Chapter 1: Book Reviews

In this post, a book I finished in less than a day, the final Tudor series book from Phillippa Gregory and a fun, light read about bloggers!

Welcome to Chapter, which going forward will be numerical rather than monthly due to my occasionally sporadic reading habits.

If you use Goodreads, please add me as a friend! I track everything I read through the site.

The Mummy Bloggers – Holly Wainwright

Synopsis from Goodreads

Chapter 1 The Mummy BloggersMeet three Mummy Bloggers – each of them followed, idolised, imitated, taunted and trolled online.

Elle Campbell is a glossy, lycra-clad mum with washboard abs, a ten-year plan and a secret past. Abi Black has quit sugar, moved to the country and is homeschooling her kids. Leisel Adams slogs away at her office job each day before rushing home, steeped in guilt, to spend precious moments with her kids before bedtime.

When all three women are nominated for a prestigious blogging award with a hefty cash prize, the scene is set for a brutal and often hilarious battle for hearts, minds-and clicks. As the awards night gets closer, their lies get bigger, their stunts get crazier – and some mistakes from the past become harder and harder to hide.

This was a nice, easy read, something for when you need some light relief bookwise. Despite this, it did keep me interested with fun characters and a good paced storyline. Holly also has some other books available which I will add to my to-read list on Goodreads.

You can buy Mummy Bloggers from Mighty Ape for NZ$17

If you enjoy Marrion Keyes or Sophie Kinsella’s books then I recommend The Mummy Bloggers.

The Sunday Girl – Pip Drysdale

Synopsis from Goodreads

The Sunday Girl Chapter 1Any woman who’s ever been involved with a bad, bad man and been dumped will understand what it feels like to be broken, broken-hearted and bent on revenge. Taylor Bishop is hurt, angry and wants to destroy Angus Hollingsworth in the way he destroyed her: Insidiously. Irreparably. Like a puzzle, he’d slowly dissembled … stolen a couple of pieces from, and then discarded, knowing that nobody would ever be able to put it back together ever again. So Taylor consulted The Art of War and made a plan. Then she took the next step – one that would change her life forever.

I started this on a plane ride back from Queenstown and had nearly finished it by the time I landed. I promptly then finished it the next day, safe to say, I could not put it down. I find some thrillers a bit hit and miss, especially as they’re currently an extremely popular genre. But this book will not disappoint! Also, the author has a new book coming out in October.

You can buy The Sunday Girl from Mighty Ape for NZ$25

The Perfect Stranger – Megan Miranda

Synopsis from Goodreads

The Perfect StrangerConfronted by a restraining order and the threat of a lawsuit, failed journalist Leah Stevens needs to get out of Boston when she runs into an old friend, Emmy Grey, who has just left a troubled relationship. Emmy proposes they move to rural Pennsylvania, where Leah can get a teaching position and both women can start again. But their new start is threatened when a woman with an eerie resemblance to Leah is assaulted by the lake, and Emmy disappears days later.

Determined to find Emmy, Leah cooperates with Kyle Donovan, a handsome young police officer on the case. As they investigate her friend’s life for clues, Leah begins to wonder: did she ever really know Emmy at all? With no friends, family, or a digital footprint, the police begin to suspect that there is no Emmy Grey. Soon Leah’s credibility is at stake, and she is forced to revisit her past: the article that ruined her career. To save herself, Leah must uncover the truth about Emmy Grey—and along the way, confront her old demons, find out who she can really trust, and clear her own name.

I have read a previous book by this author and seemed to enjoy it, however, this one was a bit average. If you want to deep into the thriller genre without too much darkness then these books might be a good start.

You can buy The Perfect Stranger from Mighty Ape for NZ$33

The Last Tudor – Phillippa Gregory

Synopsis from Goodreads

The Last TudorJane Grey was queen of England for nine days. Her father and his allies crowned her instead of the dead king’s half sister Mary Tudor, who quickly mustered an army, claimed her throne, and locked Jane in the Tower of London. When Jane refused to betray her Protestant faith, Mary sent her to the executioner’s block, where Jane transformed her father’s greedy power grab into tragic martyrdom.

“Learn you to die,” was the advice Jane wrote to her younger sister Katherine, who has no intention of dying. She intends to enjoy her beauty and her youth and fall in love. But she is heir to the insecure and infertile Queen Mary and then to her half sister, Queen Elizabeth, who will never allow Katherine to marry and produce a Tudor son. When Katherine’s pregnancy betrays her secret marriage, she faces imprisonment in the Tower, only yards from her sister’s scaffold.

“Farewell, my sister,” writes Katherine to the youngest Grey sister, Mary. A beautiful dwarf, disregarded by the court, Mary keeps family secrets, especially her own, while avoiding Elizabeth’s suspicious glare. After seeing her sisters defy their queens, Mary is acutely aware of her own danger but determined to command her own life. What will happen when the last Tudor defies her ruthless and unforgiving Queen Elizabeth?

I love Phillippa Gregory so this was an easy and pleasant read for me. I am a little sad that this is the end of the Tudor series but excited to see what’s next. Phillippa Gregory is a great place to start if you’re interested in historical fiction but don’t want something that’s too dull or plagued with heavy style English.

You can buy The Last Tudor from Mighty Ape for NZ$23

Nine Perfect Strangers -Liane Moriarty

Synopsis from Goodreads

Chapter 1. Nine Perfect Strangers Could ten days at a health resort really change you forever? In Liane Moriarty’s latest page-turner, nine perfect strangers are about to find out…

Nine people gather at a remote health resort. Some are here to lose weight, some are here to get a reboot on life, some are here for reasons they can’t even admit to themselves. Amidst all of the luxury and pampering, the mindfulness and meditation, they know these ten days might involve some real work. But none of them could imagine just how challenging the next ten days are going to be.

I have read and loved all of Liane Moriatry’s books and had been waiting for this to become available at the library for a while. Luckily my sister lent it to me and I devoured it a few days. It has a fantastic twist in the middle which adds a new level of depth to the story. If you’re looking for a new author then I highly recommend all of Liane’s books.

You can buy Nine Perfect Strangers ON SALE from Mighty Ape for NZ$12

Call Me Evie -J.P. Pomare

Synopsis from Goodreads

Chapter 1. Call Me Evie In this propulsive, twist-filled, and haunting psychological suspense debut perfect for fans of Sharp Objects and Room, a seventeen-year-old girl struggles to remember the role she played on the night her life changed forever.

For the past two weeks, seventeen-year-old Kate Bennet has lived against her will in an isolated cabin in a remote beach town–brought there by a mysterious man named Bill. Part captor, part benefactor, Bill calls her Evie and tells her he’s hiding her to protect her. That she did something terrible one night back home in Melbourne–something so unspeakable that he had no choice but to take her away. The trouble is, Kate can’t remember the night in question. 

The fragments of Kate’s shattered memories of her old life seem happy: good friends, a big house in the suburbs, a devoted boyfriend. Bill says he’ll help her fill in the blanks–but his story isn’t adding up. And as she tries to reconcile the girl she thought she’d been with the devastating consequences Bill claims she’s responsible for, Kate will unearth secrets about herself and those closest to her that could change everything. 

I actually didn’t realise that this book was set in New Zealand until I started reading it which was a nice added bonus. It is a great debut by the author but shouldn’t be compared to the likes of Sharp Objects. It has a couple of good twists in it and a great one at the end, so I would certainly recommend it to people looking for an intriguing new read.

You can buy Call Me Evie from Mighty Ape for NZ$35

Have you read any of these books? What are you currently reading and enjoying?

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