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The Best Books I Read In January

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January was a good reading month for me! While I didn’t read a ton of books, the books I did read I really enjoyed!

Before we dive into the books, if you enjoy reading also, Let’s be friends on Goodreads! I love to read and I am always looking for my next book, or chatting about the latest best seller, so anytime you want to talk about what you’ve read, or have a recommendation, reach out!

An Anonymous Girl by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen

From the Same Authors of The Wife Between Us, which I read last year and really enjoyed, comes another suspenseful novel based on obsession.

Desperate for cash, Jessica Farris a struggling makeup artist, signs up for a program seeking women ages 18–32 to participate in a study on ethics and morality. With generous compensation provided, and guarenteed anonymity Jessica is convinced she will answer a few guestions collect her money and be on her way.

But as the questions grow more intense and invasive, and the session extends into multiple opportunities to participate and earn more cash, the mysterious Dr. Sheilds schedules outings where Jess is told what to wear and how to act. Jessi begins to feel as though Dr. Shields may know what she’s thinking…and what she’s hiding. As Jess’s paranoia grows, it becomes clear that she can no longer tell the difference of what in her life is real, and what is one of Dr. Shields’ manipulative experiments. Caught in a web of deceit and jealousy, Jess quickly learns that some obsessions can be deadly

I gave An Anonymous Girl 4 Stars. I found myself immersed in the storyline and really connected with the Jess, but felt the ending fizzled out a little.

No Exit by Taylor Adams

Holy Suspense! No Exit had me on the edge of my seat from start to finish. This book was almost impossible to put down, and has all the making of a blockbuster movie.

Darby, a young college student, sets out from Denver, in hopes of making it to Utah to see her mother before she heads into emergency surgery. That plan quickly dissolves in the face of Snowmageddon, a powerful snow front shutting down highways and leaving drivers stranded. Unprepared, Darby has no choice but to take shelter in a mountainside rest stop. With road closures, no cellphone reception, and dwindling battery life there is literally no exit until dawn when the roads are expected to be cleared. Darby finds a motley crew of four random strangers also forced to also hunker down for the night in the rest stop.

It’s during an outside expedition in an attempt to secure even a single bar of reception to reach her mother, that Darby unknowingly becomes a key player in a little girl’s nightmare. Restrained in a dog cage in the back of a junky old van, Darby is the girl’s only hope for escape. Darby’s first course of action, figure out which of the four rest stop strangers the van belongs to. Second—and more importantly—pinpoint who seems trustworthy enough to ask for help.

I rated No Exit 5 Stars, for its fast-moving storyline, twisty turny plot, and intense suspense.

Maid: Hard Work, Low Pay, and a Mother’s Will to Survive by Stephanie Land

I decided to take a break from suspense for the last book of the month, and I am glad I did. Maid: Hard Work, Low Pay, and a Mother’s Will to Survive by Stephanie Land, is a fascinating window into poverty, and one mother’s unwavering commitment to secure a better life for her daughter.

When I selected this book I was expecting stories that come from being in other peoples houses daily, cleaning up their messes and being a silent witness to their private lives.

It’s not.

This is not a story of a “maid.” It’s the story of a working, poor, single mother, dealing with a variety of problems both self-inflicted and beyond her control. This is Stephanie’s story about a life when the only job you can find is being a maid. And this is a story worth telling – especially today when there is a persistent cultural belief that if someone is poor, it’s probably because they’re lazy and, prefer to live off the system.

I hate rating biographies, it feels like I am attempting to “score” someone’s life or experiences, butI gave Maid: Hard Work, Low Pay, and a Mother’s Will to Survive by Stephanie Land 4 Stars, based on writing style, how well she portrayed both her triumphs and disasters, and the value and insight this book offers.

All of these are Book of the Month Selections. I’ve talked about Book of the Month Club before, and I am a firm believer the Membership is totally worth it for me. Indulging in a couple of books a month brings me hours of reading joy. I look forward to the box every single month, and this isn’t an exaggeration.