Book Reviews: Malibu Rising, One Last Stop & The Maidens

Malibu Rising by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Goodreads blurb: Malibu: August 1983. It’s the day of Nina Riva’s annual end-of-summer party, and anticipation is at a fever pitch. Everyone wants to be around the famous Rivas: Nina, the talented surfer and supermodel; brothers Jay and Hud, one a championship surfer, the other a renowned photographer; and their adored baby sister, Kit. Together the siblings are a source of fascination in Malibu and the world over–especially as the offspring of the legendary singer Mick Riva. The only person not looking forward to the party of the year is Nina herself, who never wanted to be the center of attention, and who has also just been very publicly abandoned by her pro tennis player husband. Oh, and maybe Hud–because it is long past time for him to confess something to the brother from whom he’s been inseparable since birth. Jay, on the other hand, is counting the minutes until nightfall, when the girl he can’t stop thinking about promised she’ll be there. And Kit has a couple secrets of her own–including a guest she invited without consulting anyone. By midnight the party will be completely out of control. By morning, the Riva mansion will have gone up in flames. But before that first spark in the early hours before dawn, the alcohol will flow, the music will play, and the loves and secrets that shaped this family’s generations will all come bubbling to the surface.Malibu Rising is a story about one unforgettable night in the life of a family: the night they each have to choose what they will keep from the people who made them . . . and what they will leave behind.

My take:: 4.5 out of 5. This was an excellent book. It seems like two absolutely different books joined together (basically part 1 is 25 years and part 2 is half a day) but both are extremely enjoyable. It has a little but of everything: family drama, romance, changing timelines. I was hooked from the starts and finished it in a day, I needed to know what happened. Although one question i still don’t know why it was based in 1983?

One Last Stop by Casey McQuiston

Goodreads blurb: For cynical twenty-three-year-old August, moving to New York City is supposed to prove her right: that things like magic and cinematic love stories don’t exist, and the only smart way to go through life is alone. She can’t imagine how waiting tables at a 24-hour pancake diner and moving in with too many weird roommates could possibly change that. And there’s certainly no chance of her subway commute being anything more than a daily trudge through boredom and electrical failures. But then, there’s this gorgeous girl on the train. Jane. Dazzling, charming, mysterious, impossible Jane. Jane with her rough edges and swoopy hair and soft smile, showing up in a leather jacket to save August’s day when she needed it most. August’s subway crush becomes the best part of her day, but pretty soon, she discovers there’s one big problem: Jane doesn’t just look like an old school punk rocker. She’s literally displaced in time from the 1970s, and August is going to have to use everything she tried to leave in her own past to help her. Maybe it’s time to start believing in some things, after all. Casey McQuiston’s One Last Stop is a magical, sexy, big-hearted romance where the impossible becomes possible as August does everything in her power to save the girl lost in time.

My take: 3.75 out of 5. A really cute and easily read LGBT with a little sci-fi rom com that will probably have you drying tears in your eyes. Its adorable and engaging and quite modern all at the same time.

The Maidens by Alex Michaelides

Goodreads blurb: Edward Fosca is a murderer. Of this Mariana is certain. But Fosca is untouchable. A handsome and charismatic Greek Tragedy professor at Cambridge University, Fosca is adored by staff and students alike—particularly by the members of a secret society of female students known as The Maidens. Mariana Andros is a brilliant but troubled group therapist who becomes fixated on The Maidens when one member, a friend of Mariana’s niece Zoe, is found murdered in Cambridge. Mariana, who was once herself a student at the university, quickly suspects that behind the idyllic beauty of the spires and turrets, and beneath the ancient traditions, lies something sinister. And she becomes convinced that, despite his alibi, Edward Fosca is guilty of the murder. But why would the professor target one of his students? And why does he keep returning to the rites of Persephone, the maiden, and her journey to the underworld? When another body is found, Mariana’s obsession with proving Fosca’s guilt spirals out of control, threatening to destroy her credibility as well as her closest relationships. But Mariana is determined to stop this killer, even if it costs her everything—including her own life

My take: 4.25 out of 5. As with the Silent Patient that I adored (and realized I was a way harsher judge back in the day, i only have it 4.5) , I finished this one in one seating on a plane. Much quicker and easier to read than I expected. There were very high expectations for it, and although they were et, it wasn’t as good as the Silent Patient for me. I actually thought it was going to be very straight forward and the final twist was a shock, although, not unexpected as you know to expect things that are not obvious. I really enjoyed the fact that Mariana was a flawed, grieving and complicated character, it made it so real and true. Side note, Theo, from the Silent Patient, makes an appearance and I loved that little hint! This is a must summer read for those who love thrillers.

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