Saturday, June 23

Review: The Lying Game by Ruth Ware

Title: The Lying Game
By: Ruth Ware
My Copy: Library
The BookWhisperer's Rating: 

On a cool June morning, a woman is walking her dog in the idyllic coastal village of Salten along a tidal estuary known as the Reach. Before she can stop him, the dog charges into the water to retrieve what first appears to be a wayward stick, but to her horror, turns out to be something much more sinister...

The next morning, three women in and around London—Fatima, Thea, and Isabel—receive the text they had always hoped would NEVER come, from the fourth in their formerly inseparable clique, Kate, that says only, “I need you.”
The four girls were best friends at Salten, a second rate boarding school set near the cliffs of the English Channel. Each different in their own way, the four became inseparable and were notorious for playing the Lying Game, telling lies at every turn to both fellow boarders and faculty, with varying states of serious and flippant nature that were disturbing enough to ensure that everyone steered clear of them. The myriad and complicated rules of the game are strict: no lying to each other—ever. Bail on the lie when it becomes clear it is about to be found out. But their little game had consequences, and the girls were all expelled in their final year of school under mysterious circumstances surrounding the death of the school’s eccentric art teacher, Ambrose (who also happens to be Kate’s father).

I first fell in love with Ruth Ware’s writing after reading The Woman in Cabin 10.  There is something suspenseful in Ware’s writing that keeps you drawn into the plot but not terrified at night when you lay your head down to sleep.  The Lying Gamedoes just that.

I found myself quickly captivated by Isa’s life.  A woman who is a partner, a mother, and a lawyer but also apart of an inseparable group of four women whose childhood game encompassed weaving together lies.  

With one text message, Isa, Thea, and Fatima come running back to their childhood stomping grounds to find that a body has been found and their secret may be uncovered.  While their reunion brings back happy memories of their teenage years, we also get a peek into their troubling past and how they escaped such troubles by passing the time at the Mill.  

The more I read the pages, the more I found myself unable to put the pieces of the puzzle together.  I so badly wanted to be right when guessing the real motive behind all of the lying and betrayal however, I was left guessing until the moment I flipped the page and read the words.  Basically, Ware kept me guessing up until the reveal and I must say that I was shocked. What a wonderful thriller!  

Review: The Woman In Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware

Title: The Woman In Cabin 10
By: Ruth Ware
My Copy: Personal
The BookWhisperer's Rating: 

Lo Blacklock, a journalist who writes for a travel magazine, has just been given the assignment of a lifetime: a week on a luxury cruise with only a handful of cabins. The sky is clear, the waters calm, and the veneered, select guests jovial as the exclusive cruise ship, the Aurora, begins her voyage in the picturesque North Sea. At first, Lo s stay is nothing but pleasant: the cabins are plush, the dinner parties are sparkling, and the guests are elegant. But as the week wears on, frigid winds whip the deck, gray skies fall, and Lo witnesses what she can only describe as a dark and terrifying nightmare: a woman being thrown overboard. The problem? All passengers remain accounted for and so, the ship sails on as if nothing has happened, despite Lo's desperate attempts to convey that something (or someone) has gone terribly, terribly wrong.

My first book by Ruth Ware and I must say that it kept me suspended in a state of constant guessing and complete worry throughout the book.  

Before Lo even sets foot on the boat, she experiences a break-in at her apartment. Rattled beyond words, Lo, a journalist, sets sail on a luxury cruise. All should be smooth sailing, right?

The first night aboard, Lo hears a woman’s screams and witnesses her disappearance when she is thrown overboard.  However, no one claims to have ever seen this woman.  All known passengers and crew members are accounted for and so Lo decides to dig deeper.  She knows she cannot be mistaken; the woman she met does exist and is no longer present.  But the more that Lo digs, the more push back she receives from someone but she doesn’t know whom.  

This book thrilled me to pieces.  Every step that Lo made was to find the missing woman, even after she herself had been threatened.  It always makes me wonder if I would do the same.  Would I just chalk it up to an overactive imagination? Lack of sleep? Too much drinking? Or would I stick to my guns and know what I saw was not a result of anything of the above but of a murder.  The stories that Ware weaves before you in the pages make you second-guess every character.  Almost like you should trust no one.  

Review: The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah

Title: The Nightingale
By: Kristin Hannah
My Copy: Library
The BookWhisperer's Rating: 

In love we find out who we want to be.
In war we find out who we are.

FRANCE, 1939

In the quiet village of Carriveau, Vianne Mauriac says goodbye to her husband, Antoine, as he heads for the Front. She doesn’t believe that the Nazis will invade France...but invade they do, in droves of marching soldiers, in caravans of trucks and tanks, in planes that fill the skies and drop bombs upon the innocent. When France is overrun, Vianne is forced to take an enemy into her house, and suddenly her every move is watched; her life and her child’s life is at constant risk. Without food or money or hope, as danger escalates around her, she must make one terrible choice after another.

Vianne’s sister, Isabelle, is a rebellious eighteen-year-old girl, searching for purpose with all the reckless passion of youth. While thousands of Parisians march into the unknown terrors of war, she meets the compelling and mysterious Gäetan, a partisan who believes the French can fight the Nazis from within France, and she falls in love as only the young can...completely. When he betrays her, Isabelle races headlong into danger and joins the Resistance, never looking back or giving a thought to the real--and deadly--consequences.

With courage, grace and powerful insight, bestselling author Kristin Hannah takes her talented pen to the epic panorama of WWII and illuminates an intimate part of history seldom seen: the women’s war. The Nightingale tells the stories of two sisters, separated by years and experience, by ideals, passion and circumstance, each embarking on her own dangerous path toward survival, love, and freedom in German-occupied, war-torn France--a heartbreakingly beautiful novel that celebrates the resilience of the human spirit and the durability of women. It is a novel for everyone, a novel for a lifetime. 

I want to sit down here and write out every emotion I experienced reading The Nightingaleand how I hoped for the good but got the bad.  How I cried endlessly out of sadness and joy.  How I worried about the decisions that were made. How I feared for the life of these characters.  And how I was in awe of the braveness that some presented.  

I really want to tell you everything thought and detail that happened in this book but it would be such a big spoiler of a paragraph that I am just going to say this…don’t wait to read this book!  Two years ago a friend told me that I would love this book and that I needed to read it.  I put it off because while the synopsis was appealing, I wasn’t in the mood. I wish I hadn’t put it off for so long. I loved everything about this book! No wonder it was a best seller. The two main characters Vianne and Isabelle are the weakest and strongest characters written.  The pure sadness will break your heart but the pure joy will mend it back together again.  I feel like I have said too much but not enough.  Just.  Go. Read. It.