Welcome to the third instalment of Rapid Reviews. As the title suggests, you’ll find rapid reviews for books I’ve read recently, but for one reason or another decided against writing a full review. These reviews vary in length but they will all be rapid! And to make things easier, you can see if I’ve enjoyed a book, or not, at a glance – next to titles I’ve enjoyed, you’ll find a and for those that didn’t work for me, you’ll see a .
On today’s rapid reviews:
Sadie by Courtney Summers (full cast narration) ✔️
A missing girl on a journey of revenge and a Serial-like podcast following the clues she’s left behind.
Sadie hasn’t had an easy life. Growing up on her own, she’s been raising her sister, Mattie, in an isolated small town, trying her best to provide a normal life and keep their heads above water.
But when Mattie is found dead, Sadie’s entire world crumbles. After a somewhat botched police investigation, Sadie is determined to bring her sister’s killer to justice and hits the road following a few meager clues to find him.
When West McCray – a radio personality working on a segment about small, forgotten towns in America – overhears Sadie’s story at a local gas station, he becomes obsessed with finding the missing girl. He starts his own podcast as he tracks Sadie’s journey, trying to figure out what happened, hoping to find her before it’s too late.
Omg, this is must read/listen! With a cast of more than 30 narrators, this is one of the most engaging books I’ve listened to. Each character is distinct in personality and voice, and the narrator reading Sadie was incredible! Sadie is a mystery novel, filled with so much emotion, it’s raw, it’s heartfelt!
Barbed Wire Heart by Tess Sharpe (narrated by the author) ✔️
Never cut the drugs – leave them pure. Guns are meant to be shot – keep them loaded. Family is everything – betray them and die.
Harley McKenna is the only child of North County’s biggest criminal. Duke McKenna’s run more guns, cooked more meth, and killed more men than anyone around. Harley’s been working for him since she was 16 – collecting debts, sweet-talking her way out of trouble, and dreading the day he’d deem her ready to rule the rural drug empire he’s built.
Her time’s run out. The Springfields, her family’s biggest rivals, are moving in. Years ago, they were responsible for her mother’s death, and now they’re coming for Duke’s only weak spot: his daughter.
With a bloody turf war threatening to consume North County, Harley is forced to confront the truth: that her father’s violent world will destroy her. Duke’s raised her to be deadly – he never counted on her being disloyal. But if Harley wants to survive and protect the people she loves, she’s got to take out Duke’s operation and the Springfields.
Blowing up meth labs is dangerous business, and getting caught will be the end of her, but Harley has one advantage: She is her father’s daughter. And McKennas always win.
A remarkable novel with a deep emotional core, Barbed Wire Heart seamlessly blends thrilling suspense with a multilayered and unflinching portrayal of a poor, rural community where family is everything.
I chose to listen to this audiobook after reading Annie @ The Misstery’s review. And, I’m so glad I did – the plot, the characters, the narration, all fantastic! This is a dark crime thriller, perfect for those who love a badass female protagonist. This thriller is dangerous, dark, but it has so much heart; you become so invested in the plot, and you fall in love with Harley. I’d go so far as to say it’s one of my favourite books of 2018! If you love fierce female protagonists like Lori Anderson (Deep Down Dead), or novels like The Marsh King’s Daughter, then I think you’ll really enjoy this one!
The Wife by Alafair Burke (narrated by Jane Perry) ✔️
When Angela met Jason Powell while catering a function in the Hamptons, she assumed their romance would be a fling. But Jason, a brilliant economics professor at NYU, had other plans, and they married the following summer.
The marriage meant a fresh start, a chance for Angela and her young son to move to Manhattan, where no one knew of her tragic past. Six years later, her husband has become a successful and celebrated liberal figurehead, but when a college intern and then another woman come forward with allegations against him, their perfect life begins to unravel. Jason insists he is innocent, but will Angela stand by his side even if he drags her down with him?
The Wife exceeded all my expectations – part psychological thriller, part domestic drama with a splash of legal thriller, this made for highly addictive listening. I flew through this audio, I love the realism of the story told, and the character’s responses to the situations they found themselves in. The plot was well-thought out, and had an extremely satisfying ending. Highly recommended!
Strangers by Paul Finch (narrated by Chloe Massey) ✖️
Unknown, alone and fearing for your life. As PC Lucy Clayburn is about to find out, going undercover is the most dangerous work there is. But on the trail of a prolific female serial killer, there’s no other option – and these murders are as brutal as they come.
Lucy must step into the line of fire – a stranger in a criminal underworld that butchers anyone who crosses the line. And, unknown to Lucy, she’s already treading it….
Always gripping. Always gruesome. Paul Finch will leave fans of Rachel Abbott and MJ Arlidge gasping for more.
Wasn’t for me. Plot didn’t hold my interest, it was lacking in the thrills this genre usually delivers, and I just couldn’t connect with the main character, Lucy, so I won’t be continuing the series.
Narration was excellent though, and the reason I made it to the end of the book, will look out to see what else Chloe Massey has narrated.