Tag Archives: the missing one

Book Review: Little Black Lies by Sharon Bolton

Little Black Lies
By Sharon Bolton
Released 5/19/2015
Provided free through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

Rating: 4 bones

I’ll admit this was the first time, especially in the same year that I have read two books by the same title and by authors with the same initials!  See my other review here, but other than title (and my enjoyment of the book), the similarities of these two books mostly stop there.  This book actually really reminded me of another read from this year: The Missing One, even the covers kind of look similar (and oddly enough I read it right after the other Little Black Lies and did compare the two!)  Have I confused you yet?

But this book, which just released this week, was filled with mystery until the very end.  It held true to the mystery genre and had the reader suspecting every character at different points, with a jaw-dropping ending.  I seriously had to read 4-5 times to make sure I understood!  The subject matter is one that I don’t dive into much, missing children, just because it is so sensitive to me as a mother.  But I had seen a lot of hype around this book, that it made me want to dive in and I’m glad I did.

The beginning is quite disturbing and I was worried I would have to walk away.  One thing I dislike as much as hurting children, is hurting animals.  And you’ll find out very soon upon starting this book what I am referring to.  It is disturbing yet a defining moment for Catrin’s character.  I had to separate from this part, and thankfully was only referred to in the remainder of the book.  And I did try to see her point of view and understand what happened and I will commend the author was doing that so eloquently.

The book centers around Catrin Quinn.  Having lost her 2 sons in a tragic accident a few years prior at the hands of a trusted friend, she is quite the complex character.  Since her sons had passed, 3 boys in her small community have gone missing and no one knows who they can trust.  I really got a great sense of community as each of the characters were so fully developed, no one wanted to think there could be a killer among them.  Relationships were destroyed, dissected, and tested to the limits.

Packed full of action, there was never a dull moment in reading this book.  In efforts to keep it a mystery to you as well, I’m going to leave it at that.  This book will keep you hanging on to the very end and hopefully with your jaw on the floor with mine!  Beautiful writing, great book.

Thank you to NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press for allowing me to preview!

Book Description:
In such a small community as the Falkland Islands, a missing child is unheard of. In such a dangerous landscape it can only be a terrible tragedy, surely…

When another child goes missing, and then a third, it’s no longer possible to believe that their deaths were accidental, and the villagers must admit that there is a murderer among them. Even Catrin Quinn, a damaged woman living a reclusive life after the accidental deaths of her own two sons a few years ago, gets involved in the searches and the speculation.

And suddenly, in this wild and beautiful place that generations have called home, no one feels safe and the hysteria begins to rise.

But three islanders–Catrin, her childhood best friend, Rachel, and her ex-lover Callum–are hiding terrible secrets. And they have two things in common: all three of them are grieving, and none of them trust anyone, not even themselves.

In Little Black Lies, her most shocking and engaging suspense novel to date, Sharon Bolton will keep the reader guessing until the very last page.


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Teaser Tuesday: January 20th

Hello Tuesday!  It’s been quite the busy reading week!  I finished Little Black Lies by Sandra Block (from my teaser last week) and The Missing One by Lucy Atkins.  Both NetGalley reads, both 4 bones, both very good and worth your time, and both releasing in February 2015!


And I won a GoodReads contest of The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins which released just a few days ago.  The hard copy came super fast too, so why not dive in!?  Very excited about this one!  (And because this is a hard copy – I’m going back to turning to a random page – even I don’t know what is going on!!)

 “I need to get to the end of the story.  I need to tell someone, just once.  Say the words out loud.  If it doesn’t come out of me, it’ll eat me up.  The hole inside of me, the one they left, it’ll just get bigger and bigger until it consumes me.”
(Page 163)

Book Description:

Rachel takes the same commuter train every morning. Every day she rattles down the track, flashes past a stretch of cozy suburban homes, and stops at the signal that allows her to daily watch the same couple breakfasting on their deck. She’s even started to feel like she knows them. “Jess and Jason,” she calls them. Their life—as she sees it—is perfect. Not unlike the life she recently lost.

And then she sees something shocking. It’s only a minute until the train moves on, but it’s enough. Now everything’s changed. Unable to keep it to herself, Rachel offers what she knows to the police, and becomes inextricably entwined in what happens next, as well as in the lives of everyone involved. Has she done more harm than good?

Compulsively readable, The Girl on the Train is an emotionally immersive, Hitchcockian thriller and an electrifying debut.

Thanks for stopping by today – be sure to leave your teaser in the comments!

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!


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Book Review: The Missing One by Lucy Atkins

The Missing One (click on book or see below for description)
By Lucy Atkins
Releases 2/3/15
Provided free through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Rating: 4 bones

Keeping my 2015 good streak going – this book did not disappoint.  I guess true with most mysteries where someone is searching for something, but this one reminded me of my last read “Little Black Lies” in that the main character, Kali, was searching for answers on just who her mother was.

The book begins with the death of Kali’s (Kal as she prefers to be called) mother, Elena.  When Kal enters her late mother’s office in search of her birth certificate, she discovers 37 years worth of postcards from someone named Susannah, that simply say “Thinking of you.”  As she thinks on it, Kali realizes she doesn’t really know much about her parents, especially her mother.  Her father, still in the picture, is not very helpful with answers (and thinks someone’s past is their own) and her sister, Alice, who always had a very different relationship with her mother, doesn’t seem to know much more.  So Kali, in quite the mid-life crisis of her own, convinced her husband is cheating on her, acts quite impulsively, and telling no one boards a plane to Vancouver in search on answers.  And oh yeah, she brings her toddler, Finn with her.

I had a love/hate relationship with Kal.  In the beginning, I really could relate to her.  Having a young kid(s), a husband with a thriving career that keeps him away from home more than anyone would like, quite the planner, and wanting to know why her mother always had a wall up between her and even her son (not that last part personally – but wanting answers to everything!)  But then when she starts on this adventure, I tried to imagine what I would do in that situation (praying that I never would be) and just lost touch with her and wanted to scream at her (especially because she had her young child with her and you’ll find out something else later that will/may enrage you too!)  That didn’t take away from the story, as I’m not sure I can say I really liked any of the characters!  (Great for the story, bad if they were in my life!)

Once Kal gets to Vancouver, she easily locates Susannah, and upon meeting her, something is just off.  I never really trusted her, and I’m sure that was intentional.   But Kal, with Finn’s safety and comfort at the top of her list, chooses to trust her…

The anticipation in this book was so, incredibly thick.  I was frantically turning pages, possibly holding my breath, just knowing something was about to happen.   And when it does, prepare to hang on to the very end and prepare for ANYTHING!  I had some guesses throughout, some were on point, others off, but it was definitely not predictable.

I don’t want to spoil anything, but the book cover (seen above) is a little teaser in and of itself.  Kal does pry (and yes I mean painfully pry) information about her mother from Susannah very slowly.  First and foremost, she found out she was a pioneering orca (killer whale) researcher and activist in the 70’s.  Some of these details hurt my heart, a lot, as an animal advocate myself.  And strange timing, one morning while reading this book, I turned on the TODAY show and the story was about a captive orca, Lolita and that her release back to the wild was still a hot topic of debate.  So much to my dismay, orcas are still facing the same issues they were 40 years ago.  But I found the topic of orcas fascinating and an intricate part of this book.


I could go on, this book had so much going on and kept me hanging on to every word to the very end.  As facts filled in though, I still had a few questions at the end.  I’m one who likes everything wrapped up neatly, and while most things were, some I felt were not.  Maybe I missed it in my fast reading, but I’m usually pretty good!  Let me know if you read this book and I’d love to chat.  And do read this book, it’s a good one!

Thank you to NetGalley and Quercus (US) for allowing me to preview this great book!  Can’t wait for Ms. Atkin’s next one!

Book Description:

In her gripping debut novel The Missing One, Lucy Atkins takes us to the beautiful and rugged Pacific Northwest, where one woman endeavors to discover the dark secrets of her family’s past in order to understand and accept herself.

Kal McKenzie was never close to her mother Elena, whose coldness towards her spoiled any chance of a good relationship. When Elena dies of cancer, Kal feels forlorn; how do you mourn a mother who, inexplicably, just didn’t seem to love you?
While clearing out Elena’s art studio, Kal finds a drawer packed with postcards, each bearing an identical one-line message from a woman named Susannah Gillespie: “Thinking of you.” Who is this woman and does she hold the key to her ruined relationship with her mother?
Having recently seen a covetous text from an old girlfriend on her husband’s cell phone, Kal, dismayed over her mother’s death and disillusioned by her marriage, impulsively sets off with her toddler Finn to Susannah’s home and art gallery on a remote British Columbian island, a place of storms and killer whales.
When Kal reaches the island, the striking and enigmatic Susannah will only share a few scraps of information about Elena. Kal discovers that her mother was a pioneering orca researcher and activist.
As Kal struggles to piece together her mother’s career and relationship with Susannah, Susannah’s behavior grows more and more erratic. Most worrying of all, Susannah is becoming increasingly preoccupied with little Finn.
Told in competing narratives of past and present, The Missing One intermixes Kal’s journey with her mother’s coming of a age as a woman, scientist and activist. As these two narratives converge the novel transforms into a white-knuckle thriller where the secrets of the past threaten to tear Kal’s family apart.

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