Since I am new to book blogging, I didn’t have the chance to share all of the books I read in 2019! I read a lot, and trust me, I wanted to tell you about every single book… but I also didn’t want to start posting reviews every day and set a precedence that I knew I couldn’t maintain!
Although it is possible that I might come back to some of my 2019 reads to fully review later, I wanted to at least go over some of my favorites with you now!
The New Evil: Understanding the Emergence of Modern Violent Crime, by Gary Brucato and Michael. H Stone
So, there I was, all caught up on my true crime podcasts, bored out of my mind at work. I searched Audible for new true crime books, but everything I found was about cases I already knew. Also, I wasn’t in the mood for just one case. I was specifically searching for one book that checked off the following boxes:
- Involves cases that are rare / not publicized
- Includes more than one case
- Contains thought provoking psychological and scientific theories
And, holy shit! Just like that, I found The New Evil, and it blew my mind.
This book is an extremely detailed study of violence, which walks the reader through 22 “grades” or “levels” of evil. It thoroughly explains what psychological characteristics and types of violence are categorized in each level, and then offers multiple real life examples of each.
This book also specifically presents compelling evidence that, since a tipping point in the 1960’s, certain types of crime has emerged which rarely ever occurred in earlier decades. Then it explains multiple theories regarding what is impacting this new version of evil that we face today.
If you’re looking for something like I mentioned above, I seriously cannot recommend this enough. Also, get ready to buy a security system.
Lost Gods, by Brom
Wow! This book is intense! I sort of found this by chance while I was scanning Audible for something a bit dark and fantasy horror, and I think I got exactly what I asked for.
Chet Moran, freshly out of jail, is murdered by an evil entity who harvests and feeds on souls to remain on earth. With his wife and unborn child at risk to surely suffer the same fate, he descends into Purgatory where he must search for a sacred key, which is promised to restore the natural order of life and death. Thrust into a dimension of madness and chaos where ancient gods and demons are battling over the dead, and groups of souls are conspiring to overthrow their masters, Chet is sifting through unimaginable terrors to restore balance and make sure his family will be safe from this fate.
Oh, man, this book is absolutely amazing! The storytelling is unlike anything I have ever experienced. The way Brom is able to create this entire world is nothing short of brilliant. From the way he graphically details every inch of Purgatory, to the explicit descriptions of the Gods, souls, and suffering, I was completely enthralled and immersed in the world and characters he created.
The story is very action packed and our main character, Chet, gets himself into a lot of trouble. Additionally, nothing ever goes as planned for Chet. Every step of his journey presents a new obstacle, which means there are multiple layers of challenges for Chet and they just keep piling up. Because of this, at times I felt very defeated and overwhelmed, but that’s only because as the reader you are supposed to!
Brom’s writing style is truly out of this world. He is also an extremely talented artist and created a series of paintings to accompany the Gods and demons he featured in the books.
Vampire Academy, Books 1 – 6
Alrighhhtttt, I’ll admit it! I have a super soft spot for paranormal young adult romance novels. (Good god, that’s specific!) I also love anything that comes in the form of a completed series! So when I spotted this as a set at the local Barnes and Noble, I picked it up without any research or expectations. At first I wasn’t so sure, but once I got into the first book I was sold.
The story goes like this:
In this world, there are two types of vampires: Moroi, who are technically “alive” and wield elemental magic, and Strigoi, who are undead and evil, feeding on the innocent to survive. Rose Hathaway, a half-vamp with massive teen angst and poor impulse control, is doing her best to be a bodyguard to her best friend Lissa, a Miori princess. However, will her new attraction to an older teacher at school get in the way of her mission? It may turn out that this romance could be the most dangerous thing of all.
Aw, you guys… I loved this so much! If you’re in the mood for some angsty, PG-13, drama filled paranormal romance, then buckle up buttercup!
Conviction: The Untold Story of Putting Jodi Arias Behind Bars, by Juan Martinez
Yikes, I thought I knew the Jodi Arias case pretty well considering I was following it as it happened, and then watched all the documentaries about it. But, apparently there were a lot of details left out!
For those of you who don’t know, Jodi Arias is a knock-out beauty who’s obsessive and stalker behavior eventually lead her to murder her ex-boyfriend, Travis Alexander. However, as the story began to unravel, it became clear that this was one of the weirdest and most violent cases of premeditated murder in the last decade. Sex, religion, stalking, lies… This story really had the whole world captivated.
This book is written by the prosecuting attorney in the Jodi Arias case, Juan Martinez. It is an extremely well written and comprehensive book that details the tragic crime in a linear timeline. It also includes a lot of chilling details about Jodi Arias and Travis Alexander’s relationship, as well as some serious stalking on Jodi’s part leading up to the murder, that I was completely unaware of and shocked by.
If you have any interest in this case, which was one of the most shocking and strange crimes in the last decade, I would suggest picking this up immediately.
Well, that’s all, folks!
Please comment below and let me know if you’ve read any of these and what your thoughts are!