Sunday, January 10, 2016

Title: Buried
Author: CJ Carmichael

Normally I don’t knowingly take on cliff hangers. I got sucked into that with Mortal Instruments and had to wait an entire year for the conclusion of the series. UGH. However, I found the premise of Buried to be so compelling, I was hooked from the first word. I wasn’t reading a stand-alone novel and, for once, that was okay. With writing this good and a story so well crafted, there was no way I could have cared. I just had to keep going.

This twisted tale of murder leads the reader through a decades old friendship, a marriage that seems perfect on the surface, a new relationship no one could expect and of course, a mystery that will keep you turning page after page after page and begging for more when you reach the end.
Dougal Lachlan swore he would never return to Twisted Cedars, Oregon. Nothing but impoverished memories wait for him there. He’d already lost his mother to cancer (even though he failed to attend her funeral) and had no reason, other than the sister who was mad at him, to return. Until the emails started showing up. Crime writer he is, he was drawn to the hometown where the mystery began.
I know, right? Here’s what I can tell you… Wade, the good one, Kyle the wealthy, too-cool-for-school athlete, and Dougal, the boy from the wrong side of the trailer park, were BFFs growing up in Twisted Cedars. Time, distance, and buried secrets forced a rift that only Dougal seemed to understand. Before the ink was dry on his diploma he got the heck of there and headed off for New York City to become a best-selling true-crime writer. Drawn back to Twisted Cedars—partially to explore the story supplied by a mystery emailer and partly to talk his sister out of marrying Kyle—Dougal becomes romantically involved with a quiet librarian and decides to stay a bit longer. After all, the man has to solve a mystery of 4 librarians killed in the space of four years in the 1970s.
There are so many complex details in this one—Dougal’s ex-con murderer father, the emailer who is hell bent on getting this story out, Kyle’s run-away ex-wife, and Charlotte, the librarian love interest who is torn between two men. But these details are presented with such natural flow and as intricate little gems woven into the fabric of the story, that the reader is left with an overwhelming sense to know more. More. MORE.
The characters are crafted with multiple dimensions, bringing life to their joys and struggles. The mystery is formed in stages that allow the reader to absorb the story that bring them right to the heart of the drama.
In short, this is a 5 star read. I highly recommend this book and am so glad there was much more to come with Forgotten.

Forgotten by CJ Carmichael

CJ Carmichael has done it again. I signed up to read this book through Lola's blog tours and my only regret is that I have to wait a month for the conclusion of the series.

The second installment in the Twisted Cedars series, Forgotten follows Dougal Lachlan as he is drawn into the powerful mystery surrounding his hometown. This time, a new comer is thrown into the mix and Dougal is on a path he would rather not head down. Refusing to give the emailer feeding him information the power to force a story out of him, Dougal stays in his cottage, but decides to derail his non-fiction by proposing to his agent to write something a little less true and (in his mind) a lot more compelling. But, as he ventures away from his true calling, things in Twisted Cedars begin to go awry and Sheriff Wade MacKay is left with more work than he knows what to do with.

Then comes the pretty, but banged up Jane Doe to town and the course is set for the perfect amount of mayhem to draw Dougal back into the world of investigative writing. With the details piling up against his former friend and brother-in-law Kyle Quinpool, Dougal develops a theory, one he prays is wrong and leaves him with no choice but to reestablish a relationship with the sister he barely tolerated as a child.

I can't say more without ruining the end, but OMG, the plot twists, the subtle turns, the added layers of mystery with the turn of every gripping page... AMAZING! Again, this is a cliff-hanger, but I find myself excited about the month before the release of Exposed. I want to mull this story over a bit and re-read it again in a few days (YEP. IT'S THAT GOOD) just to catch the things I know CJ Carmichael stuck in that I might have missed.

This is one for the read many times shelf. I cannot say enough how I enjoyed this book and cannot wait for Exposed! This is a true 5 star read as it is a well-crafted mystery that will leave you wanting more!

Thank you, Lola's Blog Tours for providing the ARCs of these two WONDERFUL books for review!