In an Instant by Suzanne Redfearn | I haven’t cried that much in a long time

I love it when the ARCs I choose end up on my favorites of the year list. It doesn’t matter how many of them might not be the best, and how many I might DNF during the year, because there are always a couple that will stand out in the best way possible. 

After reading «In an Instant», I will read anything Suzanne Redfearn publishes in the future. Atmospheric and utterly heartbreaking, the story of the Millers family made me cry multiple times, the tears of sadness and joy. 

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Elevation by Stephen King | One of the best short books!

I’m slowly dipping my toes into Stephen King’s works. Last year I tried his dystopian novel «Cell» and this year I decided to start with one of the shorter books – «Elevation». I’m still avoiding his horror books, even though «Elevation» is classified as Horror and even won Goodreads awards in the horror category (shocking!) you’re safe to read it because it’s nothing more than a Fiction book with elements of fantasy? sci-fi? something out of the ordinary. 

This was an outstanding story and it instantly made it to my “favorites of 2020” list!

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The Other People by C.J. Tudor | The best of C.J. Tudor’s books to date!

After reading «The Chalk Man» in 2018, I immediately became a fan of C.J. Tudor’s writing! She creates the most gripping and thrilling plots, infused by the terror of simple common things that feel too real. Last year, I read her other book «The Taking of Annie Thorne» that was just as incredible as the first one. 

And now in 2020, we got «The Other People»! Her next book (my edition of «The Other People» had the first chapter of it) is coming out next year and sounds very interesting.

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Saving Missy by Beth Morrey | Is it really for readers of «Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine»?

This happens every single time! The publishers pitch the book as “perfect for readers of…” and I immediately fall for it, especially when they reference it to «Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine», which was my favorite book of 2018.

Will the readers of «Eleanor Oliphant» find similarities and love «Saving Missy» just as much?

My answer is No. BUT! (there is always a “but”, isn’t there?) «Saving Missy» has the same feeling of warmth and wholesomeness as «Eleanor Oliphant» did. So if you loved it because of how attached you grew to the character and how much you wanted her to do well, «Saving Missy» will be perfect! However, don’t expect any mysteries or funny moments. 

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Grace is Gone by Emily Elgar | One of my favorite tropes in thrillers!

Reading «Grace is Gone» reminded me of two very distinct things:

  1. why thrillers and mysteries used to be my favorite genres, and also
  2. why I stopped reading them. 

This might sound like I disliked this book, which is not true. But I can’t say that it was the best Mystery either, especially since I suspected from the very beginning what the twist will be, and patiently waited for my guess to be confirmed by the author.

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Such a Fun Age by Kiley Reid | The tale of “good intentions”!

Reading in December hasn’t been the best so far. This has been one of the busiest months of the year, with many extra hours at work, many blog posts to prepare for the end of the year, and just, in general, the whole hustle and bustle of Christmas season. I’ve spent too many hours at the malls trying to figure out Christmas gifts for family and friends, and I still didn’t buy all of the things I wanted.

«Such a Fun Age» was a perfect book for this busy time of the year. Captivating and engaging, this novel brought to light many important subjects in an easy-to-read way.

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Life After Life by Kate Atkinson | When the quality of the book didn’t match my enjoyment

«Life after Life», the winner of the Goodreads Choice Award in 2013, is a mesmerizing historical fiction with the element of time-traveling. It was a perfect read for the colder days, which transported me to England during the First and Second World Wars, where we followed the Todd family and discovered how different choices, little missteps, and decisions could affect the life course in very drastic ways.

Ursula Todd was born on February 11th, 1910, and she died on that same night. However, under different circumstances, Ursula Todd was born on February 11th, 1910 and she lived. 

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Dear Lily by Drew Davies | The perfect book to take on a trip to Copenhagen!

When I finally get my stuff together and plan a trip to Copenhagen, this is the book I will bring with me to read on the bus, airport and on the flight! Touching, witty and very emotional, it’s a perfect book to space out, lose yourself in someone else’s life, and enjoy the hustle and bustle of traveling.

Set in Copenhagen, Denmark, «Dear Lily» is a collection of letters from Joy to her younger sister Lily, where she recollects her experiences of moving to a different country, getting a new job, finding friends and dealing with mundane struggles of everyday life.

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I Dare You by Sam Carrington | Will I ever find a thriller I love?

I love books written in “now and then” style when each chapter brings us closer to THE day of the crime, and two realities – the future and the past, finally meet together and in a mere click, everything starts to make perfect sense. 

It’s been so difficult to find some new thrillers and mysteries that would really surprise me. I remember when I was younger, all I used to read were thrillers and all of them were amazing. Which prompted me to pick up more and more of the same genre. I don’t know if it’s the critical reader in me, and the need to review books that is lowering my excitement, or simply I can’t choose the right books for myself anymore

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The Vegetarian by Han Kang | A disturbing allegory of women’s place in the Korean society

I didn’t like it… 

Here, I said it. I honestly don’t think there is a single person out there who read this book and said: “I liked it”. Yes, most can appreciate the writing style, the story, the meaning behind it, but OMG, it was weird. 

I also don’t think it’s a good book…

There are certain stories that I read and not necessarily love but, as I said, appreciate the thought and the deeper meaning. However, if the author had to resort to disturbing and pornographic content to explain her point of view and present this allegory, it doesn’t compel me to know more about the real-world problem. In fact, it does the complete opposite, making me want to run away and not face these issues.

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Normal People by Sally Rooney | An unsettling story about sex, love, and relationships.

«Normal People» by Sally Rooney is not an easy book to review. I’m still not entirely sure if I liked it or not. 

Does it really deserve the 5-star rating I’ve given it immediately after turning the last page? I can’t answer this question yet.

There are books that instantly become our favorites, and there are books that will stay with us for a very long time, the little plot details engraved in our memory. Even though you won’t be reaching to re-read those books any time soon (or ever). That’s how I felt about «Memoirs of Geisha» that was an extraordinary reading experience and one of the first adult books I’ve ever read, and that’s also how I feel about «Normal People» by Sally Rooney.

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Cell by Stephen King | The perfect book for Halloween!

My first successful find at the local thrift bookshop, and also my first Stephen King novel (after a disastrous attempt to read «Carrie» many years ago) «Cell» was a great book to familiarize myself with King’s writing. It’s one of his dystopian books that isn’t scary at all, more of an atmospheric read, which was perfect for this time of the year. 

According to the blurb by Guardian on the front cover of my copy, I wouldn’t use my mobile for days after reading this book. That didn’t happen.

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They Call Me the Cat Lady by Amy Miller | Another attempt to find a book similar to “Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine”!

It was so difficult to sit down and write my review for this book. There are a couple of reasons for that. First of all, it was one of those books that didn’t spark a conversation. This doesn’t necessarily mean that I didn’t like it, but it felt like something I’ve read before, not bringing anything new to the table. And secondly, even though I did enjoy this book, I didn’t feel compelled to make other people read it.

«They Call Me the Cat Lady» was a fun, sad and mysterious book. The plot twists were intriguing and I did want to find out more about Nancy Jones’ past, but at the same time, it wasn’t anything extraordinary.

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The Girl Before You by Nicola Rayner

I’ve been meaning to write the review for «The Girl Before You» by Nicola Raynor for a very long time. I read it back at the beginning of May, and have been trying to come up with some words to describe this book ever since. 

The Observer compared this book to «The Girl On The Train» by Paula Hawkins but in my opinion, it didn’t live up to this comparison. It’s definitely not The Girl On The Train and it’s definitely not a book I will reread at any point.

The reason why it took me so long to finish this review was that I didn’t have anything to say about this book, which is sad because I always try to find something to talk about in every single book I read.

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The Dreamers by Karen Thompson Walker | “Isn’t the future always an imaginary thing before it comes?”

If you go into this book hoping to get a thrilling science fiction world setting, you’ll be disappointed. This is a Literary Fiction with just a little bit of a dystopian element that helps to propel the plot forward. This is a book that focuses heavily on characters’ choices, believes, their wishes and dreams. 

«The Dreamers» by Karen Thompson Walker isn’t a book for everyone. Surprisingly, after a very “rough” start, I slowly fell in love with the story and many beautiful quotes.

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