Pen Pal <--- Okay so right off the bat, this (below) happened to me, and it was physical proof that I was LOVING (LOVED!!!) this book. I announced it to the world... er, well... the Facebook. 😉
One of my all time favorite authors in the whole world and why? 'Cause she keeps on surprising me and there's nothing better than thinking a story is going one way, and being twisted into a totally different direction. Something... maybe even better, or worse, but just as addicting! So. Much. Excitement.
Maryse: When you hit the HUGE REVEAL in a book, while in a school line and get honked at ’cause you’re not moving… AND ARE ALSO notified by your watch that you have been having a high heart rate for the last 10 minutes, and all you’ve been doing was sitting there, reading… Yeah… it’s GOOOOOOOOOD!!!!
Terri: Yep, that book would do it!
Beth: oh my gosh so good!
Kristina: omg I finished this book last week and have been telling everyone about it. One of the best books all year!!
Sierra: still my #1 read of the year!
Maria: Wow…. That was a good read.
Maryse: RIGHT??? Did you see it coming?
I absolutely love her writing style. Clever hooks right from the start, a smooth writing style, characters that come to life, a story to be interested in, and best of all, jaw dropping twists that you don’t see coming, but that take a story full circle into awesomeness.
And she has done it, yet again. And everyone told me.
Kim: PenPal by JT Gessinger was AMAZING. The ending had me 😮😮😮 A must read.
Maryse: OMG I WANT TO READ THIS ONE ASAP! Her endings are always WOW!!!! OMG KIM!!! PenPal is calling me too. You ‘n me have the same “kindle throwing” book taste!!
Aimee: OMG!!! I just finished PenPal. This book is hard to put in words… it definitely was a tearjerker. Wow what an ending!!! I truly enjoyed this book!!! It was definitely a 5* What a book!!! Thanks for the recommendation because I LOVED IT!!! definitely a tearjerker for me!!
So I one-clicked it, but I did not start it.
And I waited and waited, ’cause I saw a spoiler in a comment here on my blog (or was it a reader question where it was answered?) and I was bummed. I hoped that if I waited long enough, I might forget it (though that was wishful thinking, right?). But I DID forget (thank you book gods, for letting me have sooooooo many story memories in my head that I can’t keep straight, ’cause that spoiler eventually went right out the window 😂).
So once my book-bud (from alllllll the way from back in 2010) had a freak out on my Facebook page a couple of weeks ago, I knew I was ready.
Amber: I’m currently reading Pen Pal…at the end 🤯🤯🤯 definitely will be reading more from this author!!
Maryse: She is the queen of clever reveals and twists that you don’t see coming. She catches me EVERY TIME.
Amber: yup, I’m in the middle of getting caught!! 😂😂😂
HOLY MOLY. I WAS IN!!
And guess what? I was guessing and guessing and guessing & it still hit me like a ton of bricks when I reached the biggest reveal. YAY!! I love when that happens. My heart was LITERALLY POUNDING AND RACING! My watch even said so. Here’s proof —>
I didn’t get the honking-at-me proof, but I’ll never forget my embarrassment. 😳
Anyway, on to this one. So what’s it about?
It’s a full on love story/love-after-loss story, with super-steam yumminess, and a mega-alpha male that leads HARD. Again, if you’re into that you’ll fall for him.
But should you? 😉
Anyway, the main female character (I’m calling her bunny – you’ll see why 😉 ) is mourning the recent death of her husband. Good memories abound, and she’s missing him terribly, alone in the big old house they bought and were fixing up together.
So many words, and all so meaningless.
Everything is meaningless.
There’s a Michael-shaped hole in my chest, and nothing matters anymore.
Strange things happen in the house like electrical issues (lights flickering, bulbs exploding), a leaky roof (okay that one makes sense), cabinet doors and drawers that open on their own, you get the drill.
She’s also receiving letters from an inmate in a penitentiary that insists they know each other and he’ll wait forever for her.
…my gaze lands on the letter on the table.
I can’t say what compels me to do it, but before I know it, I’m sitting down to write a reply. I scribble it on the back of the letter Dante sent me.
What are you waiting for?
I mail it before I lose my nerve.
Very romantic (yet creepy-ish) letters, but she has no clue who he is, no matter how hard she tries to figure it out. But she writes back to him, and he writes back to her, and the letters keep showing up on her table…
I take a little consolation in the fact that the letter from the mysterious Dante had no overtones of hostility. Admittedly creepy with all the “I know you” business, at least he isn’t threatening me harm.
Annnnnd, she hires a roofer for the mess of an old roof she has, and he’s everything you’d want in an alpha male. HOLY MOLY HOTNESS!!! Brooding, no-nonsense, bossy, and also kind of funny, but in a matter-of-fact way.
I don’t understand how he manages to be completely inappropriate and also ridiculously appealing. Whatever this sorcery is, I need to get away from it before I do something stupid.
And best of all, protective and comforting (exactly when she needs it). That slow burn and fun bantering starts turning into something else, even though she’s reluctant and refuses to take off her wedding ring.
How easily we trust that the sun will keep rising and setting, warming our days. And what a terrible blow it is to discover it isn’t the sun that makes things bright, but the people who love us, so that when they’re gone, everything is plunged into darkness.
But those letters keep coming, those sweet memories of hers start turning ugly, and the beautiful old house continues to torment her.
And I’m leaving it there. 😉
The rest is for you to discover, sink into, and to feel, deeply, every step of the way. There are TWO twists. Two reveals. So when one comes at you and takes your breath away, there’s still another one to discover.
5 STARS!!!! Thank you author, for all of your crazy (and addictive) stories that are always unpredictable. MORE PLEASE!! And yes, while it’s not perfect (I had a few issues that either made me cringe, or felt like “leading” a little too obviously, at times – now that I’m backtracking reading my highlights), it was fun, and intriguing and exciting and that’s what keeps me reading.
P.S. I loved this story so much that I read EVERY single word the author wrote after the story was finished. Her acknowledgements, her inspirations, and all of that. I didn’t want it to end.
➔➔➔ Love this trope? Browse more features and reviews on my blog of books that include jaw-dropping twists
➔➔➔ Love this author? Check out more of my J.T. Geissinger features and reviews on my blog!