Daisy Darker by Alice Feeney

Daisy Darker by Alice Feeney

Rating: 5 out of 5.

THIS BOOK WAS WILDDDDD! I read this in a single day, and literally could. not. put. it. DOWN! Best thriller I’ve read in awhile, inspired by my favorite novel by the legendary Agatha Christie – with a twist!

On Daisy Darker’s grandmother’s 80th birthday, the family assembles at their estate, Seaglass, to hear her deliver her final will and testament: Nana, mother Nancy, Dad, her older sister Rose, the middle sister Lily, her niece Trixie, and an old family friend, Conor. At midnight, they find Nana dead on the floor – not of the natural causes she suspected would take her in her 80th year, but of what appears to be murder. Someone at Seaglass is picking off the Darker family, one by one.

Everyone is a suspect, and nothing is as you think it is!

This book was just an utter surprise from what I was expecting, and it was so, so welcome. This book will probably end up in my top ten this year, if not my top five. THAT’S how good it was!!

Obviously, for good reason, I disliked most of the characters. The family is despicable and annoying, all in their own ways, and the only ones I really cared for were Nana and Trixie. Even Daisy herself could get to be a little much at times, and they all had their faults. No one, however, was quite as annoying and irritating as Lily. That woman was a nightmare!! Feeney creates such an atmosphere ripe with hatred and dislike that you can’t help but root for the evil that lies in just the other room. This family tore itself apart, murderer not necessary.

I felt for Daisy, but I think even she was hard to love at times. She was heavily mistreated by her family, and you do sympathize with her as the reader, but I think what will strike you about her character is that she never really moves on from that. It’s both depressing and telling.

Huge, huge fan of this twist. You will never see it coming – my mouth formed a perfect O for the last five or ten chapters! Things fall apart so insanely quick…wild. Just wild.

Highly recommending this for all my thriller AND horror lovers, if you haven’t gotten to it already. My favorite Book of the Month pick thus far. I’ll be checking out more of Feeney’s work after reading this masterpiece!

Have a wonderful weekend!

Dating Dr. Dil by Nisha Sharma

Dating Dr. Dil by Nisha Sharma

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Other Possible Prompts: 5. Chapters have titles, 6. Household object on the cover, 15. A five-syllable title, 33. A bilingual character, 41. Involves a second chance, 45. A book with illustrated people on the cover, 46. A job title in the title, 50. A person of color as the main character, 52. Published in 2022

Another Book of the Month DOWN!! I am calling this an absolute win.

As for the book itself, I wasn’t *in love* with it, but I think there’s a lot of things it gets right. Let’s jump in!

Newly thirty, single lawyer Kareena feels like she faces a constant barrage from her family, aunties, and uncles about not yet being married. It’s not for lack of wanting to, she just hasn’t found her true love yet. In contrast, Prem doesn’t believe in true love: an arranged or approved marriage creates the most health and happiness in a home, and once he’s done building his health center, that’s how he’ll have it.

After a chance encounter at a bar, and an internet video gone viral, Prem and Kareena hate each other for this exact difference in relationship views. But as Kareena’s father prepares to sell her late-mother’s home, and Prem needs to secure the last of the funds for this health center, they realize they could have a mutually beneficial arrangement: engagement.

This wasn’t exactly what I was expecting from the book but I definitely enjoyed it. I thought the plot was going to be going in a different direction but I actually thoroughly enjoyed the “marriage for love/marriage for obligation” dynamic. It created really interesting tension and an engrossing story. I read this in a day! It’s a pretty fast and enjoyable read.

It’s always fun to be immersed into a different culture while you read, and I liked Dating Dr. Dil for this as well. While I found that the way her family treated Kareena was sad, in a cultural context of being from an Indian immigrant family, I understood why she went along with it even when it was painful. Additionally, the clothes and food interwoven into the story were magical details that helped me immerse myself.

The first couple pages into this book I made the mistake of reading some reviews on Goodreads…and while they’re incredibly entertaining thoughts on the subject, it was a bit of a deterrent. Pretty much everyone had one very, particular problem…by the name of Charlie. I won’t go into detail. I wish I hadn’t even written it here because I think reading it ruined that aspect of my reading experience, but, uh…it’s kind of hilarious. But definitely, definitely a con when we’re talking about the book. I’m not sure why the author chose to include “Charlie” or why his name is Charlie to begin with, but yeah.

Kareena and Prem were both pretty okay, they each had their annoying faults, but overall they were decent characters and I was invested in their happiness. In Kareena’s case, especially, I really felt like her family was working against her. They all pretty much sucked except the Aunties. They treated her pretty badly and it made me wish she would cut them off, but I get the dynamic. Prem was fine. Just…fine. Pretty unremarkable. When I thought he was a big television personality I wasn’t sure how it was going to go, because I don’t typically like the “famous people” romances, but that turned out to be a very small part of the plot, so it was fine. Everything’s fine.

Overall? I would recommend this book. I do plan to read the second one when it gets released, so she couldn’t have warned me off that much. My biggest complaints were just the immaturity of the writing and the whole…Charlie thing.

Have an awesome week!

Reading Update: October 2022

Reading Update: October 2022

Ug. I am way too tired to write one of these today. For some reason I am just not on the ball this week when it comes to my blogging!

I read a lot of audiobooks this month. I’ve been crafting away for my Etsy shop, and these are a great way to keep me entertained while I design, paint, or drive in the car. Seriously, if you’re a reader and you’re not supplementing with audiobooks yet, what are you even doing?! Not to mention, my Audible membership is tackling the very dregs of my tbr pile right now. Meddling Kids is finally crossed off my list after FIVE WHOLE YEARS!

This month I read fourteen books, including TEN audiobooks!! I hardly ever read that many that way, but it just worked out this month. I have a ton more on my docket, just waiting to get them on loan from my library! And this seems like a great time to remind you: your library is an incredible resource!! Shameless library plug.

Looking ahead for the coming month, I want to keep picking away at my tbr like I have been (and kicking butt at it, too!). But more specifically, I’m hoping to read at least two of my Book of the Month picks, one business book to help with my Etsy store, and definitely get in some witchy reads for the spooky season now upon us.Here are the ones I’m most excited about!

  • Go Hex Yourself by Jessica Clare
  • The Kiss Curse by Erin Sterling
  • Small Town Big Magic by Hazel Beck

When it comes to my 52 Book Club Challenge, I’m just two prompts away, having crossed another one this past month. I read Carrie Soto is Back for the gold prompt, which was fabulous, and now I just need an anthology and to read something in November!! The anthology one has me stuck – I might need to explore the Goodreads list for that one. Any recommendations?

And for my final announcement: I didn’t buy any books last month! Except my Book of the Month. But that doesn’t count. That is quite the feat for me and worth recording somewhere.

Have a fabulous month of reading, peeps!

Reading Update: September 2022

Reading Update: September 2022

Happy almost fall, almost spooky season friends! I love fall for reading, and I cannot wait for all these new releases in the coming weeks.

I have a very exciting and important announcement: I broke my annual reading record in August.

Yes, August. By August of 2022, I officially read more books in this calendar year than I’ve read in any other calendar year…

and there’s still 4 more months to go.

I’m up to seventy books as I write this, with a few more in progress. I cannot believe how much I’ve been able to read this year, and I have no idea what makes this year special. I literally doubled my book count over last year (which, if you ask me, was The Hardest Year of My Life, so I guess that adds up). Suffice to say I’m pretty damn proud of myself and I’m going to keep announcing it at all social functions, like a normal person would.

When it comes to the 52 Book Club 2022 Challenge, I’m still nearly just as stuck as last month. I’ve actually read enough to schedule reviews through the remainder of the year, but I’m going to have to shift things around to hit those last few prompts. Here’s what I still have left:

20. Related to the word “gold”

44. An anthology

47. Read during the month of November

Number 47 should still be an easy one, as it’s kind of a waiting game! My plan is still to read Carrie Soto is Back by Taylor Jenkins Reid for number 20 – even if they don’t select it for Book of the Month, it just sounds like something I want to read. My plan has been Goblin by Josh Malerman for number 44, but I’m open to suggestions, honestly.

When it rains, it pours: I’ve had so many new releases on hold with my library’s Libby app for weeks, and all of a sudden they’ve all come available. At once. Just in one week. So currently my docket there includes The Daughter of Doctor Moreau by Silvia Moreno-Garcia (loving this one…she is so talented as a writer. Huge fan), Just Like Home by Sarah Gailey, and I’m Glad My Mom Died by Jennette McCurdy. I’ve heard the last one is pretty heavy, but after watching a few interviews with her, I know I’ve got to read it. McCurdy’s portrayal of Sam on iCarly was a staple of my childhood, but I’m ready to see it in a new light. This sounds like a damn important book for her, and for my generation to understand in the larger concept of our own popular culture.

I also subscribed to Audible last month, and I’m using it to pick away at the books that have been on my tbr for the longest! So this month, I’m reading A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini. I remember adoring The Kite Runner when I was *literally a freshman in high school* so yes, this book probably has been on my tbr since 2014. It only took me eight years, but I’m going to read it now, I swear… *starts sweating nervously*.

I acquired a metric ton of new reading material in August thanks to Gibson’s August sale, so unfortunately, cut off one head and two more shall grow in its place, or whatever. My tbr is Hydra.

We’re getting there, people. The colder days and more reading time are almost upon us…

Have an excellent weekend ❤