By Adventures in Obsessive Reading
Author: Taylor Adams
Page Count: 333
Format Read: BOTM Hardcover
Keywords: Kidnapping, Heroes, Blizzard
Kid Appropriate: No
Wow. Just wow.
I opened up my Book of the Month December box expecting a descent distraction of a book that I could read over the course of a couple of days. I READ THIS IN THREE HOURS.
Like with most Fridays I planned on curling up with my good book next to a cheery Christmas tree and my fluffy pup. A nice relaxing evening after a week of work. My expectations were terribly wrong. There was no relaxing, cozy Friday night reading for me. Nope. Instead I was perched on the very edge of the sofa, completely tense, and mumbling “nononononono” to the annoyance of my dog.
This book is nothing that I was expecting. Rather than a slower burn thriller that slowly creeps up on you this one takes off pretty quickly and throws twists at you left and right. While I am sure that some readers will complain of the predictability of some of the turns, there are enough that I found unexpected that I think a majority of readers will be pleased.
While I may have never experienced a Colorado winter, I could sympathize with the blizzard scene and felt it was well described based on my time in Montana and Washington. I actually lived in the part of eastern Washington that this author went to school in and the descriptions of the storm and roads that this novel is set in completely reminded me of driving between Pullman and Spokane during a blizzard. If you’re looking for a book that will chill you to the bone (more from temperature than terror) then this is the one for you. As someone that has definitely been caught unexpectedly driving during a blizzard, Adams’ descriptions of Darby trying to coax her Honda (named Blue) through the snow was done very well.
The scarier thriller elements weren’t so over the top that I would only recommend this to fans of horror or overly intense novels. While the premise and overall plot did freak me out at times and keep me reading a top speed, it built at a gentle enough pace to ease unfamiliar readers into the genre but not bore others to tears.
One element I liked was the flipping back and forth between liking and hating our villain. I prefer morally grey characters with potentially questionable mental states when I am reading my thrillers. It makes the plot a touch more unpredictable. Taylor Adams definitely delivered on that front.
If you’re looking for a fast paced thriller full of misdirection, then I definitely recommend picking up this novel. I’m so glad I read this during the colder months. Whether you’re a thriller veteran or a newbie you’ll love this book.
Author: Joe Hill
Page Count: 686
Format Read: Paperback
Keywords: Christmas, Evil, Children
Kid Appropriate: No
Okay, I’ll admit I was a little apprehensive going into this one. Excited, but nervous. I had heard that Joe Hill was Stephen King’s son. Honestly, this could be really great or I could be horribly disappointed. The expectations are just too high.
There are style similarities between the two. So similar if you covered up the author’s name and said I was reading King I might even have believed you.
Aside from that, I am having no issues getting into this book. Usually I take at least a hundred pages to warm up to a story and find the beginning slow. With this one I am flying through the pages, devouring every detail. If you are easily disturbed by criminal activity involving kidnappings and people being held against their will then maybe avoid this one.
In short: I like the cast of strange characters, the pacing is great, and the story is intriguing.