[REVIEW+Q&A] Gather the Daughters by Jennie Melamed #GatherBook @littlebrown

Let me begin this review by saying that ever since I saw the cover and read the synopsis of this book back in January I have been obsessed with it. This is just one of those books you want to own and read and look at the pretty cover for days. Sadly my physical ARC of this book never arrived but I got it in e-form. Usually when I’m excited about a book I get disappointed in some way but this one was so great and amazing that I couldn’t put it down!

The story alternates between four different points of views we have Vanessa, Amanda, Janey and Caitlin. They live on a secluded island where everything is not what it seems – men and women, boys and girls have their lives set out for them. Their purpose is to marry, have children, raise children and when the children are all grown up and parents no longer of use they get removed from society. The island and its inhabitants follow certain written rules: much like we have a Bible or other religious texts they have one too called Our Book where there are rules and restrictions which have to be respected called Shalt-Not’s. The society is created by ten ancestors who are to be worshiped and praised for creating this world where the lives of the inhabitants are blessed and safer from the rest of the world (if there is a rest of the world). The ancestors have set ten Wanderers (men chosen by the ancestors) to take care of the society and help better it by overlooking the positions and roles everyone has on the island. Here comes the exciting part [that is if you’re not already hooked by my description of the book]: In the summer children are let go to live wild and care-free while the adults are indoors. They call this period Summer of Fruition where children fight for food and sleep in the grass and rarely return home for the whole time. To slightly older girls this is the last summer before they become a woman who has to get married and bare a child and serve her purpose for the sake of their glorified community. But not everyone wants to be a woman yet and the horrifying sighting by one girl lights a shimmering fire in the hearts of others.

What can I say except that this was an utterly and completely captivating book from the writing to the author’s imagination. The story itself is brilliantly thought of and very well executed –  there were a few things that come with every debut which weren’t exactly to my taste  – but overall it was unlike anything I have ever read. The themes in this book are dark and that makes the book not suited for every kind of reader but for those who love dark things this will be a perfect read.

To anyone reading this review I URGE you to head over to your local bookshop/online bookshop and purchase yourself a copy of this one! I know I will! ALSO: The US cover is 100x better than the UK one OK! The most amazing cover I’ve seen in a while and it’s definitely worth owning and showcasing.

I would like to thank NetGalley and the publisher (Little Brown US) for allowing me to read this book in exchange for an honest review.

My rating: 

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Jennie Melamed is a psychiatric nurse practitioner who specializes in working with traumatized children. During her doctoral work at the University of Washington, she investigated anthropological, biological, and cultural aspects of child abuse. Melamed lives in Seattle with her husband and three Shiba Inus.

Find her on:  WebsiteFacebook, Twitter, Instagram and Goodreads

Click continue reading to read my interview with the author. Continue reading

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[REVIEW + Q&A with the author] Ragdoll by Daniel Cole

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I decided to request this book from Edelweiss because it looked very appealing + had an interesting storyline and to my great luck I got approved! First the Final Girls by Riley Sager and now this one!

This debut from Daniel Cole follows not just one character but quite a few – even though Detective William Fawkes is at the center of the book – interesting characters. Detective William Oliver Layton-Fawkes called ‘The Wolf’ has just got back to his position as a detective after being suspended for four years because of an incident that happened at the trial of ‘The Cremation Killer’. This trial along with the serial killer Naguib Khalid was the most shocking media covered trial in London. The reason behind William’s suspension was his unprofessional outburst in court. Along with his career went his personal life, his marriage with a gorgeous journalist Andrea and his interpersonal relationships.

William gets called to a crime scene by Detective Emily Baxter – his old friend and partner from the days when he was a detective – and when he gets to the crime scene which was situated right across his apartment he comes upon a bizzare and gory sight – unlike any he has seen before – it is six body parts attached to each other with an arm pointing to his apartment. From this point on Fawkes begins to suspect that this has something to do with him. His ex-wife Andrea receives an anonymous list of names  – a hit list – that contains dates of the victims’ doom days but what strikes her as odd is that the last person on the list is her ex-husband Detective William Fawkes.  She makes sure that Fawkes gets the list and the detectives Emily Baxter and her trainee partner Alex Edmunds start working on figuring out who the killer is and why these murders are happening. This is the moment when Fawkes realises that his past might be what’s pushing the ‘Ragdoll’ killer to commit these murders.

First of all I must say that Cole’s writing and switching between narratives is what I look for in books. I always try and figure out what is going on in the characters’ head and this book gives a great insight into that. Once you start reading it you just can’t stop. William Fawkes was a very well crafted character along with his backstory which played a huge part in the novel. Cole gives a voice to many other characters (e.g. Andrea – Williams’ ex-wife was a refreshing character because we got to see the things from the perspective of the media and not just the POV of the police)  in the book which I highly appreciate.  This book made me laugh with characters’ funny comments and it made me scared for the victims. The executions of the victims were very interesting because of the ways the author did them. The ending could’ve been done better but I guess it needed to end that way because without it there wouldn’t be a sequel.  Cole has a way of pulling the reader into the story and not letting go of them until the very end. There will be two more novels in the future which I am very much looking forward to read! The TV series based on this novel is in the works and I hope that they stay true to the book and don’t ruin it.

Ragdoll’ is an engaging, funny, filled with plot twists kind of a thriller which everyone can enjoy.

Thank you to Edelweiss, Harper Collins: Ecco and Daniel Cole for granting me a copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review.

My rating: ratingstarratingstarratingstarratingstar

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*Purchase ‘Ragdoll‘ by clicking here: amazoncom-inc-logo

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**I am in no way compensated by these sites. I am simply sharing it so people can find this book easier.

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At 33 years old, Daniel Cole has worked as a paramedic, an RSPCA officer and most recently for the RNLI, driven by an intrinsic need to save people or perhaps just a guilty conscience about the number of characters he kills off in his writing.

He has received a three-book publishing and television deal for his debut crime series which publishers and producers describe as “pulse-racing” and “exceptional”.

Daniel currently lives in sunny Bournemouth and can usually be found down the beach when he ought to be writing book two in the Nathan Wolfe series instead.

Ragdoll is his first novel.

Find him on:  Website (publisher),  Twitter,  GoodReads

 Click below to read my interview with the author.

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