Turning the Page, Volume 5

book reviews

Okay, so while I did read two books this past month for this months book review I thought it might be fun to have Eddie take over the series this month and give you perspective on a different sort of genre than I usually read. I also thought maybe these would sound interesting for the man in your life and be a nice stocking stuffer. So brace yourself for Eddie’s first review and get an insight into our very different writing styles.

The Last Night at Tremore Beach by Mikel Santiago

Goodreads Excerpt:

What starts out as an idyllic summer holiday on the Irish coast soon becomes a living nightmare with unpredictable consequences for a world-renowned composer and his family in this chilling psychological thriller.

Recently divorced and in the middle of a creative crisis, Peter Harper decides to take shelter on Ireland’s scenic and isolated Tremore Beach. But after he is struck by lightning one stormy night, he begins experiencing terrible headaches and strange dreams. As the line between his dreams and reality begins to blur, Peter realizes that his bizarre dreams may be a warning of horror still to come…

Goodreads rating: 3.79/5

Allie’s Note: I remember stumbling across this book on Goodreads and while it was suggested to me I thought it would be better suited for him and luckily he ended up loving it.

Eddie’s Review:

This book was simply fun. The main character is struck by lightning and you spend the rest of the time trying to solve what’s happening before he does. There are twists and turns left and right and what’s great is that when the puzzle does come together, you don’t feel disappointed or cheated in any way. I think my favorite part of the book is how the supernatural feel of it is very matter-of-fact and not over the top as you might find in other supernatural suspense stories; here’s the deal and here’s what happens next – accept it.
His personal rating: 4.5

Preview the first chapter for free here.

Bird Box by Josh Malerman

Goodreads Excerpt:

Something is out there, something terrifying that must not be seen. One glimpse of it, and a person is driven to deadly violence. No one knows what it is or where it came from.

Five years after it began, a handful of scattered survivors remains, including Malorie and her two young children. Living in an abandoned house near the river, she has dreamed of fleeing to a place where they might be safe. Now that the boy and girl are four, it’s time to go, but the journey ahead will be terrifying: twenty miles downriver in a rowboat–blindfolded–with nothing to rely on but her wits and the children’s trained ears. One wrong choice and they will die. Something is following them all the while, but is it man, animal, or monster?

Interweaving past and present, Bird Box is a snapshot of a world unraveled that will have you racing to the final page.

Goodreads rating: 3.98/5

Eddie’s Review:

This was another fun read. With horror, you’re usually either given something gross (think the Saw movies), something unnatural (The Walking Dead), or then you have something like Bird Box – which is the unknown – the result being quite terrifying. The author takes away your sight and then you feel the heat of the something on the back of your neck. Chills. This book was wonderfully written and very imaginative – a breath of fresh air in the horror genre.

His personal rating: 4.7/5

Preview the first chapter for free here.

The Grip of It by Jac Jemc

Goodreads Excerpt:

A chilling literary horror novel about a young couple who purchase and live in a haunted house. Jac Jemc’s The Grip of It tells the eerie story of a young couple haunted by their new home. 

Julie and James settle into a house in a small town outside the city where they met. The move—prompted by James’s penchant for gambling, his inability to keep his impulses in check—is quick and seamless; both Julie and James are happy to leave behind their usual haunts and start afresh. But this house, which sits between ocean and forest, has plans for the unsuspecting couple. As Julie and James try to settle into their home and their relationship, the house and its surrounding terrain become the locus of increasingly strange happenings. The architecture—claustrophobic, riddled with hidden rooms within rooms—becomes unrecognizable, decaying before their eyes. Stains are animated on the wall—contracting, expanding—and map themselves onto Julie’s body in the form of bruises; mold spores taint the water that James pours from the sink. Together the couple embark on a panicked search for the source of their mutual torment, a journey that mires them in the history of their peculiar neighbors and the mysterious residents who lived in the house before Julia and James.

Written in creepy, potent prose, The Grip of It is an enthralling, psychologically intense novel that deals in questions of home: how we make it and how it in turn makes us, mapping itself onto bodies and the relationships we cherish.

Goodreads rating: 3.4/5

Eddie’s Review:

Hands down, this was the best book I read last month. Not only was it creepy as can be and beautifully written (the author is also a poet and it shows), it also was such a page turner I read it in two sittings (one of which was in a cold car as Allie and her sister did some Christmas shopping). I love everything about this book and I can’t emphasize this enough. It takes the “haunted house” horror story that’s been a million times before and breathes new life into it in a way that I didn’t think was possible. And the ending… so satisfying (which I don’t think you get a lot when there is a buildup as you seen in a story such as this). Give it a shot – I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.

His personal rating: 5/5

Preview the first chapter for free here.

Tell me your thoughts below and feel free to suggest me some books. You can also follow along with me on Goodreads.

photo source: cider with rosie



This was a fun way to do it! I asked Dan last night how many books he has read this year (since I was celebrating completing my Goodreads challenge) and he said not a single one!! How did I marry a man who doesn’t read?! You’d think after 10 years he would have picked up some good habits from me 😉

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