A few more reviews of thrillers that I read recently and enjoyed, some more than others. I did a read/listen for three of them, and read the last one. Scroll down for my reviews.

An Honest Lie by Tarryn Fisher, Lauren Fortgang (Narrator)

Published April 26th 2022 by Harlequin Audio, Graydon House

4 Stars: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Lorraine aka Rainy has moved across the county with Grant and now lives at the top of Tiger Mountain, in Washington. It is remote, a sanctuary, a new life, where she can hide from the disturbing past she wants to forget. She is not sure about the women who are the wives of his best friends, but she does her best to fit in. When she is invited on a girl’s weekend to Las Vegas, she really doesn’t want to go, but agrees to please Grant. After one night of drinking, one of the women, Braithe, doesn’t return to their suite. She sends a message saying she is staying longer, but Rainy knows something is not right and also stays behind to return with her. What is really going on in Vegas?

Tarryn Fisher is known for her twisty stories and this one didn’t disappoint. It is told in both the past and present. We learn about Rainy’s past while living in a cult, about her mother’s death and how she escaped. It seems, the cult is located close to Las Vegas, and Rainy can’t resist trying to find out if the leader is still around and if the group is still in existence. She has made a new life for herself as a well respected artist, but inside she is still a scared teenager. I really liked Rainy’s character. She was hiding things, yes, but she was caring, smart, talented and just trying to fit in. Most of the other ladies were spoiled, mean, and catty women trying to be the queen bee. They talked about Rainy behind her back and tried to get dirt on her, the “new girl.” I am always amazed at how people get taken in by cults and their leaders. This group was particularly nasty, and the treatment of the members/prisoners was horrid. It was obvious that religion had nothing to do with this group. Once Braithe is missing the tense moments kicked up. There were several twists and lots of unexpected moments and secrets. This was a crazy ride that I just went with, because it was over the top. I enjoyed my time with An Honest Lie, but you definitely have to suspend belief. Lauren Fortgang narrated this story and does an amazing job. She gives the characters individual voices, using expression, tone and pacing. She adds emotion and atmosphere that made listening to this story extremely enjoyable. If you like a twisty thriller, or a book dealing with cults, I recommend you pick this one up, whether you read or listen to it. The publisher generously provided a copy of this book upon request. The rating and opinions shared are my own.

The New Neighbor by Carter Wilson, Gary Bennett (Narrator)

Published April 12th 2022 by Poisoned Pen Press, Dreamscape Media, LLC

3 Stars: ⭐⭐⭐

The story centers around Aiden Marlowe who is grieving after recently losing his wife and the mother of their seven year old twins, to a brain aneurysm. On the worst day of his life, he finds out he just won the powerball lottery. He decides to start anew and for the first time in his life, he doesn’t have to worry about money. Aiden, who goes by Marlowe, decides to relocate from Baltimore, Maryland to an upper-class neighborhood in Bury, New Hampshire. He buys a huge house that has some history. Shortly after the move, Aiden and the twins start to sense that something is wrong. It feels like someone is watching and even has been in their home. Letters start arriving, that are threatening his family. The police don’t seem to be much help either. Can he keep his children safe?

This was my first Carter Wilson book, and I’m not sure what I think. This book started out well and I was engrossed in the story, but it got bogged down for me. It was a good thing that Marlowe had invited his father over from Dublin because he becomes paranoid, has blackouts and finds refuge in the bottle. There were secrets revealed, some twists and lots of suspense in the short, snappy chapters. My biggest issue was the rather predictable ending that was a letdown for me. I know this is an unpopular opinion, so if you enjoy a thriller where families are in danger, give this one a try, it might be perfect for you. The audiobook was narrated by Gary Bennett, who does a good job adding atmosphere to the story. He gives voice to the characters showing emotion and fear. A new narrator for me and one I enjoyed.

The Heights by Louise Candlish, Genevieve Gaunt & Milo Twomey (Narrators)

Published March 1st 2022 by Simon Schuster Audio, Atria Books

4 Stars: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

I have enjoyed several of Louise Candlish’s books and was looking forward to The Heights. The Heights is a tall, slender apartment building among warehouses in an up-and-coming London neighborhood that is used as a backdrop for the story. You would think you could hide out there, but when Ellen is visiting a client across the way, she spots a man on the rooftop terrace. Kieran, the person responsible for her son, Lucas’ death. Lucas lived a reckless life in his late high school years all because of Kieran’s influence, as far as Ellen is concerned. When he drowns in an accident while Kieran is driving, Ellen wants nothing but revenge, he must die just like her son!

The Heights is a story about revenge, obsession and personal justice. It is also a story of a family trying to move on from a tragedy and deal with grief. Finally, it is a story of forgiveness, acceptance and sorrow. All this is wrapped up in a slow moving story. I know it is described as a thriller, but I felt it was more of a suspense story and psychological drama. I found the addition of snippets from Ellen’s book, “Saint or Sinners” an interesting way to get Ellen’s point of view. Ellen loved her son unconditionally, and would forgive anything he did, blaming his behaviour on everyone else. This maternal blindness was not healthy for anyone. I liked this story, but found it dragged at times. I was happy with the ending though. If you are a fan of Louise Candlish’s writing, and like a good psychological drama, then pick this one up, but again I will say it was not the gripping thriller that I was expecting. Genevieve Gaunt and Milo Twomey narrated this story. I always enjoy when a book has a male and female performer to give voice to a variety of characters.

One Step Too Far (Frankie Elkin #2) by Lisa Gardner 

Published January 18th 2022 by Dutton Books

5 Stars: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Frankie Elkin is on her way out west to search for a young boy who is missing, when she learns about Tim O’Day, a man who has been missing for several years. He and his buddies went on a camping trip for his bachelor party when the drinking got out of hand and one of the group wandered off. Tim volunteered to hike out and go for help. He was never seen again. His father, Martin, brings this group together every year to search the area in order to recover his body. Frankie shows up just as the group is preparing for their search and joins Martin, 3 of Tim’s friends, a canine handler, a Bigfoot hunter, and a mountain guide. This search mission turns into a fight for their lives. Eight people begin, how many will make it home?

This story was totally different from the first Frankie Elkin story. This was a wilderness story with all the dangers that go with it. Frankie was sure she would be okay, but it didn’t take long for her to realize how far out of her element she was. Frankie is a great character. She is wandering soul trying to outrun her demons. She is a recovering alcoholic, who fights each day to stay away from alcohol. Her gift of finding people everyone else has given up on is her reason to go on each day. She is a loner, but made friends in her last adventure, who are often in her thoughts, but she feels unworthy of them. Frankie is tenacious and won’t give up, even when everything and everyone seems to be against her. This story is full of unexpected events, twists and chilling moments. Reading this book reminds me of why I love Lisa Gardner’s writing. I never know what to expect. Although this book can be read as a standalone story, I recommend that you pick up “Before She Disappeared” to get to know Frankie Elkin from the beginning.