When a Stranger Comes to Town by Michael Koryta


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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.

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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.


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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…

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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.


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