[537]: The New Neighbor by Leah Stewart


GOODREADS SUMMARY | Simon & Schuster Canada | ARC paperback, 288 pages | Publication Date: July 7th, 2015 | Adult Fiction | Rating: 3 out of 5 Stars

Although it took me a while to get into the swing of reading this book, The New Neighbor turned out to be one of those novels that had an uncanny ability to drive you crazy. Primarily because it was a very closed-book that didn’t show its true colours until towards the end. Reading this book felt like I had an itch buried subcutaneously that was hard to scratch.

The story follows two women at two opposing points of their lives. One is a 90-year-old woman who’d practically lived like a hermit all her life; and the other, a single parent looking for a fresh start with her son. In more ways than one, they are an unlikely pair. However, through their interactions, a fragile dynamic will be formed. In the nexus of their relationship is a mutual curiosity that would somehow assuage them of their guilt; a way to face the past. But were they really guilty? Or were they victims of their own circumstances? That’s the crux of this book, and Leah Stewart did a tremendous job in flaying her characters in such a way that would appeal to her empathy-deficient readers.

Admittedly, my issue with this book was that I thought the author forgave them easily, made excuses for them, even. The ending, in particular left a lot to be desired. No one was punished. No one repented simply because the characters were made to feel like they were within their rights. I supposed they were right. But in doing so, the story lacked the emotional pull required to feel satiated. I wasn’t enraged. At the end of the novel, all I felt was an “unfeeling” relief that it was over.

Thanks to Simon & Schuster for the ARC. 

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On the Night Table [17]: ARCs




Have you ever had one of those weeks where you had everything planned only to have it all go kablooey on you? Bah. This is why planning never works especially for  someone who is afflicted with some form of an attention deficit disorder. I had four books on the go last week, but only managed to finished one.  I wasn’t even able to touch a couple of them, but I am, however,  in the midst of An Ember in the Ashes

Because I’m completely useless when it comes to keeping track of book release dates, I’ve had to re-prioritize my reading queues.  So that’s what happened last week. I tell ya, a couple of years into blogging, I promised myself I will not submit to any type of reading pressure whatsoever. But look at me now. It’s different this time around, though. For some reason, I don’t feel nearly as overwhelmed. I mean the books that I’ve been getting for reviews are books that I wanted to read anyway, so it’s not like I’m forced to read them. I think that was the problem a couple of years ago.

As time goes by, I’ve noticed that I’ve become hungrier. I’m pushing myself to read more, not because of a goal, but for the simple fact that I can’t get enough. Has this ever happened to you? Have you reached a point in your book-loving life when reading has become as addictive as exercising is to gym rats? 

This week, the books on my pile are review copies. I wanted to get ahead because there are way too many books that I’ve been meaning to read for a while now. I wanted to catch up with In Death series, and read a few of Sandra Brown’s backlist.

  • Last Year’s Mistake by Gina Ciocca (June 9th release)
  • The New Neighbor by Leah Stewart (July 7th release)
  • Nowhere But Here by Katie McGarry (May 26th release)
  • Close to Hugh by Marina Edicott (May 26th release)
  • Deadline by Sandra Brown
  • Some Kind of Normal by Juliana Stone
  • The Start of Me and You by Emery Lord
  • Off the Page by Jodi Picoult and Samantha Van Leer
  • Eighth Grave After Dark by Darynda Jones

I hope you’ll have a great week, everyone! What’s in your pile this week?


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