Review: The Dry (Aaron Falk, #1) by Jane Harper

28220971★★★

Opening Hook: I didn’t want to be involved as much as the lead didn’t

Main Character: Reluctant hero, personality missing

Plot Twisty-ness: You know who did it


Ok, I’ll do it! I’ll go against the majority on this one! HERE I COME MARTYRDOM.

But really, I have to say I found The Dry, to be, well, rather dry.

Yeah, the writing is technically good. The characters are fleshed out enough. The setting was different from the usual for me. There was a crime with a mystery to it. Past and present storylines were interwoven, and that can be tricky to do.

So, on the surface, it checked all the boxes.

But, I just found it kind of boring. Again, I gotta say dry.

I think perhaps I’m not a huge fan of cold case style mystery – where the predominant crime is old or closed. There’s no real crime scene to immerse yourself in. There’s no immediacy to the investigation.

And both crimes in this book fit this category, but the attention each was given felt lopsided. The murders of Luke Hadler and his family was the most recent, it is what pulled Falk back to his shitty hometown. This is what he’s supposed to be investigating, it’s where the red herrings and misdirection come into play, but the characters seemed too emotionally focused on the death of Falk’s friend Ellie from 20 years ago, while no one cared too much about Luke except for his parents.

Continue reading “Review: The Dry (Aaron Falk, #1) by Jane Harper”

True Crime Tuesday: Bruce McArthur, Serial Killer – Part One

One of the hottest stories in true crime right now – if such stories can be “hot” – is alleged serial killer Bruce McArthur.

If you haven’t heard of this serial killer yet, you must be living under a rock with zero access to the internet. (At this point, I’m pretty sure a rock could be wired for WiFi.) Even if you aren’t interested in true crime, this is one of the biggest serial killer cases to hit the news in a long time so you’ve probably heard something about it.

What makes it even more interesting is that this whole thing is unfolding in Toronto, Canada.

That’s right. Canada. Land of maple syrup and apologies.

Canada, my home, where the most often laid charge falls under the legal category of mischief. As in, “Hey guy, you’re kinda of being a dick there, eh? Why don’t you knock it off, buddy?”

In 2016, there were 611 homicides in the entire country.

The whole thing.

For comparison, there were 627 homicides just in the state of Ohio that same year.

Further, serial killers in Canada are like unicorns. Rare, seemingly mythical but coming equipped with something that could stab you.

unicorn GIF

Not to say we haven’t had any. Most prolific, I would say, was Robert Pickton, the pig farmer. He even inspired an episode of Criminal Minds. Most famous is probably Paul Bernardo, the Scarborough Rapist, and the case to which I credit with my fascination with true crime.

Continue reading “True Crime Tuesday: Bruce McArthur, Serial Killer – Part One”

Review: Caged (Agent Sayer Altair, #1) by Ellison Cooper

36743024★★★★

Opening Hook: Jigsaw meets the Unabomber

Main Character: Baggage fees at the airport are getting expensive.

Plot Twisty-ness: Forgot to slip the reader some DMT.


Okay, here’s my issue, I really over-hyped myself for this one.

I heard “police procedural” and “FBI agent” and “serial killer” and just lost my ever-loving crime fiction booknerd mind, expecting to fall rapidly in love with this; for it to be everything I need a book with those descriptors to be. I consciously recognized that I was doing it, in the moment, and I made a decision to allow myself to be hyped for this. Which in any other circumstance, would have been against my better judgement.

…and almost immediately once I started reading, I needed to readjust my expectations because I knew I would be massively disappointed otherwise.

So no, this was not the mind-blowing read I wanted it to be. BUT it was still good and I’m definitely on board for this as a series.

It has a very dark atmosphere with a Criminal Minds vibe. Profilers and some bureaucracy, but mostly disturbing puzzles that need solving. And this completely connected with me, bringing together a lot of my favourite things, especially the psychology behind the murders.

It’s heavy on the procedural, medium on the twists (focused on the science side of the evidence, and less on physical events) and low thrills. But that’s pretty typical for procedurals.

There are some explosions, traps and tricks and disturbing content – namely puppies and kittens in danger that will definitely stir your feels if you are anything like me.

Continue reading “Review: Caged (Agent Sayer Altair, #1) by Ellison Cooper”

Music Monday: Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds – Red Right Hand

It’s some kind of evil trickery that makes the work week feel as if an hour actually takes five to get through, but the weekends are gone in the blink of an eye.

Unfair. And unjust. WEEKEND REFORM NOW!

Image result for norma rae

Anyhooters, we’re going to make the best of another Monday with some tunes and good books.

Right now I’m reading The Last Time I Lied by Riley Sager.

Continue reading “Music Monday: Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds – Red Right Hand”

Review: Orange is the New Black – My Year in a Women’s Prison by Piper Kerman

8141503★★

I, like most people with a Netflix account and a pulse, love the Orange in the New Black tv series. And it just so happens that the new season premieres this week!

I picked this book up for that reason alone – I was curious about the real story after binging the current season in 13 hours.

Consider me a fan of the TV show, only.

Where the show excels is in the treatment of each and every woman – their individual lives are honoured, never discounted, or treated as the token bit player to Piper’s privileged white girl. They are real and honest and palpable. All walks of life given equal value, time and courtesy.

But this book was…not that.

It came across as such: I’m just a white girl who made one mistake. What an oopsie-doopsie to get involved with drug dealers trafficking for an international drug ring. I didn’t mean to traffic drugs to other countries. Can’t you ever forgive me? Can’t you see how hard I tried to get my life back on track and stop being a lesbian? I met a nice boy, I got a good job and now I’m a productive citizen. Doesn’t that count for anything when the snitches open their big mouths and I end up in prison? No? Ok. I’m ever so scared of being in prison, but I won’t show it. I am a stoic warrior princess. I’ll bite my tongue and do my time surrounded by all these women of colour – some of them even like me even though I’m white. Blonde and white. Just call me ‘Blondie’ *wink*. The Latino girls say I have street smarts. All these ethnic ladies are actually really nice. And they’ve taught me so much about what it means to not be white. Which is totally fine with me, I promise. And I consider so many of them friends, that when I left prison I was kind of sad to leave them all behind to continue doing their years and years of time after my measly 15 months. I felt bad.

Continue reading “Review: Orange is the New Black – My Year in a Women’s Prison by Piper Kerman”

Book Tag: The Liebster Award

I feel like I just did one of these? But who’s complaining? I’m not! I love that anyone would think of me ever.

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Thank you to Anne Marie for nominating me! Anne runs a blog dedicated to all her writing! If you like fantasy, I say check out her stuff. One day you could say, “I knew her when…

Onto the award thing-y-ma-bob!

LiebsterAward.png

🔪THE RULES:

  1. Link to Global Aussie’s Award blog post and put the official Liebster Award stamp on your blog.
  2. Acknowledge and link to the blogger who nominated you.
  3. Answer the 11 questions your nominator asked.
  4. Nominate 11 more bloggers and spread the ‘new blogger’ love.
  5. Ask them 11 fun questions of your own.

Optional Rules:

  1. Write a paragraph about what makes you passionate about blogging
  2. List ten random facts about yourself

Continue reading “Book Tag: The Liebster Award”

Review: Midnight at the Bright Ideas Bookstore by Matthew J. Sullivan

Midnight at the Bright Ideas Bookstore★★★

I went into this book pretty blind. I wasn’t totally sure what it was about…maybe a bookstore called Bright Ideas? Something to do with suicide? But it kept popping up on my feed, and when a mystery novel has “bookstore” right in the title, how can a genre-lover like me resist? Plus, that cover! Come on!

It’s not often that I go into a book without a clear idea of what I’m about to read. I can be pretty particular in my reading criteria, so I’m not necessarily good at the whole “oh, just surprise me!” thing. My personal levels of neurosis start to kick in when I hear words like go with the flow or spontaneity.

This novel starts immediately. Not dicking around. And I was pretty hopeful that meant I was buckling in for a cozy little thriller with a side of dark sass.

Bookseller Lydia is closing up shop at the Bright Ideas Bookstore. She goes to look for regular “BookFrog” Joseph Molina, who hasn’t left the store yet. She finds him hanging. Suicide. She can’t figure out why Joseph would choose to commit suicide in her shop. But even more curious is why he died with a picture from her 10th birthday in his pocket. The mystery becomes too much to ignore when she inherits Joseph’s belongings and finds coded messages for her inside his books.

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Book Tag: The Blogger Recognition Award

What better way to get a little pick me up on Monday than to do some drugs find out you’ve been nominated for The Blogger Recognition Award!

Image result for the bloggers recognition award

Thank you to Emily over at A Literary Life for thinking of me! Emily and I are relatively new to knowing each other, but trust me when I say you will love her blog. Poetry, writing prompts, reviews and short stories, and probably some hidden gems I haven’t even noticed yet. It has everything you could possibly want from a book blog!

So, I guess there are some rules and stuff for this award…

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🔪THE RULES

  1. Thank the blogger who nominated you.
  2. Write a post to show your award.
  3. Give a brief story about how your blog started.
  4. Give two pieces of advice to new bloggers.
  5. Select 15 other bloggers for this award.

Number one, check. Number two… Um, not entirely sure of the context. Is just creating a blog post good enough? Really? Doesn’t that kind of seem like a redundant requirement if you’re going to follow the rest of the rules? I digress…

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Music Monday: Tool – Schism

To say good morning or not to say good morning? Because it’s Monday, so it is really “good” per se? Perhaps just a grumbled greeting that is completely indecipherable. Did she say words? Did she just groan and gurgle? You don’t know! But you know you were acknowledged.

working office space GIF

I’ll be honest. I’m in a terrible fucking mood this morning. I slept like shit and my allergies are going bonkers. But I’m going to soldier on by chugging down this breakfast smoothie and doing a new Music Monday post.

I did this feature post last week for the first time ever and I was sure it would be my only one because it has nothing to do with books.

You might say, “But, Krystin, it’s your blog. You can post whatever the hell you want!” And to that I say: TRUE.

But I also live by a set of neurotic organization rules that are entirely self-imposed and completely dictated by my borderline O.C.D tendencies and if I don’t follow them I might just snap.

triggered bobs burgers GIF

Good morning, indeed.

So, to help my brain deal with these wants vs. needs, I’ve decided that I’m going to do Music Mondays INSPIRED by what I’m currently reading.

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Booknook Sunday: 07.22.18

Happy Sunday, booknerds! R’amen to you all.

It’s been a minute since I’ve done a Booknook post. That’s mostly down to my laziness.

When Sunday rolls around we do errands, groceries and prepare for another work week. By the time we’ve done all the adulting stuff, the last thing I want to do is get on the computer and write-up a post.

I just want to chill while I still have time.

Maybe that’s a shit excuse, but it’s the truth. Listen, YOUR GIRL IS LAZY.

lazy titus andromedon GIF

This past Thursday I had all the furniture for my new office/guest room delivered. So, yes, your girl is also fancy and has an office now.

Since my oldest stepkid moved out I finally have an extra room in my house with which to create a little extra personal space. I’ll be using it for the regular day-to-day business of running a household (paying bills, paying bills and paying more bills,) but it’s also going to be my space to take pictures for my #bookstagram, write-up some blog posts, and a place to go to read when I want some true peace and quiet.

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