Check It Out!

Staff recommendations and reviews from the Plainfield Public Library


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The Good Widow by Liz Fenton

Jacks has just received devastating news. Her husband, James, has died while in Hawaii. Except he is supposed to be on a business trip in Kansas. And he wasn’t alone. Jacks doesn’t know what to do with this information. She thought for the most part their eight year marriage was good. As the weeks past and she grieves, Jacks gets a visitor. His name is Nick and he claims to be the fiance of Dylan, the woman who was with James.  He wants to go to Hawaii and retrace their steps to see if he can get closure and he wants Jacks to go with him.

Jacks decides to go. As they start to retrace their steps, Jacks is shocked about all the activity they did. Jacks starts to really think about their marriage and isn’t sure if she ever knew James. Nick is having a hard time too. Jacks and Nick start to grow closer and after they leave Hawaii they start a relationship. Jacks really starts to fall for him and couldn’t be happier. But were the deaths in Hawaii really an accident or is something more sinister going on?

I really liked this book. It held my interest and kept me wanting to find out the truth. It had a good twist and I am excited to read more by these authors.

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Seven Days of Us by Francesca Hornak

Olivia is coming home for Christmas. The only reason is because she has to be quarantined for seven days after providing medical assistance to Haag victims. Joining her in quarantine are her mother, Emma, her father, Andrew, and her sister, Phoebe. They are going to the family estate, which has limited cell service and is in the middle of nowhere. To add to the stress of quarantine, Andrew has found out that he has a son from a previous relationship that he knew nothing about and Emma has just been diagnosed  with cancer.

Olivia also has a secret. She is in a secret relationship with one of the other doctors. And when you are there treating patients, there is a no touch policy, which they repeatedly violated. And now he has the Haag. This Christmas is already stressful without all of the secrets. But when the biggest secret actually shows up at the house, no one will ever be the same.

I enjoyed this book. There was one thing I didn’t like in the end but I guess it was good for the story. You don’t really like the characters but you don’t hate them and they redeem themselves as the story goes on.


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I Am Watching You by Teresa Driscoll

Ella is on her way to a conference for florists in London. She is taking the train and is bored. She notices two teen girls, Anna and Sarah, and eavesdrops on them. They are soon joined by two older boys, who have just been released from prison. Ella keeps her eye on them and wonders if she should try to contact their parents, since she overheard their names and where they are from. Ella decides she is being a prude and does nothing. The next day on the news, Anna is reported as missing.

A year later, Anna is still missing and there are no leads. Ella had come forward at the time and the two guys were never found. Ella lives with the guilt that she could have done something.  Now she is receiving anonymous notes in the mail telling her she is being watched. Ella thinks it is Anna’s mother sending the notes. She hires a private investigator to find out what is happening. Also, around this time a new documentary about the disappearance is aired. This brings some new clues to light. Will Anna’s disappearance finally be solved?

This was a good psychological thriller. It kept me guessing until it was revealed what really happened to Anna. I eagerly am waiting for the next book by Teresa Driscoll that comes out in March, The Friend.


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The Ultimatum by Karen Robards

Bianca St. Ives has spent her whole life running heists with her dad. But this last one has not gone as planned. The money is missing from the vault and Bianca is the only one left of her team besides her getaway driver, Doc. She has to get out before midnight. She manages to escape with the help of a stranger named Mickey. As they race to the meet up point they find a road block. The next thing they know the truck with Bianca’s father and other associates is blown up.

Five months later, Bianca is getting on with her life. She is working at her security firm, Guardian Consulting, in Savannah, Georgia. She isn’t 100% convinced her dad is really dead but she hasn’t heard from him. She has hired Doc to work at the company and to monitor her dad’s secret email that clients can contact him on for jobs. When a job comes up Bianca decides to take even though it could be a trap. While on this job, Bianca runs into Mickey again, who’s name is Colin Rogan and works for the government. It soon becomes clear that this is a trap. Now the good guys and the bad guys are after her because they think she knows where her dad is. But he’s dead, isn’t he?

This was a different route for Karen Robards. It was more a spy thriller than romantic suspense, which Robards is known for. I liked it. It is the first in a new series. The next one due out in 2018 is called The Moscow Deception.


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The Second Sister by Claire Kendal

Ella Brooke is still not over her sister Miranda’s disappearance. The ten year anniversary is coming up and Ella has promised her nephew that she will look into his mom’s disappearance. The police have just returned a box of Miranda’s things and Ella is determined to find a new clue. While moving Miranda’s dollhouse to her house, Ella discovers a note. It is the first solid clue to help Ella out. She is also determined to see serial killer Jason Thorne. A newspaper article is claiming that Thorne might have seen Miranda before her disappearance.

Ella is also reconnecting with her first love, Ted and a new man, Adam, who happens to be a doctor at the institute Thorne is living. As Ella continues to investigate, the pieces start to come together. And when she meets with Thorne, she finally gets the clue that will solve this mystery. But in getting the answers she so desperately seeks, will Ella meet the same fate as Miranda?

This was a very suspenseful thriller. I was trying to figure out the ending the entire time I was reading and just couldn’t. And rest assured we do find out what happened to Miranda. I am definitely going back to read Claire Kendal’s first book, The Book of You.


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Sting by Sandra Brown

Jordan Bennett has just been kidnapped. She is pretty sure it has to do with her brother and his boss, Billy Panella. Her brother, Josh, is going to testify against Billy and is under federal protection. They are both guilty but Josh turned first. Billy has vanished at the same time as Josh and there is 30 million dollars missing. Jordan has no clue where the men are or the money.

Shaw Kinnard and his partner have been hired to kill Jordan Bennett. But Shaw soon realizes that he is also a target. He changes the plan and kills his partner and kidnaps Jordan. He figures she knows where Josh and Billy are and he is thinking he can get more money from the brother if he has Jordan. But not everything is what it seems. The good guys and the bad guys might not be who you think.

Another good one by Sandra Brown. Had a little twist in the middle and the end. I guessed the middle twist but didn’t see that end one coming. I look forward to her next one, Seeing Red.


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Magpie Murders by Anthony Horowitz

Susan Ryeland is an editor for a small publishing firm in London. One of their top selling authors, Alan Conway, has just turned in his newest book featuring the detective Atticus Pund. Susan spends the weekend reading the book. It is about a small town and one of the villagers turns up dead. And then another one. Atticus Pund is asked to look into the deaths and solves the case. Except Susan doesn’t know how it ends because the last chapter is missing.

Susan calls Charles, the owner of the publishing company, to find out if he has the missing pages. She doesn’t hear from him and when she goes into the office she finds out why. Alan Conway is dead. It looks like he committed suicide and Charles even has a letter that Alan had sent that is basically a suicide note. But Susan isn’t convinced. She starts looking into his “suicide” and finds the village he lives in is very similar to the village in his book. Susan starts to find that the characters are based on the villagers. She is even more convinced that Alan was murdered. Will she figure out this mystery before it too late and the killer takes her life?

This was a very good mystery. It is in fact two mysteries in one book, since we have the book Alan wrote and then the mystery of his death. I really enjoyed how this book was laid out. Sometimes Susan got on my nerves but overall I liked the characters.