Melody
Random House Publishing Group | February 2018 | 400 pgs
Source: Library



There are books that make great escapism, then there are books that make you think and reflect along the ride and I've to say this book belongs to the latter. 

The book opens with our main protagonist, Nate McHale, returning to his childhood home in Greystone Lake after fourteen years. His purpose of visit is to attend the funeral of his first girlfriend, Lucy Bennett. Lucy and his Adirondack hometown brought him many past memories, including an automobile accident that had claimed his parents and his younger brother's life. Then, there were the teenage angst fueled by life's unfairness as well as some deeds done by a few fellow schoolmates and their families. Together with his three other friends they formed a pact to right the wrongs, calling Nate the "Storm King" and naming their deeds as Thunder Runs. With the thunderstorms as their perfect guise, what they've done are easily dismissed as accidents caused by natural disaster. Their deeds vary from pranks to "accidents", until a day Nate felt he's done enough and thereafter left Greystone Lake for good until he's heard news about Lucy's death and that there are someone who seem to be copying what they did those years. 

As the adult Nate reconnects with his estranged friends and even old enemies, he has a feeling that what's happened in the past isn't the end of everything and that a reckoning is coming and they've to pay for the deeds they'd done. 

Wow. Where shall I even begin? This book is probably one of the best books I read so far this year. Great plot, great characterisations, great writing and not to mention a great message behind this wonderfully crafted story. This may be a suspense story but I felt there are so much more than it - coming-of-age, the atmospheric feel between the storms and the haunting legend of The Night Ship Girls surrounding Greystone Lake and finally, the psychological thrill of a murder crime. This will be one of those books that will stay with me for some time. Highly recommended! 




June is approaching and the school holidays have started today. And what does that mean? Busy and a short break is in order but I've scheduled two reviews (a drama and a book review respectively) to be posted next week, though. Until then, and happy reading!



© 2018 Melody's Reading Corner (https://mel-reading-corner.blogspot.sg/), All Rights Reserved. If you are reading this post from other site(s), please take note that this post has been stolen and is used without permission.
Melody
Zaffre | March 2018 | 432 pgs
Source: Library



Have you ever thought of what you'd do if your superior treats you unfairly and sexually harass you and no amount of complaints or actions would do anything to him because the person has status whom everyone respect and like and on top of it, he is smart enough not to have witnesses so it's your words against his. Sure, there's law and order but what if the police couldn't do anything because you've no evidence and again, it's your words against his. These issues are part of the core of this story and will make you think what you'd do if you were the protagonist. Most of all, is it even right or wrong to take matters into your own hands? 

Sarah Haywood works as a part-time lecturer in a University. She is separated from her husband and is working hard to raise their young son single-handedly. Aside from the financial issue, she is also worried about her job but what really troubles her is she is being sexually harassed by a top professor whom she works with. Prof. Alan Lovelock is an outstanding scholar and a gifted researcher and his works are often recognised not only in the academic world but also publicly since he also has his own BBC2 series. But what makes him untouchable is that he has landed one of the biggest grants given out to their English department and needless to say, he is like a priceless gem to the Uni. 

Sarah is at a loss, until a chance encounter led her in rescuing a girl who happens to be the daughter of a Russian mob leader. Volkov is a man who lives by his own rules and he believes all debts must be repaid. Thus, he offers Sarah a one-time deal but that offer expires in 72 hours and that once Sarah agrees to it there is no return. 29 seconds is how long Sarah took for that phone call and a deal is made. But is there a consequence and could one really run away from law and justice?

This book blown me away on many aspects. The plot, the characterisations, and of course the morality issue behind what seemed to be a controversial decision Sarah made to solve a sticky situation. Then, there is the issue about sexual harassment and the question if the victims should risk their job or swallow their pain. Reading about Sarah's experiences had both saddened and angered me because I felt her helplessness. And in a moment of anguish and despair, Sarah made a decision which chilled my heart because although I felt her pain, I wasn't sure if it was a right path and what about consequences? I raced through the book because it was that compelling; and of course I'd hoped for a closure but I won't say anything as I'll leave it to you to find out yourself. 


© 2018 Melody's Reading Corner (https://mel-reading-corner.blogspot.sg/), All Rights Reserved. If you are reading this post from other site(s), please take note that this post has been stolen and is used without permission.
Melody

High Society is a story about family status and wealth as well as finding true love amid the different background between the rich and the poor.

Jang Yoon Ha (starring UEE) works as a part-time employee at a supermarket but actually she is the youngest daughter of a chaebol family. Since young, she is viewed as a jinxed child in her mother's eye so it is no wonder she has received the least attraction among her three other siblings. However, this doesn't bother her and she has no interest in the family's business anyway. Her goal is to find a man who loves her as who she is and to lead a normal life like everyone else. She and her co-worker, Lee Ji Yi, (starring Im Ji Yun) are best friends but the latter doesn't know about her real status.

Choi Joon Ki (starring Sung Joon) is the supermarket's deputy manager and is an ambitious man. Determined to leave his poor background he strives to do well in his job; he even has the thought of marrying a well-connected woman so he could start a new life. He encounters Yoon Ha by chance and is attracted by her confidence and he only knew about her real identity a bit later after seeing she is acquainted with Yoo Chang Soo (starring Park Hyung Shik), his ex-high schoolmate, who is the director and the heir to the supermarket where he's working.


Meanwhile, Ji Yi is shocked upon learning Chang Soo's real identity as previously she has viewed him as an unemployed with his careless attitude. Chang Soo likes her for her directness for she is unlike the other women he's met. He decides to woo her despite his mother's objection of him marrying a woman with a low background. Will this quartet finds true love despite everything?

This is another older drama (2015) which I binge watched because of Sung Joon. I think I liked this one better than Discovery of Love and I Need Romance 3 as he played a more prominent role here in terms of the character and scene-wise. I also liked that the two female protagonists here aren't intimidated by life and do the things they want to do regardless of others' views and the challenges they faced. Although there are sub-plots like family dynamics and power struggle among the chaebols, at its core is the romance of the four main characters. I enjoyed this drama thoroughly, and of course Sung Joon is part of the reason.


© 2018 Melody's Reading Corner (https://mel-reading-corner.blogspot.sg/), All Rights Reserved. If you are reading this post from other site(s), please take note that this post has been stolen and is used without permission.
Melody


Gallery Books | January 2018 | 336 pgs
Source: Library


Eve is a dreamer. She is also quirky, sensitive to emotions, likes having fun with her girlfriends and a worrier, too. She finds herself attracted to a guy in class due to his poetic charms and his talent in song writing and they hit it off quickly. They continue their relationship even after they graduated from Columbia University but both are brought down by the harshness of reality as Jesse struggles with his music band and Eve finds herself miserable with his hot and cold treatment and on top of that, the dread of him being caught as a drug runner. Their relationship finally ended but Eve still feels she is missing something in her life.  

Ben is an engineer who likes order and facts. He is a man of few words but that doesn't mean he has no opinions and ideas. He is usually calm unless something annoys or irritates him. He knew Eve when they were both students at the University but they were never close and there were no sparks between them as they have no common ground. But fate is a strange thing and they find themselves crossing paths again and again. Their friendship gradually leads to a connection they've not thought before, but it is fragile as Ben later finds out the truth regarding their parents' life-and-death encounters during the 9/11 attacks. However, Eve has this trust issue which stemmed from her unhappy tween years and one can say she is a pessimist. Adding her clashing personality with Ben's, she doesn't think they've a future and thus she finds herself destructing the relationship she has with Ben.  

Part coming-of-age and part romance, this book chronicle two different people's meeting and their falling in love. We first follow Ben and Eve in their 20s and we learn about their ups and downs as youths and thereafter the challenges in life and work as adults. Truth be told, I never felt a connection with Eve throughout the book while Ben, who seemed insignificant and non-existent from the beginning grown on me instead. The story was simple and common enough, but Ms. Cohen has a way of writing that will draw you in to her characters and into their stories. I'd have liked this story more if not because of Eve (she got on my nerves) and that being said, I'll still look forward to Ms. Cohen's next release.  



© 2018 Melody's Reading Corner (https://mel-reading-corner.blogspot.sg/), All Rights Reserved. If you are reading this post from other site(s), please take note that this post has been stolen and is used without permission.
Melody


HarperCollins Publishers | January 2018 | 496 pgs
Source: Library




Alafair Burke's latest release, The Wife, is a domestic suspense which is part police procedural and part legal thriller and revolves around issues like secrets, deceptions, kidnapping and murder. 

The story opens with the wife, Angela Powell being questioned by the police on her husband's whereabouts the day Kerry Lynch went missing. Jason Powell is an economics professor at NYU and aside from his lecturing profession, he also has a consulting firm and has written a bestselling book which put him (as well as his family) in the spotlight. As much as the fame and wealth are doing well for the Powells, Angela, on the other hand, is trying hard to avoid being in the limelight. She is worried that someday the media would find out about her past given her connection to Jason and that is what she fears most - her past identity exposed and an incident which has changed her life ever since. Jason didn't know about that past, and she intends to keep it under wraps until he is embroiled in a case with two women accusing him of sexual innuendo and rape respectively. Angela chose to believe and stand by Jason until one of the women disappeared. 

The Wife was an unputdownable book filled with suspense and twists with the "he said, she said" information and I found myself engrossed in this complex story between husband and wife and how well do you really know your other half. Jason and Angela are both intriguing characters; and truth be told I'm not sure how I felt about them. They aren't really likeable, and there are times I didn't know who to believe (Jason or the women?) and why Angela chose to stand by him. When pieces of the puzzle began to fit to form a whole picture, I began to marvel at the author's skilful craft of weaving this story into something else which I'd guessed at some point but not wholly and definitely not what I'd anticipated. Recommended. 

Note: The Wife will be adapted as a major motion picture by Amazon Studios according to the author's website and she will be writing the screenplay. 


© 2018 Melody's Reading Corner (https://mel-reading-corner.blogspot.sg/), All Rights Reserved. If you are reading this post from other site(s), please take note that this post has been stolen and is used without permission.