Tag Archive | Janelle Brown

REVIEW: Watch Me Disappear by Janelle Brown

Watch Me Disappear Book Cover Watch Me Disappear
Janelle Brown
Spiegel & Grau
July 11, 2017
July 3-10, 2017

It’s been a year since Billie Flanagan—a beautiful, charismatic Berkeley mom with an enviable life—went on a solo hike in Desolation Wilderness and vanished from the trail. No body—only a hiking boot—has ever been found. Billie’s husband and teenage daughter cope with her death the best they can: Jonathan drinks, Olive grows remote.

But then Olive starts having waking dreams—or are they hallucinations?—that her mother is still alive. Jonathan worries about Olive’s emotional stability, until he starts unearthing secrets from Billie’s past that bring into question everything he thought he knew about his wife. Together, Olive and Jonathan embark on a quest for the truth—about Billie, their family, and the stories we tell ourselves about the people we love.

My Review

I received a copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

When I started this book I thought I would hate it. I didn’t care for the narration style. But as I continued to read I found myself growing more and more invested in the mystery. Was Olive really psychic and seeing real visions of her mother? Did Billie fake her death? Was she kidnapped? Murdered? Did she really just fall into a ravine or something equally as tragic and awful while off hiking alone in the woods?

The theories were circling through my head the entire time I read this story. By the time I got to the epilogue, I had to pull my jaw off the ground. Janelle Brown really hit the nail on the head with this amazing ending.

The real central theme of this book is, can you really know someone? Really truly know the real them, not just the mask they wear for the people around them? As Jonathan and Olive dig into Billie’s life and her past, that question begins to really take over Jonathan’s thought process. As he attempts to write the love story he shared with his wife, before her death a year earlier. As he attempts to have her officially, legally, declared dead so he and his daughter can move on. As he begins to dig up more and more of Billie’s secrets…

I really don’t even know what to say in this review because everything I want to gush about will ruin everything for anyone who hasn’t read this book.

I haven’t read a lot of mysteries, but this is one of the better ones I have read and I’d rank Watch Me Disappear one almost as high as Gone Girl.

Should you read it? If you like book that keeps you guessing until the last page, THIS is the book for you!!!


You don’t realize how much you’ll miss the asphyxiating intimacy of early parenthood until you can finally breathe again.


“Stop it, Olive. This isn’t healthy. Your mother is gone. Dead,” he snaps before he can stop himself. Immediately, he is stricken with remorse.


He used to feel like there was something of the sea hidden inside her; something wild and unfathomable.


She would soak up her mother’s stories about her own Lost Years—the decade during which Billie, a teenage runaway, had roamed around the Pacific Northwest and then travelled the world, hanging out with artists and activists and drug dealers—and would sense that she was failing her mother in some way. “Anyway, you didn’t want to do what I did,” Billie would say, abruptly cutting herself off, but somehow Olive knew she meant the exact opposite.


…the world is so vast and so beautiful and so forever—and then she remembers that she is supposed to be sad, too. How can she feel both of these things at once? The loveliness of being alive and the knowledge that it can never last?


There’s no rational explanation for his wife being alive that doesn’t point to her being some kind of monster. And he’s not ready to change the point of view of his entire life’s story.


And yet how can you ever really know the truth about another person? We all write our own narratives about the people we know and love, he realizes. We choose the story that is easiest to tell, the one that best fits our own vision for our lives. We define them in the way that’s most convenient for our own sense of self-aggrandizement. Glossing over anything that doesn’t fit into the neat little narrative because we don’t want the whole fiction to fall apart.


Only someone fearful of his own ordinariness would buy, so unquestioningly, someone else’s extraordinariness.


If I dig back far enough in Billie’s history, will I finally find someone who knows what was really going on inside her?


You believe what you think you believe, until suddenly, you realize that you don’t anymore. Or maybe you do believe, but it’s no longer convenient to do so, so you decide to forget. You decide to find other beliefs, ones that more comfortably fit the constant evolving puzzle of your life.

Stacking The Shelves #1

I am now known by many for my Goodreads addiction. I wish I could say that I don’t buy books, or request ARC’s from NetGalley, because I have so many from my Goodreads addiction, but that would be a lie.

I’ve been meaning to start a Stacking the Shelves post for a while now, which is why there are so many books in the photo above, I’ve been saving them in a stack to eventually photograph. I finally did it.

Stacking The Shelves is a weekly thing that Tynga’s Reviews started. You can find out more info on her blog, HERE, and also see other bloggers book stacks.

I’ve also decided to rate the books I receive 1-5.
1 meaning there’s very little chance I’ll ever actually get around to reading this book.
5 meaning unless something else arrives that I HAVE to read, this near the top of the list and there’s a likely chance that you’ll see a review of said book from me at some point.

Come Sundown by Nora Roberts – 3
I’ve never actually read a Nora Roberts book. A lot of people entered for this so I was surprised I won. I likely won’t read it before it’s release date, but I do plan to read it at some point.
Goodreads | Amazon

It’s Always The Husband by Michele Campbell – 4
I remember thinking this one looked REALLY good when I entered. I was pretty happy to win. I’m hoping to read this sooner rather then later. I don’t read enough mystery/suspense novels.
Goodreads | Amazon

Snowbirds by Crissa-Jean Chapell – 3
This cover just doesn’t call to me. I am interested in learning more about the Amish though, and it sounds like it could be a good mystery/suspense/thriller so I’m hoping I get to this one.
Goodreads | Amazon

The Bone Witch by Rin Chupeco – n/a
Okay, so I actually already read this one through NetGalley. And I LOVED the cover, but the book not so much. You can find my review HERE. I may re-read this in the future if I get my hands on the sequel.
Goodreads | Amazon

Disrupted: My Misadventure in the Start-Up by Dan Lyons – 4
Hatchette Books sent the BEST promo kit with this book, it was so fun and creative, I won’t soon forget this one! Plus it sounds really interesting, the real life misadventures of a 50 year old man trying to survive in the new open office style Internet start up. Plus the cover is really fun.
Goodreads | Amazon

Buddhist Economics by Clair Brown – 2
This book actually seems like it could be pretty cool and I do want to read it, but I don’t gravitate toward non-humor non-fiction, so if I’m being honest, I likely will not read it.
Goodreads | Amazon

First Comes Love by Emily Giffin – 2
This is chic lit. I don’t have a very good relationship with chic lit so the odds of me actually reading this one aren’t good. If I end up reading and liking Something Borrowed (which I’ve been borrowing from a friend for year, then I’ll probably read this one.
Goodreads | Amazon

Despite the Ghosts by Dylan Newton – 2
While this book sounds like it might be interesting, the cover SCREAMS low-budget indie book, which makes me think the editing might not be up to par. I may read this one, or it may fall by the wayside. Only time will tell.
Goodreads | Amazon

The Twilight Wife by A. J. Banner – 4
I LOVE this cover! The book itself sounds really good too. I don’t read enough psychological thrillers. This one sounds like it might be right up my alley with a woman who begins having visions (memories?) that lead her to believe the life she’s living isn’t the truth.
Goodreads | Amazon

NOVA by Margaret Fortune – 3
I could love this book or I could hate it. A reviewer I usually see eye-to-eye with gave it a 3.5, so I’m hoping I love it. I’m not sure where it will fall in the priority list. I don’t read a lot of sci-fi, but it is YA, even though the cover doesn’t look YA to me.
Goodreads | Amazon

The Cajun Doctor by Sandra Hill – 3
I don’t read a lot of straight up romance, but if I do have a hankering for one I think this would be a good choice. It takes place in bayous of Louisiana, a place I know nothing about, so I think that might be a fun place to “travel” to. Plus I love the colors/contrast on the cover.
Goodreads | Amazon

The Princess Problem by Teri Wilson – 4
This book is super short. And it has a princess. I’m a sucker for anything with royalty. The cover is super cute too.
Goodreads | Amazon

A Cowboy’s Wish Upon a Star by Caro Carson – 3
Just like royalty, I like movie stars. It’s that glamorous life I’ll never know that I’m drawn to. If I’m in the mood to read a (short) romance, this might be one.
Goodreads | Amazon

The Best Man by Kristan Higgins – 4
LOOK HOW CUTE THIS COVER IS!!! If I want a cute little contemporary romance I would snag this book up fast based on this cover.
Goodreads | Amazon

The Royal We by Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan – 4
Again – royalty! This one is a beast so I probably won’t be reading it very soon, but I absolutely plan to get this one read!
Goodreads | Amazon



Tainted (Demon Withinn #1) by Ginna Moran – 5
Buying this book was Katie @ Just Another Girl and Her Books fault. I read her review of…. the third book in the series and she really liked them and they’re paranormal and…. it was only 99 cents so I bought the book and I’ll give it a try. (Side note: The cover has been updated on Amazon since I bought the book 9 days ago. I LOVE THE NEW COVER!)
Goodreads | Amazon

Hunter’s Curse: A Destined for Dreams Short Story by Ginna Moran – 3
I always snag freebies from authors I’ve purchased books from. If I like Tainted I’ll quite likely read this one. Plus it’s short.
Goodreads | Amazon

Destined for Dreams by Ginna Moran – 3
See above. If I like Tainted, then I’ll read Hunter’s Curse, then I’ll read this one! (This was also a freebie at the time!)
Goodreads | Amazon

The Nightmare Inflictor: A Destined For Dreams Short Story by Ginna Moran – 3
I actually just found this freebie when I was putting together this post! See above.
Goodreads | Amazon

Royal Day Out: A From The Notebooks of a Middle School Princess e-short by Meg Cabot – 5
It’s Meg Cabot. And a freebie. Of course I’ll read it. Even though it’s for younger kids than I normally read!
Goodreads | Amazon

Shadowland (Mediator #1) by Meg Cabot
I own the paperback but I’ve been waiting FOREVER for a good sale price on this series for my Kindle! $1.99? SOLD! (If you don’t know this one, it’s a fun teen YA about a girl named Suze who can talk to ghosts, then moves across the country and ends up living in a bedroom haunted by a super hot and chivalrous 1850’s Spaniard named Jesse.)
Goodreads | Amazon

Size 12 Is Not Fat (Heather Wells #1) by Meg Cabot
I actually have yet to read this whole series by Meg Cabot, but I listened to the audiobook of the last book first and LOVED it! A former pop princess’ mother steals her fortune and she’s left to live a normal life working at a college. Somehow she always ends up entangled in murder investigations.
Goodreads | Amazon



Watch Me Disappear by Janelle Brown – 5
This is called a “double dip” because I also won it from Goodreads. Hopefully this is a good psychological thriller
Goodreads | Amazon

The Witchfinders Sister by Beth Underdown – 5
I like the historical aspect of this, using a fictional sister to tell the story of a real man from history who tried and killed many women for witchcraft.
Goodreads | Amazon

The Secret of the India Orchid by Nancy Campbell Allen – 5
This cover is absolutely stunning. I had to have the book based on the cover alone, but this is also a historical novel that fatures royalty and spies and romance.
Goodreads | Amazon

The Falconer by Elisabeth May – 5
This looks like a cool YA fantasy series. The bonus for me for this book is that it’s an older title so it counts for my #BeatTheBacklist challenge! The downside is the formatting of the ARC is so wonky I can’t use text to speech on my Kindle at work. 🙁
Goodreads | Amazon

Royal Bastards by Andrew Shvarts – 5
I heard this book was really awesome, but I’m not so sure yet. A bunch of bastards band together and witness a crime. Now they have to prevent a civil war. It could be really good, or it might not be for me. I’ll find out soon. This one releases in June.
Goodreads | Amazon