Behind Her Eyes Review

*BEWARE OF SPOILERS*

Louise is a single mom, a secretary, stuck in a modern-day rut. On a rare night out, she meets a man in a bar and sparks fly. Though he leaves after they kiss, she’s thrilled she finally connected with someone. When Louise arrives at work on Monday, she meets her new boss, David. The man from the bar. The very married man from the bar…who says the kiss was a terrible mistake but who still can’t keep his eyes off Louise.

Louise I enjoyed as a character. Her perspective being the other woman in a marriage was interesting to read from especially since she’s quite relatable. Some of the decisions she makes like continuing her friendship with Adele were not the greatest but I can see why she would want to.

Adele I honestly thought was inconsequential at first. I figured this was just mainly focus on David’s infidelity’s and finding out that he was actually behind the fire that killed her parents. I definitely didn’t think she would progress into the sociopathic character she was portrayed to be in the end. I was very much intrigued and entertained by the way she played Louise and orchestrated everything, to say I was shocked would be an understatement.

David is a tricky one. I can understand the predicament he has found himself in being stuck in this marriage with Adele but if he would of just come clean from the start like he wanted to none of this would of happened. I think he is just as culpable as Adele and I feel like there should of been some ramifications for being an accessory. He is still a cheater at the end of the day and there was nothing really about the man that appealed to me. I don’t understand why Adele and Louise are both so enamored by him, we only ever see him drunk and crazed most of the time.

The overall pacing was very well done. Though not a lot happens for about 3/4 of this book I still felt compelled to continue reading and figure out what Adele was going to do next and what was this secret she was holding over David’s head. I liked the supernatural element, it gave the book a little excitement, especially after Louise figured it out.

⭐️4/5 stars That last twist at the end was mind blowing!!

I Kissed Shara Wheeler Review

Chloe Green is so close to winning. After her moms moved her from SoCal to Alabama for high school, she’s spent the past four years dodging gossipy classmates and a puritanical administration at Willowgrove Christian Academy. The thing that’s kept her going: winning valedictorian. Her only rival: prom queen Shara Wheeler, the principal’s perfect progeny. But a month before graduation, Shara kisses Chloe and vanishes.

Chloe as a character is definitely interesting and she felt very authentic. Sometimes when I’m reading contemporary books the characters either read too young or old but I feel like Casey McQuiston got all of these characters pretty spot on. I liked the fact that Chloe rebels against the rigid rules and regulations at her school. At first I was confused as to why Chloe was so adamant in figuring out what happened to Shara and why she just had to follow her clues. I felt like there was no motivating factors for her to continue chasing after Shara when it was obvious she was just messing with them and sending them on this wild goose chase.

I didn’t like Shara’s character at all honestly. From what we find out about her throughout the course of the book she has always capitalized off her position as the principal’s daughter and uses and manipulates everyone around her for her own gain. Her quest she sets out for Chloe, Smith and Rory again really showcase how much of a bad person she is and I didn’t really like how she is supposed to be redeemed at the end. We don’t get to see her have conversations with Smith and Rory about how she used them and vice versa, we’re just supposed to accept that they are all good and dying each other’s hair. She just wasn’t really held accountable for anything and that annoyed me.

Overall I just didn’t understand what the purpose of the book was. It was centered around Shara however we don’t even meet her until almost three quarters of the way through. We see everything through Chloe’s perspective and she doesn’t have the nicest things to say about her and then I’m expected to believe that it was actually love she was feeling. Shara very nearly sabotaged Chloe’s whole academic career because she actually liked her too much? Just doesn’t make sense to me.

I understand that these are teenagers and maybe the way they feel isn’t supposed to make sense and this book was just supposed to be about accepting who you are and coming to terms with your feelings and growing from that, but I came out of it not feeling miffed. The other characters were entertaining and distinctive for the most part. The Rory and Smith subplot was adorable and I really enjoyed seeing them come together!

⭐️2/5 stars I can understand the appeal, wasn’t for me though…

Well Matched Review

Single mother April Parker has lived in Willow Creek for twelve years with a wall around her heart. On the verge of being an empty nester, she’s decided to move on from her quaint little town, and asks her friend Mitch for his help with some home improvement projects to get her house ready to sell. Mitch Malone is known for being the life of every party, but mostly for the attire he wears to the local Renaissance Faire — a kilt (and not much else) that shows off his muscled form to perfection. While he agrees to help April, he needs a favour too: she’ll pretend to be his girlfriend at an upcoming family dinner, so that he can avoid the lectures about settling down and having a more “serious” career than high school coach and gym teacher

April as a character isn’t very likeable to be honest, she is standoffish and pushes people away unnecessarily. For someone who had no intentions of staying in this town after her daughter goes to college she is very much worried about what they would be saying about her. I don’t understand why there is anything wrong with being open and public about her relationship with Mitch and it was quite rude of her to just negate their obvious feeling for each other and try to keep him a secret.

I like that Mitch called her out after she downplayed their relationship and he established boundaries with her. I kind of wish this would of been a dual perspective so we could of got to know Mitch more when he was at home and how he navigated his family before he brought April to meet them. I liked that we got that background about him and his family and how they have put his profession down over the years and don’t take him seriously, it gave the book and Mitch as a character much needed depth.

Usually I like fake relationships as a trope but I feel like in this case April didn’t get into it enough for me to fully believe in it. Mitch 100% did, I really enjoyed him as a character and it honestly made sense why he would be into April but she didn’t reciprocate it enough, it’s more like she felt obligated at the time otherwise their ruse would of been exposed. She obviously didn’t want to get judged for dating a ‘himbo’ at her age and it showed throughout the book through her actions.

It was overall not bad, I could overlook April’s flaws and get on board with the storyline. It was well paced and kept me invested throughout though it was kind of predictable. Jen DeLuca kind of has a formula with these books and you can easily see where things were headed and the outcome at the end. Nothing wrong with that though, I didn’t go into this book expecting anything more so I was still entertained!

⭐️3/5 stars Honestly forgettable but enjoyed at the time!

Girls of Fate and Fury Review

*SPOILERS AHEAD*

There’s one thing Lei knows – she can never return to the Hidden Palace. The trauma and tragedy she suffered behind those opulent walls will plague her forever. She cannot be trapped there with the sadistic king again, especially without Wren. The last time Lei saw the girl she loved, Wren was fighting an army of soldiers in a furious battle to the death.

Lei has evolved into a character that I don’t really enjoy. I know she has suffered and endured traumatic events at the hands of the King over the course of her time at the Hidden Palace but it’s the fact that she chose to stay there and not escape and yet had to rely on others to concoct the plans and execute everything. Even though she wants to kill the king (which she reiterates every time she is near him) she doesn’t actively do anything except memorise her way through the palace. I honestly would of been more impressed if she did end up sacrificing herself for Wren and she didn’t get a happy ending, really make this a tragic story and set this series apart.

I’ve been quite ambivalent towards Wren throughout the course of the series and that honestly didn’t change in this book. I get that she loves Lei and being apart isn’t ideal but the way she agonises over it every second got boring. I would of loved if we got more insight into the Hanno’s and the actual war. I just found her storyline to be a bit lacking and uneventful honestly.

Overall I just feel like the stakes weren’t there. I just knew that Lei and Wren were going to make it out alive and the fact that there wasn’t any shocking or surprising twists made me a little disappointed. Don’t get me wrong there were definitely twists but nothing that evoked any kind emotion from me. Also the pacing of the book was just way off, the first 3/4 was super slow and then the last quarter was rushed and chaotic.

I wasn’t that big a fan of the way Natasha Ngan wrote the fighting and war scenes. It made it hard to visualise what was happening and where the characters were. I had to go back and reread some passages a few times because I couldn’t figure out where certain characters were or how they moved to this other location. It brought me out of the story and didn’t really make for a good reading experience.

⭐️2/5 stars Kind of wish Girls of Paper and Fire was a stand-a-lone…

All Her Little Secrets Review

*BEWARE OF SPOILERS BELOW*

Ellice Littlejohn seemingly has it all: an Ivy League law degree, a well-paying job as a corporate attorney in midtown Atlanta, great friends, and a “for fun” relationship with a rich, charming executive—her white boss, Michael. But everything changes one cold January morning when Ellice goes to meet Michael… and finds him dead with a gunshot to his head.

Ellice was definitely an interesting character. I honestly didn’t think she had much to hide per se but as the story progresses and we find out more of her secrets I felt sad for her. She had a traumatic upbringing and even though she managed to escape her circumstances she was left feeling immense guilt for leaving her little brother there. Which is obviously why she kept bailing him out and loaning him money. I liked to see her kind of devolve as she delves further into the mystery behind Michael’s death and who she thought was behind it.

I think it would of been more interesting if this was a dual perspective from Sam’s point of view as well. He is so wrapped up in this whole conspiracy and he eventually pays for it with his life. I still feel like he could of gave us more insight into what they had to deal with in childhood and it could of been a fascinating to see how contrasting their lives are now.

I did however really enjoyed the flashbacks to Ellice’s past. I like that there was more to her than what we originally perceived. Vera I adore and I liked the fact that she is still a major factor in both Ellice and Sam’s life and they continue to visit and show their love for her. It added a lot of depth to the storyline and showed us why Ellice acts the way she does and her reasonings behind her decisions she’s made in her life, like keeping her little secrets.

In terms of the actual mystery surrounding Michael’s death and who was behind it, I was underwhelmed. I just feel like there wasn’t enough high stakes moments that could of upped my entertainment factor. I want to be shocked and even though there were some twists throughout the plot I didn’t foresee it was all that interesting to find out. Talks about shipments and deliveries and gun orders to find out about a secret deal that leads to a conspiracy was boring.

⭐️2/5 stars I was just a little bored at times..