No One Knows by JT Ellison
The day Aubrey Hamilton’s husband is declared dead by the state of Tennessee should bring closure so she can move on with her life. But Aubrey doesn’t want to move on; she wants Josh back. It’s been five years since he disappeared, since their blissfully happy marriage—they were happy, weren’t they?—screeched to a halt and Aubrey became the prime suspect in his disappearance. Five years of emptiness, solitude, loneliness, questions. Why didn’t Josh show up at his friend’s bachelor
party? Was he murdered? Did he run away? And now, all this time later, who is the mysterious yet strangely familiar figure suddenly haunting her new life?
I picked this one up without knowing too much about it other than its Goodreads rating.
I got sucked in from the get go. I found the structure of the story and the way it’s told engaging and interesting. It kept me wanting to know more about the characters and see what would unfold next.
No One Knows is told in bits and pieces. Some from the past, from the present, jumping all around in the timeline. While Aubrey is our main character, we also get chapters from others’ perspectives from time to time. In some books, a structure like this might frustrate me. Here, however, I found it worked. Elliston just keeps giving you one piece of the puzzle at a time.
Unfortunately, as the story went on, I found myself less and less engaged.
Here’s the thing. I really love a good thriller. But the problem is good thrillers (to my taste) are hard to find. Enjoyable thrillers? Sure, those are everywhere. If you have no problem suspending your disbelief—pretty much constantly—then you won’t have too much trouble.
But I can’t. I can to a certain extent. I can here and there, if, on the whole, the story is more believable than not. However, continual and unnecessary plot twists left, right, and center make me shake my head.
Why can’t the shocking, bad thing just be shocking and bad? Why does there have to be eight hundred other layers making it more shocking and bad? That is my main pet peeve with the thriller genre as a whole. I like my stories subtler.
With No One Knows, even the “aha!” moment did not hold enough thrill for me to forgive the story’s many holes and inconsistencies. In fact, it just threw in more.
I really wanted to like this one. Instead of getting a complex story with interesting characters, I got an unnecessarily convoluted one with pieces that just didn’t quite fit together.
Honestly, I think this is just a type of thriller that doesn’t work for me. I’ve read many that I’ve had similar feelings about when most other people had loved them. I think it’s just down to your preference. If you like tons of twists and turns and don’t plan to spend too much time thinking through the plausibility of it all, you may like this one. Unfortunately for me it just didn’t do the trick.
For more reviews of No One Knows and the other spring She Reads selections, click here.
We’re halfway through April, guys! I can’t even believe it. Each year goes by faster than the last. And I’m not happy about it. However, I am happy that I can reasonably assume we’ve had it with the snow. We had a couple of storms last week which was pretty lame… But the forecast looks pretty good this week. And (fingers crossed) it will only get warmer!
I’m also pretty excited because I should be getting some big bucks back on my tax return (!!!!) and I’m looking for apartments with a friend! Going to move out (hopefully!!!) and give adulting a try. We’ll see how it goes.
In case you were wondering, I’ve joined the Hamilton tribe. I got the album on Apple Music and have been listening to it non-stop for the last couple of weeks. SO GOOD. HOW DID I NOT LISTEN TO IT BEFORE. So, yes, lovely folks of the internet, you have led me right and I thank you for it.
As for what I have been reading–it hasn’t been a lot. But that’s okay. Because things in my life are fairly awesome right now and I’ve been loving the books that I have been reading. Yay! Actually, now that I’m looking at it, I haven’t made a Monday post in a couple of weeks so there are quite a few things that I have read since then 😛
I finished up Black Apple by Joan Crate last week. It was a thought-provoking coming of age story about one girl’s search for identity within a system that stripped hers from her. Thanks to Simon & Schuster Canada for providing a copy for review. My full review will be up later this month!
Next I moved on to No One Knows by JT Ellison. This is a mystery thriller novel that is one of the She Reads spring picks. While I enjoyed the writing and flew through the book, it wasn’t really my kind of thriller. There were too many twists for me to keep my disbelief suspended. I like a good twist, but, honestly, one is enough for me. Full review coming later this week!
From there I picked up two books on the theme of sexual assault for Sexual Assault Awareness Month. I read the contemporary classic Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson and the new release Exit, Pursued by a Bear by EK Johnston. I really enjoyed both these novels and definitely think they are worth a read.
Finally, I devoured The Winner’s Kiss by Marie Rutkoski, the final book in the Winner’s trilogy. It was perfect. I loved it. What a great and strong ending to an amazing series. If you haven’t picked this series up yet, you really should! It’s so good. The characters are really strong and well crafted. The plot is exciting, filled with action and political intrigue. The romance is super swoon-worthy with zero instalove! This last instalment was a great ending.
Right now I am reading Asking For It: The Alarming Rise of Rape Culture and What We Can Do About it by Kate Harding. (I also have a few other things on the go but that’s my main read). So far this book is really interesting, thought-provoking, and anger-inducing. You should definitely pick this, or another on the same topic, up this month! There are so many myths surrounding rape and sexual assault! You may inadvertently accept some of them! Some time this month, take some time to educate yourself more on this topic. It’s really important and will likely come up at some point in your life, as awful as that is. 1 in 5 women and 1 in 70 men in America will be sexually assaulted in their lifetime.
Hunger Makes Me a Modern Girl by Carrie Brownstein
All we ever wanted was just to play songs and shows that mattered to people, that mattered to us. Music that summed up the messiness of life, that mitigated that nagging fear of hopelessness, loneliness and death.
Before I read this book, I didn’t know that much about Carrie Brownstein. I, of course, know her from the hilarious show Portlandia, but I hadn’t heard of the punk band Sleater-Kinney before. I really love Portlandia so when I had the chance, I was eager to learn more about Ms. Brownstein.
Carrie starts by telling us about her bumpy childhood and the relationships she has with her family members. She paints a picture of an endearing girl, unsure of herself, troubled not only by teenage angst, but by a disease that plagued her mother. In these times, she would turn to music and comedy.
When she moves on to her time in university, she begins to delve deeper into her love of music. This was the early 90s and the heyday of the Riot Grrrl punk movement. Carrie was in the pacific northwest of the US and was in the epicentre of a lot of this music at the time. The way she talks about it makes you feel like you are right there with her, alongside her as she takes part in this music evolution.
Carrie is an amazing writer. She gets to the heart of what it’s like to want to do something that matters, to express yourself, be an artist. She speaks honestly of trouble, loss, self-doubt, friendship, love, music, and everything in between. Her memoir is relatable, evocative, and totally engrossing. She’s a very intelligent woman and it shows.
Though I came to know Carrie through her humour, there’s not much of that in this book. If you’re looking for laughs, this isn’t the place. But if you’re looking for a well written, insightful memoir-meets-cultural-history, you’ll love this.
Five Novels that Illustrate Rape Culture from Book Riot
A discussion about the prevalence of rape culture and books that capture it. “Here are five novels that can help you understand rape culture and how it demands that rape survivors become perfect victims because the rapist is always given the benefit of the doubt.”
Here the lovely people at Book Riot recommend other titles that tackle issues of sexual assault and rape culture.
The awesome video that likens consent to a cup of tea. “Consent: it’s simple as tea.” If you haven’t watched it, do so now. If you have, watch it again! #consentiseverything
With Louise O’Neill’s Asking For It as a starting point, this article discusses YA Fiction’s history of discussing tough topics like rape.
An in depth discussion on rape culture and the myths surrounding it.
Duke Breaking Out
Boys will be boys.
a complex set of beliefs that encourage male sexual aggression and supports violence against women. It is a society where violence is seen as sexy and sexuality as violent. In a rape culture, women perceive a continuum of threatened violence that ranges from sexual remarks to sexual touching to rape itself. A rape culture condones physical and emotional terrorism against women as the norm . . . In a rape culture both men and women assume that sexual violence is a fact of life, inevitable . . . However . . . much of what we accept as inevitable is in fact the expression of values and attitudes that can change.
This month, let’s talk about sexual assault. Let’s talk about consent. Let’s talk about rape culture.
Hey guys! It’s Monday! What are you reading? What did you read in March?
For me, March was a pretty good, but unproductive, month. The first week of March I was lucky enough to go on a trip to Mexico with my family! I had an amazing time! You can read about it here. This month, I only wrote seven posts. However, I have been having a good time making new friends and getting out of the house more! Wee!
Right now I am reading Black Apple by Joan Crate. I started this book about a week ago but when Walk the Edge came out, I couldn’t help myself! I put down Black Apple so I could read it 😛 But I’ve finished it and am back on course. I’m enjoying Black Apple so far. It’s making reflect on Canada’s checkered history and to think about what makes us human.
Spriiiiiingtime! It’s spriiiiingtime, lovely people! Winter is melting away, and soon it will be warm again. I can’t wait. I’m so sick of this cold, dreary weather! You know what’s as exciting as nice weather? New books! And let me tell you, there are some seriously exciting books coming out this month. Here are the books that I am most excited about.
Asking For It by Louise O’Neill
Hardcover, 336 pages
To be published April 5th, 2016 by Quercus
This book sounds so amazing. It was released in 2015 in the UK, but us in North America had to wait until now! I sort of cheated and bought a copy from the Book Depository. I still haven’t read it though… Oh well! I’m quite excited to read it nonetheless.
Lumberjanes, Vol 3: A Terrible Plan by Noelle Stevenson
Paperback, 112 pages
To be published April 5th, 2016 by BOOM! Box
I love Lumberjanes soooooo much. Every time a new trade is released, it’s like party time. I cannot wait. GET IN MY HANDS NOW.
Giant Days, Vol 2 by John Allison
Paperback, 128 pages
To be published April 12th, 2016 by BOOM! Box
I adored the first volume of this series. I fell in love right away and can’t wait to continue on. If you haven’t checked this out yet, you definitely should! It’s a must.
Eligible: A Modern Retelling of Pride and Prejudice by Curtis Sittenfeld
Hardcover, 512 pages
To be published April 19th, 2016 by Random House
I’m a big Jane Austen fan, and any retelling always piques my interest. I’m usually pretty wary of these though, because they can so easily go awry. However, this one sounds hilarious and has been getting lots of buzz! Definitely interested in checking this one out!
The Darkest Corners by Kara Thomas
Hardcover, 336 pages
To be published April 19th, 2016 by Delacorte
I love a good YA, and I love a good thriller. Put them together, and you have definitely got me interested. Excited to check this one out!
The Raven King (The Raven Cycle #4) by Maggie Stiefvater
Hardcover, 400 pages
To be published April 26th, 2016 by Scholastic
DKFNKEJNLWKJNERLGJN!!!!!!! SO PUMPED. I LOVE THE RAVEN CYCLE. I NEED THIS BOOK IN MY LIFE ASAP. I AM COUNTING DOWN THE DAYS. The only down side is that this is the last book in the series 🙁