Booknerd Wednesday: Haunted Libraries (#Blogoween)

Happy Hump Day, ghouls and ghosts!

Halloween is getting closer with each passing day and I’m so excited about it that I’ve literally been living off of pumpkin pie and bite-sized candy for the last week.

…I don’t feel good. I think maybe some basic organ functions are stressed out?

Anyway, while I try to maintain a normal blood-sugar level, it’s time for another #Blogoween post!

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What is #Blogoween, you ask? Well, I’ll damn-well tell you. It’s a month-long celebration of Halloween on your blog with daily prompts and different levels of post commitment. Find out how to sign up for the #Blogoween event here. And a list of all the prompts is here.

Today’s prompt was local haunted hot spots. Turns out that my area isn’t exactly hopping with good ghost stories from what I can google/gather, so I decided to take the prompt and turn it into something a little bit more suited for Booknerd Wednesday.

Today we’re going to check out some of the most haunted libraries around the world!

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Whether you believe in ghosts or not is completely irrelevant. We’re not here to discuss the merits of life after death. Although I will say, once people start reporting ghosts whispering “it’s Britney, bitch,” and “what’s the wifi password?” I might give a little bit more credence to the idea.

Right now, it seems like every ghost is wearing civil war uniforms and women are in bonnets, bemoaning a lost husband. Where are all the modern ghosts in trucker hats and flared jeans haunting a Starbucks? Where are my feminist ghosts at?

So, yes, I might be a skeptic. But that doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy the stories or the “…but maybes” that can come with the fact that no one can ever truly know for certain what else might exist beyond our earthly bodies.

Here’s my list for the most haunted libraries around the world!

Continue reading “Booknerd Wednesday: Haunted Libraries (#Blogoween)”

Review: The Next Girl (DI Gina Harte, #1) by Carla Kovach

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★★★

Bookouture | 2018

Opening Hook: Dumpster baby.

Main Character: PTSD and inappropriate work places romance.

Plot Twisty-ness: Given away in the synopsis, because I guess why the hell not?


This was pretty enjoyable, I have to say. For a debut in a series it hit mostly all the right notes. But, at the same time, it was missing aspects that I look for to really make a procedural more than just the typical.

The story boils down to an abandoned baby, a woman who’s been missing for four years (who is the mother of that baby,) and one seasoned, but borderline PTSD, detective on the case.

You hear all of that and you think, yes gimme! It sounds like the perfect recipe. But I’m left feeling a little bit like Gordon Ramsey on Master Chef when someone brings up a beautiful looking dish and he tastes it, gets a funny look on his face and says: “It looks fantastic, but where’s the seasoning? Did you salt the fucking chicken?”

Carla Kovach forgot to salt the fucking chicken on this one.

Continue reading “Review: The Next Girl (DI Gina Harte, #1) by Carla Kovach”

Review: The Lies They Tell by Gillian French

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★★½

HarperTeen | 2018

Opening Hook: Rich people get lit (on fire.)

Main Character: A copy of a copy of a copy…

Plot Twisty-ness: Kiddie-rollercoaster levels.


I was really hoping this was going to be a sweaty, atmospheric summer thriller. But I only got one out of two from that list.

Depending on what’s important to you – the atmosphere or the thrills – you’re either going to love this or not.

Immediately upon starting this, I got a Revenge meets Gossip Girl meets Riverdale vibe. It’s got that “spoiled teens with no adult supervision in the Hamptons” thing going on.

It’s very rich versus poor. The pool owners and the pool cleaners. The Haves and the Have-nots.

The novel opens with a bang, so to speak, when the Haves suffer a tragedy the year prior – the Garrison estate goes up in flames, killing four members of the family. The only survivor is their teenage son, Tristan. The town is straight shooketh, casting blame and suspicion on the members of the Have Nots, because of course, the poor people want to kill the “elites.” Right, ‘Murica?

the kingsmen laughing GIF by Collider
Continue reading “Review: The Lies They Tell by Gillian French”

True Crime Tuesday: A Spring Break Nightmare

Please read the “TCT Disclaimer” under the True Crime tab at the top of the page before reading any true crime posts.

Back when it was originally airing, I watched Dexter religiously. If you didn’t love that show I question your taste on literally everything.

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Now, a depressing number of years later, I’m re-watching the series, introducing it to my husband who had never heard of it. He was so very sheltered before me, you guys. I can’t even explain it without things getting weird. Keywords: Christian & cult.

Anyhooters… on one of the last episodes we watched, Doakes is trying to make a break from the cabin where Dexter has him held captive – (it’s been five years since the series finale, you don’t get spoiler warnings anymore!) – and when Doakes breaks free, he’s lost in the Florida Everglades where he stumbles upon a hungry alligator.

It got me thinking, what better way to get rid of a body in that area than feeding it to an alligator? That’s got to have been done before right?!

RIGHT.

In doing some research for this week’s TCT post, I stumbled upon this fucked up story about a spring break gone terribly wrong, and an alligator pit.

For the record, alligators are actual fucking dinosaurs, and that’s scary as hell.

Continue reading “True Crime Tuesday: A Spring Break Nightmare”

Mystery & Thriller Releases for Summer 2018!

Summer officially started last week! Do you feel it – the unbearable heat? Do you hear it – the sound of mosquitos eating me alive. Awww, summer.

The stepkid – hereby referred to as “15” for the purposes of my blog – had his last exam and is leaving on Saturday for an extended visitation with Crazy Pants, the bio-mom.

…and to me that means FREEDOM!

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*slowly starts to paint face blue*

I’m kidding.

I whine sometimes, but being a stepmom is really not that bad compared to some of the horror stories I’ve heard in my support group. (It’s still a hard thing to do, hence the support group.) But, the kid is pretty clean and polite and doesn’t think I’m an evil twat, so I think I’m doing okay.

I will say, I’m glad the older one moved out because cis-teenage 👏 boys 👏 are 👏 fucking 👏 gross👏. My clean/organized neurosis couldn’t take it anymore.

It’s all progress and winning in my life right now…you know, except for the stuff that isn’t. But, I have a good feeling about this summer *knocks on wood.*

Some people can’t wait for summer because it means the beach and amusement parks and camping and whatever the hell else extroverted, outdoorsy people do. I can’t wait for summer because it means quiet and a warm breeze coming through my bedroom window while I sit around in no pants (apparently you have to wear pants around stepchildren) reading the summer’s hottest books.

And what might those books be you ask? Well, I’m happy to tell you.

Here is my list of the new mystery & thriller books coming your way this summer. Get your TBR ready!

Continue reading “Mystery & Thriller Releases for Summer 2018!”

Review: The Drowned Girls (Angie Pallorino, #1) by Loreth Anne White

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★★★★½

Montlake Romance | 2017

Opening Hook: Protect your lady-bits

Main Character: Sex-addict realness

Plot Twisty-ness: Procedural B+


I’m telling you right now, this book is the motherfucking shit.

Not even an exaggeration, honey.

And it’s the shit for one reason. Yes, it’s got murder. Yes, it’s got sex. Yes, it’s got a psycho serial killer. Yes, it’s hitting that fine line in the level of detail. Yes, it reads like real life honesty. Yes, it’s got gore. Yes, it takes place in C to the A to the N to the A to the D to the A…

Hold on, did I spell that right? *goes back to check* Yep.

CANADA!

But listen to me readers and lovers, without Detective Angie Pallorino as a lead character we would be sitting at a three-star rating. That’s just the truth.

Was there anything astonishing about the storyline? Not really. It’s interesting, but at the end of the day, it’s a police procedural. Extra points for taking place in Canada and getting my patriotic-self a little hyped about that, because I’m always reading books that take place in the UK or the US – and quite honestly I’ve had just about enough of the United States at this CRAZY Trump Juncture.

I’m pretty sure serial killers obsessed with religious bullshit has been done to death.

But do you know what’s not done to death?

Serial killers obsessed with religious bullshit who are being hunted by Angie Pallorino.

Alison Brie Kiss GIF by GLOW Netflix
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TCT Update: A Graphic Novel Murder – Let’s Discuss Motive!

Please read the “TCT Disclaimer” under the True Crime tab at the top of the page before reading any true crime posts.

Now, I know it’s not Tuesday, but if you read my post from last week about Blake Leibel, the trust fund douche-canoe who murdered his girlfriend just weeks after she gave birth to their daughter, then you have been waiting with bated breath for an update on the trial.

Or you’ve been waiting with normal breath, no irregular breathing pattern at all. That seems more likely.

Breaking News: about 12 hours ago, the jury came back with its decision.

GUILTY.

Like, duh.

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So, it’s officially time for True Crime Tuesday – Thursday Update… or something like that. It would be better if I had some kind of flashing graphics for this.

Continue reading “TCT Update: A Graphic Novel Murder – Let’s Discuss Motive!”

Review: Dark Game (DI Kelly Porter, #1) by Rachel Lynch

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★★★

Canelo | 2018

Welcome to another edition of Krystin Struggles To Write A Review For A Book That Was Just Okay!

These are my least favourite reviews to write. I think I’m a person who creatively operates best under strong swings on the emotional spectrum. Writing a review for a book that didn’t get me fired up either way is kind of like being asked “how was your weekend?” by an expectant colleague and struggling to come up with an answer because all you did was lay around in your PJs mindlessly watching repeats of Live PD.

That Dan Abrams sure does like him some tightly fit sweaters. And I am not complaining.

I don’t know, guys… Do you want to talk about this book or do you want to talk about Dan Abrams’ wardrobe? I’m leaning more towards the wardrobe. Blue is really his colour.

yas checking out GIF by Vanessa Marie Carter

Alright, alright! I’ll stop.

Continue reading “Review: Dark Game (DI Kelly Porter, #1) by Rachel Lynch”

Review: When The Serpent Bites (The Starks Trilogy, #1) by Nesly Clerge

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Self-Published | 2015

This must be “Krystin reads nothing but misogynistic stories” month, because this is my second in a row, and let me tell you, I’m fucking over it.

I’ll give this review some context real fast. Frederick Starks – a very rich, successful businessman – is married with three kids. His wife, Kayla, is unfaithful to him. They separate. One night, while driving aimlessly, ruminating on the state of his failed marriage, he pulls up to the house of the man Kayla cheated with and beats the shit out of him in front of the man’s wife and children, putting the man into a coma. Police arrive, Starks is caught red-handed, quite literally, and is arrested. He goes to trial and is found guilty.

Because, duh.

But for some reason, Starks just can’t believe the jury convicted him. Basically, his whole position on his guilt is: “my wife cheated, and the guy was mean to me, so I can’t be held responsible for my actions.”

In fact, at his trial, the defence mounted by his attorney is nothing more than a character assassination of Kayla because “she’s a whore,” as if that’s a legit reason to nearly kill a man.

give me a break judging you GIF by Originals

(I’m about to rant my fucking ass off, so if you don’t want any spoilers, here’s my tl;dr takeaway: this is a misogynistic dumpster fire that has no point to it at all.)

Continue reading “Review: When The Serpent Bites (The Starks Trilogy, #1) by Nesly Clerge”

Review: The Last Mrs. Parrish by Liv Constantine

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Harper | 2017

“What we’ve got here is a failure to communicate.” 

This quote from the 1967 film, COOL HAND LUKE, basically sums up how I’m feeling after reading this book. And I’ve never even seen the movie. The quote just came to me, as a thing I know somehow, deep from within the pop culture recesses of my mind. There’s a lot of useless information in there.

I might also go with: “…in the galaxy of This Sucks Camel Dicks!” Stepbrothers.

What I mean to say is: I wish the publishers hadn’t stuffed this novel into the psychological-thriller genre just because that’s where all the cool kids are, and had instead been honest about what this book is: a dark romance meets women’s fiction meets soap opera intrigue with a terrible, TERRIBLE message.

It’s not a thriller. I’m sorry, but no. I am not thrilled.

Had I known this from the start, I would have passed on reading it, because this level of dramatic soap-opera nutty-ness is just not my thing. It lacks humour and humanity, and is overpopulated with terrible one-liners, cliches and silly dialogue and tropes that feel like a reenactment. And the writing is derivative and basic.

Not to mention, the internal misogyny that permeates the entire theme gets my feminist hackles up.

Anyway… I didn’t know I shouldn’t read this, so I did, and now I have library late fees and a shitty review to write, so buckle up, bitches!

(This could get mildly spoiler-y because I’m going to rant, so if you’re super excited to read this, here’s my takeaway: Don’t waste your time with this, unless you’re cool with domestic abuse being legitimized. Otherwise, read on!)

Continue reading “Review: The Last Mrs. Parrish by Liv Constantine”