Reading Roundup: April 2019

The Lost Man by Jane Harper

This is the third book I've read by Harper and it was just as good as her first two. I love the way she incorporates the setting into her mysteries so that it nearly becomes another character. There was a twist in this book that came fairly late in the game, but it worked out with the way the story was written. If you like mysteries and are looking for a new author to read, I'd recommend trying Harper's books. 

Tripwire by Traci Hunter Abramson

I've read some of Abramson's other books for past Whitney contests and generally enjoyed them. This one had an intriguing concept for the plot, but unfortunately it did not develop the concept well and the middle portion of the novel really dragged. I liked the characters and wouldn't mind reading more about them, but this book needed a bit more action and an adjustment in the pacing.

Conviction by Robbin J. Peterson

This book was one of my favorite Whitney finalists this year. The characters are all realistically human and the plot is well-paced with plenty of unexpected twists and turns. I particularly liked the way the author wove in Mormonism in a way that was natural

The Darkling Bride by Laura Andersen

I love historical mysteries like this, and I loved the Irish setting. Some aspects of the story were a bit uneven and it dragged in the middle, but this was mostly a lot of fun and a great read.

Second Look by Julie Coulter Bellon

The twists and turns in this book were well-paced and took me by surprise. Although I thought the romance was rushed, the chemistry between the leads was realistic and I liked how they had to work together to solve the mystery. 

A Familiar Fear by Kathi Oram Peterson

This book had some typos that were distracting, and I didn't feel like the motivations of the protagonist were always clear. However, the major twist was definitely a surprise to me and I liked the characterization and setting. 

Love at Lakewood Med by TJ Amberson

I was excited about this book because I love reading about medicine, but sadly I was disappointed because it didn't start out well and never got better. The protagonist was really immature and made horrible decisions, and I kept waiting for her to grow up a little. The pacing of the romance was also uneven and the ending was rushed.

Until We Kissed by Heather B. Moore

Heather Moore is a skilled writer and the descriptions and pacing in this book were great. However, I had a hard time figuring out the protagonist--despite the fact that she apparently runs a library and has an advanced degree, she seemed very immature. Obviously doing the mature thing and breaking up with the man she was semi-dating would have killed the story and there wouldn't have been a book, but it would have made her a more interesting and sympathetic character.

Match Me if You Can by Lindzee Armstrong

I have no interest in football or reality TV, so I found it hard to relate to the protagonist of this particular book. The motivations for her behavior were not always clear, so the pacing of the book was inconsistent. Thankfully it was fairly short and easy to read, but I don't think I'm going to read any more in the series.

Silver Star by Lisa Swinton

This book was a little cheesy and the plot was a bit predictable, but the characters were all so endearing that I could forgive that. It was a lot of fun to read and I am going to miss everyone now that it's done.

Still Lives by Maria Hummel

I didn't know anything about this book before I grabbed it off the new book display at the library. I did not figure out the mystery before things were revealed at the end, and I liked that the book took place in an art gallery since this is a world I am unfamiliar with. There were, however, too many characters and loose ends that should have been either tied up or eliminated with better editing.

The Clockmaker's Daughter by Kate Morton

I've liked most of Morton's books up to now, although some are better written than others. I love historical fiction, and really love the way she weaves together a historical mystery with the contemporary characters sorting it out. I had been looking forward to this book for a while, but was a bit disappointed that it wasn't one of her best. Some parts of it were wonderful, but there were too many characters and too many loose ends that didn't quite come together to make a satisfying ending.


Legally Blonde

I can't believe this is the only movie I've watched this month--I've been watching too much TV and not taking the time to watch things on my long list of movies I'd like to see. Somehow I never got around to watching this movie, but when I wanted something light and funny it really hit the spot. I was surprised by how much I liked it--it's not perfect, but it avoids a lot of stereotypes in the humor and was actually pretty heartwarming in the end.


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