The Paradox Hotel by Rob Hart

It’s been a crazy few months between balancing work and health, but it’s almost summer time, and I’m excited to finally have the time and space to catch up on reading!

Thank you Ballantine Books for my gifted copy in exchange for my honest review.

Synopsis: January Cole’s job just got a whole lot harder. Not that running security at the Paradox was ever really easy. Nothing’s simple at a hotel where the ultra-wealthy tourists arrive costumed for a dozen different time periods, all eagerly waiting to catch their “flights” to the past. Or where proximity to the timeport makes the clocks run backward on occasion—and, rumor has it, allows ghosts to stroll the halls. None of that compares to the corpse in room 526. The one that seems to be both there and not there. The one that somehow only January can see. On top of that, some very important new guests have just checked in. Because the U.S. government is about to privatize time-travel technology—and the world’s most powerful people are on hand to stake their claims. January is sure the timing isn’t a coincidence. Neither are those “accidents” that start stalking their bidders. There’s a reason January can glimpse what others can’t. A reason why she’s the only one who can catch a killer who’s operating invisibly and in plain sight, all at once. But her ability is also destroying her grip on reality—and as her past, present, and future collide, she finds herself confronting not just the hotel’s dark secrets but her own.

I’ve read Rob Hart’s previous books and really like his style of writing. It’s very unique! The character development is strong which is always a winner in my book. I’m normally a huge fan of time travel in books, but this one was a bit more complicated than I wanted it to be. Lots of characters, lots of scene changes, not the best transitions.

3/5 Stars

The Last Guest by Tess Little

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Are you someone who pays attention to the Stars of Hollywood? While I’m not caught up in Hollywood drama, I sure love reading mysteries about it!

Thank you Ballantine Books for my gifted ebook in exchange for my honest review.

Synopsis: When actress Elspeth Bell attends the fiftieth birthday party of her ex-husband Richard Bryant, the Hollywood director who launched her career, all she wants is to pass unnoticed through the glamorous crowd in his sprawling Los Angeles mansion. Instead, there are just seven other guests–and Richard’s pet octopus, Persephone, watching over them from her tank as the intimate party grows more surreal (and rowdy) by the hour. Come morning, Richard is dead–and all of the guests are suspects. In the weeks that follow, each of the guests come under suspicion: the school friend, the studio producer, the actress, the actor, the new partner, the manager, the cinematographer, and even Elspeth herself. What starts out as a locked-room mystery soon reveals itself to be much more complicated, as dark stories from Richard’s past surface, colliding with Elspeth’s memories of their marriage that she vowed never to revisit. Elspeth begins to wonder not just who killed Richard, but why these eight guests were invited, and what sort of man would desire to possess a creature as mysterious and unsettling as Persephone.

If you are looking for a good locked room mystery, this is it. This was written so nicely that it played out like a movie in my head. The Hollywood theme lent itself well to that. It’s definitely a slow burn and took me a bit to really dive into the plot, but glad I stuck through with it. I wasn’t able to guess the twist and that always wins me over in a book.

4/5 Stars

In Her Shadow by Kristin Miller

In Her Shadow

One has to love a good mystery, especially filled with drama!

Thank you to Ballantine Books for my gifted ebook in exchange for my honest review.

Synopsis: Once his secretary, Colleen is now pregnant with Michael’s baby. When he brings her to his opulent estate, Ravenwood, she is abruptly thrust into a life of luxury she’s never known. But Colleen finds the immense house suffused with the memory of Michael’s beautiful wife, Joanna, who left months ago and who haunts her imagination. It quickly becomes apparent that there is little room for a new mistress of this house: The staff greets her with hostility, and there are entire wings and corridors from which she is prohibited to enter. Then bones are unearthed in the grove across the street. When Michael falls under the suspicion of the detectives investigating the case, the soon-to-be mother of his child finds herself hurled deeper into her boyfriend’s dark past–a past that threatens to upend all her dreams. But the terrifying secrets lurking in the shadows of Ravenwood pale in comparison to the drastic measures Colleen will take to stake a claim to her new life. Inspired by Daphne du Maurier’s RebeccaIn Her Shadow is the chilling story of one woman’s desperate desire to be loved and the ghosts that get in her way–but only if she lets them.

I was inspired most to read this book because it was advertised as a modern-day Rebecca. I am a big fan of the Alfred Hitchcock movie. I don’t think I liked the characters as much in this book as I did in the movie, but the twists and turns in this book were totally worth it. I highly recommend this entertaining read!

4.5/5 Stars

The Rumor by Lesley Kara

This book seems to be all the rage on Bookstagram (book reviews on instagram). I am happy to jump in and share my thoughts!

Thank you Ballantine Books for my gifted copy in exchange for my honest review.

Synopsis: Joanna is desperate to ingratiate herself with a popular clique of mothers at her son’s new school. But when she tries to impress them by repeating a rumor she overheard at the school gates, there’s no going back. . . .Rumor has it that a notorious killer, a woman who has been released from prison years after her brutal crime, is living under a new identity in Joanna’s seaside town. So who is the supposedly reformed murderer now living in their neighborhood? Suspicion falls on everyone. Joanna becomes obsessed with the case, pawing through decades-old records in an attempt to name the killer. But her curiosity not only ostracizes her from the community, but exposes her son and his father to a heartless psychopath who has killed–and may kill again. How dangerous can one rumor become? And how far will Joanna go to protect those she loves from harm, when she realizes what she’s unleashed? Joanna is going to regret the day she ever said a word….

There’s been a lot of hype about this book. People have been all over the place in terms of their reviews for it. As for me? I’m stuck in the middle. It read much like a Desperate Housewives/Big Little Lies type story for me. I felt like it was a story that had already been done before. The writing isn’t bad at all and it kept my attention the entire time, I just didn’t really seem to care about what happened. It was a little too predictable for me. If you don’t read thrillers often, you may enjoy this one!

3/5 Stars