1. The Kind Worth Killing by Peter Swanson.. In the vein of Hitchcock and Gone Girl, this novel is without doubt a real "page turner." It starts on an airplane with two strangers playing a game of truth who pair up as unlikely allies. It ends after a series of twists and turns with a suprising death. As the title suggests, the author asks us to ponder about those "worth killing." Because of this implicit question, The Kind Worth Killing is also an exploration of character and morals, as much as it is about murder, sex and lies. Soon to be a movie, this book keeps the reader in suspense until the last page.
2. Disclaimer by Renee Knight .. A psychological thriller filled with secrets and revenge, Disclaimer is a book told from differing points of view with two unreliable narrators. It is also a book which contains another book with a "disclaimer," inside, hence the title. By definition, the disclalimer "claims" to bear no relationship to any real people or events. Knight succeds in grabbing your attention and keeping it, not always an easy task. The plot centers around an event which happened twenty ago to the main character, which has us imagining the event from various points of view. Lies and deciet keep this plot alive, and also stuns you at the end.
3. In The Unlikely Event by Judy Blume .. Judy Blume's wrote this book in response to a series of three real life plane crashes which occurred in 1950 in Elizabeth, New Jersey. "Life is a series of unlikely events, isn’t it? ...Anything could go wrong any day of the week.” Blume zooms in on a group of individuals whose lives intersect and evolve over three generations. The central character is both likeable and realistic with realistic conflicts that make her easy to identify with. Told in short chapters peppered with newsclips and reporter style writing, Blume conveys the 1950 atmosphere which was turbulent, exciting. and filled with change. She has also created an interesting story that kept me avidly reading this almost 400 page book.
4. Two Family House by Lynda Cohen Loigman.. A compelling and enjoyable story which engages the reader from the first page. Athough somewhat predictable, Loigman does a good job in dramatizing the price of one lie during one night, which dramatically changes the lives of two families who live side by side in a two family house. As the story unfolds, we see the diverging paths taken by two women who were once close, two brothers who do their best to maintain their relationship, and the ramifications of the lie. Love, loss, identity, loyalty, and secrets are just a few of the themes central to Loigman's book, which make for critical thinking and good discussion.
5. Behold the Dreamers by Imbolo Mbue .. This debut novel is set in 2008 during the country's financial crisis when stability was threatened, lives were ruined, and the American Dream came under harsh scruinty. The story focuses upon a Cameroonian immigrant who comes to America and gets a job as a limosousine driver for a wealthy Wall street family. We see how the two families become intertwined, and how their lives evolve through a series of life changing events. The book was well written, interesting, and told a good story.