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Mini Review Dump #5 - It's All 4 Stars+ Today

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Recent Mini Reviews Let's face it, most of my reviews lately are what most people consider "mini" anyhow. Most of the time I'd rather be reading than writing an essay deconstructing every part of a book, so it is what it is. Here are the quick takes and the thoughtless thoughts about the recent(ish) books I've read.  How to Sell A Haunted House by Grady Hendrix ⭐⭐⭐⭐ This was a good read with some terribly flawed characters who pissed me off multiple times before I learned all of the circumstances. It's a well-crafted spooky read with some great characterization. Stick with it if the fighting between the siblings starts putting you off. I probably would've quit if I weren't listening on audio because it's long and the arguments drove me nuts but I'm so glad I finished. I’m also pretty sure my mother’s creepy ass Ashton Drake dolls feature heavily in this book so that was an extra level of creep. Recommended if you don't mind being very a

The Only One Left by Riley Sager | Book Review

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This was such a fun audio! The Only One Left by Riley Sager Released June 2023 Source: Library Borrow Goodreads  | Amazon Bestselling author Riley Sager returns with a Gothic chiller about a young caregiver assigned to work for a woman accused of a Lizzie Borden-like massacre decades earlier. At seventeen, Lenora Hope Hung her sister with a rope Now reduced to a schoolyard chant, the Hope family murders shocked the Maine coast one bloody night in 1929. While most people assume seventeen-year-old Lenora was responsible, the police were never able to prove it. Other than her denial after the killings, she has never spoken publicly about that night, nor has she set foot outside Hope’s End, the cliffside mansion where the massacre occurred. Stabbed her father with a knife Took her mother’s happy life It’s now 1983, and home-health aide Kit McDeere arrives at a decaying Hope’s End to care for Lenora after her previous nurse fled in the middle of the night. In her seventies and confined to a

Hideaway by Dean Koontz | A Retro Review

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I wrote this review many moons ago. It's a bit more plot heavy than my recent reviews but it's still brutally honest. About the Book Hideaway by Dean Koontz Released January 1992 Source: Library Borrow Goodreads  | Amazon Strange visions plague a man after he survives a near-death experience in this chilling thriller from #1 New York Times bestselling author Dean Koontz. Surviving a car accident on a snowy mountain road is miraculous for Lindsey Harrison, but even more so for her husband, Hatch, who was clinically dead for eighty minutes.   After experimental procedures bring Hatch back to life, he awakens with the terrifying feeling that something is it out there . But it soon becomes apparent that the evil stalking Hatch is within him—a dark force of murderous rage that hides within us all... My 2 Cents for Free! I first read Hideaway when I was able to waste away an entire day reading and I remember loving it to bits. This time around I listened to it on audio because I can’

Black Sheep by Rachel Harrison | Horror Fiction Review

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This was fantastic on audio! It almost made me look forward to housework.   Black Sheep by Rachel Harrison Released September 2023 Source: Library Borrow Goodreads  | Amazon A cynical twentysomething must confront her unconventional family’s dark secrets in this fiery, irreverent horror novel from the author of Such Sharp Teeth and Cackle. Nobody has a “normal” family, but Vesper Wright’s is truly...something else. Vesper left home at eighteen and never looked back—mostly because she was told that leaving the staunchly religious community she grew up in meant she couldn’t return. But then an envelope arrives on her doorstep. Inside is an invitation to the wedding of Vesper’s beloved cousin Rosie. It’s to be hosted at the family farm. Have they made an exception to the rule? It wouldn’t be the first time Vesper’s been given special treatment. Is the invite a sweet gesture? An olive branch? A trap? Doesn’t matter. Something inside her insists she go to the wedding. Even if it means retur

Books, Movies, TV & Updates • February 16, 2023

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Hello, everyone! I hope you found some time to read last week or were at least able to take some time for yourself.  Recent Reads & Listens  I still have an arc or two to finish up and then I'm reading purely for me. New books, old books, books that catch my eye. If I don't like them I'll be free to toss them. Ahhh, the freedom. Here's what I've finished recently: Clicking on a cover will open a new window to my review if you'd like to read it. ⭐⭐ ⭐⭐ 1/2 ⭐ ⭐⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ Additions to the TBR I found nearly new copies of The Wicked King & The Queen of Nothing by Holly Black inside one of the Little Free Libraries last week, so I grabbed them not realizing they were books #2 & #3 in The Folk of Air series. Ooops. So, I ordered book #1, The Cruel Prince, so I could read them in order. Have you read this series yet?  Recent Watches   ⭐ ⭐⭐ ⭐ 1/2 We just finished up Fargo Season 6 and it was a wild one! Jon Hamm was the absolute worst ex

When Beauty Tamed the Beast by Eloisa James | Romance Fiction Review

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Here's an oldie I just discovered. It's book #2 of a series and of course I read them out of order 😄 When Beauty Tamed the Beast by Eloisa James Released January 2011 Source: Library Borrow Goodreads  | Amazon Miss Linnet Berry Thrynne is a Beauty... Naturally, she's betrothed to a Beast. Piers Yelverton, Earl of Marchant, lives in a castle in Wales where, it is rumored, his bad temper flays everyone he crosses. And rumor also has it that a wound has left the earl immune to the charms of any woman. Linnet is not just any woman. She is more than merely lovely: her wit and charm brought a prince to his knees. She estimates the earl will fall madly in love—in just two weeks. If she decides to be very wicked indeed... what price will she pay for taming his wild heart? My 2 Cents for Free! I wasn't so sure about this book when I first started it. It was a bit convoluted and a little irritating if I'm being completely honest.  Everyone assumed the heroine was pregnant be

I Made Something: Rice Jumper

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While I haven't been reviewing (or blogging) much over the past few months, I have been reading and also doing other things! This is one of them. It's the Rice Jumper from We Are Knitters (if you plan to make a purchase sign up for emails and wait for a BIG sale like the 40% one they just ran because their 100% wool yarn is not cheap). First I picked the yarn (the fun part!). I changed the default colors of the pattern because they kind of clash with my paleness and I went with more of a muted palette.  Look at all the pretty yarn 💗 The Rice Jumper pattern is super easy to follow and great for tv/movie knitting, but it leaves out a few important points. Fortunately, there are usually notes on Ravelry  or helpful people blog about their experiences. I found this one with my Googlefoo and it saved me so much frustration.  https://consciousbychloe.com/2022/11/02/rice-jumper-we-are-knitters-la-casita-de-wendy/ There's a little rib stitch on the bottom and the sleeves and the

Book Review: A Woman Built by Man edited by S.H. Cooper & Elle Turpitt

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Hello, everyone! I'm back after my brief but much needed hiatus. I've decided to stop accepting ARC's and am focusing on my tbr for a bit because it was all becoming too stressful and unfun. We'll see how this goes, lol. Anyhow, here's a very good book you might want to read (and it's on Kindle Unlimited if you subscribe)  ↓  A Woman Built by Man edited by S.H. Cooper & Elle Turpitt Released February 2022 Source: My TBR Pile Goodreads  | Amazon A Woman Built by Man is a collage of 21 horror tales that seek to crawl under the skin and deconstruct the many ways women are built up and broken down by a patriarchal society. And the many ways they're finally saying, "Enough." My 2 Cents for Free! I was going to do a write-up on each story but decided to focus on the ones that I liked best instead. Call it laziness or call it not wanting to sit with the content of some of them for too long. Probably a bit of both. I read every one but I had to take a

Brainwyrms by Alison Rumfitt | Book Review

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Just like Rumfitt's previous book, this book will upset you. Brainwyrms by Alison Rumfitt Released October 2023 Source: Received for Review Consideration Goodreads   | Amazon From Alison Rumfitt, the author of Tell Me I’m Worthless — “a triumph of transgressive queer horror” (Publishers Weekly) — comes Brainwyrms, a searing body horror novel of obsession, violence and pleasure. When a transphobic woman bombs Frankie’s workplace, she blows up Frankie’s life with it. As the media descends like vultures, Frankie tries to cope with the carnage: binge-drinking, fucking strangers, pushing away her friends. Then she meets Vanya. Mysterious, beautiful, terrifying Vanya. The two hit it off immediately, but as their relationship intensifies, so too does Frankie’s feeling that Vanya is hiding something from her. When Vanya’s secrets threaten to tear them apart, Frankie starts digging, and unearths a sinister, depraved conspiracy, the roots of which go deeper than she ever imagined. Shocking,

Rouge by Mona Awad | Book Review

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I love me a weird book and this is a weird book! Rouge by Mona Awad Released September 2023 Source: Received for Review Consideration Goodreads |   Amazon From the critically acclaimed author of Bunny comes a horror-tinted, gothic fairy tale about a lonely dress shop clerk whose mother’s unexpected death sends her down a treacherous path in pursuit of youth and beauty. Can she escape her mother’s fate—and find a connection that is more than skin deep? For as long as she can remember, Belle has been insidiously obsessed with her skin and skincare videos. When her estranged mother Noelle mysteriously dies, Belle finds herself back in Southern California, dealing with her mother’s considerable debts and grappling with lingering questions about her death. The stakes escalate when a strange woman in red appears at the funeral, offering a tantalizing clue about her mother’s demise, followed by a cryptic video about a transformative spa experience. With the help of a pair of red shoes, Belle

Reluctant Immortals by Gwendolyn Kiste | Book Review

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This was fun but it left me with some questions. Reluctant Immortals by Gwendolyn Kiste Released August 2022 Source: Library Borrow Goodreads   | Amazon For fans of Mexican Gothic, from three-time Bram Stoker Award–winning author Gwendolyn Kiste comes a novel inspired by the untold stories of forgotten women in classic literature--from Lucy Westenra, a victim of Stoker’s Dracula, and Bertha Mason, from Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre--as they band together to combat the toxic men bent on destroying their lives, set against the backdrop of the Summer of Love, Haight-Ashbury, 1967. Reluctant Immortals is a historical horror novel that looks at two men of classic literature, Dracula and Mr. Rochester, and the two women who survived them, Bertha and Lucy, who are now undead immortals residing in Los Angeles in 1967 when Dracula and Rochester make a shocking return in the Haight-Ashbury district of San Francisco. Combining elements of historical and gothic fiction with a modern perspective, in

Reviews and Other Crud

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Hey, everyone! I haven't done an update in too long. I hope you're all reading some great books, watching some creepy movies and getting outside. I've been feeling pretty meh about a lot of things. I recently lost my other elderly cat Mr. Kirbs and I still find myself getting up to fetch his meds at certain times. He passed quietly in the night after a rough couple of days in and out of the vet's. I adopted him as a kitten and he lived with me for 19 years so it's been sad not seeing his old man cat face, hearing his rumbly purr and having him sit on my head while he tries to eat my hair as I read. I've since decided to ditch most of my social media because it seems to reward stress and hatefulness and terrible people and I just don't have the space for it anymore and I've also decided to slow way down on reviewing arc's to make room to read things I bought and am dying to read. I never seem to find enough time to actually read them and always end up