Author: Caroline Kepnes

Rapid Fire Reviews | Hail Mary, The Soulmate Equation, The Halloween Tree, You Love Me

Posted July 31, 2021 by Bonnie in Book Reviews, Rapid Fire Reviews / 2 Comments

Sometimes review writing is hard. Sometimes you don’t have a lot to say. Sometimes you’re just lazy as fuck. These are Rapid Fire Reviews.

Rapid Fire Reviews | Hail Mary, The Soulmate Equation, The Halloween Tree, You Love MeProject Hail Mary by Andy Weir
Published by Ballantine Books on May 4, 2021
Pages: 476
Genres: Sci-fi
Format: eARC
Source: Netgalley
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Audible
Goodreads

Also by this author: The MartianArtemis

Thoughts: I don’t give out five stars too often, but this one was one spectacular book. I was a bit apprehensive at first: the plot centers around an astronaut that wakes up alone on a spaceship with no memory of where he is, or even who he is. Rather than being provided a backstory, we’d suddenly get these bursts of memory, but they were written kind of sloppily I felt. He’d be doing something on the spaceship, have some memory, and realize oh! That’s because I was a science teacher, or whatever. It was really off-putting and happened frequently in the first several hundred pages. The rest of the book was so amazing that I was able to overlook the issues I had with that.

Verdict: The major aspect of this book is actually a huge spoiler and it is 100% better to experience it firsthand, so, I’m going to do my part and not even try to allude to it. Well worth a read.

In a nutshell, GIF style:

Gif space loop 5 » GIF Images Download

five-stars

I received this book free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Rapid Fire Reviews | Hail Mary, The Soulmate Equation, The Halloween Tree, You Love MeThe Soulmate Equation by Christina Lauren
Published by Gallery Books on May 18, 2021
Pages: 368
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Format: eARC
Source: Edelweiss
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Audible
Goodreads

Also by this author: My Favorite Half-Night StandJosh and Hazel’s Guide to Not DatingLove and Other WordsThe UnhoneymoonersTwice in a Blue Moon

Thoughts: I’m always on board for new CL, and I was completely in love with this plot when I read the blurb. Not only do we have some fun science shit, but we’ve got an enemies-to-lovers thing going on (which I l-o-v-e). Unfortunately, there’s usually a lot more sizzle between a pair when they realize that they don’t actually hate one another as much as they thought. The sizzle fizzled instead, and we were left with a whole lot of talk of soulmates but not much showing.

Verdict: Being able to find your soulmate through a scientific experiment is quite an intriguing concept: too bad the soulmates in this story have practically no chemistry.

In a nutshell, GIF style:

Soulmates GIF | Gfycat

three-half-stars

I received this book free from Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Rapid Fire Reviews | Hail Mary, The Soulmate Equation, The Halloween Tree, You Love MeThe Halloween Moon by Joseph Fink
Published by Quill Tree Books on July 20, 2021
Pages: 288
Genres: Horror
Format: eARC
Source: Netgalley
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Audible
Goodreads

Thoughts: The Halloween Queen has frozen time in Esther’s small town and it’s up to her and a few friends to break the curse. The premise of this was really creepy and perfect for Goosebumps fans, young and old alike, but Fink tried to do a little too much within these pages. I appreciated the thought he put into the diversity of the characters and the progress of Esther’s coming-of-age story, however, it definitely detracted from reaching peak horror. ​Being chased through town by a guy throwing razor blade-filled apples was quite creepy but there was so much other stuff going on it was hard to determine whether or not there was actually any threat.

Verdict: I’m not actually sure if this would have just been better suited to the targeted age group, but either way, it was still a thrilling little Halloween in July sort of tale.

In a nutshell, GIF style:

Top 30 Poison Apple GIFs | Find the best GIF on Gfycat

three-stars

I received this book free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Rapid Fire Reviews | Hail Mary, The Soulmate Equation, The Halloween Tree, You Love MeYou Love Me (You, #3) by Caroline Kepnes
Published by Random House on April 6, 2021
Pages: 385
Genres: Thriller
Format: eARC
Source: Netgalley
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Audible
Goodreads

Also by this author: Hidden Bodies

Thoughts: Joe and his stalker romantic tendencies are still going strong. He’s moved to a new town, has a new job at the library, and has a new woman to become weirdly obsessed over for no particular reason. Honestly, despite the occasional curve balls that kept this installment slightly interesting, You Love Me just felt like a recycled version of what’s been told twice before now. The only difference was the excessive use of “lemonhead” and “Murakami”. 🤢

Verdict: I believe this is one of the rare cases where the show is actually better than the book so I’ll be sticking with that from this point on.

In a nutshell, GIF style:

The Office Ugh GIF by Romy - Find & Share on GIPHY

two-stars

I received this book free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

 

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Book Review – Hidden Bodies (You #2) by Caroline Kepnes

Posted March 18, 2016 by Bonnie in Adult, Book Reviews, Read in 2016 / 1 Comment

I received this book free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Book Review – Hidden Bodies (You #2) by Caroline KepnesHidden Bodies by Caroline Kepnes
Series: You #2
Published by Emily Bestler Books on February 23rd 2016
Pages: 448
Genres: Thriller
Source: Netgalley
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository
Goodreads

Also by this author: You Love Me (You, #3)

two-stars

Joe Goldberg is no stranger to hiding bodies. In the past ten years, this thirty-something has buried four of them, collateral damage in his quest for love. Now he’s heading west to Los Angeles, the city of second chances, determined to put his past behind him.

In Hollywood, Joe blends in effortlessly with the other young upstarts. He eats guac, works in a bookstore, and flirts with a journalist neighbor. But while others seem fixated on their own reflections, Joe can’t stop looking over his shoulder. The problem with hidden bodies is that they don’t always stay that way. They re-emerge, like dark thoughts, multiplying and threatening to destroy what Joe wants most: true love. And when he finds it in a darkened room in Soho House, he’s more desperate than ever to keep his secrets buried. He doesn’t want to hurt his new girlfriend—he wants to be with her forever. But if she ever finds out what he’s done, he may not have a choice...

style-3 (2) review

Hidden Bodies is the continued adventures of one of my favorite psychos: Joe Goldberg. You was the most fantastic of surprises and since we’re on the topic of You it must be said that not only should you read it before you pick up Hidden Bodies, but it’d be best you read that before you read this review because there will definitely be spoilers. Fine print out of the way, Hidden Bodies jumped to the top ten list of my most anticipated of the year. Suffice it to say, there’s nothing worse than getting your hopes up only to have them dashed.

I know. I’m super bummed. But let me explain the why of it all.

Joe Goldberg is quite possibly the most normal yet most intriguing serial killer I have yet to find in fiction. He’s the manager of a bookstore and when not being exasperated by the general population of New York City, is on the hunt for love. He thought he found it with Guinevere but four dead bodies later (including hers) that clearly isn’t the case. But he’s found love with Amy and everything is going splendidly, at least until she disappears with his rare-book collection. And his heart. But Joe is able to set his heartbreak aside and sets his focus on revenge instead. And that’s how he finds himself in sunny Los Angeles.

What I loved most about Joe is how hilarious and charismatic he was.. for a psychopath. We’re given a front row viewing at how his mind works and while it was, of course, a terrifying place to be, he still managed to garner your sympathy shockingly enough. His diatribes of people and the ridiculous shit they do were the absolute best and I was looking forward to his outlook on the insipid masses that populate Los Angeles. But then we reach about the midway point, while he’s still rambling on about ridiculous people, I slowly realize that he’s becoming just like them. Joe’s original charisma, his appeal as a captivating fictional character? Missing in action. He arrived in California to completely lose sight of the purpose for his presence there in the first place.

While it could be said that Joe’s actions were the same as they were in You, all in a misguided attempt to find and keep love (literally and figuratively, he begins dating a girl in LA that’s actually named Love), it felt far more sporadic and sloppy this time around. Joe was constantly finding himself in the cross-hairs of danger and the majority of it all seemed superfluous and much like how I’d expect it’d feel watching a train wreck.

Suffice it to say, I felt You was a complete story that could (and should) have been left as is. It reminded me a lot of a more modern version of The Collector, with an incredibly entertaining character stylishly rocking a complete lack of morals. I just didn’t enjoy the evolution of Joe’s character or the direction of the plot in Hidden Bodies and it made for a most tedious read. Others have loved this as much as You, so there’s good news for that crowd: there will definitely be a third Joe Goldberg book. I’ll be sitting over here waiting anxiously for Kepnes to create something new because I’m calling it quits with Joe.

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