Thursday, March 7, 2019

Catching Up on a few Reviews - Kingdom of the Blind; Louise Penny and An Anonymous Girl; Hendricks and Pekkenan

TITLE: Kingdom of the Blind (book #14)
AUTHOR:  Louise Penny
PUBLISHER:  Macmillan Audio 
PUB. YEAR: 2018
SETTING:  Canada
FORMAT:  - library audio download 
(12 hrs. 20 min)
RATING: 3.5/5

When Chief Inspector Armand Gamache receives a curious letter inviting him to an old farmhouse outside of his charming village of Three Pines, he learns that he's been named one of (3) executors of the will of a woman he does not know. None of the executors have known the deceased, a woman known as "The Baroness."

The Baroness, a former cleaning lady has amassed a fortune of millions but how, and, why was Gamache and the others called forward to execute her wishes when she had adult children?

I've read several books from this series, which I always enjoyed. The characters you grow to love come back with a new characters added to the mix here and there.  Her characters are so well-written, real characters with human frailties. Unfortunately, I hadn't read the previous book of this series, Glass Houses, and I wish I had as this one contains hints of that backstory.

I loved the cold, snowy backdrop, typically a part of Penny's mysteries, as well as the well established characters but, this one definitely felt much grittier than earlier installments. Honestly, I didn't enjoy reading about the drug trade, which seems to pop up all too often in today's fiction.

TITLE: An Anonymous Girl
AUTHOR:  Greer Hendricks & Sarah Pekkanen
PUBLISHER:  St Martin's Press
PUB. YEAR: 2019
SETTING:  New York City
FORMAT:  - print -  (384 pp)
RATING: 3.5/5

Seeking women 18-32 to participate in a study on ethics and morality. Generous compensation. Anonymity guaranteed.

Jessica Farris 28, is a make-up artist in New York City looking to earn extra money.  When she learns that she could earn an extra $500 for starters by answering a survey, she jumps at the chance.  A little uncomfortable and perhaps a bit suspicious after her first session, she agrees to continue helping Dr. Shields with her research by returning for more Q&A's and additional compensation.

She soon begins to suspect that the manipulative Dr. Shields has a hidden agenda when it's clear that she knows far too much about Jessica than she has ever shared.

This was a fast read with short chapters alternating between Jessica and Dr, Shield's POV with a few more characters added to the story.  At times I didn't feel that the story felt quite believable but, I was curious enough to want to see how it played out.  Unlike the authors last book: The Wife Between Us which was riveting and had some great twists, this one seemed anti climatic and went on just a bit too long.  


  1. That's too bad about An Anonymous Girl - it's been hyped so much I'd decided I'll wait a little while to read it but maybe I'll just skip it.

    I need to try Penny's work.

    1. Kathy, yes, the previous book (audio) really was much better IMO).

  2. I read the book previous to AN ANONYMOUS GIRL and liked it a lot, but I've been a little hesitant about this one. And I've kind of started inserting other books in between those thriller reads. I'll likely get to this one at some point.

    As to Louise Penny's books, well, I always tell people that reading them in order is best. I know that there are 14 now in the series, but there are arcs that carry over from book to book. And, yes, the drug trade is very much mentioned in books these days, especially books that are set in the Northeast US or just above in Canada.

    1. Kay, I think I've only read about 5 of the Penny novels, hope to get to the rest before my time runs out LOL

      As for An Anonymous Girl, as I mentioned to Kathy, the previous book (audio) really was much better IMO).

  3. A couple of so-so but at least we all can say we know!

  4. I loved the first book and was planning on reading this one, but after reading your thoughts about it I'm wondering if I will.

  5. A blogger friend of mine is reading all the Louise Penny books and loves most of them. She is on my list of upcoming crime series to read after I finish the ones I am already reading!

  6. I'm so glad I have so many Louise Penny books to look forward to! I've only just finished #5. :)

  7. That pretty much sums up my thoughts on An Anonymous Girl. It was good and fast though strained credibility. I will continue with the Three Pines series though I'll be sure to read them in order!

  8. I have only read one Louise Penny and liked it. I've got my parents both reading them as well. I will eventually start working my way through the series.

  9. I guess I should get the audio of The Wife Between Us. The first one sounds better.

  10. Kay turned me on to the Inspector Gamache series and I LOVE it. I'm reading it slowly, so I can savor every book :)

  11. Too bad these two weren't that good.

  12. Agree on Anonymous. It was about 50 pages too long, IMO. I felt like we needed to know more about the doc. Her methods were so extreme given the info we had.


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