ARC REVIEW: The Child Next Door – by Shalini Boland @bookouture @ShaliniBoland

Title: The Child Next Door
Author: Shalini Boland
Genre: Mystery, Thriller, Suspense
First published: March 29th 2018
Publisher: Bookouture
Finished reading: March 12th 2018
Pages: 279

“My stomach gives a sudden lurch, and I have the sensation that something has irrevocably shifted. That nothing in our lives will ever be quite the same again.”

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

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Birthday review!! 😀 Because receiving the message my request was approved last week was like an early birthday present in the first place.

I’ve been a big fan of Shalini Boland‘s psychological thrillers ever since she first reached out to me with the question if I wanted to read The Girl From The Sea back in 2016, and these feelings haven’t changed after reading her next three psychological thrillers. The Child Next Door is already book number five and was yet again very much another winner. There is just something about the writing style that has you hooked from the very first page and literally doesn’t let you go… I finished The Child Next Door in less than a day! This psychological thriller starts with a bang and every mother’s worst nightmare, setting the tone for the rest of the story. Who were those voices Kirstie heard? Are they after her little girl? Oh yes, you are starting to feel paranoid yourself as well as you keep reading and things start to happen to Kirstie. The characters are well developed and feel realistic in general and it was interesting to see them react to the different situations, although I’m not sure they are completely likeable. The pace is perfect for a good psychological thriller and the amount of plot twists and false leads is just right as well. There are a lot of different angles included in this story, making for a rich plot and a wide pool of suspects and possibilities. I did feel the general ending came a bit as an anticlimax after all that was being build up, but it was definitely not something that I saw coming and shocking as well. And that final statement!!! I SO need a sequel or something to know more… I was left staring open-mouthed at the last page because I just couldn’t believe what I just read. If you enjoy reading psychological thrillers, I can highly recommend both The Child Next Door and any of her other books. They are excellent!

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When Kirstie wakes up and hears her child crying through the baby monitor, she hurries upstairs to tend to her. But then she hears an unknown voice in the baby monitor, telling someone to just take the child and go. Kirstie panicks and flies up the stairs, only to find her daughter safe asleep in her cot. Who was the voice she heard? There are no other babies living closeby… And neither the police nor her husband believe she actually heard the voice. But Kirstie knows something isn’t right, and these feelings only increase when things start happening…

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The Child Next Door is psychological thriller at its best. Just the right amount of tension, a rich plot and a healthy dose of twists and false leads, but also well rounded characters and a pace that is just right. To top things off, the writing style will make you want to keep on reading and you will have a hard time letting go. I didn’t see the ending coming at all, as it kind of came out of nowhere, but it was shocking as well. And like I said before, that final reveal left me both speechless and wanting for more. Recommended!


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WWW Wednesdays #167 – March 14th

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 currently reading My Sister’s Keeper by Jodi Picoult, but it’s not the reading experience I was hoping for. I’m not saying the writing is bad, but the topic itself is making me very very angry and I think I would never have read it if I would have known exactly what this book was about. People might be offended by this, but I’m totally on Anna’s side here. She should NOT be treated as a walking human donor bank and just being pressured giving up everything and going through all those treatments just because her parents say so… It should be her choice and her choice alone. Honestly, the whole reason they had her in the first place makes me sick. I’ll finish it just to see how the second half of the book will go, but it’s not going to be a good rating for me.

I kind of want to pick up The Elephant Keeper’s Daughter by Julia Drosten instead and read something different… Although I might need something light and fluffy to calm me down first before I do.

  • WHAT DID YOU RECENTLY FINISH READING?

1. The Art Of Fear by Pamela Crane (3/5 stars) REVIEW
I had really high hopes for The Art Of Fear, especially after such an explosive and dark beginning. But sadly I was never able to warm up to the characters, and the multiple POVs and flashbacks slowed down the pace considerably and didn’t help keeping the tension. Like I said before, The Art Of Fear is by no means a bad read, but I don’t think it lived up to expectations either. There is a lot of potential though, and I did like the writing style. Graffiti Palace had all the potential to blow me away, but instead I was left struggling and feeling confused about it all.

2. Graffiti Palace by A.G. Lombardo (DNF at 49%, 0/5 stars) REVIEW
I’ve tried several times over the last two weeks to start reading Graffiti Palace, but unfortunately I have been struggling with it right from the very first page. The main thing that stood out for me was the writing style, which simply wasn’t for me. It felt confusing, chaotic, haltering… And it simply made it hard to make sense of it all. Some might call it literary fiction, colorful and exuberant prose, but the sad hard facts are that I personally found it a constant struggle to reach the end of each page.

3. Wink Poppy Midnight by April Genevieve Tucholke (2,5/5 stars) REVIEW 23/03
As soon as I started reading Wink Poppy Midnight, I was blown away by the writing style. So so beautiful, mysterious and intriguing! The writing style is by far what stood out most for me in this book and it’s the only reason I’m giving this story the benefit of the doubt. Why the low rating, would you ask? I’m keeping things simple and give one main reason: Poppy. I understand we are not supposed to like her in the first place, but I absolutely utterly despised her character. This extremely negative feeling for Poppy ruined the reading experience for me and made it really hard to just forget about her and enjoy the other chapters.

4. The Sun Does Shine by Anthony Ray Hinton (4,5/5 stars) REVIEW 18/03
Powerful, inspiring, infuriating, heartbreaking, but also full of hope and forgiveness. The Sun Does Shine shows us how racial discrimination and prejudice helped send an innocent man to death row and keep him there for thirty years despite solid proof of his innocence. The pure injustice of it all makes you want to scream, but both his case and experience is very well documented in this memoir and makes for a painful, but inspiring, intriguing and very powerful read. I’m truly impressed by his views on life and his ability to be able to forgive the unforgivable. Highly recommended!

5. The Child Next Door by Shalini Boland (4,5/5 stars) REVIEW 19/03 
The Child Next Door is psychological thriller at its best. Just the right amount of tension, a rich plot and a healthy dose of twists and false leads, but also well rounded characters and a pace that is just right. To top things off, the writing style will make you want to keep on reading and you will have a hard time letting go. I didn’t see the ending coming at all, as it kind of came out of nowhere, but it was shocking as well. And like I said before, that final reveal left me both speechless and wanting for more. Recommended!

  • WHAT DO YOU THINK YOU’LL READ NEXT?

I really need to read The Silent Kookaburra by Liza Perrat, especially since I should have read it months ago… Sorry! I also want to read The Good Twin by Marti Green since it sounds so good. I might go for something different and read Wing Jones by Katherine Webber first though… And I have a new TBR jar pick: Summer Of Sloane by Erin L. Schneider. I haven’t been reading much summery books this Summer, so I might just pick this one up before the season officially ends down here!


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Teaser Tuesdays #169 – March 13th: The Child Next Door @bookouture

TEASER TUESDAYS is a weekly book meme hosted at The Purple Booker. To participate, just open the book you are currently reading to a random page, and choose two ‘teaser’ sentences from somewhere on that page. (no spoilers!)

I’m currently reading The Child Next Door by Shalini Boland… Although I might just have finished it by the time this post goes live. Because even though I only started it yesterday right after my request was finally approved, I am flying through the pages with such speed it would be strange otherwise haha. Shalini Boland is one of my favorite psychological thriller authors and I’m stoked to be able to read this one early. The Child Next Door is proving to be another winner so far!

My teaser (5%):

“My stomach gives a sudden lurch, and I have the sensation that something has irrevocably shifted. That nothing in our lives will ever be quite the same again.”

What are you reading right now?


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