It’s a new year–or at least, not an old one yet–and you probably have some resolutions. If you’re anything like me, one of them is always to read more. Hopefully, in the midst of all the tea and makeup, I can give you a little book inspiration. I love reading mysteries year-round, but I find them especially helpful when I’m in a reading slump. I shared my first 3 Mysteries To Devour here, and today’s post features 3 more books you won’t be able to put down.
Although I mostly read mysteries that fall into the psychological thriller end of the spectrum, Broken Promise by Linwood Barclay* is definitely a more traditional mystery option. It takes place after David Harwood’s wife dies and he moves back with his son to his childhood home in Promise Falls, New York. Then the newspaper he is supposed to be working for goes under, and he visits his cousin Marla only to find she has a baby that is not her own. After the baby’s mother is found murdered, David starts to piece together the mystery of what happened and if Marla was involved. But it turns out there are a lot of strange things going on in Promise Falls, and the baby’s murdered mother is just the beginning…
This is the second book I’ve read by Barclay and it’s just as well-written as I remember. The story and characters are full of layers and suspense. I may have guessed a few of the twists along the way but that didn’t prevent me from continuing to enjoy the story. The pacing is excellent and there are plenty of interesting subplots in addition to the murder mystery. Broken Promise is the first of three books set in Promise Falls so I definitely still have some questions left I am hoping to have answered in Far From True when it is released in March.
Pair This With: The main character is David, and you’ll want a good cup of tea while devouring this book, so check out my post on this yummy DAVIDsTEA Gingerbread Cookie tea.
Night Film by Marisha Pessl* is a novel I’ve had in my collection for for over a year, and although I’d originally been excited to read it in the midst of…life, it had somehow gotten neglected. When I was looking for a big chunky mystery to read over Christmas I picked up this 600+ page book, and I am very glad I did!
Night Film begins with Ashley Cordova, daughter of the legendary and reclusive horror film director Stanislas Cordova who hasn’t been seen in public for more than 30 years–being found dead. Although her death is listed as suicide, journalist Scott McGrath thinks something is off. Motivated by his own need for redemption after his last encounter with Cordova cost McGrath his marriage and carrier, he works to reveal the truth. But this time, it might cost him his life…
Pessl’s novel intersperses newspaper clippers and photos and even a Night Film app that lets you listen to music and film trailers along with the story for a unique multimedia experience, although personally I would skip the app. It’s a dark twisted world where it’s impossible to know what’s real. It has so much depth and detail and although I wish it was a little shorter, I was definitely captivated by the story. If you’re a fan of books like Gone Girl and The Girl on the Train are looking for a dark suspense thriller definitely check out Night Film.
Pair This With: Cordova’s films have a cult following and are only screened in secret. If you’re looking for something a lot easier to watch, try my suggestions of 3 Shows to Binge-Watch on Netflix.
Black Iris by Leah Raeder* is a dark, twisted novel that’s part mystery part romance. After Laney’s mother commits suicide and her world falls apart, she’s looking for a clean slate at college. Then she meets Armin and Blythe, and the three become inseparable. Until the bully who ruin Laney’s life the first time reappears and the three decide to take action.
Raeder’s novel is gritty and full of darkness. It’s not about revenge, not redemption. As a warning, it’s also quite graphic when it comes to sex (all kinds) and although that’s usually not what I read, the gorgeous writing and intense storyline make it a book I still wanted to recommend in this segment.
Full disclosure: I did beta-read a previous novel for Raeder, but it’s the vivid, striking storytelling that has kept me interested in continuing to pick up Raeder’s books. However, Black Iris does get very, very dark, even for me and if I didn’t enjoy Raeder’s writing so much I might have been deterred from it. As it is, I definitely plan to read Cam Girl, Raeder’s most recent book, in the near future.
Pair This With: If Laney could be summed up in a fragrance it would definitely be Lady Gaga Fame Eau De Parfum. The bottle actually looks like a grenade, the perfume itself is black and dangerous, but there’s something alluring and sensual about it on the skin.
Have you read anything good lately? My 2016 is not off to a promising start reading-wise but there’s still 11 months for me to turn it around!