Cover Image: Ladykiller

Ladykiller

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The descriptives of of this Greek island where the story evolves has the reader feeling the hot sun, seeing white houses and blue ocean.........you're there.
     Gia, newly married, needs to see her best friend and brother because there are issues at home. They are to meet in Sweden.....she needs to talk.......they go but Gia never arrives.
     Gia has inherited a small sum of money and a greek house, all of which she gladly shares with her new husband. She has been questioned on this quick romance and wedding and the man who she knows so little about by her brother and friend. Her accountant has given her a warning about his spending and his "business" ventures which she rationalizes. Gia is defending her actions until she no longer can, thus the trip to meet in Sweden.
    Problems first materialize in Greece after a couple who have  unexpected car issues and unavailable hotel accommodations are befriended by Gia and her husband at a bar and they invite them to their home for the night. Now the reader knows where this is all leading.
    It's both mystery and thriller with characters that will leave the readers with many unanswered questions.........but it's worth it.

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This is a good solid thriller that will keep you on the edge of your seat the whole entire time.

Abby hasn’t seen her best friend Gia since she married her husband. Now their all suppose to be meeting for vacation and Gia is no where to be found.

This thriller kept me entertained the whole entire time. We get Abby’s POV and then Gia’s POV through her manuscript. By the end of the book you don’t know who to believe and your left thinking about this book.

I did not feel like there was a slow part in this book. It feels like you find out something new every chapter.

If you like thrillers where everything is wrapped up neatly at the end. This is not for you. We are left with questions towards the end and you are left to wonder what really happened.

You never know what is going on in the secret lives of the rich.

Genre: Thriller
APK: Ebook
Pages: 368
Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Series or Standalone: Stand-alone

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Thank you Netgalley for the arc of this book! This is my first book by this author. From the description I thought I would enjoy it a lot more than I did. I feel baffled, and like none of my questions were ever answered. I feel very let down with this book, and would rate it like 2.5?

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Ihad high hopes for this book and it started off strong but seemed to fizzle somewhere in the middle. I can’t really put my finger on the why. I think it’s because I wanted less assumptions and more concrete happenings.

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Abby and Gia are best friends, although it's an uneven one with a twisted power dynamic. Gia is newly married and invites her hardworking attorney friend to Scandinavia to celebrate. When Abby and Gia's brother arrive in Norway, Gia is nowhere to be found and isn't answering her phone. The two are concerned enough about her wellbeing that they travel to Greece, where Gia is staying with her new husband. There, they find a manuscript written by Gia that helps them piece together a puzzle.

I found the beginning of this book to be slow, but it picked up in the second half. I enjoyed the unbalanced friendship and thought of owing one another to create a specific kind of trust (or lack of trust) and tension throughout the novel. Overall, it was a quick ready from the second half, although it took some time to get in to.

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This intriguing story grabs the reader from the beginning chapter and keeps the momentum going throughout the novel. The narrative uses alternating POV between two friends and timelines: Abby in the present day and the manuscript written by Gia, which runs from five months earlier to the present. Almost every character in the novel has secrets, and the reader is left to wonder how much of the truth any character is revealing at any given time. This device ratchets up the suspense—who doesn’t love an unreliable narrator (or two)? A traumatic event that took place years earlier during their college days informs the present actions and relationships of both Gia and Abby, and the gradual revelation of the truth of that event propels the novel towards its climax as present-day events unfold—including spousal abuse, fraud, a billionaire’s will, secret identities, abduction, and murder. The characters are great, the action is tense, and the conclusion is satisfying.

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3.5 stars!
Ladykiller is somewhat of a romance mystery set on an idyllic island of Greece. The author, Katherine Wood, takes us between the viewpoints of bestfriends Gia and Abby through two fateful summers that change their life forever. But who's story are you going to believe?
Gia and Abby are about to reunite in Switzerland, Abby takes time off work from her demanding job as a lawyer and Gia... disappears. In the search for Gia her manuscript shows up detailing the last few months on the island, which has been anything but a vacation. Will Gia show up, and what is she really trying to tell Abby in her manuscript? Only Gia can tell.
This book had me the perfect amount of engaged. As soon as I was ready to switch over to a different point of view, Katherine Wood was already ahead of me. This is not one that you could figure out what was going to happen next. She left the ending open to interpretation, which I almost wish she would have told me what exactly happened as she envisioned it. But I can also appreciate the creativity! She did a great job of building up the anticipation to the end, more than enough to keep you engaged and wanting to read in one sitting! Her description of the Greek island really had you transporting there in your mind, her illustrations felt real and was a summer trip to remember!
I will recommend this book to friends because I want their take on the ending and what they think is the truth!
Thank you to Random House publishing group/Ballantine, netgalley, and Katherine Wood for the advanced reader copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

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LADYKiller
by Katherine Wood
Pub Date: July 9, 2024
Thanks to the author, publisher and Net Galley for the ARC of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.
Everyone has a story. But not everyone’s story is true.
When a young woman vanishes from her remote Greek island estate, her best friend races to find her, using clues found in the explosive manuscript she left behind.
How could I turn down a widget for a title and cover this beautiful ??
I started off intrigued... but my midpoint it was just meh to me.
While this story started off super strong, it unfortunately lost its way somewhere past the halfway mark. We are left to assume to know what happened towards the end, but for me I would have liked this story to be wrapped up in a nice pretty red bow. I am left with way more questions than answers, and rather unsatisfied with the ending. I also started off liking Gia and Abby pretty strongly, but by the end I didn’t care much for either one of them (although I definitely liked one more than the other).

This book might be a better read for those who don’t mind stories that take sudden twists and turns of action and have an open ending.

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The beginning of Ladykiller captured my attention. However, I tired of it aboit halfway through. It just didn't keep my attention.

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Years after a tragedy at Gia’s family’s summer estate in Greece, the Gia, her best friend Abby, and Gia’s brother Benny are to reunite to see the northern lights. Suspicions grow as Gia does not show up, and instead, sends crypitc messages, causing Abby and Benny to race to Greece for answers. Gia is not at the house, but her manuscript is, where Gia unveils the ominous summer events leading up to her disappearance, involving her husband and two guests. But where is Gia now?

Ladykiller is a fun thriller with beautifully written characters and an even more beautiful location. This was a fun read and I enjoyed the character depths and the dual point of views.

Thank you Katherine Wood and Random House Publishing Group-Ballantine and Netgalley for my ARC.

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I'll start by saying I wasn't expecting such a sensual, sexy story. lol
Nothing wrong with that! I'm very far from being a prude - my photos on my social medias prove that -, but I thought this book was, sometimes, too sexual. I wasn't in it for the sex scenes or the sex talk. I was in it for the mystery.
And before I got to the half of this book I was mildly interested in the characters and the slow building up to the major mystery. And then this book (finally) clicked with me. I started to looove it. The characters were getting more layers, more complexed and the whole plot was evolving and, by the end, there were no loose ends, some twists I had not seen coming, and I genuinely liked the ending. I'm sure it won't please every reader, but, personally, I liked it a lot.
The Greek island setting was a delight and this author's writing style is very good. I'll definitely keep my eye on her future releases.
I'll be honest: I thought I didn't love it. But it's been a few days since I finished reading it and I keep thinking about this book, these characters and what that ending could mean. I guess, after all, I loved it!
I'd recommend this book to any readers who love a disappearence mystery, rich people drama, a more kind of slow start, character-driven at first, all set on an island kind of novel. Oh, sure...and to readers who don't mind some smut in their mystery stories.

Thank you, NetGalley and the publisher, for providing me with a free eARC copy of this novel.

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Overall held my interest - quick read but nothing earth-shattering. Would recommend as a beach read for thriller lovers.

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3.5 rounded up⭐️

Super huge thank you to the Publishers at Random House Ballantine for recommending this book and providing an egalley via NetGalley!

This book was WILD. From start to finish this book had me on a rollercoaster. Personally, I HATED every character in this book but somehow it works for this story? It was very different for me because I usually need a good connection to a character or characters in order to enjoy a book. But this was totally opposite. It was filled to the brim of shady, self centered people.

The story was very entertaining. I felt like I was watching a soap opera play out in front of me. I did guess where this was going but the way it was done really worked with this story.

Overall, I enjoyed this story. I rated a 3.5 because there were times when I just didn’t feel like picking this book back up to continue reading. It wasn’t a book that I couldn’t stop thinking about.

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Thoroughly enjoyed “Ladykiller”, by Katherine Wood. A story of betrayal, romance and murder on a remote Greek island. Ms Wood did an excellent job in keeping the reader engaged and guessing with her various play twists. I would definitely read another by this author.

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I loved the cover of this book which is one of the reasons why I really wanted to read it. It seemed like a perfect summer read and I think for some people it will be. I did not find the book especially interesting from beginning to end, but I did stick with it.

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I like Verity by Colleen Hoover a lot. Is it a problematic book? Yes but I really liked the plot and the darkness surrounding it a lot. Most importantly what I liked was the reader having to figure out what the truth is. This was similar to that but we get a lot of friendship moments in this book. This was also a little problematic but I think the story really pushed through in the second half when we find out so much of the truth and how these characters navigate the lies that are on the brink of exploding.

We get the story in 2 parts: a memoir manuscript and Abby’s point of view. There are some shady characters and some shady moments in the books that kind of make you wonder where this is going but they also build so much suspense that I couldn’t help but be at the edge of my seat.

The first half was so slow and it was really hard for me to read it after a long day. By the second half, I was shocked by how fast it was. There were secrets spilling, betrayal, and some romance. I loved the concept of the readers being stuck trying to figure out what the truth is because it is such a great way to discuss and digest the story. Is Gia telling the truth? Is Abby right? The friendship dismantling because of the lies and doubts was pushing the story forward.

I liked this book a lot. If the first half kept me engaged, this would’ve definitely been rated higher. Nevertheless, if you liked Verity I 100% recommend this.

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Blurb Beware: The blurb gives away a lot of the book and isn’t quite accurate. In fact, the first line of the blurb doesn’t happen until 80 percent into the book, and that conflict is resolved pretty quickly. So avoid.

I also can’t tell what’s on the cover. Maybe it will be clearer in print. It looks at first glance like someone swimming a butterfly stroke. But maybe it’s someone doing a backstroke. Then again, maybe it’s a landscape shot? My vision is not good enough to decipher it.

The construction of the story is a little weird. We have Abby in the present, being invited to visit her best friend, Gia, in Greece. This is interspersed with Gia’s “manuscript” of her newlywed life in Greece, backtracking several months. It takes about 75 percent of the book for the manuscript to catch up to the present. This made it feel like the book hadn’t really started yet. Then it’s all Abby’s POV for the rest of it. The manuscript is all present tense (groan) and most of Abby’s POV is in past tense (but some is in present tense). I HATE narratives in present tense. Only five percent of writers can use it effectively.

The beginning really confused me. In the prologue, it talks about a zoo animal that escapes and eats another animal, then switches mid-paragraph to a funeral. I thought the funeral was for the animal for a long time but it was for a person totally unrelated to the zoo. I still have no idea what the point of the zoo tale was, and I am still recovering from the whiplash of the non sequitur. Maybe it was copy and pasted in by mistake in the ARC.

The atmosphere of the book is full of suspicions, with characters and actions that feel a bit off, and secrets waiting to be revealed. So it has a great buildup, if a tad slow. Then the ending was a letdown. It’s just ambiguous, no clear answers. I hate that. It’s not a bad book by any means — if it sounds appealing, you’ll probably like it. Still a good book but could be better.

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Another one from Penguin Random House, Ladykiller by Katherine Wood, will be out in July 2024, and this is a wild ride. Gia, is an heiress, newly married, and getting her family home on a Greek island ready for sale when she goes missing leaving behind a manuscript filled with clues, or are they? Her brother, Benny, and her best friend growing up, Abby, are expecting her in Sweden for a birthday celebration under the Northern Lights, and Gia fails to show up. Instead, she feigns illness and refuses to answer their calls. Meanwhile, Abby, is receiving alarming emails that leave her on edge. The emails are linked to a series of events from the last summer Abby and Gia were together on that Greek island when they were both 18. Benny and Abby return to Greece to find the family home vacant. All of Gia's things are there, but she is where to be found. They find the manuscript and realize that Gia's marriage, and her husband, Garrett, aren't at all what they seem. Additionally, as things unravel, Abby is forced to shed more light on that incident from the girls past, because it's becoming clear, the past and the present are somehow connected. Will Benny and Abby find Gia in time, and will the two of them finally consummate the long standing attraction between them? And if they do, will it survive the truth of the past, and the questions for the future. There are several stories under the cover of this novel with twists and turns and more questions than answers Instead, the reader is left to ponder which truth they believe. All in all, a great summer beach read to add to your pile! Thank you Penguin Random House for selecting me!

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Ladykiller is a vibe. It's a tumultous tale of love, lust and deception set against the glimmering backdrop of a Greek paradise. Gia's narrative takes place 5 months before the present day and the story opens on Gia and her husband and the steamy one-night stand that was never supposed to end in marriage. But, sometimes things are just so right that they work out, against all odds.

But while things are going fantastically in love, financially, things aren't going quite as well. Barrett's business is struggling and Gia has to help him out several times. And worse, while she grew up rich, her father's death has resulted in her and her brother Benny being almost broke - apart from her Greek villa that she's renovating and then has plans to sell. Then, unexpected guests enter the story and things take at turn.

Abby's narrative starts in present day. She and Gia were best friends as children and Abby, Benny, and Gia have made plans to meet in Sweden to reunite and celebrate Abby's birthday. But Gia doesn't show. As Abby and Benny work to track Gia down, things aren't as they seem. And people aren't as they seem. And time is running out.

Ladykiller is the perfect summer read with all the twists and turns. It would be amazing to enjoy as you lie by a pool and drink a cool drink. Special thanks to Netgalley for an advanced readers e-galley in exchange for my honest review. This one is out July 9.

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This is the first time I’ve read this author. I found the premise of this story intriguing which was my reason for wanting to read it.

Gia, Benny, and Abby three peas in a pod. Abby’s mother worked for Gia and Benny’s father which is how she came to be in their midst. As you might guess, Abby didn’t grow up with a silver spoon in her mouth, but Gia and Benny did.

Abby wondered how she could be so lucky as to become the best friend of such a wealthy young girl. Gia wasn’t wealthy, but her parents were hella loaded. Gia’s father loved Abby as one of his own so much so that he paid for her college education back in the U.S. Gia and Benny were originally from Greece. They used to spend summer vacation together and do all sorts of things young teens do.

Twelve years later, Gia is working as an attorney and repaying her debt to Gia’s father by living out her dreams of becoming a lawyer. Gia’s father had recently passed, and it was the first time in many years that Abby got to be with her old bestie and her brother Benny, albeit under unfortunate circumstances.

The next time Abby hears from Gia is when she called to advise her that she was getting married to the man of her dreams. Abby tried to be happy for her bestie, but she was struggling to do so because Gia had a terrible habit of loving hard, strong and entirely too fast. She hadn’t known her man but for a few short months and they were getting married. Abby begged Gia not to do it and to give it more time so she could get to know her beau, but Gia was always headstrong and determined to live her best life and do whatever her heart desired because her father gave her a life that she’d grown accustomed to and a girl wants what she wants.

As a result of this conversation, Abby was outraged that Gia would be so stupid as to marry this man she hadn’t known but for a minute. Several months go by and all of a sudden while Abby was in the middle of a case, Gia sends an invitation to her and her brother, Benny, to help her celebrate her thirtieth birthday in Sweden and to watch the awesome northern lights. Abby wasn’t sure she’d be able to just pick up in the middle of a case and go flying halfway around the world for a friend that was angry with her for stating the obvious. But this was Gia and Abby loved her like a sister and this was the olive branch she needed.

As luck would have it, Abby’s boss let her go and she was well on her way. By the time Abby and Benny’s planes landed, Gia was noticeably absent. Where on earth could she be? Why would she ask them to fly there to celebrate her birthday and she be a no show. Abby received a strange text message from Gia stating she was sick and was so sorry she wouldn’t be able to make the trip and advised that she and Benny should continue to stay and enjoy the suite and the northern lights on her.

Abby and Benny weren’t buying that excuse at all. They had no idea what was really going on, that is, until they decided to leave Sweden and head to Greece to find Gia. Once they returned to her home to find Gia missing, they stumbled across her manuscript of her memoir and began reading. What they found on those pages was enough to raise eyebrows and cause some scratching of one’s head. To find out what Gia wrote, you’ll have to read the rest of the novel.

Wow! There was so much going on and a great many things I left out because it would give too many spoilers. I enjoyed the flow of the story. Again, it was a lot, but it was the useful information you needed. I felt the author gave lots of detail, but not overly done. In fact, the details she provided the reader will be needed because it gives a lot of insight into what is to follow. However, having said that, this story was way too long. I know that’s a huge pet-peeve of mine, but this story really began to grate on my nerves because of the carrot dangling that drove me insane. But even though it did that, I was still able to figure out much of what was happening, and then when I got to the ending, I wasn’t quite sure how I was supposed to feel.

Again, I can’t go into detail because it will spoil the story, but I felt a little let down after having read all those pages that it ended in the way in which it did. I found myself having more questions and not the correct answers. I didn’t hate the ending, but I didn’t love it either. At the end of the day, this was really a good story, and I did enjoy the journey.

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