Emily Carpenter recommends
Her Dying Day (2022)Mindy Carlson"Mindy Carlson's irresistible new book, Her Dying Day, is a charming, expertly-written mystery with a clever heroine at the center who wisecracks her way through the fascinating case of a missing Agatha-Christie-like author, solving the cold case and coming to terms with her difficult past with an aplomb that kept me turning the pages at lightning speed. Slick, sophisticated, and fun, this one absolutely sparkles." In Her Defense (2022)(Riversedge Law Club, book 1)Amy Impellizzeri"Finally--the female-driven, character-rich, John Grisham-style legal thriller I've been waiting for..." The Hitman's Daughter (2022)(Mave Michael, book 1)Carolyne Topdjian"Carolyne Topdjian's THE HITMAN'S DAUGHTER nails every classic gothic horror trope in the most elegant of ways, drawing us into a ghostly suspense story with exquisite imagery, lush language and a cast of characters in the tradition of the best whodunits. Sumptuous, sinister, and seductive, I was both charmed and haunted." Everything We Didn't Say (2021)Nicole Baart"Nicole Baart skillfully blends suspense and family drama like no one else. Everything We Didn’t Say is an atmospheric barn-burner that jumps from past to present in an Iowa farm community rife with secrets, simmering grudges, and an unsolved murder. I was utterly enthralled." Six Weeks to Live (2021)Catherine McKenzie"Catherine McKenzie works her magic again with Six Weeks to Live, combining harrowing domestic suspense with a razor-sharp crime thriller that had me riveted from page one. Hands down, my favorite book this year." More recommendations Bitterroot Lake (2021)Alicia Beckman"Bitterroot Lake is a twisty, haunting thriller propelled by a delicious hint of otherworldliness. It's a book that's both an expert mystery and an affirmation of love and family. I was absolutely enthralled." The Last One Home (2021)Victoria Helen Stone"In The Last One Home, Victoria Helen Stone weaves another sure-handed story, this one about mothers, the fierce love they have for their children, and just how far they will go to protect their progeny. This is a suspense novel that’s in part a love story, as well as a chilling mystery. But it’s the kind of tale that sneaks up on you, revealing discoveries in the last scorching chapters that flip the whole narrative on its head. Full of shifting family loyalties and recollections of the past, and creepy, alone-in-the-countryside vibes, this book held me, start to finish, in its mesmerizing thrall." After Alice Fell (2021)Kim Taylor Blakemore"After Alice Fell is an enthralling, haunting, and harrowing gothic mystery that sweeps the reader into a postCivil War New England that consists of broken families and even more broken minds. Easily one of my favorite books of the year, this story stayed with me long after I’d read the last page. I absolutely loved it!" Not One of Us (2021)Debbie Herbert"What a pleasure it was to surrender to Not One of Us, chock full of thick, humid atmosphere and authentic, vivid characters, and let it pull me into its deep-South trance of unsolved murders, dirty cops, and a family torn apart by guilt, and their own desperate need for each other. Engima is a town you’re going to want to visit over and over again. This book’s an absolute knockout." Under a Gilded Moon (2020)Joy Jordan-Lake"I was swept away by this dazzling, masterfully written tale of the clash of classes and cultures around the Biltmore in North Carolina. Joy Jordan-Lake brings the past alive with impeccable details, raw emotion, and parallels to our present world. A triumph." Loss Lake (2020)Amber Cowie"Mallory Dent has run to Loss Lake to recover from the loss of her husband. But it’s only as she meets the townspeople of McNamarawho seem oddly connected through multiple tragedies and a belief in a monster who lives under the lake’s surfacethat she begins to understand the implications of her own past. Meditative, eerie, and surreal like the best fairy tales are, Amber Cowie’s Loss Lake builds in quiet strength until the final delivery of a knockout punch." Girls of Brackenhill (2020)Kate Moretti"Finally, an honest-to-goodness gothic ghost story, full of everything you need in a story like thisa creepy castle, suspicious townspeople, and a dying old man who may just have answers to everything. In Moretti’s deft hands the story unspools with an expert unfolding of clues. As the deaths pile up, you’ll feel just as disoriented and full of unnamed dread as Hannah the main character, trying to figure out what really happened to her sister all those years ago. Oh. And wait’ll you see what’s in the basement
" Never Turn Back (2020)(Faulkner Family Thriller, book 1)Christopher Swann"Christopher Swann understands the dread that an incidental glance, a casual comment, silence between two characters can conjure. And it's with this delicate but sure touch that he tells the story of a man trying to make sense of his violent past and prevent it from destroying the new life he's built." Girl Gone Mad (2020)Avery Bishop"This relentless, pulse-pounding thriller crossed with a brutal, unflinching examination of the fallout from bullying had me on the edge of my seat until the final shocking page. Bishop knocks it out of the park!" Stories We Never Told (2020)Sonja Yoerg"Obsession, jealousy, and secrets smolder into a deadly fire in Yoerg’s latest, as a woman’s marriage and career implode at the same time her ex’s life seems to be on the rise. Astutely observed and beautifully written with echoes of Highsmith’s Ripley, this one’s got a deliciously diabolical villain to die for." Drowning with Others (2019)Linda Keir"A body at the bottom of a lake. A married couple with secrets from their boarding school days. And their resourceful daughter who just may uncover a truth she doesn't want to know. Drowning with Others, a riveting murder mystery rife with poetry, lust, and lies, captivated me to the last page. A sumptuous, dark tale I could not put down!" Confidential (2019)Ellie Monago"The three women being treated by psychotherapist Dr. Michael Baylor are complicated, secretive, and determined to get what they want. But which of them is a murderer? As their stories unfolded, I was swept headlong into this disturbing tale, not sure who to trust until the very last chapter. A sharp, wicked psychological chiller with a final twist that made me shout out loud." Forget You Know Me (2019)Jessica Strawser"Friendships crack, marriages erode, and dangerous deceits rise to the surface in this twisty, emotionally complex, powder keg of a tale." The Line Between (2019)(Line Between , book 1)Tosca Lee"Lee's terrifyingly realistic apocalypse unfolds in the equally harrowing shadow of the seductive, soul-swallowing cult Wynter Roth was raised in, the survival of the world now depending on the strength, bravery, and faith of a young woman who's only known deceit and betrayal from those she trusted. Smartly written, tautly paced, with an utterly irresistible protagonist, The Line Between is pure exhilaration on a page." Daughters of the Lake (2018)Wendy Webb"In Wendy Webb’s entrancing Daughters of the Lake, dreams open a door between the dead and the living, a lake spirit calls to a family of gifted women, and a century-old murder is solved under the cover of fog. This northern gothic gem is everything that is delicious, spooky, and impossible to put down." Whisper Me This (2018)Kerry Anne King"Moving and emotionally taut, Whisper Me This is a gut-wrenching story of a family fractured by abuse and lies
and the ultimate sacrifice of a mother’s love. King once again proves herself an expert with family drama. A triumph of a book." The Trailing Spouse (2018)Jo Furniss"An exotic setting, characters chock-full of questionable motives, and slow-burning intrigue blend together in this utterly unique domestic thriller (or psychological suspense). As swept up as I was in the glittering, privileged world of British expats in Singapore and the secrets they hide in their glamorous air-conditioned glass penthouses, I was equally gobsmacked by the final reveal." The One That Got Away (2018)Joe Clifford"The mystery of The One That Got Away sucked me in, but it was the emotional punch of Alex Salerno’s return home that broke my heart. With its sharply observed characters and setting and crime-thriller pace, its tough exterior belies a vast, unexpected tenderness. I cannot not quit thinking about this book." In the Vines (2018)Shannon Kirk"A beautiful, bloody, harrowing mashup of all the best elements in gothic horror set against the backdrop of a (more) demented version of Grey Gardens. An absolute stunner." When Never Comes (2018)Barbara Davis"Brimming with compassion and a refreshingly grown-up romance, Barbara Davis’s story of a woman who has left herself behind in more ways than one is imbued with grace, patience, and hope. Second chances abound in this uplifting tale about starting over and how letting go of our nevers just might be the only thing that lets us move forward." Here We Lie (2018)Paula Treick DeBoard"Set against a backdrop of college life, politics, and sexual assault, Paul Treick DeBoard explores the exquisite joy of discovering the perfect friendship-then the acute pain of disentangling when that friendship sours. Here We Lie takes you a remarkable journey of two girls who learn, together and alone, to decide who they will ultimately be-it is at once observant, devastating, and thoroughly satisfying." The Little Crew of Butchers (2017)Francine Pascal"In Little Crew of Butchers, Francine Pascal tells an unsettling story of four desperate days in the life of a homeless man. As cruelty, love, and violence converge in the final explosive chapters, the truth is all too clear: only we can stop the cycles of inhumanity that plague society." The Depth of Lies (2017)E C Diskin"Fans of E.C. Diskin’s thrillers will cheer her foray into domestic suspense with this juicy mystery
You won't want to miss this one!" Wives of War (2017)Soraya M Lane"In Soraya M. Lane's captivating historical drama, three heroic nurses brave bullets, blood, and heartache to survive wartime France, all the while struggling to keep hope alive for a peaceful future. Scarlet, Ellie, and Lucy’s journey through the horrors of WWII is, at the same time, moving, harrowing, and ultimately satisfying." The Truth We Bury (2017)Barbara Taylor Sissel"In this engrossing murder mystery, Barbara Taylor Sissel examines questions of parental protection and control, set against the backdrop of a traditional Texas wedding that devolves into a family tragedy of epic proportions. Sissel’s characters are all too real, their harrowing devotion and blind love for their children not far from what every parent feels. As their choices play out, and the consequences and truth unspool, you will be riveted until the very last page." The Saturday Evening Girls Club (2017)Jane Healey"Follow the four women of Jane Healey's immersive historical drama and you'll come face to face with how different life truly was for women at the turn of the century. As Caprice, Thea, Ada, and Maria fight for the right to live, love, and work according to the changing times, you'll root for them at every turn to find their hearts' desire."
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