Book Review: Hits & Misses

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Although I generally come across more hits than misses, there have been a couple books recently that I wasn’t a big fan of.  Here are my hits and misses:

Hits:

  1. What She Knew by Gilly Macmillan – This story follows a mother’s desperate search for her young son.  After she allows him to run ahead of her on a walk, he is gone within seconds.  The mother is confronted with her own guilt as well as, attacks from the media regarding her capability as a mother. The author does a great job in describing the intricate personalities of each character and makes it easy to relate to the mother in the story.  I thought I had guessed who was behind the boy’s disappearance but was completely surprised by the conclusion. (Rating: 4 out of 5 stars)
  2. With Love from the Inside by Angela Pisel – A young woman is determined to keep her secret family past separate from her new life.  When she was still a child, her mother was sentenced to death for the murder of her younger brother.  Over the years, her mother has maintained she is innocent but the evidence is stacked against her.  As the execution date looms closer, the young woman is forced to confront both her mother and past once again.  This is by no means a light read and I cried during a few different parts of this book.  Although I’m not usually a fan of emotional books, this one was so moving that I’m glad I took the time to read it. (Rating: 4 out of 5 stars)

Misses:

  1. The Daughter by Jane Shemilt – I came across this book on Goodreads and was immediately interested after reading the description.  The story follows a mother whose family is left in shambles after her teenage daughter goes missing.  As the mother begins to piece together clues to her daughter’s disappearance, she realizes she may have not known her daughter as well as she thought she did.  I really liked this book at first but it lost momentum about midway through the story.  I also felt so bad for the mother who is cast as the villain because of her busy work schedule as a doctor.  Despite her demanding career, it is clear she genuinely cares about the well being of her children, and I didn’t think it was fair for her to be blamed for all of their problems.  Although I wasn’t a fan overall, others may feel differently. (Rating: 3 out of 5 stars)
  2. Pretty Is by Maggie Mitchell – After reading the premise of this book, I couldn’t wait to read it.  The overall plot is a good one but unfortunately it did not match up to my expectations.  Two woman are forced to confront the summer they were kidnapped together, after a movie script is released detailing their ordeal.  The book alternates between the summer they were taken as children and their present adult lives.  The writing wasn’t very smooth and it was hard for me to get completely drawn into the plot.  I also kept expecting a twist but the story was straightforward and didn’t hold any surprises.  (Rating: 2 out of 5 stars)
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