Welcome to the first books of the new year! I have set my Reading Challenge goal for 2024 on Goodreads and have finished two books this week…
I decided to stick with 60 books, even though I exceeded this number last year. It’s only for fun and I don’t want to feel any pressure to meet the target.
Here’s the first book of 2023:
The first book was Girl, Forgotten by Karin Slaughter, #02 Andrea Oliver series. Here is the blurb:
A small town hides a big secret…
Who killed Emily Vaughn?
“A girl with a secret…
Longbill Beach, 1982. Emily Vaughn gets ready for the prom. For an athlete, who is smart, pretty and well-liked, this night that should be the highlight of her high school career. But Emily has a secret. And by the end of the evening, that secret will be silenced forever.
An unsolved murder…
Forty years later, Emily’s murder remains a mystery. Her tight-knit group of friends closed ranks; her respected, wealthy family retreated inwards; the small town moved on from her grisly attack. But all that’s about to change.
One final chance to uncover a killer…
US Marshal Andrea Oliver arrives in Longbill Beach on her first assignment: to protect a judge receiving death threats. But, in reality, Andrea is there to find justice for Emily. The killer is still out there – and Andrea must discover the truth before she gets silenced, too…”
I read the first book in this series back in 2018, so I must admit that I had virtually totally forgotten the plot, which was a bit of a problem as I began to read this book. Anyway, this is my response on Goodreads:Girl, Forgotten by Karin Slaughter
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
This is a sequel, unfortunately I couldn’t remember much about the first book and I was quite grateful that Slaughter signposted some of the plot! I did enjoy this book, although I didn’t feel that it was one of her best. The book improved as I read on and became quite exciting in the second half. The chapters set in the 80s were very sad and upsetting, reminding me of how much things have improved.
I will certainly read Slaughter’s next book and am glad to see that she is returning to the world of Will Trent!
View all my reviews
I was excited to see that a television series based on Slaughter’s Will Trent books is now airing, but despite having several streaming platforms, it is not available on any that I subscribe to! What a shame.
Now, let’s turn to the second book of the week…
I was quite excited when this book came up in our library’s ebook listing: The Heron’s Cry by Ann Cleeves, #02 Two Rivers. I had read the first book in the series, The Long Call, back in 2020 and enjoyed it immensely, as I have Cleeves’ other books. Anyway, let’s look first at the blurb:
“North Devon is enjoying a rare hot summer with tourists flocking to its coastline. Detective Matthew Venn is called out to a rural crime scene at the home of a group of artists. What he finds is an elaborately staged murder–Dr Nigel Yeo has been fatally stabbed with a shard of one of his glassblower daughter’s broken vases.
Dr. Yeo seems an unlikely murder victim. He’s a good man, a public servant, beloved by his daughter. Matthew is unnerved, though, to find that she is a close friend of Jonathan, his husband.
Then another body is found–killed in a similar way. Matthew soon finds himself treading carefully through the lies that fester at the heart of his community and a case that is dangerously close to home…”
Now, this is my review:The Heron’s Cry by Ann Cleeves
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
This is more of a 3.5 really. Whilst I did enjoy the book, the characters were well written and the locations and plot were interesting, I found the whole thing far too long. I have read a lot of Cleeves’ other books and found them far better. If a further book is written in the series, I will almost definitely read it, but I hope that she can be a little more succinct!
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Once again, I must apologise for the brevity of my responses to each book. I don’t suppose they deserve to be called reviews really. However, whilst I am really pleased that I get visitors to these Reading Roundup posts, I write them for my own amusement and to have a record of what I am reading. Also, I don’t want to put any pressure on myself to write at length or to achieve a certain quality in my writing. I compile this blog now to try to exercise my brain since I retired and particularly since I had the stroke in 2019. So, thank you to those of you who do respond – it is really appreciated and I hope that you do get something useful or entertaining from these posts!
Happy Reading to you all!
Love and best wishes,