book review · Non ARC

When a Stranger Comes by Karen S. Bell

When a Stranger Comes...: A gripping psychological thriller

3 Stars

Publisher:

Date of publication: September 13th, 2017

Genre: Fantasy, Suspense, Paranormal

Where you can find When a Stranger Comes: Amazon

Book synopsis (from Goodreads):

A GRIPPING PSYCHOLOGICAL THRILLER FOR FANS OF KING AND KOONTZ! 

Would you be willing to make a deal with the devil to have your hopes and dreams come true? 

Witnessing a lightening bolt on a sunny day, author Alexa Wainwright doesn’t realize she’s been transported to an alternate universe. Here, she meets media mogul and publisher King Blakemore who offers her a lucrative book contract that will guarantee her comeback. 

This publisher seems odd. This book deal is too good. Suddenly, the contract’s been signed. Now what can she do? 

Desperate to get her life back, Alexa devises schemes to untether herself from this hellish existence but to no avail. Can Alexa find her way out of this nightmare? 

Buy this book if you’re a reader who loves a page-turning, heart-stopping, psychological thriller with some magical realism thrown in. 

My review:

I like a book that gets under my skin. So when I read the blurb for When a Stranger Comes…, I was intrigued. Unfortunately, When a Stranger Comes… didn’t get under my skin. If anything, I was left confused by the end of the book. I was also left dissatisfied that the book didn’t get under my skin. A psychological thriller should do that to you. It didn’t for me.

I thought the plotline for When a Stranger Comes… was great. A writer is transported to an alternate realm without her knowledge. There, she achieves the fame and fortune that she wants, but for a price. When she realizes that she made a deal with the Devil, it is almost too late. She needs to find a way to get out of this nightmare. The whole making a deal with the Devil plotline is overused but the author put a fresh spin on it. It wasn’t until the end of the book that the plot started to go all over the place. It was almost like the author had a timeline and rushed through the ending.

I didn’t like Alexa. She rubbed me the wrong way. She overreacted to everything. She made up excuses about why she didn’t keep people close. She treated her assistant horribly. There were scenes where I was eyerolling so hard that I thought my eyes were going to get stuck. She did change, somewhat, during the last part of the book. But that did nothing to change my perception of her.

As weird as this is going to sound, I thought the Devil was a well-written character. He didn’t attempt to hide who he was or what he was doing. I wouldn’t go as far to say that I liked him but he was an enjoyable character to read.

It was the last part of the book that went off track for me.  If the author introduced the alternate universe and angel storyline sooner that I wouldn’t have been as confused.

The end of the book was interesting. I liked that the author chose to do what she did with Alexa. It made for some thinking after I was done with the book.

What I liked about When a Stranger Comes…:

A) Good storyline

B) the Devil

C) the end of the book

What I disliked about When a Stranger Comes…:

A) Left feeling confused by the end of the book

B) Book didn’t get under my skin

C) Alexa

I would give When a Stranger Comes…an Adult rating. There is sex. It is not explicit but Alexa has a lot of it. There is violence. There is language.

There are no trigger warnings with When a Stranger Comes

I am on the fence if I would read this book again. I am also on the fence if I would recommend this book to family and friends. I am open to reading other books by the author.

I would like to thank the publishers for allowing me to read and review When a Stranger Comes…

All opinions stated in this review of When a Stranger Comes…are mine.

**I received a free copy of this book and volunteered to review it**

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