eARC Review: They Never Learn by Layne Fargo

They Never Learn by Layne Fargo

Categories: Thriller

First Publication Date: 13th October 2020


I received an advance copy via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.


Synopsis: Scarlett Clark is an exceptional English professor. But she’s even better at getting away with murder.

Every year, she searches for the worst man at Gorman University and plots his well-deserved demise. Thanks to her meticulous planning, she’s avoided drawing attention to herself—but as she’s preparing for her biggest kill yet, the school starts probing into the growing body count on campus. Determined to keep her enemies close, Scarlett insinuates herself into the investigation and charms the woman in charge, Dr. Mina Pierce. Everything’s going according to her master plan…until she loses control with her latest victim, putting her secret life at risk of exposure.

Meanwhile, Gorman student Carly Schiller is just trying to survive her freshman year. Finally free of her emotionally abusive father, all Carly wants is to focus on her studies and fade into the background. Her new roommate has other ideas. Allison Hadley is cool and confident—everything Carly wishes she could be—and the two girls quickly form an intense friendship. So when Allison is sexually assaulted at a party, Carly becomes obsessed with making the attacker pay…and turning her fantasies about revenge into a reality.

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Review: Kept Animals by Kate Milliken

kept animals kate millikenRating: ★★★★☆

Categories: Contemporary Fiction, Coming-of-Age Fiction, F/F

It’s 1993, and Rory Ramos works as a ranch hand at the stable her stepfather manages in Topanga Canyon, California, a dry, dusty place reliant on horses and hierarchies. There she rides for the rich clientele, including twins June and Wade Fisk. While Rory draws the interest of out-and-proud June, she’s more intrigued by Vivian Price, the beautiful girl with the movie-star father who lives down the hill. Rory keeps largely separate from the likes of the Prices—but, perched on her bedroom windowsill, Rory steals glimpses of Vivian swimming in her pool nearly every night.

After Rory’s stepfather is involved in a tragic car accident, the lives of Rory, June, and Vivian become inextricably bound together. Rory discovers photography, begins riding more competitively, and grows closer to gorgeous, mercurial Vivian, but despite her newfound sense of self, disaster lurks all around her: in the parched landscape, in her unruly desires, in her stepfather’s wrecked body and guilty conscience.One night, as the relationships among these teenagers come to a head, a forest fire tears through the canyon, and Rory’s life is changed forever. Continue reading

eARC Review: My Heart’s in the Highlands by Amy Hoff

My Heart's in the Highlands amy hoff

Rating: ★★★☆☆

Categories: Historical Romance, F/F

I received an advance copy via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Lady Jane Crichton is a scientist, one of the seven women to have gone to the Edinburgh University, even if they weren’t given diplomas for their graduations. She is smart and beautiful, happy in a marriage of convenience with David, who gives her the means and the support to pursue her career, and for whom she guards a secret. When Jane creates a time machine and travels to the 13th century, the last thing she expects is that the people she thought of as “savages” may be, in many ways, far more civilized than 1888 Edinburgh. She meets Ainslie, the daughter of the clean chief, and slowly finds herself realizing she might be falling in love for the first time in her life. Continue reading

eARC Review: Throwaway Girls by Andrea Contos

throwaway girls andrea contos

Rating: ★★★★☆

Categories: YA Thriller, F/F

I received advance copies via Edelweiss and Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

In Throwaway Girls, Caroline’s best friend has gone missing. The day she disappeared, Caroline was supposed to meet her, and the guilt is suffocating. As she tries to get over a painful breakup and the loss of the one person who made life worth living, Caroline now must find her best friend – she knows the police isn’t looking in the right places, and as they try to frame a teacher, Caroline knows he’s not guilty. It’s someone else – someone who’s been taking girls no one cares to look for.

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Review: Supper Club by Lara Williams

supper club lara williams

Rating: ★★★★☆

Categories: Literary Fiction, Contemporary Fiction

Goodreads / Skoob / The StoryGraph

Roberta spends her life trying not to take up space. At almost thirty, she is adrift and alienated from life. Stuck in a mindless job and reluctant to pursue her passion for food, she suppresses her appetite and recedes to the corners of rooms. But when she meets Stevie, a spirited and effervescent artist, their intense friendship sparks a change in Roberta, a shift in her desire for more. Together, they invent the Supper Club, a transgressive and joyous collective of women who gather to celebrate, rather than admonish, their hungers. They gather after dark and feast until they are sick; they break into private buildings and leave carnage in their wake; they embrace their changing bodies; they stop apologizing. For these women, each extraordinary yet unfulfilled, the club is a way to explore, discover, and push the boundaries of the space they take up in the world. Yet as the club expands, growing both in size and rebellion, Roberta is forced to reconcile herself to the desire and vulnerabilities of the body–and the past she has worked so hard to repress. Devastatingly perceptive and savagely funny, Supper Club is an essential coming-of-age story for our times. Continue reading

If you liked this book, try this F/F book! #2

Hello readers!

I really enjoy writing this kind of post, as it makes me think about the stuff I’ve read and can at times be a bit challenging to find comparable books when I want to recommend something in particular. It’s incredibly exciting that these past years there have been some really great F/F books coming out and getting more hype than in the past. Still we have a long way to go, and I think a great way to get people to read books they wouldn’t have thought of picking up before is finding readalikes!

I have another post like this: If you liked this book, try this F/F book!

Blog Divider

If you liked Normal People, try Exciting Times

normal people sally rooney exciting times noise dolan

Normal People is a very hyped book right now, for good reason. The love story of Marianne and Connell, their uncertainty, self-destruction and magnetic pull towards each other make for such a compelling read – and I think Naoise Dolan’s Exciting Times has a similar feel. Ava, living in Hong Kong and teaching English, is in a relationship with Julian, who does not love her but likes her company. When she meets Edith, a beautiful and powerful lawyer, they start falling in love, but Ava fails to tell her about her relationship with Julian. Choosing between her new and unknown relationship with Edith and the familiarity but lovelessness of Julian is scary and difficult, and Ava doesn’t know how to make that decision. It’s a quiet and interesting book, and the writing style resembles Sally Rooney’s quite a lot!

Normal People by Sally Rooney Goodreads / Review

Exciting Times by Naoise Dolan Goodreads / Review Continue reading

eARC Review: Meet Cute Club, by Jack Harbon

meet cute club jack harbonRating: ★★★☆☆

Categories: M/M Romance

Goodreads

I received an advance copy from the author in exchange for an honest review.

The Meet Cute Club has been the one thing Jordan is truly passionate about, and he always looks forward to spending his Saturday afternoons talking about romance books and eating delicious baked things. But attendance is dwindling and the club can’t survive anyone else leaving, so when the rude new bookseller from Jordan’s favorite bookstore decides to join it, he can hardly refuse. After all, romance is for everyone, right? Even for rude, handsome Rex and his insufferable attitude… right? Continue reading

Mini-Review: Snare by Lilja Sigurðardóttir

snare lilja sigurdardottirRating: ★★★★☆

Categories: Noir Thriller, F/F, translated fiction

Goodreads

Snare is the story of Sonja, a mother who finds herself in a nasty divorce settlement after her husband catches her in bed with another woman. To be able to pay her lawyer’s fees, she starts to smuggle drugs into the country, and finds out she is actually very good at that. She needs only a few more jobs before she has enough money saved to try to get custody of her son again – if she can survive and escape the Snare.

I did not expect to like this as much as I did, in fact – I’ve picked up so many books that ended up disappointing lately and felt like a cold, noir mystery. The writing is spare and to the point, which I really enjoyed. This is the kind of noir that I think of when I want to read noir, and although I’d have preferred it to be a standalone, I think it’s very encouraging that the books are slim. I loved the complicated relationship between Agla and Sonja, and the complexity of the situations they found themselves in both by their own doing and  by circumstance – and the scheming of others. This is a quite intense read!

eARC Reviews: Exciting Times by Naoise Dolan, Apartment by Teddy Wayne

exciting times noise dolanExciting Times by Naoise Dolan

Rating: ★★★★☆

Categories: Contemporary

Goodreads

I received an advance copy via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.

Exciting Times is the story of Ava, a young woman from Ireland living in Hong Kong and working as an English teacher. She has a complicated relationship with Julian, who’s not technically her boyfriend, and things complicate further when Julian leaves Hong Kong for several months and Ava meets Edith. She does not tell Edith about Julian, and doesn’t tell Julian about Edith. Hopefully things will just sort themselves out somehow… Continue reading

eARC Review: Harrow the Ninth (The Locked Tomb #2), by Tamsyn Muir

harrow the ninth tamsyn muir

Rating: ★★★★☆

Genres: Fantasy, Science Fiction, F/F

Goodreads

I received an advance copy from Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.

Harrow is now a Lyctor, and joins God and the other Lyctors in a war they cannot win. Her health is failing and her mind is, too – she is almost sure she’s going mad.

Harrow the Ninth is a puzzle of a book – entirely different from Gideon the Ninth, it starts exchanging between present (second person) and past (person), which I found terribly confusing. For a (fleeting) moment I considered not continuing the book at all because it was frustrating to try to keep up; while book 1 is deliciously addictive from chapter one, it took book 2 almost 70% of the book to feel the same way for me. Harrow is quite different from the first book, and the reader should be ready to be patient with it. It is worth reading through the confusing chapters, I promise, and once you start getting answers (and some of them you can try to guess yourself, which was exciting for me), it’s seriously worth it. The twists blew my mind. Continue reading