Autumn · books · Monthly reads · Read · Reading · Thriller

Monthly Reads: September 2020

Hello everyone, and welcome back to The Bookworm’s Fantasy! I hope you’re all doing well. Today I’m posting my Monthly Reads for September 2020. It’s been a while since I last posted a monthly reads for various different reasons – but I’m going to try and stick to posting one at the end of each month again! I managed to read 5 books during September, which is pretty good going considering I’ve been very busy. So, keep reading to discover which books I read last month…

Seven Days by Alex Lake.

A race against time to save her child?

In seven days, Maggie’s son, Max, turns three. But she’s not planning a party or buying presents or updating his baby book. She’s dreading it. Because in her world, third birthdays are the days on which the unthinkable happens: she loses her child.

For the last twelve years Maggie has been imprisoned in a basement. Abducted aged fifteen, she gave birth to two sons before Max, and on their third birthdays her captor came and took them from her.

She cannot let it happen again. But she has no idea how to stop it. And the clock is ticking…

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I won’t say too much about this book now, as I have a full review coming soon – keep your eyes peeled for that! I hadn’t heard anything about this book so had no expectations going into it – fortunately, I ended up absolutely loving it! The characters were fantastically-written and the plot was engaging and suspenseful. I was hooked throughout the course of the novel, and simply couldn’t put it down. My only criticism is that it slightly resembled Emma Donoghue’s ‘Room’; but maybe I’m not being open-minded enough!

Sound good? Click here to purchase.

The House Swap by Rebecca Fleet.

‘No one lives this way unless they want to hide something.’

When Caroline and Francis receive an offer to house swap, they jump at the chance for a week away from home. After the difficulties of the past few years, they’ve worked hard to rebuild their marriage for their son’s sake; now they want to reconnect as a couple.

On arrival, they find a house that is stark and sinister in its emptiness – it’s hard to imagine what kind of person lives here. Then, gradually, Caroline begins to uncover some signs of life – signs of her life. The flowers in the bathroom or the music in the CD player might seem innocent to her husband but to her they are anything but. It seems the person they have swapped with is someone she used to know; someone she’s desperate to leave in her past.

But that person is now in her home – and they want to make sure she’ll never forget . . .

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This book receives 2 stars simply because I did not finish it. I loved the idea behind this book and have heard so many good things about it, so I had very high expectations from the start. Unfortunately, I was left bitterly disappointed. I could not connect with the protagonist Caroline whatsoever – I found her to be extremely cold and unlikeable. I gave this book a good chance and read the first 100 pages, but there just seemed to be no suspense or mystery there at all, and I felt that there was no reason for me to continue reading.

Find Her by Lisa Gardner.


472 days locked in a pine box, at the mercy of a madman.

Flora Dane survived her hell with only one goal: develop all the deadly skills necessary to make sure she’s never caught again.


Detective D.D. Warren believes that Flora may be the key to finding missing college student, Stacey Summers.

But she must follow rules that Flora has no interest in.

For Flora no risk is too great, no cost too high, even if it means playing into a predator’s hands.

Two victims. One cop.

TIME IS RUNNING OUT…if you’re going to FIND HER

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This book was a bit of a headf*ck for me. The writing style was a bit too complex for my liking, and I found it very difficult to follow. There are two distinct narratives in this book: I really liked the “past” narrative detailing Flora’s previous kidnapping and survival, but didn’t enjoy the “present” narrative featuring the police/Flora’s hunt for Stacey Summers as there were far too many strands to follow. I really wanted to love this book, but sadly I just couldn’t engage well enough with the plot.

The Mothers by Sarah J. Naughton.


They meet at their NCT Group. The only thing they have in common is they’re all pregnant.


Three years later, they are all good friends. Aren’t they?


Now the police have come knocking. Someone knows something.


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I awarded this book 2 stars simply because I did not finish it. I’ve read one of Naughton’s novels in the past and didn’t get on with it, but thought I would give her another chance. I made the wrong decision! I found this book so dull, and the characters were all extremely flat. The plot seemed a bit random and incoherent to me, and there was absolutely nothing about this book that made me want to read on. A very disappointing experience!

Don’t You Cry by Mary Kubica.

In downtown Chicago, a young woman named Esther Vaughan disappears from her apartment without a trace. A haunting letter addressed to My Dearest is found among her possessions, leaving her friend and roommate Quinn Collins to wonder where Esther is and whether or not she’s the person Quinn thought she knew.

Meanwhile, in a small Michigan harbour town an hour outside Chicago, a mysterious woman appears in the quiet coffee shop where 18 year old Alex Gallo works as a dishwasher. He is immediately drawn to her charm and beauty, but what starts as an innocent crush quickly spirals into something far more dark and sinister.

As Quinn searches for answers about Esther, and Alex is drawn further under the stranger’s spell, Mary Kubica takes readers on a taut and twisted rollercoaster ride that builds to a stunning conclusion.

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Again, this book was another DNF. I’ve read one of Kubica’s books in the past and enjoyed it, so thought I would give this one a go. Wrong decision! This book was all a bit jarring for me – there were SO many Americanisms that I just couldn’t understand or relate to, and the plot was very tricky to understand. The writing style was too elaborate and complex – I feel like this book would have benefitted much more if it had been written using simplistic language choices. I wasn’t hooked at all by this book, and didn’t think it was worth reading on!

Happy reading 🙂

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