The Wife’s Promise

The Wife’s Promise: A totally escapist WWII historical fiction novel by Kate Hewitt

My rating: 4 of 5 stars


Two lifetimes apart, Alice and Jane reside at an old vicar’s house. The house welcomes both women with cold walls and shatters their dreams for the future. But in a long run, the same walls of an old vicarage give the women strength to move forward with new life purposes, new goals for the future, and finally – find happiness at heart.

The story sheds the lite on women’s life after a major move from the comfortable environments that they have known and spent all their lives living. Each woman struggles with their new identity as a wife/mother/homemaker. I was rooting for both women throughout the novel, and in all honesty – had strong doubts that Jane will make it thru. Alice’s timeline was rough to read thru as well, but it made me so happy to see her turn her sorrows into something positive. I admire the strong and perceptive woman she grew into.

If you have enjoyed reading other historical fiction taking place during WWII, then you simply must read this emotional and brilliantly written story. It’s a completely gripping story of love, regrets, and harsh realities.

Thank you, NetGalley for a free and advanced copy of the novel.



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Best Friend Forever

Best Friends Forever by Shannon Hollinger

My rating: 4 of 5 stars



Ten years prior, after a traumatic incident, Kate leaves her home and family behind and moves states away. Her mother’s recent incident forces Kate to return to her hometown. Her biggest dread is facing her childhood best friend Emma. But Emma’s sudden death frees Kate of the burden. However, she expects the death of her friend to bring her and the family relief. Instead, it opens a door into a web of many shocking secrets.

For a very ordinary plot, this novel shocks the reader with a chain of surprising revelations and one unexpected ending. I found this book to be compelling and a true psychological thriller, which I’m always looking for. There’s also a romance at the center as well. I definitely plan to read more by the author, I admire her writing style.

Thank you, NetGalley for a free and advanced copy of the novel.



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All The Dangerous Things

All the Dangerous Things by Stacy Willingham

My rating: 4 of 5 stars



One year has passed since the worst night of her life. One year ago she was a happily married mother of a wonderful little boy. As her missing son’s case sits unresolved, Isabelle does not give up. Finding her little boy is her life’s mission. From interviewing the neighbors and potential suspects she moves to true crime speaking. That’s where she meets HIM, the person who will make her see the truth.

A missing child is any mother’s true nightmare. Isabelle’s determination to find her son is beyond inspiring. She does not break under pressure but instead uses it as a motivation to find the truth. This was definitely one of the more addictive can’t-put-down reads that I’ve read this year. While the story was not insanely original, it was extremely compelling.

Thank you, NetGalley for a free and advanced copy of the novel in the exchange for my honest review.



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Only One Lie

Only One Lie by Audrey J. Cole

My rating: 4 of 5 stars



Seattle, the midst of WWII. After her husband’s deployment, Vera manages to replace him as a private pilot with the wealthiest family on the coast. But the major tragedy strikes her new employer, and Vera is asked to help in resolving the mystery.

I had no clue what I was getting myself into with this novel. The book is filled with shocking twists in every single chapter. And the pace of the novel is so fast, I was burning thru its pages. The novel shares many similar details with the Lindbergh kidnapping, although it takes a very different direction. I do not want to reveal any spoilers, but this is definitely one of the best historical detective novels that I’ve enjoyed in a while.



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Summer

Summer by Edith Wharton

My rating: 4 of 5 stars



A young and naive Charity Royall meets a charming city boy Lucius Harney. As their romance strikes up rumors in town, her legal guardian is trying to save the girl’s reputation. But stubborn Charity follows her heart, and it leads her to a devastating ending of the summer romance.

Edith Wharton has written another beautifully heart-rending romance. The alluring setting of the novel, dashing characters, and melancholic ending touched my heart, and days after the read, the story is still on my mind. The novel is bittersweet, the writing is beautiful, and the story has a natural, easy flow. I am simply in love with the writing of Edith Wharton.



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The Secret

The Secret by Gemma Rogers

My rating: 3 of 5 stars



During the summer before their senior year, a group of eight high schoolers plans a secret party during which they all lose their virginity. The events of this particular night have changed many lives. Twenty years later, someone is targeting the group, and they are out for bloody revenge.

The Secret by Gemma Rogers begins with a bang, which had me excited but as the story progressed there were times when I lost interest and my attention wavered. The characters in the book were okay. I would have liked more suspense. Overall, it was a good read.



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The Turn of the Key

The Turn of the Key by Ruth Ware

My rating: 3 of 5 stars



At last, she did it! Everything went according to her well-thought plan, and way beyond it. But she never expected to experience what was waiting on her behind the gates of the magnificent Heatherbrae House.

Good, typical new nanny story, with well-organized suspense and remarkable twists that are revealed in each chapter. Prepare yourself for not so happy ending, this novel ends on a melancholy note. Although the plot of the novel didn’t wow me, the finale made up for it.



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It Starts With Us

It Starts with Us by Colleen Hoover

My rating: 3 of 5 stars


With the divorce behind her, Lily is finally ready to give herself another chance to be happy. Her relationship with Atlas had easily picked up from where it was left off years prior. But Ryle is not ready to let his family go.

It Ends With Us has left me in tears. The story touched my heart and soul, and when the sequel of the novel came out, I had to read it to complete Lily’s happily ever after. But, I was left disappointed. From the very first pages, we knew that Lily and Atlas will end up together, however, the road that led there was uneventful and dry. By the middle of the book, their constant love confessions began to sound like a broken record. Less is more! The twist with the new relative that popped up in Atlas’s life was very interesting. But basically, that was it. The ongoing drama with Ryle was simply annoying and melodramatic. Overall, it was a cute ending to Atlas and Lily’s love story.



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Last Girl Gone

Last Girl Gone by J.G. Hetherton

My rating: 4 of 5 stars


Once a bright star of the Boston Globe, Laura is now back in her hometown. Her traumatic past has brought her to the “couch” of the small town’s only therapist. Driven by her work as a newspaper writer, she begins to involve her therapist in the missing girls’ case. As she digs deeper into the findings, unknowingly Laura brings the danger closer to the people she loves and cares about.

Last Girl Gone is told from the journalist’s perspective, which is a change from all the detective novels I’ve been accustomed to. Laura’s character is bold and fearless. Although I was a bit confused about why out of hundreds of towns/cities in the US, she choose to go back to the town she was so eager to get out of. Anyway, I am glad she did, otherwise, the cold case mystery would have never been solved. Nevertheless, this is a busy, yet fast-paced read, with many shocking details and twists. This novel screams – trust no one! If you love reading thrillers, mysteries, or psychological thrillers then I highly recommend you read this book.



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Christmas At The Amish Market

Christmas at the Amish Market by Shelley Shepard Gray

My rating: 4 of 5 stars



The busy Christmas season at the family store keeps Wesley away from his long-time girlfriend. Liesl and Wesley have been going steady for years, and she expects the young man to finally ask for her hand in marriage. This holiday season has surprising life-changing events waiting for the young couple.

Christmas at the Amish Market is a short and heartwarming story of finding true love during the most magical time of the year. Written in true Hallmark fashion – sweet and clean with a slow-burn romance. I love that the reader gets to see things through the eyes of all four main characters. That made the book really balanced.

Thank you, NetGalley and Shelley Shepard Gray for a free and advanced copy of the novel in the exchange for my honest review.



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The Villa

The Villa by Rachel Hawkins

My rating: 4 of 5 stars


Houses remember… Villa Rosato is the perfect jewel waiting for another person and their story.

Past – In the summer of 1974, a group of five comes to Villa Rosato for a fun summer holiday. By the end of the summer, two members of the group are dead, and two others become worldwide famous. However, the days the group has spent in the villa under the Italian sun remain a mystery.

Present – Emily, a murder mystery writer, receives an invitation from her childhood friend and famous self-help author Chess to join her for a summer holiday in the Italian Villa Aestas. After a year of a pure personal nightmare, Emily finds a hard time returning to her writing. While looking for inspiration, she discovers a diary of the woman that stayed in the house in the summer of 1974.

I’ve been a fan of Rachel Hawkins for a few years, and the author never fails to lure me into a spider web of her phenomenal thrillers. Although, The Villa is less suspenseful than her previous novels, nevertheless, I found it fascinating. Great characters and a setting that adds a dark mysterious vibe to the novel. The dual timeline and the tragic stories of the two heroines kept me captivated from the very first pages. Overall, it is a great read, with an unexpected twist at the very end.



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The Midwife

The Midwife by Victoria Jenkins

My rating: 3 of 5 stars


Nature granted Lauren a second chance on becoming a mother. This time, she will do everything it takes to protect her child. She is prepared for everything, except for her past to come and hunt her.

Overall, an ok read. I expected a gripping suspense but ended up with a light thriller version. I found it reasonably well-narrated, but unnecessarily long and predictable. Not a bad book, just not my type.

Thank you, NetGalley for a free and advanced copy of the novel.



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