Reviewing Sequels Without Reading the First book – Let’s Talk Bookish

Good morning!!! Look who’s alive?! Yes, it’s me. I am BACK at least for today my friends and I am very happy that I have a little bit of time to write this post. I know I was gone the past two Fridays and I didn’t even say anything about that or have Dani do the linkup (sorry!) but I’ve just had too much on my plate and blogging fell away for a time.

Anyhow, we are here, and it is Friday, and of course, we shall have a lovely discussion today. For those of you that don’t know, Let’s Talk Bookish is a weekly meme, hosted by me & Dani @ Literary Lion, where we discuss certain topics, share our opinions, and spread the love by visiting each other’s posts.

Today’s topic is: Should you review a sequel, without reading the first book? (Dani)

This is an awesome topic, so thank you to Dani for suggesting it! As far as I’m concerned, the very short and very simple answer to this is No, but I am not a “very short and simple answer” kind of girl, so let’s discuss.

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Spoiler Free Review – Deceptive Waters

Hey there friends! Today I’m going to be reviewing Deceptive Waters. This was an interesting ARC read that kept me hooked even though I didn’t really like the characters and the ending raised quite a few questions.

Book: Deceptive Waters

Author: Carolyn Courtney Lauman

Genre: Adult, Mystery

Summary: When Mary Branson witnesses a car hurtle off the Golden Gate Bridge in the fall of 1998, little does she realize that, twenty years later, she’ll find herself revisiting the haunting details of that crash. But when a woman’s body is found floating along the dark shores of the Chesapeake Bay, Mary tasks herself with unravelling the truth behind both deaths.

Not everyone wants Mary to uncover that truth, let alone publish a novel based on the secrets she exposes. With ominous forces working to silence her, Mary turns to her law enforcement husband and a street-savvy private investigator for help. Can she stay alive long enough to finish her story?

In Deceptive Waters, Carolyn Courtney Lauman introduces her readers to Mary Branson, the lead character in her mystery and suspense Deceptive series. Enjoy reading how Mary transitions from international business executive to writer of true-crime-turns-fiction. You won’t be disappointed.

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Spoiler Free Book Review – Mistborn: The Final Empire

Hello hello! Welcome back y’all!! Today, I’m going to be reviewing Mistborn: The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson. You’ve all seen me scream about how awesome and believable this book was, so let’s jump right in to my finally full review.

Mistborn: The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson - Cover

Book: Mistborn: The Final Empire

Author: Brandon Sanderson

Genre: Epic Fantasy, Adult

Summary: For a thousand years the ash fell and no flowers bloomed. For a thousand years the Skaa slaved in misery and lived in fear. For a thousand years the Lord Ruler, the “Sliver of Infinity,” reigned with absolute power and ultimate terror, divinely invincible. Then, when hope was so long lost that not even its memory remained, a terribly scarred, heart-broken half-Skaa rediscovered it in the depths of the Lord Ruler’s most hellish prison. Kelsier “snapped” and found in himself the powers of a Mistborn. A brilliant thief and natural leader, he turned his talents to the ultimate caper, with the Lord Ruler himself as the mark.

Kelsier recruited the underworld’s elite, the smartest and most trustworthy allomancers, each of whom shares one of his many powers, and all of whom relish a high-stakes challenge. Only then does he reveal his ultimate dream, not just the greatest heist in history, but the downfall of the divine despot.

But even with the best criminal crew ever assembled, Kel’s plan looks more like the ultimate long shot, until luck brings a ragged girl named Vin into his life. Like him, she’s a half-Skaa orphan, but she’s lived a much harsher life. Vin has learned to expect betrayal from everyone she meets, and gotten it. She will have to learn to trust, if Kel is to help her master powers of which she never dreamed.

This saga dares to ask a simple question: What if the hero of prophecy fails?

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Vengeful by V. E. Schwab – Review

Good morning everyone! Welcome back! I hope you are having a great week so far. Today I’m going to be reviewing Vengeful by V. E. Schwab. This was an amazing sequel with wonderful characters and an intriguing plot.

Book: Vengeful

Author: V. E. Schwab

Rating: ★★★★★

Summary: Sydney once had Serena—beloved sister, betrayed enemy, powerful ally. But now she is alone, except for her thrice-dead dog, Dol, and then there’s Victor, who thinks Sydney doesn’t know about his most recent act of vengeance.

Victor himself is under the radar these days—being buried and re-animated can strike concern even if one has superhuman powers. But despite his own worries, his anger remains. And Eli Ever still has yet to pay for the evil he has done.


Quote: “I don’t want to survive. I want to thrive.”

*Victor. I’ve always loved Victor because he’s not necessarily the good guy. He’s more like the lesser of two evils, which makes him a very interesting character. He doesn’t have the same views of what is right and wrong, nor does he particularly care about the suffering of others at his hands. But he’s still a good guy, with a good heart, no matter how small it is. He cares and loves certain people, and he isn’t drawn by a desire to kill just for the fun of it, or to rule, or whatever it is that makes people become evil. And that is what makes him a phenomenal anti-hero. This was much more evident in this book, and I loved seeing what he does and why, and seeing him care about Mitch and Sydney.

*Eli. We get a whole new side of Eli in this book, and despite the fact that I want to hate him viciously (no pun intended lol), I really can’t because we get his backstory. We learn what happened to him as a kid, what made him what he is today. It’s traumatizing, and it made me want to sympathize and feel sorry for him.

*Sydney & Mitch. The small family moments were amazing, and I love how much of a dad Mitch is. He may be big and intimidating, but he is such a softy on the inside, and his love for Syd is so heart-warming. Sydney was also pretty interesting, and I understood her want to have a friend, to have someone to talk to and trust. It broke my heart to see how much she missed Serena and wanted her back.

*Marcella and June. Marcella is terrifying. Terrifying. She’s probably insane and a little too vengeful. I’m pretty sure the book was named after her desire to take revenge on all the men who’d belittled her in life. June was an interesting character, and there were many unanswered questions about who she was. I loved her ability (she’s a shape-shifter), and her loyalty to Sydney even though it isn’t explained why. Hopefully it will be in the third book! if there is a third

*Plot. This was so fast paced especially at the end and I loved the suspense through-out. That ending was amazing, and also pretty sad.


Quote: “Perhaps she was glass. But glass is only brittle until it breaks. Then it’s sharp.”

*Timelines. This confused me in the first book, and it still kind of confused me in this one as well. It’s a little hard to keep straight when it’s flip flopping over the years, but once you get the hang of it, it makes a lot of sense.


Quote: “Maybe we are broken. But we put ourselves back together. We survived. That’s what makes us so powerful. And as for family—well, blood is always family, but family doesn’t always have to be blood.”

I really loved this, I would recommend it, and I hope you enjoy it if you read it! The characters and plot were amazing, and I love how we got to see another side of Eli, while also being introduced to a new and terrifying villain.

One sentence summary: A great sci-fi thriller with amazing characters and an intriguing plot.

Overall, 5 splendid stars

Rating: 5 out of 5.
Chat with me

That’s it for this review! Have you read Vengeful? What did you think? Did Marcella terrify you, while making you feel some respect for her? What’s your favorite V.E. or Victoria Schwab book? Chat with me in the comments below!

Three Days Missing by Kimberly Belle – Review

Hello and welcome! Today I’m going to be reviewing Three Days Missing by Kimberly Belle. This was a good thriller, but I was also disappointed since it was pretty obvious who the bad guy was.

Book: Three Days Missing

Author: Kimberly Belle

Rating: ★★★★☆

Summary: It’s every parent’s worst nightmare: the call that comes in the middle of the night.

When Kat Jenkins awakens to the police on her doorstep, her greatest fear is realized. Her nine-year-old son, Ethan, is missing—vanished from the cabin where he’d been on an overnight field trip with his class. Shocked and distraught, Kat rushes to the campground where he was last seen. But she’s too late; the authorities have returned from their search empty-handed after losing Ethan’s trail in the mountain forest.

Another mother from the school, Stef Huntington, seems like she has it all: money, prominence in the community, a popular son and a loving husband. She hardly knows Kat, except for the vicious gossip that swirls around Kat’s traumatic past. But as the police investigation unfolds, Ethan’s disappearance will have earth-shattering consequences in Stef’s own life—and the paths of these two mothers are about to cross in ways no one could have anticipated.

Racing against the clock, their desperate search for answers begins—one where the greatest danger could lie behind the everyday smiles of those they trust the most.


*Thriller. This is every parent’s worst nightmare: getting a visit from the cops in the middle of the night telling you that your child is missing. And that’s what happens to Kat Jenkins. I liked how the plot was instantly tense from the beginning, even if it was a little slow, and created a lot of anticipation as the clock ticked and Ethan still remained missing. It was also interesting to see how Stef and her family fit into the story. It made me want to continue reading, to find out what happens, even though I was pretty sure I knew the identity of the kidnapper.

*Characters. I really felt so much for Kat, and I actually grew to like Stef, even though at first she annoyed me. Kat’s fear and emotions were so real and I understood her struggle and frustration with everyone. Stef’s role in the matter, combined with her anxiety and struggle to connect with her son, were also very interesting and heartfelt to read. I also really liked Lucas and his loyalty and love for Kat and Ethan. He truly is Kat’s brother in ever way but blood.


*The reveal of the kidnapper. It was really disappointing because the moment the character was introduced earlier in the book, I knew it was them. So the reveal was pretty underwhelming. But, it was still interesting to know why Ethan was taken and how everything had gone so horribly wrong.

*Ethan. I actually liked Ethan and his relationship with his mom, but it kind of annoyed me that he had such a high IQ. Lately, it seems like most thrillers that involves a kid, is about a kid who is “different” or really “smart” or unlike other kids. It’s starting to become cliche at this point, and I don’t see why Ethan couldn’t be a regular kid. And even if he had a high IQ, it didn’t need to be mentioned so many times.


I liked this, I would recommend it, and I hope you enjoy it if you read it! The characters were interesting, the plot build-up was great, and even though I knew who the kidnapper was, I was still a little thrilled by the ending.

One sentence summary: An interesting thriller with great characters and an underwhelming reveal.

Overall, 4 stars

Rating: 4 out of 5.
Chat with me

Have you read Three Days Missing? What did you think? Have you read any other books by Kimberly Belle? Do you find it annoying when the main kid in the story has a high IQ or is “unlike other kids”? Chat with me in the comments below!