Nostalgic Book Haul (July)

 

Sweet Valley High #34 – Forbidden Love“Maria Santelli’s engagement to Michael Harris is the talk of Sweet Valley High, but they must keep it a secret from their parents. Years ago, the two families had a huge argument, and Michael and Maria were forbidden to see each other. At first, the sparkle in Maria’s eyes nearly matches the sparkle of her diamond ring. But being engaged isn’t as easy as Maria had expected. She’s used to doing things on her own; but not Michael acts as if he owns her . He’s even jealous of her helping Winston Egbert with his campaign for Student Council. Maria’s beginning to think that she and Michael were happier before their engagement. Will Michael and Maria resolve their differences and go ahead with their wedding plans? Or will their secret engagement destroy their relationship forever?”
 
Goosebumps #4 – Say Cheese And Die!“Greg thinks there is something wrong with the old camera he and his friends found. The photographs keep turning out wrong. Very wrong. Like the snapshot Greg took of his father’s new car that shows it totalled. And then Greg’s father is in a nasty wreck. But Greg’s friends don’t believe him. Shari even makes Greg bring the camera to her birthday party and take her picture. Only Shari’s not in the photograph when it develops. Is Shari about to be taken out of the picture permanently? Who is going to take the next fall for… the evil camera?”
 
Sweet Valley High #37 – Rumors“It’s every girl’s dream at Sweet Valley High to attend the fabulous Bridgewater Ball, and Susan Stewart has the chance to go with handsome, wealthy Gordon Stoddard. Nobody knows where Susan gets her money and style – or who her real parents are – but everyone agrees she’s beautiful, friendly, and fun to be with. Then jealous Lila Fowler starts spreading vicious rumors about Susan’s mother – who she really is and why she abandoned Susan. No one wants to talk to Susan anymore, not even Gordon. To clear her name, Susan has to find out the truth about her parents. But is she better off not knowing?”

July TBR

 

Home Before Dark by Riley Sager – “What was it like? Living in that house. Maggie Holt is used to such questions. Twenty-five years ago, she and her parents, Ewan and Jess, moved into Baneberry Hall, a rambling Victorian estate in the Vermont woods. They spent three weeks there before fleeing in the dead of night, an ordeal Ewan later recounted in a nonfiction book called House of Horrors. His tale of ghostly happenings and encounters with malevolent spirits became a worldwide phenomenon, rivaling The Amityville Horror in popularity–and skepticism. Today, Maggie is a restorer of old homes and too young to remember any of the events mentioned in her father’s book. But she also doesn’t believe a word of it. Ghosts, after all, don’t exist. When Maggie inherits Baneberry Hall after her father’s death, she returns to renovate the place to prepare it for sale. But her homecoming is anything but warm. People from the past, chronicled in House of Horrors, lurk in the shadows. And locals aren’t thrilled that their small town has been made infamous thanks to Maggie’s father. Even more unnerving is Baneberry Hall itself–a place filled with relics from another era that hint at a history of dark deeds. As Maggie experiences strange occurrences straight out of her father’s book, she starts to believe that what he wrote was more fact than fiction. Alternating between Maggie’s uneasy homecoming and chapters from her father’s book, Home Before Dark is the story of a house with long-buried secrets and a woman’s quest to uncover them–even if the truth is far more terrifying than any haunting.”
 
Well Met by Jen De Luca – “Emily knew there would be strings attached when she relocated to the small town of Willow Creek, Maryland, for the summer to help her sister recover from an accident, but who could anticipate getting roped into volunteering for the local Renaissance Faire alongside her teenaged niece? Or that the irritating and inscrutable schoolteacher in charge of the volunteers would be so annoying that she finds it impossible to stop thinking about him? The faire is Simon’s family legacy and from the start he makes clear he doesn’t have time for Emily’s lighthearted approach to life, her oddball Shakespeare conspiracy theories, or her endless suggestions for new acts to shake things up. Yet on the faire grounds he becomes a different person, flirting freely with Emily when she’s in her revealing wench’s costume. But is this attraction real, or just part of the characters they’re portraying? This summer was only ever supposed to be a pit stop on the way to somewhere else for Emily, but soon she can’t seem to shake the fantasy of establishing something more with Simon or a permanent home of her own in Willow Creek.”
 
Keeper by Jessica Moor – “When Katie Straw’s body is pulled from the waters of the local suicide spot, the police are ready to write it off as a standard-issue female suicide. But the residents of the domestic violence shelter where Katie worked disagree. These women have spent weeks or even years waiting for the men they’re running from to catch up with them. They know immediately: This was murder. Still, Detective Dan Whitworth and his team expect an open-and-shut case–until they discover evidence that suggests Katie wasn’t who she appeared.”

Winter Book Haul

 

My Dark Vanessa by Kate Elizabeth Russell – “Vanessa Wye was fifteen years old when she first had sex with her English teacher. She is now thirty-two and in the storm of allegations against powerful men in 2017, the teacher, Jacob Strane, has just been accused of sexual abuse by another former student. Vanessa is horrified by this news, because she is quite certain that the relationship she had with Strane wasn’t abuse. It was love. She’s sure of that. Forced to rethink her past, to revisit everything that happened, Vanessa has to redefine the great love story of her life – her great sexual awakening – as rape. Now she must deal with the possibility that she might be a victim, and just one of many.”
 
Keeper by Jessica Moor – “When Katie Straw’s body is pulled from the waters of the local suicide spot, the police are ready to write it off as a standard-issue female suicide. But the residents of the domestic violence shelter where Katie worked disagree. These women have spent weeks or even years waiting for the men they’re running from to catch up with them. They know immediately: This was murder.
Still, Detective Dan Whitworth and his team expect an open-and-shut case–until they discover evidence that suggests Katie wasn’t who she appeared.”

 
If It Bleeds by Stephen King – “Holly Gibney of the Finders Keepers detective agency is working on the case of a missing dog – and on her own need to be more assertive – when she sees the footage on TV. But when she tunes in again, to the late-night report, she realises there is something not quite right about the correspondent who was first on the scene.”

June TBR (Nostalgic Reads)

 

Sweet Valley High #15 – Promises“Steven Wakefield is crushed when his girlfriend, Tricia, dies after a tragic illness. The only things that keep him going are the memory of their love and his promise to Tricia to take care of her sister, Betsy, after she’s gone. Betsy Martin’s wild exploits with drink, drugs, and boys have left her with the worst reputation in Sweet Valley. But when Steven takes her into the Wakefield home, Betsy makes a promise to change. And as her goodness grows, so does her love for Steven. Jessica, Steven’s conniving younger sister, doesn’t like this one bit. She makes a little promise of her own to get Betsy out of the house and out of Steven’s life… forever!”
 
Sweet Valley University #13 – SS Heartbreak“When Elizabeth Wakefield catches Tom Watts kissing another woman on the Lido Deck, she can’t believe her eyes. Elizabeth tells Tom to get out of her life forever. But can she get him out of her heart? Todd Wilkins is confused. He thought he was still in love with Elizabeth, but now that she’s giving him a chance to rekindle their romance, he finds himself fantasizing about another woman. Jessica Wakefield is running out of patience. She’s desperate to find the dashing stranger who saved her life, but he refuses to come forward. Is he just shy – or does he have something to hide?”
 
Goosebumps #2 – Stay Out Of The Basement“Dr. Brewer is doing a little plant-testing in his basement. Nothing to worry about. Harmless, really. But Margaret and Casey Brewer are worried about their father. Especially when they… meet… some of the plants he is growing down there. Then they notice that their father is developing plantlike tendencies. In fact, he is becoming distinctly weedy- and seedy. Is it just part of their father’s ‘harmless’ experiment? Or has the basement turned into another little shop of horrors?”

Nostalgic Book Haul (May)

 

Sweet Valley High #30 – Jealous Lies“It’s pledge season for Pi Beta Alpha, and everyone in the exclusive Sweet Valley High sorority expects Sandra Bacon to nominate her best friend, Jean West. But Sandra’s tired of always hearing about Jean’s perfect figure, terrific grades, and fantastic cheerleading. The sorority is the only thing Sandra has that Jean doesn’t, and even though Jean is her best friend, Sandra wants to keep Pi Beta Alpha for herself. When Sandra unwillingly becomes Jean’s pledge sponsor, she’s determined to do everything she can to insure Jean doesn’t make it through the pledge period. But how far can Sandra go and still remain friends with Jean?”
 
Sweet Valley University – Super Thriller #12 – Don’t Answer The Phone“SVU Hot Line operator Alexandra Rollins doesn’t know what to do when she begins receiving vicious calls from a man threatening to commit a murder. She can’t tell the police – all calls are meant to be confidential. Besides, it’s probably just a practical joke. It’s best not to get involved… right? Wrong. The maniac’s threat turns into a promise when one of Alexandra’s closest friends is killed on campus. Over come with guilt, she decides to trap the killer herself. But he’s watching her every move… in fact, he’s even closer to Alexandra than she realizes. Is the end of her life just a phone call away?”
 
Sweet Valley High – Super Thriller #3 – No Place To Hide“When Elizabeth and Jessica Wakefield invite Nicholas Morrow on a picnic to help cure his blues, their plan has unexpected results. Nicholas falls in love with Barbara, a beautiful girl who involves the twins in their most dangerous mystery yet. Barbara tells Nicholas they must hide their relationship from the uncle she’s visiting. Hearing the fear in her voice, Nicholas decides to tell the twins, and they start investigating. The more they find out, the more desperate Barbara’s situation seems. Then Jessica and Elizabeth are threatened by an anonymous caller. Now they face a terrible choice either give up their search and leave Barbara in deadly trouble, or save Barbara’s life and risk their lives and Nicholas’s!”