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The Mayfly by James Hazel

The MayflyThe Mayfly by James Hazel

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

First things first: This book was FANTASTIC. If you’re a mystery/thriller fan, you need to check this book out. OK, now on to the details.

I don’t want to give too much away because the reveals are great, and you’re going to want to stay up late reading.

The book follows Charlie Priest, a former cop turned lawyer with his own issues. But despite his flaws, he’s a fantastic investigator, who is attacked by a strange man one night in his home. The next day, the man is dead – killed brutally – and the victim’s family wants to hire Priest to figure out what happened. The answers lie deep in history, from the horrors of Buchenwald in 1945 and a remote farm post-war, all leading to to the present day. Priest must fight to figure out what is going on as the body count rises.

The elements of the book are blended really well, creating an atmosphere that just screams “thriller.” This book combines dark history, creepy families and just enough gore to make you want to sleep with one eye open. Figuring out how all the pieces fit together is a great challenge and I did not figure it out before the ending.

The scenario presented in the book is just real enough to really scare you, which also adds to the fun. The characters are fantastic; well written and flawed, but with enough character to like them. I think this is the start of a new series, and I’m ecstatic to see them again.

Overall, I throughly enjoyed this book. It is one of my top reads so far this year.

Highly recommended.

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Posted in Reviews

In the Shadow of Lakecrest by Elizabeth Blackwell

In the Shadow of LakecrestIn the Shadow of Lakecrest by Elizabeth Blackwell

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I DEVOURED this book.

I was worried that the historical (1920’s) setting would give the book a stilted/overly complicated style. But this book was such an easy read on top of such a great story, that I didn’t even realize how quickly I was racing through it.

The novel tells the love story of Kate Moore – raised by a poor mother who dreamed of a rich, handsome husband for her only child – and Matthew Lemont, a wealthy heir to a Chicago family’s fortune and terrible legacy. The Lemonts are well-respected, but also feared due to rumors of strange happenings on the family estate, Lakecrest. Many of the tumors surround Matthew’s aunt, Cecily, an eccentric artist who disappeared into a strange building 16 years before. As Kate unravels the family’s secrets, can she keep her sanity and her life from falling apart?

This story has it all: rumors of strange, heathen rituals, an evil mother-in-law, family secrets, a weird, sprawling estate; literally every gothic novel element is there, just waiting to be unraveled. And the author does a great job of using each element just enough to keep you guessing. There are enough moving parts to keep you guessing until the end.

I also liked that you couldn’t trust any of the characters in the novel. It wasn’t clear who was telling the truth, who was insane, etc. throughout the book. Even Kate comes under suspicion. That’s really the mark of a great suspense novel, when you truly feel you can’t even trust the person telling the story – you’re so wrapped up in the intrigue.

I also loved the ending. So neat and clean. It really was the exact perfect way it should have ended.

I highly recommend this novel to people who love suspense and great thrillers. I look forward to this author’s next work.

A++

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Looking ahead to 2017!

Looking back, 2016 was a big year for ebooknerd Reviews! I’m so proud of how far this blog has come and am proud of the connections I’ve been able to make with all of you.

Now, it’s time to look forward to 2017, and I’m kicking around some ideas to make this next year even better. Here’s some ideas, please let me know what you’d like to see and what you think is a good idea or bad idea.

In-depth book discussions via video. Like a video review, but with much more discussion of the plot, characters, etc.

  • Guest posts/reviews
  • More author interviews
  • Book previews

Cheers to a fabulous new year!

Posted in Reviews

Stone Coffin by Knell Eriksson

Stone CoffinStone Coffin by Kjell Eriksson
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This book has great potential, but doesn’t to the exciting action promised in the description. It’s more a crawl through an intriguing-enough mystery, rather than an action-packed escapade.

The book follows Ann Lindell, who is investigating the murder of a woman and her young daughter soon be husband is tracked down, and his fate leaves more questions than answers. Why would a successful young man on the brink of taking in some big money run down his family? Or if he didn’t do it, who did?

Sounds good right? This book had so much potential but gets bogged down in the personal trials of the investigative team and action that unfolds fairly slowly. The action never really gets going and the mystery just ends up….solved. They figure it out and move on, I guess.

I wasn’t too worried about who the culprit was by the end of the novel – but I was interested to see how it all fit together. More because I did like the idea of the novel, and wanted to see it through. But I wasn’t turning pages frenetically or anything.

And there is an interesting twist, don’t get me wrong. But the pace of the novel is so slow. It really takes away from the excitement that you get from most thrillers and police procedurals.

Plus, because it’s a series, the personal issues presented in the novel don’t get solved. They’re left for the next installment – boo!

So, I don’t know what to say about this one. It has the potential, but it’s not there yet. Not my cup of tea.

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