It’s a double mystery-thriller quickie.
One yay & one nay.
Author: Rachel Caine
Series: Stillhouse Lake #1
Published by: Thomas & Mercer
Publication Date: July 1, 2017
Gina Royal is the definition of average—a shy Midwestern housewife with a happy marriage and two adorable children. But when a car accident reveals her husband’s secret life as a serial killer, she must remake herself as Gwen Proctor—the ultimate warrior mom.
With her ex now in prison, Gwen has finally found refuge in a new home on remote Stillhouse Lake. Though still the target of stalkers and Internet trolls who think she had something to do with her husband’s crimes, Gwen dares to think her kids can finally grow up in peace.
But just when she’s starting to feel at ease in her new identity, a body turns up in the lake—and threatening letters start arriving from an all-too-familiar address. Gwen Proctor must keep friends close and enemies at bay to avoid being exposed—or watch her kids fall victim to a killer who takes pleasure in tormenting her. One thing is certain: she’s learned how to fight evil. And she’ll never stop.
Can you believe Stillhouse Lake is the first Rachel Caine book I’ve read? She’s been on my radar for several years, but you know how it goes. I know this is different than what she usually writes, but I couldn’t resist jumping in now. I’m not sorry I did, because I liked it and want to read more of her books.
Gwen has gone through hell thanks to her husband, who turned out to be a serial killer. She may be paranoid now, but she has a damn good reason. I love how she has taken things into her own hands when it comes to protecting herself and the kids. Don’t mess with mama bear.
I wouldn’t say this was an exceptional mystery-thriller, but it is nicely done and has that extra “something” that makes it unable to put it down. A lot of what’s going on is obvious, but what I really like is I wasn’t always sure which path it would take to get where it’s going. Does that make sense? *shrugs*
Bottom line: Read it. Also, it appears this will be a series, so I’m looking forward to the next book.
Author: Riley Sager
Published by: Dutton
Publication Date: July 11, 2017
Ten years ago, college student Quincy Carpenter went on vacation with five friends and came back alone, the only survivor of a horror movie–scale massacre. In an instant, she became a member of a club no one wants to belong to—a group of similar survivors known in the press as the Final Girls. Lisa, who lost nine sorority sisters to a college dropout's knife; Sam, who went up against the Sack Man during her shift at the Nightlight Inn; and now Quincy, who ran bleeding through the woods to escape Pine Cottage and the man she refers to only as Him. The three girls are all attempting to put their nightmares behind them, and, with that, one another. Despite the media's attempts, they never meet.
Now, Quincy is doing well—maybe even great, thanks to her Xanax prescription. She has a caring almost-fiancé, Jeff; a popular baking blog; a beautiful apartment; and a therapeutic presence in Coop, the police officer who saved her life all those years ago. Her memory won’t even allow her to recall the events of that night; the past is in the past.
That is, until Lisa, the first Final Girl, is found dead in her bathtub, wrists slit, and Sam, the second, appears on Quincy's doorstep. Blowing through Quincy's life like a whirlwind, Sam seems intent on making Quincy relive the past, with increasingly dire consequences, all of which makes Quincy question why Sam is really seeking her out. And when new details about Lisa's death come to light, Quincy's life becomes a race against time as she tries to unravel Sam's truths from her lies, evade the police and hungry reporters, and, most crucially, remember what really happened at Pine Cottage, before what was started ten years ago is finished.
I had high hopes for Final Girls, but those hopes were extinguished early on. It was so predictable, and I immediately knew who the “bad guy” was and what was going on. Now, that isn’t always a bad thing, because some authors have the ability to still turn it into something amazing. That wasn’t the case here. One major reason I caught on quick is because it’s so horror movie cliche.
Not only that, but it was soooo slow. I got to 46% and had to set it aside. I eventually finished only because I couldn’t not leave it unfinished. So yeah, this book just did not do it for me.