Unspeakable Things
Inspired by a terrifying true story from the author’s hometown, a heart-pounding novel of suspense about a small Minnesota community where nothing is as quiet—or as safe—as it seems.Cassie McDowell’s life in 1980s Minnesota seems perfectly wholesome. She lives on a farm, loves school, and has a crush on the nicest boy in class. Yes, there are her parents’ strange parties and their parade of deviant guests, but she’s grown accustomed to them.All that changes when someone comes hunting in Lilydale.One by one, local boys go missing. One by one, they return changed—violent, moody, and withdrawn. What happened to them becomes the stuff of shocking rumors. The accusations of who’s responsible grow just as wild, and dangerous town secrets start to surface. Then Cassie’s own sister undergoes the dark change. If she is to survive, Cassie must find her way in an adult world where every sin is justified, and only the truth is unforgivable.

Unspeakable Things Details

TitleUnspeakable Things
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseJan 1st, 2020
PublisherBrilliance Audio
ISBN-139781978683716
Rating
GenreMystery, Fiction, Thriller, Historical, Historical Fiction, Mystery Thriller, Suspense

Unspeakable Things Review

  • Nilufer Ozmekik
    January 1, 1970
    Another disturbing, dark, nail biter story based on true events. And I loved to spend time at Cassie’s head and seeing events at 80’s Minnesota from her eyes. She was thirteen, smart, mature from her peers, a little quirky (but in an adorable way), coming from not so wealthy and dysfunctional family, dealing with his mostly drunk, artistic father’s mood swings and anger management problems as her mother acts like they’re perfect and exampled family and nothing is wrong about them.They’re living Another disturbing, dark, nail biter story based on true events. And I loved to spend time at Cassie’s head and seeing events at 80’s Minnesota from her eyes. She was thirteen, smart, mature from her peers, a little quirky (but in an adorable way), coming from not so wealthy and dysfunctional family, dealing with his mostly drunk, artistic father’s mood swings and anger management problems as her mother acts like they’re perfect and exampled family and nothing is wrong about them.They’re living in a small community. Everybody knows everybody and their most of the secrets. But the small community’s life ruined with disappearance of string of local boys. Is it Peeping Tom as the school children gossiped about or is it a real dangerous hunter coming for boys?Do you love the dark, ominous, nerve bending atmosphere and heart throbbing stories with smart, riveting narration? If your answer is a strong : “Yessss!, this book fits for your expectations.It’s gripping, it’s intriguing and at some parts it was compelling to read the things Cassie had to witness and endure. But it was mostly quick page-turner, even though the heavy and creepy stuffs in the book made me a little irritated and gave me several jumps at my seat. I ended up sitting cross legged on the floor and consumed more wine that I can stomach. It was not stressful, agitating journey!A quick warning: If you’re dissatisfied with the haphazard ending of the book. There’s epilogue was pulled out before the release. Please visit the ww.jesslourey.com and request your epilogue so you get more satisfying answers and closure about the characters’ future stories.Overall: I loved Cassie and I loved eerie, complex, captivating writing style. Only thing I didn’t like was the ending but as soon as I checked the website, that problem is also solved. I wished the author or publishers wouldn’t pull out this part of the book. But I mostly enjoyed more than I expected.
    more
  • marilyn
    January 1, 1970
    Cassie McDowell is a twelve year old girl living in rural Minnesota in the 1980s, daughter of well educated, but poor, free living, hippy-ish parents. You might think that she and her older sister had a blessed life, but there are bad things happening to boys in her area and bad things happening in her own home. Cassie lives in fear of her dad coming up the stairs to her room at night, something she tries to fend off by writing stories in her diary. And Cassie and the entire town are concerned Cassie McDowell is a twelve year old girl living in rural Minnesota in the 1980s, daughter of well educated, but poor, free living, hippy-ish parents. You might think that she and her older sister had a blessed life, but there are bad things happening to boys in her area and bad things happening in her own home. Cassie lives in fear of her dad coming up the stairs to her room at night, something she tries to fend off by writing stories in her diary. And Cassie and the entire town are concerned that boys are going missing, only to show up again, having been molested by a masked man. Rumors are rampant but because the boys are from the poorest side of town, next to nothing it being done about the abuse to the boys. Then finally, a boy from the rich part of town goes missing and things start to heat up. Things really aren't much better at Cassie's house. Her parents hold parties where anything goes and they don't even try to hide it from their daughters. Both girls are told they can never speak of what goes on at home, because other people won't "understand". Smart, creative Cassie is living a nightmare but not able to reach out to anyone about it. She decides to solve the mystery of who is kidnapping and molesting her schoolmates but she fears even those crimes may be way closer to home than just in her neighborhood. Her father's ever changing moods rule the household and there are so many secrets, including what happens in their dirt basement. While this might be a coming of age story, it is for sure a tension filled thriller. Every day and especially, every night, of Cassie's life, is spent in fear of the monster who is may come up the stairs and the monster who is taking young boys. Cassie's mom won't put a stop to what happens at home and in fact, turns a blind eye to it. Cassie's sister is acting out, dealing with everything in the most dysfunctional of ways. I felt for all the children, even those that take to striking out at those weaker than them, because they are trapped in a world that puts what side of town one lives in, over actual crimes that need investigating. This was a Kindle First Read choice. 
    more
  • Michelle
    January 1, 1970
    1980's Lilydale, Minnesota Twelve year old Cassie and her older sister Sephie grew up poor with an artist father and their mother, the sole provider, a teacher. Their world is rocked when boys in their neighborhood begin getting attacked by a man in a mask. These victims aren't the same after and Cassie wants to solve the mystery and catch the attacker. The yuck factor in this book was a bit too much for me and that has nothing to do with the boys being attacked. Are swingers and sex parties 1980's Lilydale, Minnesota Twelve year old Cassie and her older sister Sephie grew up poor with an artist father and their mother, the sole provider, a teacher. Their world is rocked when boys in their neighborhood begin getting attacked by a man in a mask. These victims aren't the same after and Cassie wants to solve the mystery and catch the attacker. The yuck factor in this book was a bit too much for me and that has nothing to do with the boys being attacked. Are swingers and sex parties really necessary to tell this story? Also, the culprit really comes as no surprise. Anyhoo, what really pissed me off is the ending. Or the lack of one. Apparently the author decided to leave out the epilogue in favor of readers forming their own opinion. You can access the epilogue via her website to get some sort of resolution. This was an arc that was provided to me for free but had I of purchased this book I would have been really angry that I now have to go to her website to be provided the ending in which I already paid for. I hope they change this before publication. 2 stars! Thank you to NetGalley and and Thomas & Mercer for providing me with a digital ARC in exchange for my honest review.
    more
  • Kristi Lamont
    January 1, 1970
    Wow was this a really good book about some truly disturbing things. Got it as an Amazon First Read so I went into it with low expectations; whipped through it in a couple of hours this afternoon. Realized as I was getting toward the end that I was thirsty, I needed to go to the bathroom, my jaws were locked and my fingers were clenching my iPad very, very hard. The sense of foreboding Ms Lourey had going on was something else. No way in the world was I getting out of my chair until I got to the Wow was this a really good book about some truly disturbing things. Got it as an Amazon First Read so I went into it with low expectations; whipped through it in a couple of hours this afternoon. Realized as I was getting toward the end that I was thirsty, I needed to go to the bathroom, my jaws were locked and my fingers were clenching my iPad very, very hard. The sense of foreboding Ms Lourey had going on was something else. No way in the world was I getting out of my chair until I got to the end.I wish Netflix or somebody would make this into a series. I see Woody Harrelson as one of the main characters. If you read the book, tell me your guess as to which one in the comments, not gonna do a spoiler here.Oh, one more thing: I'm quite sure part of the reason I really liked this book is because it was told from the perspective of a female adolescent in the early 1980s. I would've been I guess five years older than her then, more like her sister's age, but could still totally relate to SO many things (hot rollers and Farrah Fawcett hair, anyone?). But thank GOD I've never had to butcher a chicken.
    more
  • Kelli
    January 1, 1970
    Wow. This is really dark folks. Pretty disturbing things happening. And somehow the way the words are written gripped me and I needed to finish it out. I'm glad I did.
  • Lawyer
    January 1, 1970
    It is rare that I write a full review these days. I am conscious of all I wish to read yet. The clock is ticking. I am conscious of growing older. I am well aware that time is not regained. Why this review?This title was an Amazon Prime First Read. It carries a Goodreads rating of 3.76. It deserves neither.Perhaps this will keep you from wasting your time in reading this book. It is tragically over written. While the subject matter is so significant--child abuse and exploitation--the author It is rare that I write a full review these days. I am conscious of all I wish to read yet. The clock is ticking. I am conscious of growing older. I am well aware that time is not regained. Why this review?This title was an Amazon Prime First Read. It carries a Goodreads rating of 3.76. It deserves neither.Perhaps this will keep you from wasting your time in reading this book. It is tragically over written. While the subject matter is so significant--child abuse and exploitation--the author exhibits inadequate knowledge of the problem. Worse, Lourey shows she performed any research on the topic, though material sources have consistently multiplied since the 1980s. Rather, Lourey cites a single podcast related to a single case involving the abduction of an eleven year old boy whose body was boot discovered till 27 years later.What allow me to offer such open criticism of this book? I was a career prosecutor for close to 28 years. More than 20 years I specialized in the investigation and prosecution of child abuse cases, physical and sexual. I received training across the nation. And became a trainer of other professionals assigned to present these cases.Lourey blends offender types, both opportunistic and fixated, as interchangeable types. They are not. Lourey has a worried town pointing fingers at stereotypified offenders.For one example of a novel worthy of its subject matter I recommend Bastard Out of Carolina by Dorothy Allison. For one novel involving the random act of the offender unknown to his victim I recommend The Prince of Tides by Pat Conroy.For those interested in reference titles to offenders and victims of child abuse, a multitude of the most recent studies are readily found online.What a disappointing book on which to begin the New Year.
    more
  • Amy
    January 1, 1970
    Unspeakable Things is out today and man you guys, this one was such a different read from the type of book I’ve been gravitating towards lately. It’s a mix between a coming of age story and suspense and is set in 1980’s Minnesota and follows a thirteen year old girl named Cassie. She lives in a small town and suddenly a string of local boys start to disappear, but most of them return quickly. They’re all changed and haunted by whatever happened while they were gone and Cassie is terrified by Unspeakable Things is out today and man you guys, this one was such a different read from the type of book I’ve been gravitating towards lately. It’s a mix between a coming of age story and suspense and is set in 1980’s Minnesota and follows a thirteen year old girl named Cassie. She lives in a small town and suddenly a string of local boys start to disappear, but most of them return quickly. They’re all changed and haunted by whatever happened while they were gone and Cassie is terrified by what’s going on in her town. Terrifying, right? It’s also inspired by true events making it all the more creepy!This one went super dark, and had an overall sense of foreboding, hints of menace and just the general feeling that something was off. I found it to be atmospheric and eerie and really emotional all at the same time. It almost had a literary feel to it as the author has a beautiful way with words and the angst and emotional turmoil Cassie was facing added so much depth and heartbreak to a really gripping story.The ending of this wasn’t my favorite, I was disappointed until I found out the author had originally written an epilogue then decided to pull it before publication. She has it up on her website and after reading it and getting some more firm answers I was satisfied. Don’t read it first though, there are huge spoilers for the book. Other than that minor gripe that was easily resolved for me I really enjoyed this one.
    more
  • Chandra Claypool (wherethereadergrows)
    January 1, 1970
    For some reason, I glanced at this book yesterday and almost set it aside as one I'd get to later, if I had time. But then something kept drawing me to it and after picking it up and putting it down a few times, something about it just called to me and I decided to pick this up.... and once I did, I didn't put it down until I was done reading. So if you have this on your shelf anywhere, I recommend you don't pass this one up and READ IT ASAP.I love novels based on true stories. As this one is For some reason, I glanced at this book yesterday and almost set it aside as one I'd get to later, if I had time. But then something kept drawing me to it and after picking it up and putting it down a few times, something about it just called to me and I decided to pick this up.... and once I did, I didn't put it down until I was done reading. So if you have this on your shelf anywhere, I recommend you don't pass this one up and READ IT ASAP.I love novels based on true stories. As this one is told through Cassie's eyes, a 12-turning-13 year old girl in the 80s, I understood every single reference and remember all the stories of Chester the Molester and when letting your kids roam the streets on their bikes was still safe.. until it wasn't. I also remember being that age where everything frightened you and yet you were also fearless. Cassie was this girl. Innocent and yet aware of all the weird things going on around her - whether within her own family or around her otherwise. She becomes her own Nancy Drew and wants to figure out what's going on with these kidnapped boys... especially when the one that doesn't come back is the one in her romantic mind she was destined to marry.I absolutely adore that the entire novel is straight through Cassie. You instantly feel a connection with her. And all the little clues keep you wondering, with her, as to who the suspects are and what possible motives there might be. You see her grow (faster than she needs to be at that age). I will say, I understand why the ending was the way that it was.... but I was left feeling a little want... luckily, I saw @novelgossip's review and she mentioned you could get the epilogue so AFTER you've read the book, if you need some answers like I did, google Unspeakable Things Epilogue. Even with the slight abrupt ending, I can't give this book less than the five stars I think it deserves. I'll be thinking about this one for a while.
    more
  • Sheila Beaumont
    January 1, 1970
    This is a creepy, well-written account of the perverse goings-on behind the wholesome facade of a small town in Minnesota. The tale is narrated by a 12-year-old girl, but this is definitely not a children's book. This horrific story is based on real events from the author's childhood.
    more
  • Darcia Helle
    January 1, 1970
    Unspeakable Things is dark, intense, and so well written that it hurts to read this story.The entire novel is written from 12-year-old Cassie's perspective, but this is absolutely not a YA novel. I almost didn't get this book because I'm not a big fan of child narrators. Fortunately for me, the premise was too tempting to pass up. Within a few paragraphs, I was hooked. By the end of the first chapter, I couldn't imagine this story being told from any other character's perspective. By the end, I Unspeakable Things is dark, intense, and so well written that it hurts to read this story.The entire novel is written from 12-year-old Cassie's perspective, but this is absolutely not a YA novel. I almost didn't get this book because I'm not a big fan of child narrators. Fortunately for me, the premise was too tempting to pass up. Within a few paragraphs, I was hooked. By the end of the first chapter, I couldn't imagine this story being told from any other character's perspective. By the end, I was a ragged knot of emotions.A version of this story played out in the author's hometown decades ago. Another version is probably playing out somewhere else right now. Maybe knowing this makes Cassie's story more powerful and heartbreaking. Or maybe what hits me hardest is knowing that many of us, at some point in our lives, are side characters to Cassie's starring role, and like those in this book, we choose to look away.
    more
  • Annika Martin
    January 1, 1970
    This book is emotional and intense and just so compelling - I was flipping those pages like mad with my heart in my throat. It's out of my normal genre to read, but OMG so grateful I got an early copy. Beautifully written. Definite winner.
  • Natasha | readwithnatasha
    January 1, 1970
    3.5 stars. I devoured this book in two days. Young boys in Cassie's small town are being molested and she doesn't think the police are doing enough to solve this mystery. The innocent 13 year old has her own handful of suspects - the creepy police chief, her gay band teacher, the scary man called the Goblin, as well as her own father. This story is pretty dark and disturbing - molestation, incest, swinger parties, etc. and it's all told through Cassie and her innocence. A lot of the bad stuff is 3.5 stars. I devoured this book in two days. Young boys in Cassie's small town are being molested and she doesn't think the police are doing enough to solve this mystery. The innocent 13 year old has her own handful of suspects - the creepy police chief, her gay band teacher, the scary man called the Goblin, as well as her own father. This story is pretty dark and disturbing - molestation, incest, swinger parties, etc. and it's all told through Cassie and her innocence. A lot of the bad stuff is implied and covered by Cassie calling it gross.I loved Cassie as the main character. She's a child and some of her thoughts are juvenile, but I loved it. I loved the suspense throughout the entire book. I was constantly switching who I thought the molester was and was curious about the entire town in general. The reason for the 3.5 star rating is because of the ending. I didn't feel like it addressed all the questions that were raised and the ending seemed rushed. I would still recommend this book to people because the suspense had me hooked, but I'd give fair warning that not all your questions will be answered and there is a lot of vagueness where you have to fill in the blanks.EDIT: Jess Lourey has released an epilogue. She said she wanted readers to form their own ending so she left the epilogue out of the book. Here is the link to the epilogue: http://jessicalourey.com/survey-two it contains spoilers so don't read it until you're done with the book. I thought about raising my rating, but I'm not going to.
    more
  • Amy
    January 1, 1970
    My favorite book of 2019!!I had downloaded this book and read just 7% at first and I knew it was going to be a fantastic story. I picked it up and read until 7:30am and it was the best all-nighter I've ever had! This story IMO seems so urgent and important for many reasons. I had to make sure the characters in the book were going to be okay. My heart broke for all the kids that were taken by the town creeper and I couldn't wait to solve the mystery. I absolutely loved the author's writing style! My favorite book of 2019!!I had downloaded this book and read just 7% at first and I knew it was going to be a fantastic story. I picked it up and read until 7:30am and it was the best all-nighter I've ever had! This story IMO seems so urgent and important for many reasons. I had to make sure the characters in the book were going to be okay. My heart broke for all the kids that were taken by the town creeper and I couldn't wait to solve the mystery. I absolutely loved the author's writing style! I could see the surroundings and smell the air and taste the foods, ect. Some of her sentences are so beautifully written that I would reread them 3 or 4 times. I had the biggest goosebumps and cried at the ending! This is definitely my pick for best book of 2019! I will buy anything and everything she writes! I also wanted to add that my absolute favorite hero is Mighty Isis and this is the very first book that I've read that mentions the Isis from the old TV show! I love all the details that made me remember the good old days of being a kid.
    more
  • Ruthy lavin
    January 1, 1970
    Being an 80’s kid, I always love it when I read a book set in that era which is so wonderfully visionary that it takes me right back to being 10 again - it happened when I read ‘stand by me’ and ‘It’ and again when I watched the wonderful Netflix series ‘stranger things’.This book gave me those same feelings and more.It is wonderful.A sad story based loosely on true events, the narrative is stunning. I felt like I was by Cassie’s side throughout the whole story.I would have awarded it 5 stars Being an 80’s kid, I always love it when I read a book set in that era which is so wonderfully visionary that it takes me right back to being 10 again - it happened when I read ‘stand by me’ and ‘It’ and again when I watched the wonderful Netflix series ‘stranger things’.This book gave me those same feelings and more.It is wonderful.A sad story based loosely on true events, the narrative is stunning. I felt like I was by Cassie’s side throughout the whole story.I would have awarded it 5 stars but I felt the ending was unnecessarily rushed and could have been better.This was one of those books that I didn’t want to end, and like Stand by me, it’s worthy of being adapted for film. It’s already back on the pile to be read again.A truly fantastic read.
    more
  • Joseph Spuckler
    January 1, 1970
    Unspeakable Things by Jess Lourey is a crime/mystery story influenced by actual events. Lourey writes about secrets. She is the bestselling Agatha, Anthony, and Lefty-nominated author of the critically-acclaimed Mira James mysteries, which have earned multiple starred reviews from Library JournalandBooklist, the latter calling her writing "a splendid mix of humor and suspense."There are several likable things in this novel, like the 1980s setting and pop culture references. Secondly, Cassandra, Unspeakable Things by Jess Lourey is a crime/mystery story influenced by actual events.  Lourey writes about secrets. She is the bestselling Agatha, Anthony, and Lefty-nominated author of the critically-acclaimed Mira James mysteries, which have earned multiple starred reviews from Library Journal and Booklist, the latter calling her writing "a splendid mix of humor and suspense."There are several likable things in this novel, like the 1980s setting and pop culture references.  Secondly, Cassandra, the narrator and central character in the story, is very likable.  Not quite thirteen, there is still quite a bit of innocence in her interpretation of events, even though she is an adult when telling the story.  It gave me the same feeling as the narration in the movie "Silver Bullet."  The inserts of  "Ripley's Believe It or Not" throughout the book also brought back memories.  There is a good deal of nostalgia in the story. Other parts of the book are too obvious or unexplained.  The parent's parties are pretty obvious, even though it is not explained until later in the book.   Other things like the number of stairs the father climbs add an extra layer of creepiness to the story.  Although the implication it's not difficult.  Other repeated events like the clipping of nails is a weird aspect of the story and not explained at all. There is a level of creepiness that runs throughout the book.  It doesn't build or subside as the story progresses but remains constant.  The mother is a teacher that seems like an old hippie with healthy food, home remedies, and openness on some issues.  The father is a creep and a drunk but is often left in charge of both daughters. The sheriff and some of the other townsfolk are just as bad. Creepiness aside, this felt much more like a young adult novel than the promoted Adult Fiction tag.  Parts were too simplistic for an adult reader, and other elements that might be accepted by younger readers are questionable to adults.  The prologue would have the reader believe the narrator is an adult. Still, the telling of the story is undoubtedly that of a young teenager without any adult clarifications or added hindsight information.  The writing well done as it draws the reader into the story, and Cassandra is very likable.  The story has some twists, and although it is not predictable, there are plenty of unanswered questions that could have added to the account or created a bit of complexity.  A solid story that could be better.
    more
  • patricia tiffany
    January 1, 1970
    Okay but not greatSome things just didn't fit. And what Haiti the dad? And what had the dad done? And were there other victims? What did she mean about what if I had eaten strawberries? Some stuff just didn't make sense.
  • PinkAmy loves books, cats and naps
    January 1, 1970
    Summer of 1983, boys in Cassie’s small town are being molested by a stranger in a mask. The almost thirteen year old has a number of suspects, her gay music teacher, the scary man kids call Goblin, the creepy police chief, even her own father.UNSPEAKABLE THINGS drew me in with Cassie’s wise, yet innocent voice. Jess Lourey skillfully showed the difference between what the tween understood and what certain characters in her life were actually doing. Because of Cassie’s naïveté, Lourey skirts Summer of 1983, boys in Cassie’s small town are being molested by a stranger in a mask. The almost thirteen year old has a number of suspects, her gay music teacher, the scary man kids call Goblin, the creepy police chief, even her own father.UNSPEAKABLE THINGS drew me in with Cassie’s wise, yet innocent voice. Jess Lourey skillfully showed the difference between what the tween understood and what certain characters in her life were actually doing. Because of Cassie’s naïveté, Lourey skirts around some of the bigger issues going in in her home like incest and sex parties.Lourey doesn’t shy away from the prejudices against gay men and a more conservative, judgmental small town mentality that I remember well from living in a small town in 1983 when I was nineteen. I assume she chose to set the show during the years of her own childhood, when similar kidnappings occurred. I remembered all the cultural references Lourey threw in the mix to remind readers of the era. The plot of UNSPEAKABLE THINGS is dreary. As good as the story starts out is as bleak as it becomes, and not because the story is dark. Cassie’s father, drunk and inappropriately sexual, controlling and erratic was much more awful than she realized (not a spoiler, readers will pick this up from the beginning). Her mom didn’t have her back, suffering under her own learned helplessness. UNSPEAKABLE THINGS uneven pace seemed to have a lot of scene fillers than didn’t advance plot or characters. I didn’t feel any tension in the story although I didn’t guess the perp, though he was among the handful of people I suspected at one point during the story.The ending of UNSPEAKABLE THINGS made me glad the book wasn’t longer. I didn’t feel much else.
    more
  • Crime by the Book
    January 1, 1970
    4.5/5 stars for this dread-inducing, dark coming-of-age story! WOW, this book. This is one of those books that I'm sure will provoke strong opinions on both sides of the fence, but I personally loved it. This is a truly disturbing story that explores challenging themes; readers who do NOT want to read anything involving child abuse will be best avoiding this book. Unspeakable Things follows a young girl on the brink of becoming a teenager, navigating dangers within her town and within her 4.5/5 stars for this dread-inducing, dark coming-of-age story! WOW, this book. This is one of those books that I'm sure will provoke strong opinions on both sides of the fence, but I personally loved it. This is a truly disturbing story that explores challenging themes; readers who do NOT want to read anything involving child abuse will be best avoiding this book. Unspeakable Things follows a young girl on the brink of becoming a teenager, navigating dangers within her town and within her home. It's a sinister blend of psychological suspense, coming-of-age story, and rural noir, and I loved it. Catch my full thoughts on the CBTB blog! http://crimebythebook.com/blog/2020/1...
    more
  • Alison Marie (Thrillerlovingirl)
    January 1, 1970
    If you’re picking up this book because you believe it to be some fast paced mystery thriller, you’ll be highly disappointed. To me, it read more as a little bit of mystery, and a lot more of a fiction type book, if anything. The pros:-I loved the writing. -The “parties” that Cassie’s parents had were the most disturbing yet entertaining parts of the book. (I’m not sure what that says about me) -I connected with Cassie in a lot of ways when reading this book. Character connection is a major plus If you’re picking up this book because you believe it to be some fast paced mystery thriller, you’ll be highly disappointed. To me, it read more as a little bit of mystery, and a lot more of a fiction type book, if anything. The pros:-I loved the writing. -The “parties” that Cassie’s parents had were the most disturbing yet entertaining parts of the book. (I’m not sure what that says about me) -I connected with Cassie in a lot of ways when reading this book. Character connection is a major plus for me.The cons:-I expected more thrill. There were a few times that I did catch myself holding my breath, but it was short lived.I liked this book. A lot. If I were to judge it by the fact that it’s categorized as a mystery thriller then I wouldn’t have liked it as much. I do recommend this book, but I don’t exactly know who to. If you do decide to pick this one up, drop your thriller expectations and try to go in as blindly as possible.
    more
  • Monika Sadowski
    January 1, 1970
    Very disturbing book. It’s hard to imagine that it was real story.
  • Mary
    January 1, 1970
    After giving this novel a four star rating, I found myself questioning whether I actually wanted to give it four stars. It was hard to put down, and it was better than most Kindle first reads, but I think I'll go to three stars for the reasons below.Spoilers below:There were a few things here that left me perplexed or annoyed. When and where was the dad molesting Sephie? Isn't her bedroom down the hall from Cassie's, so wouldn't she hear everything, especially when she's up all night waiting for After giving this novel a four star rating, I found myself questioning whether I actually wanted to give it four stars. It was hard to put down, and it was better than most Kindle first reads, but I think I'll go to three stars for the reasons below.Spoilers below:There were a few things here that left me perplexed or annoyed. When and where was the dad molesting Sephie? Isn't her bedroom down the hall from Cassie's, so wouldn't she hear everything, especially when she's up all night waiting for her father to get her? What was up with the part about the strawberries? It seemed to imply that Sephie suffered more because she alone ate them, but that really doesn't make any sense since she doesn't figure out anything about the man attacking the boys, and since it didn't lead to anything new happening to her (the dad had already been molesting her for months). How old are these characters? At one point Cassie says Frank is 11, only one year younger than herself. Then when they're in the fight with the boys by the river he's only 10. She also says she moved to the country when she was 5 and has only one memory of their old home, but soon after says she began walking when they were in the farmhouse. I don't know if these were all just loose ends that the author forgot about or what, but I tend to remember little details that don't fit, and they drive me crazy! The overtone of the whole story was creepy and gross, with almost all of the male characters being complete degenerates in some way, and all of the females being unlikable for the way they condone, protect, and go along with the mens' horrifying behaviors.Overall, Unspeakable Things was hard to put down because I just wanted to know what happened to Gabriel, and to find out if Cassie and Sephie ever escape their monster of a father. I enjoyed the writing for the most part, but the above issues and maybe a few others I'm forgetting made this a mixed bag for me. Thanks to the reader that posted a link to the epilogue!
    more
  • Shelby Dawson
    January 1, 1970
    Yet another Kindle First book with a ton of five star ratings that leave me feeling very confused.This wasn't terrible but between the writing style and the way a lot of things didn't add up to the (much too fast imo) conclusion I just don't see how this is anything more than sub par.(view spoiler)[There were so many things in here that felt like they were either never resolved or were thrown into the story for no reason. I don't know where the abuse to Sephie came in when Donny never made it up Yet another Kindle First book with a ton of five star ratings that leave me feeling very confused.This wasn't terrible but between the writing style and the way a lot of things didn't add up to the (much too fast imo) conclusion I just don't see how this is anything more than sub par.(view spoiler)[There were so many things in here that felt like they were either never resolved or were thrown into the story for no reason. I don't know where the abuse to Sephie came in when Donny never made it up the stairs. I'm confused about where Goblin's dog went? Why even mention that "story line" when we never find out if it was from Goblin himself, the Sherif, or Cassie's dad? I don't see the point of that whatsoever. I also found this to be one of those books where it is extremely obvious an adult is writing the dialogue for the child character. There were a few lines I'd read and feel like I was reading about someone much older than twelve.I feel like the ending would have been much more satisfying if we had even a slight glance at the way things turned out for Cassie and her family. It took literally until the last five chapters for me to be invested in them in any capacity so to have such a unsatisfying ending left me feeling like this read was kind of a waste of my time tbh. (hide spoiler)]
    more
  • Elle's Book Blog
    January 1, 1970
    Release Date: January 1, 2020 Actual Rating: 3 stars Small Town | Crime | Thriller Unspeakable Things has a good concept, but I didn't care for the way the book was executed. The author left too many unanswered questions about a LOT of things that were going on in the book and I fear that some readers may become confused because of it. On the other hand, I think the author did this to show just how naïve the main character Cassie was. There were some MAJOR issues taking place in the story and Release Date: January 1, 2020 Actual Rating: 3 stars Small Town | Crime | Thriller Unspeakable Things has a good concept, but I didn't care for the way the book was executed. The author left too many unanswered questions about a LOT of things that were going on in the book and I fear that some readers may become confused because of it. On the other hand, I think the author did this to show just how naïve the main character Cassie was. There were some MAJOR issues taking place in the story and we were able to get a firsthand account of it through her eyes. A lot of reads may really like this as it’s unique, but it didn’t work for me. I wanted to be SHOWN and directly TOLD what was happening rather than trying to piece it all together. Another thing that didn’t really work for me is the books actual description. I went into this book thinking it would be all about the kidnappings that took place and the aftermath of it all yet, it wasn’t. It felt like more of a filler for the story and was fleetingly discussed. Sure, the story has the kidnappings in it but the book was way more about Cassie, her family, and their dirty little secrets rather than the abductions. I really wish the author incorporated it more in the story.Other than this, Jess Lourey does a good job with prose and pacing. I felt like I was a part of this small town and I felt shame from the secrets being kept. She sure knows how to immerse her readers into her world and for this reason I gave the book 3 stars rather than 2 like I was thinking.
    more
  • Armand Rosamilia
    January 1, 1970
    Wow. Just wow. This book is such a heartbreak, emotional rollercoaster. It will make you cry, get angry and really feel for the main character. I had to put it down at times because it was so intense, and recommend this to anyone who wants to read a tragic coming-of-age tale with so many twists and turns it will make your head spin.
    more
  • Brandy
    January 1, 1970
    “Bad news still finds you on sunny days.” Unspeakable Things is a wicked, factual based novel that leaves you feeling unhinged. I devoured this book in the matter of a few hours (ok 1/2 my day)- it keeps you tuned in thanks to its own sultry flavor of perversion. 5 stars
    more
  • Rich
    January 1, 1970
    I decided to try and read a book on a different topic that you don't read every or at least I do not lol .I had some high hopes for this book after reading some reviews on it. I have to report at the end of the day this book fell short. The characters were good for the most part the pace was good but a few times it did get bogged down. This book dabbled way to much on the outer fringes of what it was going to be about. I was not expecting a porno but it was very tame not that many unspeakable I decided to try and read a book on a different topic that you don't read every or at least I do not lol .I had some high hopes for this book after reading some reviews on it. I have to report at the end of the day this book fell short. The characters were good for the most part the pace was good but a few times it did get bogged down. This book dabbled way to much on the outer fringes of what it was going to be about. I was not expecting a porno but it was very tame not that many unspeakable scenes. It lightly applied something might be amiss but not strongly enough. I feel this author was afraid this book might get an r rating. The parents were not the greatest but more so the Dad but the Mom was there. It was too much of a coming of age book for me and it lost its way or was afraid to find its way. I thought the ending was rushed , weak too shallow and maybe unbelievable. I would not say to run out and read this book but if you need something to read then it would be ok to give it a spin.
    more
  • Jodie Norquist
    January 1, 1970
    I couldn’t stop reading this book...and read it in a day! Jess Lourey does a great job with murder mysteries. I definitely recommend this one.
  • Kat
    January 1, 1970
    “Bad news still finds you on sunny days.”Unspeakable Things it’s an emotional story told through 12 years old girl’s eyes and is inspired by the true events. Although the subject matter is very disturbing and unsettling the book itself is not very violent and graphic which is refreshingly different to the usual thriller. Young boys are being abducted by a stranger in a mask in a small town of Minnesota. As Cassie follows the local events she becomes determined to discover what happened to the “Bad news still finds you on sunny days.”Unspeakable Things it’s an emotional story told through 12 years old girl’s eyes and is inspired by the true events. Although the subject matter is very disturbing and unsettling the book itself is not very violent and graphic which is refreshingly different to the usual thriller. Young boys are being abducted by a stranger in a mask in a small town of Minnesota. As Cassie follows the local events she becomes determined to discover what happened to the molested boys. However it‘s not the only problem that occupies her mind. We soon find out Cassie struggles with her very own personal nightmares - lack of friends, abuse and constant fear of her father. The author captured the horrifying events very well and created a great story of suspense. I could sense the atmosphere of mystery and dark secrets from the very first pages. I absolutely loved a first person narration - I could almost feel Cassie’s horror and vulnerability and my heart ached for her all the time. The only disappointment for me was the ending which leaves a lot of unanswered questions. I would like to know what happened to Cassie and her family after the evens unfold, especially her relationship with father. I understand it may not be an easy read for some and it is most definitely heartbreaking and unsettling reminder that the monsters might live among us.
    more
  • Renee
    January 1, 1970
    Cassie is not your average twelve year old. She lives with her parents and older sister in a ramshackle house on the outskirts of town. She is smart and has an inquisitive mind, but few friends since her home life is anything but normal. When young boys suddenly go missing, then come back, changed, Cassie is on high alert. She knows what bad men can do, after all, her father Don wrote the book.Cassie never describes what happens at home in great detail. Rather, we get glimpses of her life; the Cassie is not your average twelve year old. She lives with her parents and older sister in a ramshackle house on the outskirts of town. She is smart and has an inquisitive mind, but few friends since her home life is anything but normal. When young boys suddenly go missing, then come back, changed, Cassie is on high alert. She knows what bad men can do, after all, her father Don wrote the book.Cassie never describes what happens at home in great detail. Rather, we get glimpses of her life; the way Cassie behaves when she goes to bed, the way she never discusses her home life with anyone, the way people act when her parents throw a party, and the ominous changes in her sister. Not knowing why Cassie reacted in certain ways, sent my imagination into overdrive.Cassie is the kind of character that I immediately cared about and I just wanted her to find a way out. The ending, like the story, doesn't wrap everything up into a neat little package. Unspeakable Things was a well-paced chilling tale that kept me on the edge of my seat. The tension was unbearable at times and as the story progressed, it only got worse. My first read by Jess Lourey and not my last.
    more
  • Linda
    January 1, 1970
    A few things in this book that jumped out to me. A few of the sentences that made a difference.“Tomorrow was the last day of seventh grade for me. Soon I’d be running through the corn rows with my hands out to catch the pollen, the air exploding with the smell of green juice and earth. Summer meant everything detonating in fruit and flowers.”“That’s the thing about small-town boys. All they had to do was come up with that one shtick, a crack at just the right time, or a Hail Mary touchdown, or A few things in this book that jumped out to me. A few of the sentences that made a difference.“Tomorrow was the last day of seventh grade for me. Soon I’d be running through the corn rows with my hands out to catch the pollen, the air exploding with the smell of green juice and earth. Summer meant everything detonating in fruit and flowers.”“That’s the thing about small-town boys. All they had to do was come up with that one shtick, a crack at just the right time, or a Hail Mary touchdown, or nail the part of Romeo in the class play, and they were set. They never had to try again. Here’s the things about small-town girls: we let them get away with it.”“And we stood there, in that safe pocket of smiles and laughter, summer dreams and yearbook autographs, and it was the last time we’d all be together again.Alive, I mean.”“I’d gone to bed a kid, but I woke up a teenager. An honest -to-god thirteen-year old. I felt different, I was sure of it.”“In the end, I took the necklace, and if me ending up with that doesn’t tell you that there is a grand plan for this life, then you’re hopeless.”This is a very dark story. Although it does not come right out and put deep descriptions on the things that happen, you will have no trouble imagining it. This is told from a twelve year old child’s view. A young girl, Cassandra/Cassie, who has her whole life ahead of her but goes through so much. She is quite the smart young lady too. A very kind child who should live a carefree life without a worry in the world. But she is worried. She knows things are not good in the town she lives in. She’s heard all the talk about the missing then returned boys and how they come back different. She lives in a house where things are not so great either. Secrets are all around her and her older sister. Nothing is explicit at all in this story but you’ll know. You’ll feel so bad for the children. The boys, even though some are bad, are heartbreaking in what they must have gone through. The sisters who are afraid of their own dad. A mother who refuses to listen. This story goes into things that happen in life sometimes. From the peeping Tom to the so called Chester the Molester. To hints of incest. Boys being molested and given back. There are several people who you will suspect are the bad man but will you be able to guess for sure. I had a pretty good idea but didn’t know until the end. Cassie is a strong young girl who just wants the life of a normal child. To live in a world of peace and true love from parents who cherish her and her sister. While some people may not like this story at all I found it to be interesting. How things came together. How things in this small town ran. How a family can be called a family when in reality it’s not at all. It takes way more than a married couple to be real parents. I didn’t like Cassie’s dad or mother. Her mother seemed very week and scared to speak out for her children even though she was a very educated woman and a high school teacher at that. Her dad had many issues going on. One that he survived Vietnam but in my opinion used that to get his way about almost everything from not being a good dad or husband to now having a job to help support his family. He was really the weak one though I still don’t like the mother either. The two sisters are close. Very close and love each other very much. But it’s Cassie who is strong and seemingly independent in so many ways. She’s the one who will pull this story together. Solve the mystery around all that is wrong but on the level of a twelve year old. The author did a great job of keeping her a child in her words and actions. I applaud her for that. Great job Jess Lourey. Great job.The only problem I had with this book, thus the 4 stars, was the ending. I wanted to know what happened. What happened to the dad, the teacher, Cassie and her sister and mother. What happened. Did the mother ever decide to take up for her daughters? Maybe she did. Maybe that is the way it’s suppose to play out. Maybe that is why it ended the way it did. I’d like to think so anyway.Thank you to #NetGalley, #UnspeakableThings, #JessLourey, #Thomas&Mercer for the eARC of this book. This is my own true review.I gave it 4 stars and do recommend it. It was a fast read for me and a very interesting one.
    more
Write a review