When a Stranger Comes to Town by Michael Koryta

 

When a

The latest Mystery Writers of America story collection, featuring surprising, page-turning twists on the genre from some of the top bestsellers and award winners in crime fiction

It’s been said that all great literature boils down to one of two stories—a man takes a journey, or a stranger comes to town. While mystery writers have been successfully using both approaches for generations, there’s something undeniably alluring in the nature of a stranger: the uninvited guest, the unacquainted neighbor, the fish out of water.

No matter how or where they appear, strangers are walking mysteries, complete unknowns in once-familiar territories who disrupt our lives with unease and wonder. In the newest collection of stories by the Mystery Writers of America, each author weaves a fresh tale surrounding the eerie feeling that comes when a stranger enters our midst, featuring stories by prolific mystery writers such as Michael Connelly, Dean Koontz and Joe Hill.

π π π π

Available Today – April 20, 2021!

When a Stranger Comes to Town contains 19 short stories (from 19 different authors) with one theme – strangers! I found that this was a very interesting concept. It made for lots of excellent stories where the stranger wreaks havoc. 

I typically don’t read too many collections, but I’m really glad I choose this one. I enjoyed the majority of the stories and found some new authors to check out. Here are some of my favourites!

  • Seat 2C by Alafair Burke – a widow meeting a new man on a flight. I love Alafair Burke and I was so disappointed when the story was over, I wanted so much more!
  • Avalon by Michael Connelly – Mysterious man comes to the island of Avalon. I was hooked on the mystery man and why he had come to the island. Very suspenseful!
  • Here’s to New Friends by Jacqueline Freimor – creepy stranger on the train! This one shocked me! Need to check out more by the author, such an easy writing style that had me wanting more.
  • A Six Letter Word for Neighbor by Lisa Unger – A new next door neighbour moves in. Loved the twist! You never know who your neighbour is!
  • Perfect Strangers by Tilia Klebenov Jacobs – the perfect robbery? I loved the background of the robber and how the author set up the robbery. And of course the ending was too perfect. Loved it!
  • PFA by Michael Koryta – a nosy neighbor. OMG, my favourite of the bunch. I had no idea where it was going and I was so shocked. Loved every word and of course wanted more!
  • Genius by Elaine Togneri – attempting to kill a musician. So funny. I was loving the narrator’s attempts and was trying to see if they would be successful.
  • Tokyo Stranger by Tina deBellegarde – a driver making a tough decision. Was surprised by this one. Was more emotional than the others. 

4 calculators out of a potential 5. Check out this collection! So many great short stories that will have you second guessing when a stranger appears!

Thank you to Netgallery and HARLEQUIN – Trade Publishing (U.S. & Canada) for an ARC in exchange for my honest review.

red_calculatorred_calculatorred_calculatorred_calculator

Let’s be friends! Goodreads & Instagram

Just My Luck by Adele Parks

Just My Luck cover

It’s the stuff dreams are made of – a lottery win so big, it changes everything.

For fifteen years, Lexi and Jake have played the same six numbers with their friends, the Pearsons and the Heathcotes. Over dinner parties, fish & chip suppers and summer barbecues, they’ve discussed the important stuff – the kids, marriages, jobs and houses – and they’ve laughed off their disappointment when they failed to win anything more than a tenner.

But then, one Saturday night, the unthinkable happens. There’s a rift in the group. Someone doesn’t tell the truth. And soon after, six numbers come up which change everything forever.

Lexi and Jake have a ticket worth £18 million. And their friends are determined to claim a share of it.

Adele Parks returns with a riveting look at the dark side of wealth in this gripping take on friendship, money and betrayal, and good luck gone bad…

π π π π

Available Today – April 6, 2021!

What would happen if you won the lottery? It’s a scenario that everyone dreams about. Quit your job, buy a new house, go on a trip, donate to charity. You think that your life would change for the better, but would it?? 

Enter Lexi and Jake. Married for 25 years, 2 teenager children and the winners of millions of dollars. I thought I would like reading about an average couple winning the lottery, but these two are pretty unlikeable. I was disappointed reading about them and the decisions that they were making on their lottery win, especially Jake. I hated Jake. 

The mystery aspects were lacking as well. I had guessed a lot of the twists and they were pretty far out there. The novel quickly went from your average couple to very unrealistic. 

Also can we talk about the very last chapter. What was that?! I would of much rather read a book about the 3 couples than the family drama that Just My Luck was. 

2 calculators out of a potential 5. A big miss for me, which was disappointing since the cover and description really pulled me into the novel. 

Thank you to Netgallery and HARLEQUIN – Trade Publishing (U.S. & Canada) for an ARC in exchange for my honest review.

red_calculatorred_calculator

Let’s be friends! Goodreads & Instagram

Tell No Lies by Allison Brennan

9780778331469_RHC_PRD

Something mysterious is killing the wildlife in the desert hills just south of Tucson. When a college intern turned activist sets out to collect her own evidence, she, too, ends up dead. Local law enforcement is slow to get involved. That’s when the mobile FBI unit goes undercover to infiltrate the town and its copper refinery in search of possible leads.

Quinn and Cos find themselves scouring the desolate landscape, which keeps revealing clues to something much darker—greed, child trafficking and more murder. As the body count adds up, it’s clear they have stumbled on much more than they bargained for. Now they must figure out who is at the heart of this mayhem and stop them before more innocent lives are lost.

π π π π

Available Today – March 30, 2021!

Allison Brennan was able to pack a lot into this mystery. At first, it was a bit overwhelming since you had to try to remember all of the characters plus how they were involved (illegal dumping, child trafficking, money laundering). 

My favourite part was reading about Kara Quinn. In this novel, she is undercover as a bartender to get close to the locals. I really loved reading about being undercover and how it takes the exact right person for the job or else the whole operation could be blown. I really hope there are future novels about more undercover operations!

Even though this was the second novel in the series, it could be read as a standalone. Sadly, I didn’t enjoy it as much as the first novel (The Third to Die by Allison Brennan). The complexity of all the different storylines took away some of my enjoyment from the novel. 

3 calculators out of a potential 5. I’m excited to read more in the series and to see what happens with Matt and Kara. 

Thank you to Netgallery and HARLEQUIN – Trade Publishing (U.S. & Canada) for an ARC in exchange for my honest review.

red_calculatorred_calculatorred_calculator

Let’s be friends! Goodreads & Instagram

Danger in Numbers by Heather Graham

Danger in Numbers Cover_FINAL

On the edge of the Everglades, an eerie crime scene sets off an investigation that sends two agents deep into a world of corrupted faith, greed and deadly secrets.

A ritualistic murder on the side of a remote road brings in the Florida state police. Special Agent Amy Larson has never seen worse, and there are indications that this killing could be just the beginning. The crime draws the attention of the FBI in the form of Special Agent Hunter Forrest, a man with insider knowledge of how violent cults operate, and a man who might never be able to escape his own past.

The rural community is devastated by the death in their midst, but people know more than they are saying. As Amy and Hunter join forces, every lead takes them further into the twisted beliefs of a dangerous group that will stop at nothing to see their will done.

Doomsday preppers and small-town secrets collide in this sultry, twisty page-turning thriller.

π π π π

Available Today – March 23, 2021!

Even though Heather Graham has written dozens of novels, this was my first time reading one of her novels. I was really interested when I was reading the description since I find books, especially mysteries, involving cults to be fascinating. 

Danger in Numbers was good and I enjoyed reading it, but sadly there was nothing that stood out to me. I found the two lead characters to be pretty bland and it was pretty obvious early on what would happen to these two. 

The mystery was lacking. There were no surprising twists that occurred. I was hoping that something would happen to change the direction of the novel, but sadly it didn’t. With so many mysteries novels out there and even mysteries involving cults, Danger in Numbers just doesn’t stand out. 

3 calculators out of a potential 5. Run of the mill mystery involving a cult.

Thank you to Netgallery and HARLEQUIN – Trade Publishing (U.S. & Canada) for an ARC in exchange for my honest review.

red_calculatorred_calculatorred_calculator

Let’s be friends! Goodreads & Instagram

Her Dark Lies by J.T. Ellison

 

image001

At the wedding of the year, a killer needs no invitation

Jutting from sparkling turquoise waters off the Italian coast, Isle Isola is an idyllic setting for a wedding. In the majestic cliff-top villa owned by the wealthy Compton family, up-and-coming artist Claire Hunter will marry handsome, charming Jack Compton, surrounded by close family, intimate friends…and a host of dark secrets.

From the moment Claire sets foot on the island, something seems amiss. Skeletal remains have just been found. There are other, newer disturbances, too. Menacing texts. A ruined wedding dress. And one troubling shadow hanging over Claire’s otherwise blissful relationship—the strange mystery surrounding Jack’s first wife.

Then a raging storm descends, the power goes out—and the real terror begins…

π π π π

Available Today – March 9, 2021!

Is it just me or is secluded weddings with a killer the mystery theme of the year? I’ve been reading a lot of these lately. Thankfully I love these types of locked room mysteries so I’m happy to read them!

Her Dark Lies follows Claire and Jack who are getting married on a beautiful private island owned by Jack’s family. Of course nothing is as it’s seems as past secrets come out and threaten to ruin their big day. 

I really enjoyed all the mysteries and secrets that Claire and Jack had to face. It wasn’t a simple mystery, there were multiple layers that had me hooked on finding out who was behind it all. 

4 calculators out of a potential 5. One of my favourite reads so far this year! 

Thank you to Netgallery and HARLEQUIN – Trade Publishing (U.S. & Canada) for an ARC in exchange for my honest review.

red_calculatorred_calculatorred_calculatorred_calculator

Let’s be friends! Goodreads & Instagram