Happy First Day of Spring my fellow book lovers. Today’s Top Ten Tuesday topic is absolutely perfect for today’s date and I’m quite excited to be moving away from winter. Today I will be counting down my Top Ten ‘Most Anticipated’ Books on my Spring TBR (since there are quite a many more than ten on my full spring TBR list–I mean, spring will not end until late June, which I consider to be summer in South Carolina, but hey, that’s besides the point). These are mixed genres (crime thrillers/psych thrillers and YA titles, my two go-tos). These are not in any respective order… you guys can’t ask me to do that! These are so very different and that would be way too difficult! 🙂
Our Kind of Cruelty by Amarinta Hall
Publication Date: 05/08/18
Synopsis: This is a love story. Mike’s love story. Mike Hayes fought his way out of a brutal childhood and into a quiet, if lonely life, before he met Verity Metcalf. V taught him about love, and in return, Mike has dedicated his life to making her happy. He’s found the perfect home, the perfect job, he’s sculpted himself into the physical ideal V has always wanted. He knows they’ll be blissfully happy together. It doesn’t matter that she hasn’t been returning his emails or phone calls. It doesn’t matter that she says she’s marrying Angus. It’s all just part of the secret game they used to play. If Mike watches V closely, he’ll see the signs. If he keeps track of her every move he’ll know just when to come to her rescue… A spellbinding, darkly twisted novel about desire and obsession, and the complicated lines between truth and perception, Our Kind of Cruelty introduces Araminta Hall, a chilling new voice in psychological suspense.
★★★ I am beyond excited for this title. Some of my most trusted reviewer and blogger friends have already read this title and loved it. Plus… I may or may not have already made a sneaky little preview at the first few pages and I just have ‘that feeling’ guys.. you know what I mean.. it’s going to be a good one!
LIFE L1K3 by Jay Kristoff
Publication Date: 04/24/18
Synopsis: On an island junkyard beneath a sky that glows with radiation, a deadly secret lies buried in the scrap. Seventeen-year-old Eve isn’t looking for trouble–she’s too busy looking over her shoulder. The robot gladiator she spent months building has been reduced to a smoking wreck, she’s on the local gangster’s wanted list, and the only thing keeping her grandpa alive is the money she just lost to the bookies. Worst of all, she’s discovered she can somehow destroy machines with the power of her mind, and a bunch of puritanical fanatics are building a coffin her size because of it. If she’s ever had a worse day, Eve can’t remember it. The problem is, Eve has had a worse day–one that lingers in her nightmares and the cybernetic implant where her memories used to be. Her discovery of a handsome android named Ezekiel–called a “Lifelike” because they resemble humans–will bring her world crashing down and make her question whether her entire life is a lie. With her best friend Lemon Fresh and her robotic sidekick Cricket in tow, Eve will trek across deserts of glass, battle unkillable bots, and infiltrate towering megacities to save the ones she loves… and learn the truth about the bloody secrets of her past.
★★★ This will be my first Jay Kristoff title (*gasp!*). Just wait till you hear what this book was pitched as— Ready for this? Are you seated? Braced yourself? Romeo and Juliet, meets X-Men, meets Mad Max: Fury Road. *Mic Drop*, *Walks Away*
Caged by Ellison Cooper
Publication Date: 07/10/18
Synopsis: FBI neuroscientist Sayer Altair hunts for evil in the deepest recesses of the human mind. Still reeling from the death of her fiance, she wants nothing more than to focus on her research into the brains of serial killers. But when the Washington D.C. police stumble upon a gruesome murder scene involving a girl who’d been slowly starved to death while held captive in a cage, Sayer is called in to lead the investigation. When the victim is identified as the daughter of a high profile senator, Sayer is thrust into the spotlight. As public pressure mounts, she discovers that another girl has been taken and is teetering on the brink of death. With evidence unraveling around her, Sayer races to save the second victim but soon realizes that they are hunting a killer with a dangerous obsession…a killer who is closer than she thought.
★★★ This will be a June read for me, if I can hold out that long. This is one of my most anticipated for the upcoming months of my TBR. If you love Mindhunter and/or Criminal Minds, go ahead and add this one to your TBR as well. If you follow me on Instagram, you know that I have raved about this synopsis and this author in general. She has one of the most kickass bios I have ever read. Ellison Cooper has a Ph.D in anthropology… spent some extent of time working as a murder detective in D.C… Completed field work on 4 different continents, with one of those being in Belize to search for lost Mayan ruins… a K9 Search & Rescue Federal Disaster volunteer… a mother and wife.. AND now an author. I am feeling very unaccomplished right about now.
All The Beautiful Lies by Peter Swanson
Publication Date: 04/03/18
Synopsis: From the acclaimed author of Her Every Fear and The Kind Worth Killing comes a diabolically clever tale of obsession, revenge, and cold-blooded murder—a sly and brilliant guessing game of a novel in the vein of Ruth Ware, Paula Hawkins, and Patricia Highsmith. Harry Ackerson has always considered his stepmother Alice to be sexy and beautiful, in an “otherworldly” way. She has always been kind and attentive, if a little aloof in the last few years. Days before his college graduation, Alice calls with shocking news. His father is dead and the police think it’s suicide. Devastated, Harry returns to his father’s home in Maine. There, he and Alice will help each other pick up of the pieces of their lives and uncover what happened to his father. Shortly after he arrives, Harry meets a mysterious young woman named Grace McGowan. Though she claims to be new to the area, Harry begins to suspect that Grace may not be a complete stranger to his family. But she isn’t the only attractive woman taking an interest in Harry. The sensual Alice is also growing closer, coming on to him in an enticing, clearly sexual way. Mesmerized by these two women, Harry finds himself falling deeper under their spell. Yet the closer he gets to them, the more isolated he feels, disoriented by a growing fear that both women are hiding dangerous—even deadly—secrets . . . and that neither one is telling the truth.
★★★ This title is actually my current read and I am already loving it. I really enjoyed The Kind Worth Killing last year, so I am excited to read another of Peter Swanson’s novels. This one is told from a dual perspective, and with both past and present timelines, and has one of those characters that you love despite their nastiness (you know what I mean… that love-to-hate kind of character).
Girl Made of Stars by Ashley Herring Blake
Publication Date: 05/15/18
Synopsis: “I need Owen to explain this. Because yes, I do know that Owen would never do that, but I also know Hannah would never lie about something like that.” Mara and Owen are about as close as twins can get. So when Mara’s friend Hannah accuses Owen of rape, Mara doesn’t know what to think. Can the brother she loves really be guilty of such a violent crime? Torn between the family she loves and her own sense of right and wrong, Mara is feeling lost, and it doesn’t help that things have been strained with her ex and best friend since childhood, Charlie. As Mara, Hannah, and Charlie navigate this new terrain, Mara must face a trauma from her own past and decide where Charlie fits in her future. With sensitivity and openness, this timely novel confronts the difficult questions surrounding consent, victim blaming, and sexual assault.
★★★ This novel covers a very touchy subject in (what I have heard is) a very respectful and appropriate manner. These are raw, true life situations that are difficult to talk about. Ashley Herring Blake is also known for including diverse characters (especially in the realm of representing sexual diversity) in her novels. I have a feeling that this will be one of those novels that is so very important to our adolescent/young adult population and I cannot wait to dig into the story!
Into the Black Nowhere by Meg Gardiner
Publication Date: 01/30/18
Synopsis: I will just link the synopsis here so that if you haven’t read the first installment UNSUB, there will not be any spoilers for you.
★★★ This isn’t a new release, so that sets it apart from the other titles on this list. I recently read UNSUB by Med Gardiner and it is seriously one of my favorite books I have ever read. It was about as ‘up my alley’ as a book could possibly get and I really, really enjoyed it. I cannot wait to get my hands on this second installment to continue this series.
Paper Ghosts by Julia Heaberlin
Publication Date: 05/15/18
Synopsis: Carl Louis Feldman is an old man who was once a celebrated photographer. That was before he was tried for the murder of a young woman and acquitted. Before his admission to a care home for dementia. Now his daughter has come to see him, to take him on a trip. Only she’s not his daughter and, if she has her way, he’s not coming back . . . Because Carl’s past has finally caught up with him. The young woman driving the car is convinced her passenger is guilty, and that he’s killed other young women. Including her sister Rachel. Now they’re following the trail of his photographs, his clues, his alleged crimes. To see if he remembers any of it. Confesses to any of it. To discover what really happened to Rachel. Has Carl truly forgotten what he did or is he just pretending? Perhaps he’s guilty of nothing and she’s the liar. Either way in driving him into the Texan wilderness she’s taking a terrible risk. For if Carl really is a serial killer, she’s alone in the most dangerous place of all . . .
★★★ I’m a sucker for serial killers. Doesn’t that sound lovely?! But seriously.. I love true crime, I love the psychology behind criminal behavior and psychopaths, I love police procedurals and crime novels.. and that is probably reflected in my reviews of novels. So the description for this one sounds phenomenal. This will likely be a ‘buddy read’ with my husband.
War Storm by Victoria Aveyard
Publication Date: 05/15/18
Synopsis: Again.. this is part of a series, so I want to avoid spoilers. Synopsis is here.
★★★ Let me tell you a little story about that time I thought this was a trilogy and I binge read all three of the novels that were currently released and only realized there would be a fourth when I hit that cliffhanger. *eye roll* And then I looked up to see when the fourth would come out, and realized that the third had just been released (I unknowingly purchased it on the release date when I finished the second installment)… so I had to wait a whole year. It’s finally here. And I can’t wait!
Our Little Secret by Roz Nay
Publication Date: 04/17/18
Synopsis: Roz Nay’s Our Little Secret is a twisted tale of love, pain, and revenge that will stay with the reader long after they turn the last page. They say you never forget your first love. What they don’t say though, is that sometimes your first love won’t forget you… A police interview room is the last place Angela expected to find herself today. It’s been hours, and they keep asking her the same inane questions over and over. “How do you know the victim?” “What’s your relationship with Mr. Parker?” Her ex’s wife has gone missing, and anyone who was close to the couple is a suspect. Angela is tired of the bottomless questions and tired of the cold room that stays the same while a rotating litany of interrogators changes shifts around her. But when criminologist Novak takes over, she can tell he’s not like the others. He’s ready to listen, and she knows he’ll understand. When she tells him that her story begins a decade before, long before Saskia was in the picture, he gives her the floor. A twenty-something young professional, Angela claims to have no involvement. How could she? It’s been years since she and H.P., Mr. Parker that is, were together. As her story unfolds, it deepens and darkens. There’s a lot to unpack… betrayal, jealousy, and a group of people who all have motives for retribution. If Angela is telling the truth, then who’s lying?
★★★ Doesn’t this one sound awesome!? Again.. many of my trusted blogger/reviewer/bookstagrammer friends have already reviewed this one and really enjoyed it, so I am super excited to dive into this one! Plus.. one of the blurbs was provided by Ruth Ware… so.. it’s gotta be good!
The Last Time I Lied by Riley Sager
Publication Date: 07/10/18
Synopsis: Two Truths and a Lie. The girls played it all the time in their tiny cabin at Camp Nightingale. Vivian, Natalie, Allison, and first-time camper Emma Davis, the youngest of the group. The games ended when Emma sleepily watched the others sneak out of the cabin in the dead of night. The last she–or anyone–saw of them was Vivian closing the cabin door behind her, hushing Emma with a finger pressed to her lips. Now a rising star in the New York art scene, Emma turns her past into paintings–massive canvases filled with dark leaves and gnarled branches that cover ghostly shapes in white dresses. The paintings catch the attention of Francesca Harris-White, the socialite and wealthy owner of Camp Nightingale. When Francesca implores her to return to the newly reopened camp as a painting instructor, Emma sees an opportunity to try to find out what really happened to her friends. Yet it’s immediately clear that all is not right at Camp Nightingale. Already haunted by memories from fifteen years ago, Emma discovers a security camera pointed directly at her cabin, mounting mistrust from Francesca and, most disturbing of all, cryptic clues Vivian left behind about the camp’s twisted origins. As she digs deeper, Emma finds herself sorting through lies from the past while facing threats from both man and nature in the present. And the closer she gets to the truth about Camp Nightingale, the more she realizes it may come at a deadly price.
★★★ I have this one planned as a June read, but again.. I may not make it that far, because I am so excited to dive into this one. I absolutely loved Final Girls so I am excited to dig into Riley Sager’s sophomore novel, which sounds so great!