Books I Recommend – First Half of 2019

How are we almost done with June already?! It seems like 2019 is flying by and there have already been so many amazing books out there.

A big thank you to all of the publishers and authors for the gifted copies in exchange for my honest reviews throughout the year so far.

Instead of doing multiple lists and posts like last year, I’m going to try and keep it simple and stick with my top 10 books from the first half of 2019! So in order to qualify, they had to have been books I read between January 1st, 2019 and June 30th, 2019.

I believe these are all 5 star reads, with the potential for one 4 star rating. They are all ones that stand out in my mind when I think back to the beginning of this year. I would highly recommend all of these to any reader. Lots of thrillers (as expected) but there are a couple more contemporary fiction books in the mix. I need to point out how hilarious it is that the first three photos have the same blanket – what are the odds?


Books I Recommend – First Half of 2019:


BLOOD ORANGE – Harriet Tyce

5 stars – One of the first major 5 star reads for me of the year! Unreliable narrator, questions at every turn, is she just drowning herself in liquor and putting her daughter at risk? Or is there something more sinister at work here? That ending – holy crap. I loved every page of this book! See my full review here!


MY LOVELY WIFE – Samantha Downing

5 stars – If you want a binge read, look no further. I read this one in an evening and just couldn’t put it down. They hype around it is well-deserved. A picture perfect marriage with the perfect life – or so it seems. Mr and Mrs Smith meets Dexter in this crazy thriller. I don’t want to give any specifics away at risk of spoiling the fun! See my full review here!


INTO THE JUNGLE – Erica Ferencik

5 stars – I read Ferencik’s debut THE RIVER AT NIGHT and immediately fell in love. A crazy thriller with an element that made it feel completely plausible and real. Now with INTO THE JUNGLE, we are brought on a suspenseful journey where the characters’ survival instincts have to kick into high gear. The author’s research that went into this book is incredibly evident. She spent time in the jungle experiencing everything from meeting locals, living in the conditions,  and encountering different animals. I definitely recommend both of her books. See the full #ATBR2019 reviews here!



I KNOW WHO YOU ARE – Alice Feeney

5 stars – Aimee is an actress on the rise and her career is her main focus. Her life is turned upside down when she comes home to an empty house – her husband is gone but his wallet, phone, keys, and shoes are all still at home. She becomes the prime suspect in his disappearance, bud did she do it? We also go back to her childhood and see the chain of events that brought her to where she is now. That twist at the end – did not see that coming, at all. See the full #ATBR2019 reviews here!


LIKE LIONS – Brian Panowich

5 stars – This is book two in the series, and I will be picking up book one soon! Clayton Burroughs is the sheriff of a small town in Georgia, but what makes him stand out is that he also belongs to the area’s most notorious crime family. Things get complicated when he becomes the sole heir to the business. When a rival gang begins to cross into their territory, Clayton is faced a difficult decision. Will he remain on the right side of the law or will he go back to the life of a crime family? The writing is phenomenal. We’re transported to this small town, feel the grit and intensity as the characters maneuver their struggles. Don’t miss the prologue and epilogue! See my full review here!


BEFORE SHE WAS FOUND – Heather Gudenkauf

5 stars – I’m a sucker for anything that resembles Slenderman (does that make me weird?). An urban legend in a small town has led to a young girl in the hospital with near-fatal injuries with her best friend as one of the only witnesses. The claims they make bring a small town urban legend to life and now they must find out who attacked the young girl before it’s too late. See my full review here!


MINE – Courtney Cole

5 stars – Talk about a compulsive read! I couldn’t believe how fast I flew through this one. Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned is taken to a whole new meaning. What would you do when you stumble across texts between your husband and his mistress? Well, lure her to your house to confront her, right? You’re in for one hell of a ride and a crazy night as these women face off in the middle of an intense hurricane. See the full #ATBR2019 reviews here!



4 stars – While this wasn’t a solid 5 star rating, it’s one I will definitely recommend. The ending and twists alone are what made it completely stand out in my mind when reflecting back on all that I’ve read this year. Alice has a successful interior design company and is happily married to Nathan and she has two daughters. A decade earlier, tragedy struck when her first husband went missing in a skiing accident. Things slowly start to unravel when Alice finds evidence that points to her husband having an affair. Is she imaging things, or is he really with another woman? See my full review here!


JUST ONE BITE – Jack Heath

5 stars – Book two in the Timothy Blake series. I’m sure you remember me raving about book one, HANGMAN, last year. This one was just as gory as the first with the same injection of dark humor and wit that I loved about the first book. Everyone’s favorite puzzle-solving cannibal is back and is faced with an even harder case than before and his secret is at risk of being revealed. See my full review and author Q&A here!


THIS IS HOME – Lisa Duffy

5 stars – This is the follow up to THE SALT HOUSE (which I also loved) and so far Duffy can do no wrong. I highly recommend this one to anyone looking for an emotional read with incredibly real and well-developed characters. Definitely one that will stick with you and I think would be perfect for a book club. See the full #ATBR2019 reviews here!


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