[BOOK REVIEW] The Kind Worth Saving by Peter Swanson #TheKindWorthSaving




The Kind Worth Saving (2023) by Peter Swanson is the sequel to his popular thriller The Kind Worth Killing (2015). Before I begin, I would like to note that this book can’t be read as a standalone because it spoils the happenings of the first one, so be aware of that when deciding whether to go into this one. I would definitely recommend The Kind Worth Killing because it’s quite fast-paced and thrilling! When it comes to The Kind Worth Saving – well, I found it to be fast-paced and interesting but somehow rushed. This review will be spoiler-free. Before I go in: there’s a trigger warning regarding a school-shooting which plays a role in the book.

The Kind Worth Saving follows Henry Kimball (a character from TKWK) who is hired to investigate a cheating allegation from a concerned wife (Joan). While investigating he begins to form some sort of a relationship with the woman being suspected of having an affair with Joan’s husband. From then on things turn upside down and nothing is what it seems. Having some issues Henry calls for Lily Kintner (character from TKWK) to lend a helping hand. Basically this sounds like a reiterated blurb from Goodreads but oh well!

What can one expect from Swanson? Mystery, yes. Thrillery feels, yes. Fast-paced novels, yes! Swanson knows how to craft a nice thriller and keep the reader engaged. I read this book in three days and found it to be very enjoyable. Whenever I stopped reading I kept coming back to the book, always thinking about what’s going to happen next. Although The Kind Worth Saving was an enjoyable read for me I found it to be a bit rushed, especially the ending and actions of the characters. Having built the psychology surrounding each character I expected more cunningness, more reasoning, more psychological battle that leaves the reader gasping and guessing. I must say that the twists were interesting although after the first one I found the rest to be fine, they didn’t WOW me as much. I absolutely enjoyed reading the first part featuring Joan and her “tender age”. Such an interesting character yet I wish we got more from her. I like how Swanson combined the story from the first book and we got a bit more information regarding our returning characters. I don’t wish to spoil anything so I’ll have to refrain myself from discussing the book further for fear of ruining the experience for future readers.

The Kind Worth Saving is a thrilling fast-paced book, something you can always expect from this author. It will definitely keep you entertained!

My rating: ratingstarratingstarratingstarhalfstar

The Kind Worth Saving is out on the 2nd of March 2023.

I would like to thank the publisher (Faber&Faber) for providing me with a review copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed in this review are my own and weren’t influenced by the fact that I got this book from the publisher.

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Peter Swanson is the author of four novels: The Girl With a Clock For a Heart, an LA Times Book Award finalist; The Kind Worth Killing, winner of the New England Society Book Award, and finalist for the CWA Ian Fleming Steel Dagger; Her Every Fear, an NPR book of the year; and his most recent, All the Beautiful Lies. His books have been translated into 30 languages, and his stories, poetry, and features have appeared in Asimov’s Science Fiction, The Atlantic Monthly, Measure, The Guardian, The Strand Magazine, and Yankee Magazine. A graduate of Trinity College, the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, and Emerson College, he lives in Somerville, Massachusetts with his wife and cat.

Find him on: Website, Goodreads, Facebook and Twitter.

[BOOK REVIEW] The Children’s Crusade by Ann Packer #TheChildrensCrusade



Compared to my previous read Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant by Anne Tyler this book had more depth and more meat. I also don’t get the low ratings and reviews but some reviews make a good point – still, in my opinion, I feel like this is a solid family saga novel.

The book follows the Blair family, four siblings: Robert, Rebecca, Ryan and James but also the parents: Bill and Penny (it’s mostly focused on the children but it has many interactions with the parents because we follow the children from a very young age). Now, you know there’s going to be drama because the last kid isn’t named with a letter R!! I’m kidding but not really. The novel deals with issues which are real such as sibling rivalry, attachment, detachment, jealousy, distant parents… The synopsis on Goodreads does a good job of giving you the skinny of the novel. The novel is an interesting exploration of a family with many layers in it from the above mentioned sibling rivalry, to the jealousy, distancing from the parents, damaged relationships etc. Every time I sat down to read I read around 80-100 pages in one sitting because of how invested I became in the story. Let’s discuss what I found the book was lacking: explanations, certain scenes which would help give the reader even more depth in regards to the ways certain characters felt towards one another. Having set the story where there’s a psychiatrist and two doctors in the family I expected more complexity when it comes to the intra and interpersonal relationships. I wish the author gave us more context rather than leaving us wondering about what might’ve caused this reaction and this scene. Maybe that’s me being lazy because I know some people love to wonder and analyse but I’d rather have more complexity inside the novel so I could analyse the characters better.

Issues aside I felt like this novel did a nice job in following the family saga rule: provide the reader with many years/decades and many situations where we can see the family interact and see the family grow in many ways (those are my rules at least). I would recommend this book to anyone interested in the story and in the genre.

My rating:

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Ann Packer was born in Stanford, California, in 1959, and grew up near Stanford University, where her parents were professors. She attended Yale University and the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and has received fellowships from the Wisconsin Institute for Creative Writing, the Michener-Copernicus Society, and the National Endowment for the Arts.

She is the acclaimed author of two collections of short fiction, Swim Back to Me and Mendocino and Other Stories, and three bestselling novels, The Children’s Crusade, Songs Without Words, and The Dive from Clausen’s Pier, which received the Kate Chopin Literary Award, among many other prizes and honors. Her short fiction has appeared in The New Yorker and in the O. Henry Prize Stories anthologies, and her novels have been published around the world.

Beginning in 2016, Ann expanded her writing into film and TV, collaborating on these projects with her husband, the novelist and screenwriter Rafael Yglesias. They divide their time between New York, the Bay Area, and Maine.

Find her on: Website, Goodreads and Twitter.