Reading Lately

I haven't been great with my reading these days.. the days are going by so quickly.. these were the last few books I did get the chance to read.

Another Woman's Husband by Gill Paul

Synopsis - Two women who challenged the Crown. Divided by time. Bound by a secret...

1911 - At the age of fifteen, carefree Mary Kirk and indomitable Wallis Warfield meet at summer camp. Their friendship will survive heartbreaks, separation and the demands of the British Crown until it is shattered by one unforgivable betrayal.

1997 - Rachel's romantic break in Paris with her fiance ends in tragedy when the car ahead crashes. Inside was Princess Diana. Back in Brighton, Rachel is haunted by the accident, and intrigued to learn the princess had visited the last home of Wallis, Duchess of Windsor, only hours before the crash. Soon, the discovery of a long-forgotten link to Wallis Simpson leads Rachel to the truth behind a scandal that shook the world...

Thoughts - Historically speaking, this was an extremely fascinating read. Until I watched The Crown I hadn't even heard of Wallis Simpson. I definitely preferred reading about the past than the present. For anyone who enjoys reading historical fiction and the current monarchy than this is the perfect read for you!  

Before She Knew Him by Peter Swanson

SynopsisHen and her husband Lloyd have settled into a quiet life in a new house outside of Boston, Massachusetts. Hen is an illustrator and works out of a studio nearby, and has found the right meds to control her bipolar disorder. Finally, she’s found some stability and peace. 

But when they meet the neighbors next door, that calm begins to erode as she spots a familiar object displayed on the husband’s office shelf. The sports trophy looks exactly like one that went missing from the home of a young man who was killed two years ago. Hen knows because she’s long had a fascination with this unsolved murder—an obsession she doesn’t talk about anymore, but can’t fully shake either.
Could her neighbor, Matthew, be a killer? Or is this the beginning of another psychotic episode like the one she suffered back in college, when she became so consumed with proving a fellow student guilty that she ended up hurting a classmate?

The more Hen observes Matthew, the more she suspects he’s planning something truly terrifying. Yet no one will believe her. Then one night, when she comes face to face with Matthew in a dark parking lot, she realizes that he knows she’s been watching him, that she’s really on to him. And that this is the beginning of a horrifying nightmare she may not live to escape. 

Thoughts - This is my third read by Peter Swanson and while I immensely disliked the first, The Girl with a Clock for a Heart. I thoroughly enjoyed the second one A Kind Worth Killing. I was a little on the fence about this one when I picked it up.. but I'm glad I did.. I enjoy it. It had plenty of twists and turns and brought light upon many mental health issues and the effects of a troubled childhood. 

Before We Were Yours by Lisa Wingate

Synopsis - Memphis, 1939. Twelve-year-old Rill Foss and her four younger siblings live a magical life aboard their family’s Mississippi River shantyboat. But when their father must rush their mother to the hospital one stormy night, Rill is left in charge—until strangers arrive in force. Wrenched from all that is familiar and thrown into a Tennessee Children’s Home Society orphanage, the Foss children are assured that they will soon be returned to their parents—but they quickly realize the dark truth. 

Aiken, South Carolina, present day. Born into wealth and privilege, Avery Stafford seems to have it all: a successful career as a federal prosecutor, a handsome fiance, and a lavish wedding on the horizon. But when Avery returns home to help her father weather a health crisis, a chance encounter leaves her with uncomfortable questions and compels her to take a journey through her family’s long-hidden history, on a path that will ultimately lead either to devastation or to redemption.

Thoughts - I have seen this book pop up a lot on my social media.. it sounded intriguing.. Based on one of America’s most notorious real-life scandals—in which Georgia Tann, director of a Memphis-based adoption organization, kidnapped and sold poor children to wealthy families all over the country. I was prepared for this to be a tearjerker. Yet I felt nothing. Not sure what went wrong but I felt bored.. Yes, it is heartbreaking what happens to children in orphanages and foster homes, the fact that most of these children were not even orphans was even more heartbreaking.. but I didn't feel any of that heartbreak.. Maybe we are becoming desensitized to these horrors because we read about them every day?

The boy's pediatrician noticed the book in my hand and said she too has been trying and struggling to read the book.. 

It has great reviews so we may be in the minority. If you've already read it I'd love to hear your thoughts.

The Silent Patient by Alex Michealides

Synopsis - Alicia Berenson’s life is seemingly perfect. A famous painter married to an in-demand fashion photographer, she lives in a grand house with big windows overlooking a park in one of London’s most desirable areas. One evening her husband Gabriel returns home late from a fashion shoot, and Alicia shoots him five times in the face, and then never speaks another word.

Alicia’s refusal to talk, or give any kind of explanation, turns a domestic tragedy into something far grander, a mystery that captures the public imagination and casts Alicia into notoriety. 

Theo Faber is a criminal psychotherapist who has waited a long time for the opportunity to work with Alicia. His determination to get her to talk and unravel the mystery of why she shot her husband takes him down a twisting path into his own motivations—a search for the truth that threatens to consume him

Thoughts - This was another though one. It sounded promising.. the reviews were terrific and everyone claimed it was unputdownable.. So I am once again in the minority. I didn't care about any of the characters.. the twist came in the last 10 or so pages but it was not worth the first 300 something pages I had to read to get to it.  Have you read it? What did you think?

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I am not a fan of the royals past or present so I may give that a miss. Before She Knew Him sounds like a fascinating read though. Maybe a tear jerker if it delves into childhood trauma?!

Mica said…
Oh before we were yours sounds too emotional to read! It's interesting it wasn't an emotional read for you, but the story makes me sad. Not my kind of book!

Hope that you had a great weekend :)

Away From Blue
Jennifer said…
These books sound good!

Effortlessly Sophisticated
The Abdication Crisis of 1936 was such a huge deal at the time. It shook the British Empire.
Lackadaisy said…
I love books with misteries, these sounds like some great picks! Thank you for recommendations <3

Debbie said…
i am not a reader but i'm sure your followers that do read will appreciate your thorough reviews!! wish i was a reader!!! have i ever told you how much i love your header picture, it's a really good one!!
Thanks for the reviews! I keep seeing Before We Were Yours pop up as well. I don't think I'd enjoy it.
Kelly said…
Both of the first two sound good. You might remember I read The Kind Worth Killing (based on your recommendation here) earlier in the year and really enjoyed it. Our bookclub read Before We Were Yours and though I found the events it was based on horrific, I wasn't as bothered by the book as I thought I would be. I skipped over what you said about the final book because I'm currently halfway through it! (another book club choice) I'll come back when I finish.
Each one of these sounds wonderful! I wish I had more time to read them all.
Chatty Crone said…
Hey, those books look very interesting. Do you buy them or get them from the library?
I'm not a fan of the monarchy but Another woman's Husband sounds interesting. Wallis Simpson was areal piece of work in not a good way.
Emmylou said…
Thanks for the honest review, Hena:) I like the sound of that Peter Swanson book a lot. Sorry to hear the others are not-so-great though.
I recently read The Silent Patient and I agreed it was good, but not as good as the hype was about it. The ending was probably my favorite as I felt the rest of the book kind of dragged along.

Thank you.
I haven't read any of these (and the two which didn't engage your emotions I will skip).
Wallis Simpson was a complicated woman, and her truths are often stranger than fiction.
Veronica Lee said…
I love historical fiction and Another Woman's Husband is right up my alley.

Happy Tuesday, Hena.
FashionRadi said…
These are ones I would love to check out. I haven't heard of them before.
I've only read Before we were yours...and I just loved it. But thanks for these others ideas!! I need some new ones!
simply styling said…
I always enjoy a great book review ! These all look like great reads !
Another Woman's Husband sounds fascinating. I like historical fiction so I might give this one a try.
awhite said…
Before She Knew Him has been on my radar!

Le Stylo Rouge
You know I have almost stopped reading fiction. I have been disappointed so many times. I either figure out the big plot twists half way through like Gone Girl and Deep in the Woods and I found both to be contrived. Or the characters do not come off the page for me or the plot does not ring true.

Sad that we have become so desensitized. I am currently reading a book on the French Revolution.

Allie of
Thanks for sharing this! They sound really interesting! Growing up in Lady Di's era, my home was full of Windsor stories in magazines. I might try to get that one :)

karen said…
I have the before book on my tbr pile (and the pile is big!). I'm interested to read it and hopefully I can get through the sadness. It seems to depend on what is on my mind on how I do with tough topics.
Kelly said…
I'm back, having now finished The Silent Patient. I'll agree that none of the characters were particularly likable, but I found it to be a quick, easy read... and a fairly short one, at that. Overall I liked it, only figuring out the twist just moments before it was revealed. That answered all my questions that were bothering me up to that point.
Bummer about the Silent Patient. I just put it on my library list to read. I really wanted to read Before She Knew Him. I LOVED The Kind Worth Killing. Thanks for your recommendations.
I read "Before We Were Yours" also. I thought it was a really interesting book, but I agree that it wasn't a tear jerker. I think she just wrote in a more pragmatic style.
Que bonitos todos! Espero tu opinión en mi último post! Feliz noche! 🌻🌻🌻
Ruth Josey said…
I really enjoy historic fiction, so I'm sure I'd love the first one. Actually, with your reviews of the difficult-to-read ones, I really want to see what my response to those would be. These are great reviews - thank you for sharing them!

Before She Knew Him sounds really good. I've not tried one of Swanson's books yet but have been wanting to. Sorry to hear the last two weren't the best.
Before We Were Yours has been on my reading list for ages. I also want to read Before She Knew Him. Thanks for the suggestions!

Jill - Doused in Pink
Natalia said…
Looks interesting, I have just made some book shopping☺
I have heard good things about that one as well, but i am sorry that you are struggling with it. I often prefer to read things in the past too, though I rarely find myself wanting to read pure historical fiction which is strange! Sounds like otherwise some good reads this month! :) Xo - Alexandra

Simply Alexandra: My Favorite Things
Stefanie said…
You've been reading so much more this year, a goal I know you had wanted. Yippee for time for reading.
E said…
You always have such great recommendations! I want to read Before She Knew Him!

District of Chic
NotJessFashion said…
Before we were yours sound really intriguing. Looks like a fun read. Thanks dear!

Jessica |
Melissa Kacar said…
All of these books sound so interesting! I never heard of any of them before, so thanks for sharing your thoughts on each! :)
Laura Mitbrodt said…
These all sounds great for summer reading
Jeanie said…
I hadn't heard about "Another Woman's Husband." Now I HAVE to read it! Thanks for tellling me about this and the others, too!
Hilary Young said…
I love this post! Do you want to support each other’s blog by following each other?:) Please let me know if you do so I can follow you right back x


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