, “I knew something like this would happen!”

DC Naz Apkarian covers a yawn with the back of her hand.  The long night had turned into a slow morning.

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TEASER TUESDAY:

(Charlie Miller) – Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Charlie was unpacking the boxes marked Kitchen on the floor of the living room. Deep blue skies contrasted against the pure white clouds like a children’s painting, and cast a broad square of gold upon the floor. (p. 33).

 

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Synopsis:  One day, a woman turns up in a remote coastal village. She’s bought a crumbling, long-vacant cottage and calls herself Charlie Miller. Charlie keeps to herself, reluctant to integrate with the locals. If they ever find out who she really is, and what she’s done, she’ll lose what little she has left.

Charlie served two years in prison for providing a false alibi for a murderer. It was the mistake of a woman in love, a woman who couldn’t believe her boyfriend was guilty–or lying to her. All she desperately wants now is a fresh start.

As Charlie slowly lets down her guard and becomes friendly with her neighbors, she can’t shake the feeling that someone is watching her, someone who knows what she did. When one of her new friends suddenly disappears, Charlie’s worst fears are confirmed. She must confront her past head-on, but as she knows all too well, everything is far more dangerous than how it appears.

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I’m eager to start reading this one.  What do you think?

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TUESDAY EXCERPTS: “THE SEA GLASS COTTAGE”

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events: First Chapter/Intros, now hosted by  Socrates Book Reviews; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by The Purple Booker.

Today’s feature is a recent download:  The Sea Glass Cottage, by RaeAnne Thayne.

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Intro:  (Olivia)

She could do this.

Olivia Harper approached the nondescript coffee shop across the street from her apartment in the Lower Queen Anne neighborhood of Seattle.

The place wasn’t necessarily her favorite.  The servers could be rude, the food overcooked and the coffee rather bland compared to the place she preferred a few blocks east.

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Teaser:  She hadn’t realized how much resentment she had been clinging to all these years.  Now that she did, Olivia knew she needed to work toward forgiving her mother. (60%).

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Synopsis:  The life Olivia Harper always dreamed of isn’t so dreamy these days. The 16-hour work days are unfulfilling and so are things with her on-again, off-again boyfriend. But when she hears that her estranged mother, Juliet, has been seriously injured, Liv has no choice but to pack up her life and head home to beautiful Cape Sanctuary on the Northern California coast.

It’s just for a few months—that’s what Liv keeps telling herself. But the closer she gets to Cape Sanctuary, the painful memories start flooding back: Natalie, her vibrant, passionate older sister who downward-spiraled into addiction. The fights with her mother who enabled her sister at every turn. The overdose that took Natalie, leaving her now-teenaged daughter, Caitlin, an orphan.

As Liv tries to balance her own needs with those of her injured mother and an obstinate, resentful fifteen-year-old, it becomes clear that all three Harper women have been keeping heartbreaking secrets from one another. And as those secrets are revealed, Liv, Juliet, and Caitlin will see that it’s never too late—or too early—to heal family wounds and find forgiveness.

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I have been eyeing this book for a while, and since I have enjoyed other books by the author, it was easy to take the leap to download it.  I can’t wait to read it.

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TUESDAY EXCERPTS: “HEAVEN ADJACENT”

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events: First Chapter/Intros, now hosted by  Socrates Book Reviews; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by The Purple Booker.

Today’s feature is Heaven Adjacent, by Catherine Ryan Hyde, a book that has been resting on my Kindle for almost two years!

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Intro:  (When Somebody Hands You a Fish)

Roseanna was standing under the barely warm water in her tiny, cold makeshift shower when the bell at the gate began to clang.

She cursed to herself a few times, under her breath but out loud, rinsing off more or less all at once and grabbing a towel.  She stepped out into her shabby and small add-on bathroom, toweled her hair briefly, then wrapped the towel around herself.

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Teaser:  “That might be a bridge too far,” Roseanna said, almost without considering her words.  Then, remembering the feeling of freedom everywhere, she added, “But I guess I could think about it.”

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Synopsis:  Roseanna Chaldecott spent her life as a high-powered lawyer in Manhattan. But when her best friend and law partner dies suddenly, something snaps. Unsure of her future, Roseanna heads upstate on one tank of gas and with no plans to return.

In the foothills of the Adirondacks, Roseanna discovers the perfect hideout in a ramshackle farm. Its seventy-six acres are rich with possibilities and full of surprises, including a mother and daughter squatting on the property. Although company is the last thing Roseanna wants, she reluctantly lets them stay.

Roseanna and the young girl begin sculpting junk found around the farm into zoo animals, drawing more newcomers—including her estranged son, Lance. He pleads with Roseanna to return to the city, but she’s finally discovered where she belongs. It may not provide the solitude she originally sought, but her heart has found room for much more.

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What do you think?  I have enjoyed this author, so I am eager to make up for how long it stayed on my TBR before reading!

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TUESDAY EXCERPTS: “BEEN THERE, MARRIED THAT”

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events: First Chapter/Intros, originally hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea and now hosted by I’d Rather Be at the Beach; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by The Purple Booker.

Today’s feature is a relatively new book:  Been There, Married That, by Gigi Levangie.

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Intro:  Happy (?) Birthday!

“A toast!”

Trevor, my husband, tapped his Saint Louis glass with a sterling knife, and the glittery couples chattering around the candelit table snapped to attention.  Everyone paid attention to Trevor.  Even Pep, our tween with ADD, ADHD, and recent DOATM (Disgust of All Things Mom), paid attention when her father cleared his throat.

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Teaser:  They walked back up the driveway to their unmarked sedan, Gonazlez stiff and lumbering, Raskoff quick and officious.  My heart pounded like a Rihanna song in a sticky nightclub. (56%).

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Synopsis:Agnes Murphy Nash is in big trouble. When she returns home one evening only to find the locks changed on the gates of their mansion, the security guard breaks the news: her famous producer husband has filed for divorce. And he’s not going to play fair. Trevor Nash wants custody of their tween daughter, Pep, but only for the sake of appearances. And Agnes can’t let him win.

With the help of her ex-con sister, a Hollywood psychic, a ballsy female lawyer, and a host of friends and “frenemies,” Agnes realizes that when he changes the locks, she needs to change the rules. But a crisis can lead to opportunity, and for Agnes, this gigantic betrayal brings her to a crossroads that will have her asking herself what she really wants out of life, who she really wants to be, and which man she really loves.

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What do you think?  Would you keep reading? 

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TUESDAY EXCERPTS: “EIGHT PERFECT MURDERS”

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events: First Chapter/Intros, originally hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea and now hosted by I’d Rather Be at the Beach; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by The Purple Booker.

Today’s feature is a new thriller:  Eight Perfect Murders, by Peter Swanson.

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Intro:  The front door opened, and I heard the stamp of the FBI agent’s feet on the doormat.  It had just begun to snow, and the air that rushed into the store was heavy and brimming with energy.  The door shut behind the agent.  She must have been just outside when she’d called because it had only been about five minutes since I’d agreed to meet with her.

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Teaser:  I didn’t have the answers to those questions, but I did know, in my gut, that Gwen Mulvey was going to figure it out.  She’d put it all together so far and she was going to continue to put it together. (40%).

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Synopsis:  Years ago, bookseller and mystery aficionado Malcolm Kershaw compiled a list of the genre’s most unsolvable murders, those that are almost impossible to crack—which he titled “Eight Perfect Murders”—chosen from among the best of the best including Agatha Christie’s A. B. C. Murders, Patricia Highsmith’s Strangers on a Train, Ira Levin’s Death Trap, A. A. Milne’s Red House Mystery, Anthony Berkeley Cox’s Malice Aforethought, James M. Cain’s Double Indemnity, John D. Macdonald’s The Drowner, and Donna Tartt’s A Secret History.

But no one is more surprised than Mal, now the owner of the Old Devils Bookstore in Boston, when an FBI agent comes knocking on his door one snowy day in February. She’s looking for information about a series of unsolved murders that look eerily similar to the killings on Mal’s old list. And the FBI agent isn’t the only one interested in this bookseller who spends almost every night at home reading. There is killer is out there, watching his every move—a diabolical threat who knows way too much about Mal’s personal history, especially the secrets he’s never told anyone, even his recently deceased wife.

To protect himself, Mal begins looking into possible suspects . . . and sees a killer in everyone around him. But Mal doesn’t count on the investigation leaving a trail of death in its wake. Suddenly, a series of shocking twists leaves more victims dead—and the noose around Mal’s neck grows so tight he might never escape.

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Would you keep reading?  Do the snippets grab you?

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TUESDAY EXCERPTS: “PRETTY AS A PICTURE”

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events: First Chapter/Intros, originally hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea and now hosted by I’d Rather Be at the Beach; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by The Purple Booker.

Today’s feature is a recent download:  Pretty as a Picture, by Elizabeth Little.

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Intro:  (Prologue)

They say a picture’s worth a thousand words.

That’s not what I’d say.

I’d say it depends on the picture.  I’d say it depends on the size and the color and the subject and the print and the framing and the focus and the composition.  I’d say it depends on what you were doing the hour before, the day before, the year before, the life before.

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Teaser: As I walk, I slip my hands behind me and rub my fingertips against each other, just a little, running my thumb from index to pinky finger and back again, a quick one-two-three-four, one-two-three four.  I let the rest of my senses go soft.

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Synopsis:  An egomaniacal movie director, an isolated island, and a decades-old murder–the addictive new novel from the bestselling author of Dear Daughter

Marissa Dahl, a shy but successful film editor, travels to a small island off the coast of Delaware to work with the legendary–and legendarily demanding–director Tony Rees on a feature film with a familiar logline.

Some girl dies.

It’s not much to go on, but the specifics don’t concern Marissa. Whatever the script is, her job is the same. She’ll spend her days in the editing room, doing what she does best: turning pictures into stories.

But she soon discovers that on this set, nothing is as it’s supposed to be–or as it seems. There are rumors of accidents and indiscretions, of burgeoning scandals and perilous schemes. Half the crew has been fired. The other half wants to quit. Even the actors have figured out something is wrong. And no one seems to know what happened to the editor she was hired to replace.

Then she meets the intrepid and incorrigible teenage girls who are determined to solve the real-life murder that is the movie’s central subject, and before long, Marissa is drawn into the investigation herself.

The only problem is, the killer may still be on the loose. And he might not be finished.

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What do you think?  Do the snippets grab you?

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TUESDAY EXCERPTS: “THE OTHER MRS.”

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events: First Chapter/Intros, originally hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea and now hosted by I’d Rather Be at the Beach; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by The Purple Booker.

Today’s featured book is a recent download:  The Other Mrs., by Mary Kubica.

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Intro:  (Sadie)

There’s something off about the house.  Something that nags at me, makes me feel uneasy, though I don’t know what it is that makes me feel this way.  On the surface, it’s perfectly idyllic, gray with a large covered porch, one that runs the full width of the house.  It’s boxy and big, a foursquare farmhouse with windows aligned in rows, symmetrical in a way I find eye pleasing.

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Teaser:  I think about her in our bedroom the other night, watching us sleep.  The strange exchange we had in the hallway.  The photograph of her dead mother that she carries around on her phone.  These are abnormal behaviors. (53%).

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Synopsis:  Sadie and Will Foust have only just moved their family from bustling Chicago to small-town Maine when their neighbor Morgan Baines is found dead in her home. The murder rocks their tiny coastal island, but no one is more shaken than Sadie.

But it’s not just Morgan’s death that has Sadie on edge. And as the eyes of suspicion turn toward the new family in town, Sadie is drawn deeper into the mystery of what really happened that dark and deadly night. But Sadie must be careful, for the more she discovers about Mrs. Baines, the more she begins to realize just how much she has to lose if the truth ever comes to light.

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What do you think?  Would you keep reading?

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TUESDAY EXCERPTS: “THE RED LOTUS”

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events: First Chapter/Intros, originally hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea and now hosted by I’d Rather Be at the Beach; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by The Purple Booker.

Today’s featured book is an ARC with a release date of 3/17/20:  The Red Lotus, by Chris Bohjalian.

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Intro:  (Prologue) The opposite of a hospice?  Not a maternity ward or a NICU.  It’s a trick question.

The correct answer?  An emergency room.  In a hospice, you do everything you can to allow people to die.  In the ER?  You do all that you can to keep them alive.

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Teaser:  “No,” she wailed, an almost biblical ululation, “it’s not okay!  Nothing’s okay and nothing ever will be again!  My child is gone!  Our child is gone!”

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Synopsis:  The first time Alexis saw Austin, it was a Saturday night. Not in a bar, but in the emergency room where Alexis sutured a bullet wound in Austin’s arm. Six months later, on the brink of falling in love, they travel to Vietnam on a bike tour so that Austin can show her his passion for cycling and he can pay his respects to the place where his father and uncle fought in the war. But as Alexis sips white wine and waits at the hotel for him to return from his solo ride, two men emerge from the tall grass and Austin vanishes into thin air. The only clue he leaves behind is a bright yellow energy gel dropped on the road. As Alexis grapples with this bewildering loss, and deals with the FBI, Austin’s prickly family, and her colleagues at the hospital, Alexis uncovers a series of strange lies that force her to wonder: Where did Austin go? Why did he really bring her to Vietnam? And how much danger has he left her in? Set amidst the adrenaline-fueled world of the emergency room, The Red Lotus is a global thriller about those who dedicate their lives to saving people, and those who peddle death to the highest bidder.

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Would you keep reading?  I love this author’s books, so I definitely want to read it right away.

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TUESDAY EXCERPTS: “PERFECT LITTLE CHILDREN”

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events: First Chapter/Intros, originally hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea and now hosted by I’d Rather Be at the Beach; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by The Purple Booker.

Today’s feature is a new book:  Perfect Little Children, by Sophie Hannah.

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Intro:  (April 20, 2019)

Here we are, in the wrong place:  Wyddial Lane.  It’s a private road, as the sign unsubtly proclaims in letters larger than those spelling out its name, in a village called Hemingford Abbots.  I switch off the engine, stretch my back to release the ache from two hours of driving, and wait for Ben to notice that there’s no football ground in sight.

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Teaser:  Thank goodness someone understands the way my mind works.  I’m grateful for any scrap of evidence that proves I’m not losing the plot. (p. 62).

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Synopsis:  All Beth has to do is drive her son to his soccer game, watch him play, and then return home. Just because she knows her ex-best friend lives near the field, that doesn’t mean she has to drive past her house and try to catch a glimpse of her.

Why would Beth do that and risk dredging up painful memories? She hasn’t seen Flora for twelve years. She doesn’t want to see her today—or ever again. But she can’t resist. She parks outside the open gates of Newnham House, watches from across the road as Flora arrives and calls to her children Thomas and Emily to get out of the car.

Except . . . There’s something terribly wrong. Flora looks the same, only older. Twelve years ago, Thomas and Emily were five and three years old. Today, they look precisely as they did then. They are Thomas and Emily without a doubt, but they haven’t changed at all. They are no taller, no older. Why haven’t they grown? How is it possible that they haven’t grown up?

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What do you think?  Would you keep reading?  I always enjoy a book by this author.

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TUESDAY EXCERPTS: “WHEN YOU SEE ME”

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events: First Chapter/Intros, originally hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea and now hosted by I’d Rather Be at the Beach; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by The Purple Booker.

Today’s feature is a new book from a favorite author:  When You See Me, by Lisa Gardner.

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(Prologue) My mother likes to hum.  She stands at the stove, stirring this, tasting that, and humming, humming, humming.

I sit in a chair by the table.  I have a job. Grate the cheese.  It’s an easy job.  The queso blanco crumbles to the touch.  But I’m proud to do my part.

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Teaser:  “You will order.  You will eat.  You are part of a taskforce now, and you owe it to the rest of us to pull your shit together and keep functional. Got it?”

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Synopsis:  FBI Special Agent Kimberly Quincy and Sergeant Detective D. D. Warren have built a task force to follow the digital bread crumbs left behind by deceased serial kidnapper Jacob Ness. When a disturbing piece of evidence is discovered in the hills of Georgia, they bring Flora Dane and true-crime savant Keith Edgar to a small town where something seems to be deeply wrong. What at first looks like a Gothic eeriness soon hardens into something much more sinister…and they discover that for all the evil Jacob committed while alive, his worst secret is still to be revealed. Quincy and DD must summon their considerable skills and experience to crack the most disturbing case of their careers—and Flora must face her own past directly in the hope of saving others.

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What do you think? I have been following this series and love everything about the characters.  Would you keep reading?

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