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The Writing Retreat by Julia Bartz (Atria Books) & What Lies In The Woods by Kate Alice Marshall (Flatiron Books)

Dear Gorgeous Readers,

Today I am here to share two thrillers for 2023. What Lies in the Woods by Kate Alice Marshall is OUT NOW, and The Writing Retreat by Julia Bartz comes out February 21st. I thoroughly enjoyed both of these books, and I am hopeful that these suspenseful reads will keep you entertained this month and keep the winter blues away.

Happy Reading!



Click on the book pic to purchase!

I adored the premise of Julia Bartz’s debut novel. Famous author Roza Vallo is holding a month-long writing retreat for five selected writers at her uber-private estate. One writer will leave the retreat with a finished novel and a publishing deal of a lifetime. The story is narrated by Alex, one of the selected writers, and let me tell you…this is one action-packed retreat. ⁣

Bartz’s pages cleverly unveil ALL the high stakes, ALL the batty drama, and ALL the wild mind games you could imagine. Her writing oozes tension and mystique, and I loved every minute of it. The mansion’s atmosphere is bounteous in detail and brimming with gothic vibes. There was an incredible feeling of containment–like the walls were closing in on me and the urgency to beat the clock, make the daily word count, and not get yourself killed made the pages turn without hesitation. Every character is layered with goodness and always kept me guessing. There was also a “story” within the story that gave THE WRITING RETREAT a wicked cool touch. If you are wondering what it takes to get your book published at this retreat….you are in store for quite the adventure. ⁣

Put this book on your February TBR and make it happen! It’s a fun one! ⁣

Click on the book pic to purchase!

I enjoyed this light thriller. 𝘞𝘩𝘢𝘵 𝘓𝘪𝘦𝘴 𝘪𝘯 𝘵𝘩𝘦 𝘞𝘰𝘰𝘥𝘴 started slow but quickly began to move and shake (which is what I like). Once I got all the characters in order, I settled into my listening experience nicely. I love a thriller with a childhood backstory that creeps its way back in to present day. Marshall did a fantastic job bringing me between two distinct timelines with ease. Her book was an easy breezy read that I happily listened to. I am a massive fan of the audiobook narrator, Karissa Vacker @karissavacker, who 100% brought the characters and story to life.⁣

Grab yourself a copy or an audiobook credit for this new release!⁣


“Naomi Shaw used to believe in magic. Twenty-two years ago, she and her two best friends, Cassidy and Olivia, spent the summer roaming the woods, imagining a world of ceremony and wonder. They called it the Goddess Game. The summer ended suddenly when Naomi was attacked. Miraculously, she survived her seventeen stab wounds and lived to identify the man who had hurt her. The girls’ testimony put away a serial killer wanted for murdering six women. They were heroes. And they were liars. For decades, the friends have kept a secret worth killing for. But now Olivia wants to tell, and Naomi sets out to find out what really happened in the woods–no matter how dangerous the truth turns out to be.”

*I received an advance reader copy of both books mentioned in today’s post from the publishers in exchange for my honest review. My opinions are 100% my own. If I don’t like it…I don’t share it!

*Book links provided in today’s post are affiliate links. Dear Mr. Hemingway makes a tiny commission through books purchased in our storefront. Even better, 20% of purchases made through the Dear Mr. Hemingway storefront go towards an independent bookstore. Thank you so much for all of your support!

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