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Weekly Book Club {3.28.18}

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I haven’t had a lot of free time lately but I’m trying to fit in at least 20 minutes of reading a night before bed. Every spare second has been consumed with getting this house ready to go on the market. I’m so ready to move so I can read books again!

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Need to Know by Karen Cleveland– Vivian Miller is a dedicated CIA counterintelligence analyst assigned to uncover the leaders of Russian sleeper cells in the United States. On track for a much-needed promotion, she’s developed a system for identifying Russian agents, seemingly normal people living in plain sight. After accessing the computer of a potential Russian operative, Vivian stumbles on a secret dossier of deep-cover agents within America’s borders. A few clicks later, everything that matters to her—her job, her husband, even her four children—are threatened. Vivian has vowed to defend her country against all enemies, foreign and domestic. But now she’s facing impossible choices. Torn between loyalty and betrayal, allegiance and treason, love and suspicion, who can she trust?

My Rating: 4.5 Stars

This one was so close to a 5 Star read for me. I really enjoyed it. The story line flowed nicely with good pace, there was enough tension to keep me interested the entire time, and the characters were well developed. The angst of Vivian’s situation was almost palpable throughout the entire book and I thought the way she handled things was portrayed very realistically. My only complaint was the ending. I thought it wrapped up the story and drama a little too quickly and neatly despite the author leaving room for future books. I hope she does write a second one! Definitely recommend!

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Into the Black Nowhere by Meg Gardiner– In southern Texas, on Saturday nights, women are disappearing. One vanishes from a movie theater. Another is ripped from her car at a stoplight. Another vanishes from her home while checking on her baby. Rookie FBI agent Caitlin Hendrix, newly assigned to the FBI’s elite Behavioral Analysis Unit, fears that a serial killer is roaming the dark roads outside Austin. Caitlin and the FBI’s serial crime unit discover the first victim’s body in the woods. She’s laid out in a bloodstained, white baby-doll nightgown. A second victim in a white nightie lies deeper in the forest’s darkness. Both bodies are surrounded by Polaroid photos, stuck in the earth like headstones. Each photo pictures a woman in a white negligee, wrists slashed, suicide-style–posed like Snow White awaiting her prince’s kiss. To track the UNSUB, Caitlin must get inside his mind. How is he selecting these women? Working with a legendary FBI profiler, Caitlin searches for a homology–that elusive point where character and action come together. She profiles a confident, meticulous killer who convinces his victims to lower their guard until he can overpower and take them in plain sight. He then reduces them to objects in a twisted fantasy–dolls for him to possess, control, and ultimately destroy. Caitlin’s profile leads the FBI to focus on one man: a charismatic, successful professional who easily gains people’s trust. But with only circumstantial evidence linking him to the murders, the police allow him to escape. As Saturday night approaches, Caitlin and the FBI enter a desperate game of cat and mouse, racing to capture the cunning predator before he claims more victims.

My Rating: 4.5 Stars

This was a truly gripping book. It was a gritty, dark read that was uncomfortable at times but I enjoyed every minute of it, if that makes any sense. I finished this book in 6 hours because I could not put it down! I started it around 9pm and woke up at 4am with my iPad on my face and only 1 chapter left to read. Ha! I loved the suspense, the mystery, the police procedure of this story. I liked the main characters and I can’t wait to read more from this series!

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  • Stephanie Burris Towne

    Glad you liked Need to Know! I felt the same way about the book-loved it but the ending felt rushed to me.