WWW Wednesdays #136 – May 10th

WWW WEDNESDAYS is a weekly meme hosted by Sam @ Taking On A World Of Words and is all about answering the three questions below.

  • WHAT ARE YOU CURRENTLY READING?

I’m about to start Roses Of May by Dot Hutchison; another Netgalley ARC and a title I’ve been looking forward to. I read and loved The Butterfly Garden last year and I didn’t realize it was a series until I saw this sequel on NG… Can’t wait to dive into this disturbing story again! I also started reading Aurabel by Laura Dockrill, a NG fantasy ARC with mermaids, but I had to put it on hold after 5%. Why? I felt like I was reading a story written in a foreign language I could just barely understand. Things just didn’t make sense at all… And after investigating, this story apparently takes place in the same world as a previous book which I didn’t know about. That could probably explain the lack of worldbuilding, but does make it extremely difficult to properly enjoy it without reading that one first (which I don’t have time for xD ).

  • WHAT DID YOU RECENTLY FINISH READING?

* The first book I finished since last week is Anything For Her by Jack Jordan, which turned out to be an excellent psychological thriller and even better than his other title My Girl. It’s fast, it’s entertaining and it manages to catch your attention right from the first page… And the whole mystery around ‘that night’ is intriguing and definitely makes you want to keep on reading. More in my review.
* I then read All The Good Things by Clare Fisher, another ARC I was really looking forward to. Unfortunately I ended up having mixed thoughts about it, mostly because I couldn’t connect to the main character Beth. Which is shame, because she’s a truly fascinating character and I really wanted to love this story. More about my mixed thoughts in my review.
* I actually wasn’t going to continue this series after my experience with book three, but I gave in since already had a copy on my kindle and it would mean I could cross off another series. Unfortunately, The Murder Of An Angel by James Patterson & Maxine Paetro continued down the same road as book three, and the only reason I made it to the end is that the prose at least reads superfast. Want to know why I didn’t like it? Here‘s why.
* After two mediocre reads, I decided to play it safe and pick up another Bookouture thriller. And I wasn’t wrong, because I’ve now added The Darkest Lies by Barbara Copperthwaite to the growing list of Bookouture winners. This story started out strong and stayed that way until the very end. Not every character is all that likeable, but you will forget all about that as you find yourself trapped in the same web of lies and secrets as the rest of the town. Many many plot twists and a surprising ending! Find out more in my review which will be posted later today.
* I then continued Enchanters by K.F. Bradshaw, a high fantasy read I had been posponing during the last few weeks due to its length and wordbuilding. I’m glad I finally continued it and I really like the idea behind this story. That said, I do think the story itself is overlong and would have been more enjoyable with more focus on the action and less on ‘insignificant’ details and dialogue. In fact, some of the main characters were starting to become really annoying; especially the bantering between Cassie and Andrea. I love that it’s a YA fantasy read with a glbt angle though; you don’t see that too often (or at least in the stories I’ve read so far…)
* The last book I was able to finish is Room by Emma Donoghue, which has been on my TBR for way too long. The worst part is that I kept hearing great things about it, but somehow I never actually picked it up… I’m regretting this now, because it was such an excellent read! I literally flew through the pages and finished it in less than a day. I love that it’s told from the POV of a 5-year-old; it makes the story that much more powerful (Think The Boy With The Striped Pajamas, which has a similar effect.)

  • WHAT DO YOU THINK YOU’LL READ NEXT?

After I finish my current reads, I’m planning to pick up the other titles on my Bout Of Books TBR. One of them is another one that has been collecting dust for way too long: Stardust by Neil Gaiman. It will be one of the exceptions were I’ve already seen the movie before reading the story, so we’ll see how that goes. The next ARC I’m picking up will be Manipulated Lives by H.A. Leuschel, which I’ve heard great things about and can’t wait to finally pick up. Also on the ARC list is Heartborn by Terry Maggert, which is another fantasy read. Last up is One Of Us Is Lying by Karen M. McManus, which I requested after a recommendation and I’m really excited about. I wanted to pick up the thriller Be My Killer by Richard Parker first, but it doesn’t have a pagecount yet and I need that for it to count for the readathon. xD


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ARC REVIEW: All The Good Things – by Clare Fisher

Title: All The Good Things
Author: Clare Fisher

Genre: Fiction, Contemporary, Mystery
First published: June 1st 2017
Publisher: Penguin Books UK
Finished reading: May 4th 2017
Pages: 280

“When I was done with crying, I saw that things wouldn’t change on their own; you had to change them. You had to rise up out of that lazy part of yourself that did what it had done before just because it was easier, and do the new thing, the strange thing, the thing you were scared of.”

*** A copy of this book was kindly provided to me by Netgalley and Penguin Books UK in exchange for an honest review. Thank you! ***

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It’s been a few days since I finished All The Good Things and I’m still struggling to put my thoughts together. Because the truth is: I’ve been having mixed thoughts about this story and its main character ever since I first started reading it. I can’t deny Clare Fisher has written a powerful story with a very interesting character and I can see why so many people seem to love All The Good Things. That said, I personally struggled to get a clear picture of Beth or at least couldn’t properly connect to her character. That might be one of the reasons it took me a while to make sense of the story and unfortunately I didn’t enjoy this story as much as I thought I would. But while this sounds negative, I also found myself fascinated by Beth’s character, history and development. I understand why the complete picture of Beth isn’t revealed until the end, but I also do think I would have actually enjoyed this story better with a little more background information in the beginning. The use of the diary entries is a nice touch, I like the reference to the title and it does create a great opportunity to learn more about Beth, but in the end I just wasn’t fully convinced. Apparently All The Good Things is a book that can go both ways though, so definitely give it a try if you like intriguing and unique characters.

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The twenty-one year old Beth is in prison after doing something so bad she thinks she doesn’t deserve to ever feel good again. Her counsellor Erika thinks otherwise though, and tries to help her feel better. She asks Beth to make a list of all the good things in her life, and reluctantly Beth starts to write down her story. As she talks about the good things, we slowly learn more about her… But at the end of her journey, she will have to confront the bad thing. What did she do that was so bad? And how did she get to that point in the first place?

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There is no doubt Beth is a fascinating character and one worthy to have a story written about, and that’s probably why it pains me so much I wasn’t able to properly connect to her. I really wanted to love All The Good Things and it definitely has all the right elements, but the story as a whole just didn’t blow me away. Would I have enjoyed it better with a little more information about Beth so it would be easier to connect? Maybe. Would I have liked it better if the story would have been told in a different order/format? Perhaps. But I’ve seen others loving her story, so it might just have been me.


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