Mini Reviews – April 2023 Part Two

Making headway in catching up on reviews!

Thanks to the mentioned publishers for any gifted copies reviewed

I also managed to get another #23in23 title read and I think I’m on track to get through them all this year.

Mini Reviews – April 2023 Part Two:

DIRTY LAUNDRY – Disha Bose (Released April 4th, 2023 – Thanks to Random House for the gifted copy)

She was the perfect wife, with the perfect life. You would kill to have it…Ciara Dunphy has it all–a loving husband, well-behaved children, and a beautiful home. Her circle of friends in their small Irish village go to her for tips about mothering, style, and influencer success–a picture-perfect life is easy money on Instagram. But behind the filters, reality is less polished.

Enter Mishti Guha: Ciara’s best friend. Ciara welcomed Mishti into her inner circle for being… unlike the other mothers in the group. But, discontent in a marriage arranged for her through her parents back in Calcutta, Mishti now raises her young daughter in a country that is too cold, among the children of her new friends who look nothing like her. She just wants what Ciara has–the ease with which she moves through the world–and in that sense, Mishti might be exactly like the other mothers.

And there’s earth mother Lauren Doyle, born, bred, and the butt of jokes in their village. With her disheveled partner and children who run naked in the yard, they’re mostly a happy lot, though unsurprisingly ostracized for being the singular dysfunction in Ciara’s immaculate world. When Lauren finds an unlikely ally in Mishti, she decides that her days of ridicule are over.

Then Ciara is found murdered in her own pristine home, and the house of cards she’d worked so hard to build comes crumbling down. Everyone seems to have something to gain from Ciara’s death, so if they don’t want the blame, it may be the perfect time to air their enemies’ dirty laundry.

Mini Review: 3.5/5 stars – This was a fun little domestic suspense. The beginning was slow moving for me but once I actually sat down and focused then I was completely absorbed. Not a single likeable character in the bunch, but you gotta love seeing the cracks forming in their perfect facades. Things really came together in the last quarter and I loved seeing it all fall into place. This is a solid debut and I look forward to more!

SLEEPLESS – Romy Hausmann – #23in23 (Released April 17th, 2020)

It’s been years since Nadja Kulka was convicted of a cruel crime. After being released from prison, she’s wanted nothing more than to live a normal life: nice flat, steady job, even a few friends. But when one of those friends, Laura von Hoven–free-spirited beauty and wife of Nadja’s boss–kills her lover and begs Nadja for her help, Nadja can’t seem to refuse.

The two women make for a remote house in the woods, the perfect place to bury a body. But their plan quickly falls apart and Nadja finds herself outplayed, a pawn in a bizarre game in which she is both the perfect victim and the perfect murderer…

Mini Review: 3/5 stars – I liked the vibe and what the author was trying to do with this book, but there was a lot of confusion. Things felt out of order and really jumbled together. The beginning was strong and the ending was worth sticking it out for, but the middle was all over for me. I’ve seen some rave reviews so it could easily be a me thing! I say give it a try!

THE LAST REMAINS – Elly Griffiths (Released April 25th, 2023 – Thanks to Mariner Books for the gifted copy)

When builders discover a human skeleton while renovating a café, they call in archaeologist Dr. Ruth Galloway, who is preoccupied with the threatened closure of her department and by her ever-complicated relationship with DCI Nelson. The bones turn out to be modern–the remains of Emily Pickering, a young archaeology student who went missing in 2002. Suspicion soon falls on Emily’s Cambridge tutor and also on another archeology enthusiast who was part of the group gathered the weekend before she disappeared–Ruth’s friend Cathbad.

As they investigate, Nelson and his team uncover a tangled web of relationships within the archaeology group and look for a link between them and the café where Emily’s bones were found. Then, just when the team seem to be making progress, Cathbad disappears. The trail leads Ruth a to the Neolithic flint mines in Grimes Graves. The race is on, first to find Cathbad and then to exonerate him, but will Ruth and Nelson uncover the truth in time to save their friend?

Mini Review: 4/5 stars – This is the 15th installment in the Ruth Galloway series and I’m still impressed with how strong the series has continued to be! Remains are found at a construction site and the bones are discovered to belong to a missing person’s case from 20 years ago. While I think this works very well as a standalone, I’m glad I have some background knowledge into Ruth’s personal life as well as the other characters. While each mystery is self contained in the books, the character development is something you should experience across the series! I heard they may be the last installment and that makes me sad but knowing this, I did enjoy how some loose ends got tied up in the end.


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