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Happy Monday friends! I had an extra day off for the holiday weekend and we spent some time with Gary's family outside of the city! It's always nice to relax & unwind - with a good book mind you. Once I finished this latest read I thought it was time for another "recently read" post!  
Swear on This Life || 5/5 This was such a great read and if I had to pick one as a must read from the list, this would be it!! A book within a book really, which is such an interesting concept. I started the first chapter of this book super late one night & couldn't stop thinking about the characters so I actually finished it the following day - thankfully it was snowing so that was helpful! Emiline, an aspiring writer,  reluctantly starts reading a book that is being hailed as a literary work of art - as she starts reading the novel, she quickly realizes that the story is about her life & her first love that she hasn't seen or spoken to in over 12 years. Honestly, I can't write anymore about the book because I don't want to give anything away. It was a romance through and through and I feel like everyone can fall in love with these characters. 
PAUSE - if you have not read Me Before You, don't read this!!
After You ||  3.5/5 Admittedly I read After You, long after I had finished Me Before You - but the story of Will and Louisa was still fresh in my head, maybe it was because I had recently watched the movie. Regardless the book picks up almost 6 months after Will's death & Louisa is forced to learn how to put her life back together after losing Will. I'm not sure I liked this book as much as I enjoyed reading the first book & I really wish there was an epilogue to sort of finish things off. I also thought Louisa's character was a bit rougher around the edges this go around, maybe it was meant to be that way because of her loss. Overall it was a good read, but not as great as the first book. 
Behind Closed Doors || 2/5 Oh man, this book was seriously disturbing and not in the thriller sense, but in the could this really happen sense. Jack and Grace have the perfect life - he's a successful and handsome attorney and she's the doting wife that pulls off flawless dinners and always looks put together. Successful in her own right as a former buyer for a store, why doesn't she work anymore? These types of books are hard to review, but I will say that it was a quick read for me because I needed to know everything. It's nothing like Girl on the Train or even Gone Girl which people have compared it to. It's on it's own disturbing level and if you're someone that is squeamish, this book is not for you! 
On Second Thought || 4.5/5 I was so happy to read something relatively light and airy after Behind Closed Doors. Kate is Ainsley's older half-sister and each chapter alternates between their two points of views. I thought the extended family dynamic was an interesting touch to add to the book and made the character's a little more human to me. It was at times predictable, but what some-what romance book isn't. I enjoyed every single one of the character's in the book, while I may not have liked all of them, the author did an incredible job of describing them and gram-gram had to be my favorite! There are a few one-liners that were laugh out loud funny. The book itself is about loss and how these two sister's deal with loss in their own ways. 
The Next Best Thing || 4/5 This is the same author as On Second Thought and again we're met with a young widow. I'm hoping this isn't a theme with Kristan Higgins books! I always check the Amazon descriptions before I write anything about a book because I don't want to give anything away. With that being said,  the story was a little far fetched to me, but I'm a sucker for anything romantic and this book was just that. Lucy is mourning the loss of her husband Jimmy and after 5 years she feels like she's ready to start dating again, but just not her friend with benefits Ethan who also happens to be her late husband's younger brother! Yep she went there. But once you get over that little fact, the book is an easy and light read. I'm a sucker for a good epilogue and I'm grateful to any author who gives us a complete picture! 
A few good books over the last month - I'd call that a win! What are you reading these days? Let me know! 

68 comments

  1. I love when the characters stay with you, that first one sounds like it must be on my Summer reading list!! The blogger reviews for Behind Closed Doors have been under par, so not even going to read it, I've save myself for the 4 and 5 star reviews from awesome ladies such as yourself!! Happy Monday!!

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  2. I've been searching for a new book, will have to try these!
    Xo, Elizabeth
    http://stripesandsolitaires.com

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  3. I am always looking to add another book to my reading list. Definitely adding your first one. I have to say I liked Behind Closed Doors, it was such a quick read and definitely disturbing, but I enjoy a psychological thriller (not sure what that says about me, I was a psych major). I agree that when you read it you're like....uh....this could happen. I just started reading Everything We Keep, the reviews were promising.

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  4. Ohhhhhh I'm intriguing about the follow up of Louisa. I only saw the movie and definitely now think I have to read the book! I always love your book recaps.

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  5. I did not enjoy After You! I felt like it was such a let down after reading Me Before You! I just finished The Orchardist--long and not what I expected. It was an okay book....now I'm looking for an easy read!
    Sarah at MeetTheShaneyfelts

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  6. Even though you gave Behind Closed Doors a 2, that sounds like something I would love reading!

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  7. I am so bummed to hear After You wasn't that great however I still really want to read it! I just loved Me Before You so much so I would love to keep going with the story!! Definitely checking out Swear on This Life!!

    www.rosyoutlookblog.com

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  8. I read Behind Closed Doors a few months ago and had the same exact reaction! It took me a long time to finish and it was a little too dark for me... I wouldn't compare it to Girl on the Train either. I definitely want to check out Swear on This Life though!

    http://thecourtneydiaries.com

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  9. Behind closed doors is on my TBR list and currently waiting for me at the library.

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  10. So many good books to add to the list! I will be picking up Swear on this Life ASAP! Love your book reviews!

    Xoxo,
    Whitney & Blaire
    Peaches In A Pod

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  11. I always love the book recomindations you have! I need to grab some good ones at the end of this semester! Such good picks and honest reviews! Hope you had an amazing holiday weekend!
    xoxo,Victoria
    www.coffeeandablonde.blogspot.com

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  12. I haven't read a single book this past month, it's sad!! I really need to get back into my reading groove. Behind Closed Doors sounds like one I would love to tear through, but then again, I'm pretty squeamish!

    Brooke
    pumps and push-ups

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  13. Adding all of these to the list! So many great options! Happy Monday :)

    Brittany :)
    www.kingdomofsequins.com

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  14. adding swear on this life to my list! and i heard after you wasn't the best. i mean i def sobbed during the first so i know there wouldn't be the same effect. happy monday girly!

    xoxo cheshire kat

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  15. I'm always looking for a new read! I'm adding Swear on This Life to my amazon cart now!

    By Lauren M

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  16. Swear on this Life sounds like the movie The Girl in the Book! It's about a book editor who struggled with some unfortunate things that happened to her as a child, as she tried to pursue her career in journalism from a very young age. She came from a very wealthy family and it ended up that she stumbled upon a book that was written by an author she knew from years ago who had written about her life story. I wonder if this book inspired the movie? Girl, you've managed to read so many books, you're inspiring me. Now that my energy is starting to come back more (it fluctuates) I need to catch up on some of the books I've started, but have failed to finish! Thanks for sharing and I hope you have a wonderful start to your week, beauty!

    XO,

    Jalisa
    www.thestylecontour.com

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  17. I'm intrigued by Behind Closed Doors but not sure I should read it... love these book reviews. Definitely need some summer reading now that the weather has warmed up!

    Zelle
    Southern Style

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  18. I almost read Me After You, so I'm glad I skipped it!! I loved the movie.

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  19. Thanks for the book recommendations! Always looking for new reads!

    xx Leah / www.eatpraywearlove.com

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  20. Swear on This Life was sooo good, I think it was one of the only books I read last year that I literally read in one sitting because I had to know what was going to happen. She has a new book coming out later this year and I'm hoping it's just as good!

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  21. I still need to read After You, but am surprised to hear Louisa's character is rougher around the edges. I also want to check out On Second Thought. Cheers to a fabulous week <3
    Green Fashionista

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  22. I wasn't a fan of After You either. As weird as it may sound, I feel like After You was written by a completely different person. I wasn't a fan of Louisa or the writing. It felt rushed to me. I definitely need to download Swear on this Life! It sounds so good! <3, Pamela Sequins & Sea Breezes

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  23. You've read some good books lately! I'm making my list for summer beach reads to download before the beach trips start up... and I might need to add a few of these to that list! Happy Monday :)

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  24. Swear On This Life has been on my reading list forever! I'm glad to hear that you enjoyed it so much. Might have to skip Behind Closed Doors - I don't do well with the squeamish stuff!

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  25. I always love your book reviews! Definitely adding "Swear on this Life" to my Amazon list now :)

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  26. ugh I LOVED behind closed doors! i could not put it down. agree that it's not comparable to girl on a train, but definitely still a page-turner. i feel like all of these new thrillers are pretty disturbing. just finished 'the couple next door' which i would probably file in the same category as this one.

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  27. I hate when authors have a theme or formula for their books. You gotta switch it up eventually to keep us interested. I love love loved Swear on This Life. It was one of my favorites last year! And I really enjoyed after you because I just couldn't get enough of the characters. I know it wasn't as good as Me Before You, but that book was just so amazing that anything that followed wouldn't have been. I really loved the other books of Moyes that I have read too!

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  28. WOW you have read a lot of books lately, Biana. The first and third book sound great. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and reviews. I pinned all of these. I hope you had a great Passover and Easter week and weekend. =)

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  29. You are a reading machine lady!! I just started Truly Madly Guilty last night and already obsessed, I'm sure you read that already. After You was one of my favorite books!!
    xx Tess | Sequins are the New Black

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  30. OOh I need to check out that first one for sure! I am traveling this weekend and it will be perfect for the plane! Thanks for your reviews!

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  31. I think most people agree that After You isn't as strong as Me Before You but it was still a good read. it just didn't pack the same emotional punch. I have read several other novels from JoJo Moyes and think she's a great writer. have you read any of her other books?

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  32. So many great titles! I for sure need to check some of these out!
    ~Samantha
    http://goldcoastgirlblog.com

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  33. "Swear on this Life" sounds interesting. I added it to my list. I just started reading "Someone is Watching" by Joy Fielding. She usually mixes mystery with family drama.

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  34. I've heard how disturbing Behind Closed Doors is, but I still really want to read it, but I can totally understand why you didn't like it. It sounds like the Kristan Higgins books were just what you needed after that one. I actually haven't read any books by her, but I tend to love the light and airy books, so I definitely need to pick up one of her books soon! I hope that you enjoy your extra day off!

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  35. I absolutely loved Me Before You, but have yet to read After You, I have to get on that. I'm thinking that is the perfect cruise read. Swear on This Life also sounds like a winner, adding those to my list!

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  36. I had a love hate thing with After You ... I just didnt like the whole idea really - what are the odds? & I just didnt like a world without Will Traynor.

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  37. I'm always amazed at how many books you read girl! I can't find the time to read as much as I'd like to these days -- I'm still trying to finish a book I started 2 months ago! So unlike me!
    xo, Lily
    Beauty With Lily

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  38. Lord have mercy you can plow through a book better than most!! ;) I wish I shared this skill! XOXO, R

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  39. Way to go - still working on one from over a year ago...no joke (I can't not finish it haha) Happy Monday!!

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  40. Wow you read a lot recently. I like thriller types of books, but I fear Behind Closed Doors and what I can already gather from it.

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  41. I liked Swear on this Life much more than I thought I would!

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  42. i had such high hopes for After You too but I was pretty disappointed with it it just didnt compare to the first book. xo jillian - cornflake dreams

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  43. I felt the same way about After You. It felt like an almost totally different character to me than Me Before You. So glad you found the 5/5 book! Those are always a win! :)

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  44. Putting the first one on my to read list! I read Behind Closed Doors too and was super disturbed by the fact it could happen!

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  45. Right now I am reading American Wife - it's good, but I haven't had a whole lot of time to dive into it. I loved Behind Closed Doors, but I think in my head it was so far fetched that it wasn't TOO disturbing. But you are right, there are probably sick enough people to have it be real life. I thought it was very different than most books, which is why I probably enjoyed it even more!

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  46. I am dying to dive into a new book if I can find the time! I will keep these in mind!

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  47. I LOVED Swear on This Life. I'm so glad you did too!

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  48. Thanks for sharing! I have seen After You on several blogs now. Need to check it out!

    Amy Ann
    Straight A Style

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  49. I've heard about Swear on This Life - I need to check it out!

    Heidi || Wishes & Reality

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  50. Always great to have a relaxing weekend! I've been searching for some books for our vacation in May, so I will have to check these out. Swear on This Life sounds really good, I always love a good romance book. Thanks for the suggestions, Biana!

    xo, Rachel
    A Blonde's Moment

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  51. I hope you enjoyed the extra day to unwind from your Easter family fun! Behind Closed Doors was on my "next to read" list but bummer to know it was a weird kind of disturbing. I might still read it out of curiosity LOL. I haven't heard of "Swear on this Life" before but I'm always looking for new book recommendations and a good review always gets me intrigued.

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  52. I'm glad you mentioned that about After You! I picked it up at the thrift store a few weeks ago for a quarter but I haven't read Me Before You yet! So I will wait and make sure I read that first!!

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  53. I seriously admire how many books you read in a month! Swear On This Life sounds like a must read. Thanks for the inspo!
    xoxo, Jenna
    Boston Chic Party

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  54. I'm glad you had a nice relaxing weekend. I love how many books you read! Beautifully Candid

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  55. You are seriously killing it with all these books! Weirdly I am intrigued by behind closed doors haha! I love creepy books!

    <3 Shannon 
    Upbeat Soles

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  56. Great list of recently reads! :D If I had to choose one from the list, I would choose 'Swear on This Life'. The plot has intrigued me deeply and I am thinking of buying this one real soon!

    Manavi,
    beforbeauty.com

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  57. I heard mixed reviews about after you. Those last two books have me intrigued

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  58. Thanks for sharing these as I'm always looking to add books to my reading list. I started After you but quickly got bored by it. I do want to read it again one day. The first book stayed with me so long I think that is why I didn't care for the second book.

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  59. I'm one of the few that just didn't like Me Before You. I wanted to like it, I just didn't. The rest of these books sound great!
    Kelsey
    www.thepeacockroost.com

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  60. I love your book rec's, lady- and On Second Thought sounds like a great, breezy read!

    -Ashley
    Le Stylo Rouge

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  61. Swear on this life sounds good - I love finding a book so good that you can't wait to finish!

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  62. yay, so glad you enjoyed swear on this life! i loved it, and i always feel like my opinions are validated when other people like books i like haha.
    i agree about after you. just as i started to enjoy it, it ended. blah. i think i heard she's writing another, which is just weird to me. i really feel like after you, they could have changed the names and it would have been its own story, you know?
    bummer about Behind Closed Doors, i have heard it's good. never read anything by kristan higgins, but i love a good romance too, so i will check those books out!

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  63. I've read so many of your recommendations and I'm posting mine on Thursday. I read Maybe Someday after loving This Ends With Us. Colleen Hoover is seriously one of my favorite authors now. Have you read Confess?

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  64. Great book list! I've been wanting to read Behind Closed Doors.

    http://roadesque.com
    http://ourruins.com

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  65. Okay - someone had recommended After You to me, and I was in Barnes and Noble yesterday and I almost bought it! Luckily I read the back and realized it was the sequel to Me Before You (which I bought instead). Can't wait to read! xx -Leigha

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  66. Thanks for sharing.
    Just added Swear on This to my reading list.
    I didn't read After You. I had love Me Before You so much and after reading all the bad reviews I thought it better to just stay away

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  67. Adding Swear on This Life to my reading list! xx, I'm Fixin' To

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  68. Behind Closed Doors was a page turner! I definitely think I need something lighter now....thanks for the suggestions!

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