Hot Best Seller

Providence

Availability: Ready to download

A propulsive new thriller about the obsessive nature of love when an intensifying relationship between best friends is disrupted by a kidnapping. Growing up as best friends in small-town New Hampshire, Jon and Chloe are the only ones who truly understand each other, though they can never find the words to tell one another the depth of their feelings. When Jon is finally rea A propulsive new thriller about the obsessive nature of love when an intensifying relationship between best friends is disrupted by a kidnapping. Growing up as best friends in small-town New Hampshire, Jon and Chloe are the only ones who truly understand each other, though they can never find the words to tell one another the depth of their feelings. When Jon is finally ready to confess his feelings, he's suddenly kidnapped by his substitute teacher who is obsessed with H.P. Lovecraft and has a plot to save humanity. Mourning the disappearance of Jon and facing the reality he may never return, Chloe tries to navigate the rites of entering young adulthood and "fit in" with the popular crowd, but thoughts of Jon are never far away. When Jon finally escapes, he discovers he now has an uncontrollable power that endangers anyone he has intense feelings for. He runs away to protect Chloe and find the answers to his new identity--but he's soon being tracked by a detective who is fascinated by a series of vigilante killings that appear connected. Whisking us on a journey through New England and crashing these characters' lives together in the most unexpected ways, Kepnes explores the complex relationship between love and identity, unrequited passion and obsession, self-preservation and self-destruction, and how the lines are often blurred between the two.


Compare

A propulsive new thriller about the obsessive nature of love when an intensifying relationship between best friends is disrupted by a kidnapping. Growing up as best friends in small-town New Hampshire, Jon and Chloe are the only ones who truly understand each other, though they can never find the words to tell one another the depth of their feelings. When Jon is finally rea A propulsive new thriller about the obsessive nature of love when an intensifying relationship between best friends is disrupted by a kidnapping. Growing up as best friends in small-town New Hampshire, Jon and Chloe are the only ones who truly understand each other, though they can never find the words to tell one another the depth of their feelings. When Jon is finally ready to confess his feelings, he's suddenly kidnapped by his substitute teacher who is obsessed with H.P. Lovecraft and has a plot to save humanity. Mourning the disappearance of Jon and facing the reality he may never return, Chloe tries to navigate the rites of entering young adulthood and "fit in" with the popular crowd, but thoughts of Jon are never far away. When Jon finally escapes, he discovers he now has an uncontrollable power that endangers anyone he has intense feelings for. He runs away to protect Chloe and find the answers to his new identity--but he's soon being tracked by a detective who is fascinated by a series of vigilante killings that appear connected. Whisking us on a journey through New England and crashing these characters' lives together in the most unexpected ways, Kepnes explores the complex relationship between love and identity, unrequited passion and obsession, self-preservation and self-destruction, and how the lines are often blurred between the two.

30 review for Providence

  1. 3 out of 5

    Chelsea Humphrey

    Le sigh. Maybe I’ve just hit a reading slump, but it seems like my concerns going into this one ended up being valid (for me) after all. I’m very touch and go with the fantasy/science fiction that I enjoy; rarely do I read any type of urban fantasy and I typically only pick up the YA variety. However, going in knowing that the main characters are younger in the beginning of the novel, I was willing to give this one a go. I’m going to chalk this up to a mismatch of reader and book; the book wasn’ Le sigh. Maybe I’ve just hit a reading slump, but it seems like my concerns going into this one ended up being valid (for me) after all. I’m very touch and go with the fantasy/science fiction that I enjoy; rarely do I read any type of urban fantasy and I typically only pick up the YA variety. However, going in knowing that the main characters are younger in the beginning of the novel, I was willing to give this one a go. I’m going to chalk this up to a mismatch of reader and book; the book wasn’t bad, it just wasn’t right for me. Please don’t pass it over simply because it wasn’t my cup of tea. I found myself mostly invested in the first part, right up until Jon disappears, but somehow became lost and tuned out after that. It could be the fact that most of the Lovecraft references were lost on me; I have yet to experience his work and have little to no knowledge of anything his fanbase would consider basic facts. I also felt like, while this is being billed as a thriller, it was not. This book much more fits in the category of “slow burning mystery full of character development”. The focus is much more on the emotional healing and working out just how to recapture the intimacy lost in the aftermath of tragedy. Just in case every other review written so far hasn’t given this fact away, this is very different than previous Kepnes work. If you are expecting anything remotely similar to You and Hidden Bodies, this one won’t be enjoyable on it’s own merit. If, however, you sound intrigued based on the synopsis and enjoy a good paranormal, slow burning, character driven story, give this a try. *I received a review copy via the publisher.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Edward Lorn

    With Providence, Caroline Kepnes proves that she's not a one-hit (one-character?) wonder. There will certainly be those who dislike this novel based solely on the fact that it is not another Joe Goldberg story, but those people should be ignored. Same goes for anyone who bitches about the supernatural aspect. You can't please everyone all the time, and I'm glad Kepnes branched out into weirdish territory. Providence is terrific, from start to finish, and it just goes to show how versatile the au With Providence, Caroline Kepnes proves that she's not a one-hit (one-character?) wonder. There will certainly be those who dislike this novel based solely on the fact that it is not another Joe Goldberg story, but those people should be ignored. Same goes for anyone who bitches about the supernatural aspect. You can't please everyone all the time, and I'm glad Kepnes branched out into weirdish territory. Providence is terrific, from start to finish, and it just goes to show how versatile the author is, that she can write about an entirely new cast of characters and give them all unique voices while maintaining her own voice throughout. And that's something I kept coming back to, time and time again, as I was reading this outstanding book. It has a unique sense of voice, and I've come to believe that I could easily pick Kepnes's voice out of a stack of nameless writings. Her prose has a certain readability you don't find in every book. Kepnes writes with the seasoned conviction and confidence of a prolific author in the winter of their career. Some authors take years to find their voice. Caroline Kepnes found hers with her first book, which is commendable and impressive. In its simplest form, Providence is a story of requited-yet-separated love. There is no doubt that Chloe and Jon love each other. The mystery is, will they ever be allowed to love each other like normal human beings. Jon was kidnapped and changed when he was a young man, and Chloe has been the perpetual lover-in-waiting ever since he disappeared. Their story is a great one, but they are not the characters who shined brightest for me. That would be Eggs and Lo. Eggs (or Eggie) and Lo reminded me a lot of my wife and I, how she and I interact, and in other regards that are more personal than I'd care to share. In Hidden Bodies, Kepnes showcased a love for her support characters that is rarely seen by giving everyone mentioned in the book a full and deep history. Kepnes does the same here, and I believe the book would've suffered greatly had she not included Eggs and Lo. They are now, hands down, my favorite couple in all of literature. The story hearkens back to a Lovecraft novel I've not read, nor do I care to read it, even now that I've read this book. I love how Kepnes didn't make me feel as if I were missing something by having not read The Dunwich Horror and Other Stories. Never did I feel out of touch with the source material, and in that way, Kepnes is as successful in her tribute as Victor LaValle was with The Ballad of Black Tom. I'm glad that such great authors are reimagining this bigot's work and making it their own. But what I love the most is that they're doing it better than Lovecraft ever did, which is a subtle slap in the face to the old hatemonger. Good on ya, Caroline. In summation: Caroline Kepnes has become one of three authors whom I will buy on release day in every format: ebook, audiobook, and hardcover, and even the eventual paperback. The other two on that list are Stephen King and Kealan Patrick Burke. I highly recommend everything she has written. All the stars. Final Judgment: Kepnes is better at Lovecraft than Lovecraft himself. Disclaimer: I was sent a physical review copy by Random House in exchange for the review you've just read. Many thanks to the author and publisher for making this happen.

  3. 4 out of 5

    James

    When the newest book, Providence, by Caroline Kepnes became available, I excitedly requested and downloaded it on NetGalley. Her first book, You, is one of my favorites, and her second, Hidden Bodies, was very strong. I rushed through Providence this week turning the pages and watching a strange story unfold before my eyes. There are many parts I enjoyed, a few I thought were just okay, and in the end would give it about 3.5 stars. Let's start out with a little bit about the story... two teenager When the newest book, Providence, by Caroline Kepnes became available, I excitedly requested and downloaded it on NetGalley. Her first book, You, is one of my favorites, and her second, Hidden Bodies, was very strong. I rushed through Providence this week turning the pages and watching a strange story unfold before my eyes. There are many parts I enjoyed, a few I thought were just okay, and in the end would give it about 3.5 stars. Let's start out with a little bit about the story... two teenagers are best friends in love with one another but unwilling to tell the other. We see why they click and what is appealing in both. Then Jon goes missing. The book jumps several years later and Chloe is now dating the guy who picked on Jon when they were younger. We have no idea what happened to Jon. More time passes and we find out Jon was kidnapped by someone at their school, and when he wakes up, he's been in a medically-induced coma for years. He's physically matured and somehow developed a bit of a supernatural power. This is where I got worried... I'm not a fantasy or sci-fi reader, but I'm trying to branch out, so this was a really great opportunity to check out another genre. I wasn't disappointed. It was exactly what I thought it would be. I love how the 'other worldly' talents integrate into the story, but I had tons of questions like a two year old: why, how, when, where, what... yet I believe it's important as a reader to hold your own questions at bay and read with an open mind. I never got the answers, but then again, you don't always get them in sci-fi or fantasy (from what I understand). It just happens and you go with the fun aspects of something new or different. That said, I found ways to enjoy the book for what it is. A coming-of-age story where the main character is a bit older than normal because of everything he's gone through. And you end up questioning what is right and wrong. Is one bad or evil action able to be redeemed, or should someone suffer / die because of it. Throughout the course of the ~400 pages, Jon struggles to balance his love for Chloe and his inability to control the powers when he gets emotional. It's a love story, a suspenseful drama, a mystery chase, and a bit of a reflection on life. Kepnes is fond of (and strong at, too) developing characters with obsessions, social media-frenzied anxiety, and over-indulgence in human emotional needs. I mean this in a positive way, too. She gets right to the core of what makes some people tick or focus on the little details that sit within a person's mind all day long. It helps pull you in to the story and the characters. Many readers will compare this to You, and if they aren't sci-fi or fantasy genre buffs, they may struggle a little. I am not familiar with HP Lovecraft's books, which are a central theme in this one. Although Kepnes does a good job and explaining what you need to know, it would be better if you had read Lovecraft. I hope readers will see this as something similar yet purposely different to both books, as it stands out as an interesting and quick read where you see a different slice of humanity and psychological rhythm. Character development is spot on. Plots are woven well. Settings are very clear. And there's a subtle page-turning push you feel trying to understand where it's all going. For me, it's a good book. I'm glad I read it. I'd recommend it only to folks I think would be willing to cross all the different genres and go for a peculiar and crafty ride. Thanks to NetGalley, Kepnes and her publisher for getting me an early copy.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Jenny

    Unite science fiction, missing person mystery, and love story and you have Providence, a novel by Caroline Kepnes. Jon, a middle schooler, vanished on his way to school. Four years later, he reappears only now as a bigger, healthier, stronger specimen. There are inexplicable consequences of Jon’s missing four years. Chloe, Jon’s best friend/soul mate is pleased when Jon reappears but changes have also occurred in her life over the four years. The interactions of Jon and Chloe are the backbone of th Unite science fiction, missing person mystery, and love story and you have Providence, a novel by Caroline Kepnes. Jon, a middle schooler, vanished on his way to school. Four years later, he reappears only now as a bigger, healthier, stronger specimen. There are inexplicable consequences of Jon’s missing four years. Chloe, Jon’s best friend/soul mate is pleased when Jon reappears but changes have also occurred in her life over the four years. The interactions of Jon and Chloe are the backbone of this novel. They have a deep symbiotic relationship. Add in an aging police officer with issues, an ex boyfriend and the abducter and you have a story that keeps you guessing but always hoping for the best. I received a copy of this book from Netgalley. This did not effect my review of this book. #netgalley #providence

  5. 3 out of 5

    Nenia ✨ Queen of Literary Trash, Protector of Out-of-Print Gems, Khaleesi of Bodice Rippers, Mother of Smut, the Unrepentant, Breaker of Convention ✨ Campbell

    Instagram || Twitter || Facebook || Amazon || Pinterest My reactions while reading this book can basically be summed up in a single word: Okay! Okay. Okay? Okay... Spoiler alert: this book was not okay. Dear people who read this book and gave it five stars - what the hell? Did you get a different book than I did? What is this so-called brilliant homage that you read, because I got a really lame story about this boy in the friend-zone who ends up obsessed with this manic pixie dream girl stereotype Instagram || Twitter || Facebook || Amazon || Pinterest My reactions while reading this book can basically be summed up in a single word: Okay! Okay. Okay? Okay... Spoiler alert: this book was not okay. Dear people who read this book and gave it five stars - what the hell? Did you get a different book than I did? What is this so-called brilliant homage that you read, because I got a really lame story about this boy in the friend-zone who ends up obsessed with this manic pixie dream girl stereotype who's in love with the bad boy AND a story about this old man whose name is LITERALLY "Eggs" and his relationship with his passive aggressive wife as he struggles to rectify his cringe-worthy resentment towards his severely disabled son and utter denial of his own health problems. Oh, and there's some supernatural stuff thrown in there and the book tries to pretend it's so meta but it's completely half-assed. Basically, this is a "supernatural" story the way McDonald's new Szechuan sauce is Chinese food. Also, let me assure you that I did not hate this book because it was not another YOU. I get that authors don't want to write the same story over and over again and I don't just respect that, I love that. Sometimes it pays off. This didn't. This was a major backslide. If I didn't know better, I would have thought that this was Kepnes's debut effort, and not YOU, because it seems so much more undeveloped and unpolished by comparison. Part of the reason that I loved YOU so much was the smart writing, the cutting insights on society, the smart pop culture references, and the chilling way that she made reality itself seem just as horrifying as the sociopathic main character (in fact, I may have deactivated some of my own social media accounts after reading that book). This book plodded. It didn't really have much of a plot. The characters were about what you'd expect in one of those airport bookstore-type novels aimed at middle-aged women written by someone who knows nothing about women. And the pop culture references were painful. I think there were references to the movie, Big Eyes, and Colleen Hoover? One of those references is already dated and the CH reference just felt like a "Heyyyyy, buddy!" I'm really disappointed by this book. I don't want to say anything else because I don't want to spoil too much, but yeah, if you're expecting this to be on par with YOU, just save yourself the trouble right now and lower your expectations by about 200%. P.S. It's not just me. I buddy-read this with my friend Heather, and I just checked out her review, and it looks like we were disappointed for roughly the same reasons. I feel validated. Thanks to Netgalley/the publisher for the review copy! 1.5 stars

  6. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer ~ TarHeelReader

    3.5 mishmash stars to Providence! ⭐ ⭐ ⭐.5 I listened to Caroline Kepnes’ YOU on audio this exact same time two years ago. THAT was an experience, and if you enjoy audios and don’t mind disturbing content, it’s the best audio I know. When I saw Kepnes had a new thriller releasing under the new imprint Lenny (by Lena Dunham), I jumped at the chance to read Providence. Providence is a mishmash of genres- thriller, paranormal, urban fantasy, young adult - and also a bit of a mishmash on how I felt ab 3.5 mishmash stars to Providence! ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️.5 I listened to Caroline Kepnes’ YOU on audio this exact same time two years ago. THAT was an experience, and if you enjoy audios and don’t mind disturbing content, it’s the best audio I know. When I saw Kepnes had a new thriller releasing under the new imprint Lenny (by Lena Dunham), I jumped at the chance to read Providence. Providence is a mishmash of genres- thriller, paranormal, urban fantasy, young adult - and also a bit of a mishmash on how I felt about it. More on that later. Jon and Chloe grow up as best friends in New Hampshire. Their feelings for each other start to grow, but they never talk about it. Just as Jon is about to confess how he feels, he is kidnapped by his teacher. His teacher has an obsession for H.P. Lovecraft, an author of horror pulp fiction, and by kidnapping Jon, the teacher is planning to save the world. Chloe is left to mourn Jon and becomes an adult without him there to support her. Jon finally escapes, but does so with an uncontrollable superpower, which can hurt the people he loves most. Of course he runs away to protect Chloe from his power, but all the while, he is being tracked by a detective. I was on board with Chloe and Jon’s story. Their relationship is sweet, they are likable characters, and I loved that theirs was a girl/boy best friendship. I found the H.P. Lovecraft angle interesting because I did not know much about him or his writing, and at first I even enjoyed when Jon returned with his superpower. I was a fan of the show Heroes when it first aired, and some of the inner turmoil that Jon experienced reminded me of that show. Where the book lost me a little was when Jon left again to protect Chloe. At that point, many things were going on, and the pacing slid for me. Providence held much promise, and it did, in fact, hold my interest well, until that last section. Overall, it was enjoyable and original. I was expecting to adore it, and it was more of an affinity. Kepnes is an engaging and strong writer, and I will continue to look for her new releases. I hope her next one will be another demented psychological thriller! Thank you to Caroline Kepnes, Random House/Ballantine, and Netgalley for the copy. Providence will be published on June 19, 2018. My reviews can also be found on my blog: www.jennifertarheelreader.com

  7. 5 out of 5

    Debra

    Jon and Chloe are best friends who have grown up together in a small town in New Hampshire. Jon is sort of an outcast and is bullied by his peers. Chloe does not care when her friends ridicule her for sitting with Jon at lunch or for hanging out with him after school. Both feel a connection to the other and feel as if he/she has finally found someone who "gets" him/her. Then one day Jon is kidnapped and not seen or heard from in four years. Chloe has gone on with her life and makes attempts to fi Jon and Chloe are best friends who have grown up together in a small town in New Hampshire. Jon is sort of an outcast and is bullied by his peers. Chloe does not care when her friends ridicule her for sitting with Jon at lunch or for hanging out with him after school. Both feel a connection to the other and feel as if he/she has finally found someone who "gets" him/her. Then one day Jon is kidnapped and not seen or heard from in four years. Chloe has gone on with her life and makes attempts to fit in and be a "normal" teenager even though her best friends is missing. Jon suddenly wakes up from a medically induced coma to learn he has been kidnapped by a substitute teacher who leaves him a note telling him that they did "good work" and "you're welcome." Jon realizes he has powers now and that people are not safe around him. Jon decides to leave town but not before attracting the attention of a detective who becomes obsessed with a series of deaths that appear to be connected. I know a lot of people are really enjoying this book, but it was not for me. We are not all going to like the same books, this is a book I had high hopes for, but just didn't enjoy. There is a strong emphasis on H.P. Lovecraft here and that is not a bad thing, possibly fans of Lovecraft will enjoy this book more. I believe a lot of the references were lost on me. There are also some elements that just had me scratching my head. I admit, I wanted to learn more about his kidnapping and what occurred while he was kept in the basement. Jon never learns the full truth and I guess that is why the reader never learns the truth either. This book started out good. I was really enjoying it up until Jon decided to leave town for good. That is where the book went downhill for me and I found myself losing interest in this book fast. I knew that this book was going to be nothing like "YOU" and I was expecting that, but this book just failed to grab me. I'll go so far as to say I was bored while reading this book. I found myself skimming through parts that were just dragging on and on and on.... Sadly, this book was just not for me. Thank you to Random House Publishing Group and NetGalley who provided me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. See more of my reviews at www.openbookpost.com

  8. 5 out of 5

    Berit☀️✨

    4 Wild Stars 🌟🌟🌟🌟 Wow! This book was nothing and I mean nothing like Caroline Kepnes’s previous books.... this book was a mixture of young adult, crime fiction, the supernatural, and much more! It was a genre potpourri... and it worked... because the thing this had in common with Caroline’s previous books is it was very well written with some interesting characters.... I just don’t want you to enter this book thinking it is a dark demented twisted psychological thriller, it is far from that... 4 Wild Stars 🌟🌟🌟🌟 Wow! This book was nothing and I mean nothing like Caroline Kepnes’s previous books.... this book was a mixture of young adult, crime fiction, the supernatural, and much more! It was a genre potpourri... and it worked... because the thing this had in common with Caroline’s previous books is it was very well written with some interesting characters.... I just don’t want you to enter this book thinking it is a dark demented twisted psychological thriller, it is far from that... although there are some disturbing and demented parts.... The book is told from multiple points of view including John and Chloe.... we met these two when they were still pretty young and I enjoyed the young adult aspect of this book... John is kidnapped when he is young and comes back with a superpower of sorts.... now here is the part that I might not have appreciated as much as I could have.... because I know absolutely nothing about H.P. Lovecraft... so if you are better acquainted with him perhaps this part will resonate with you much more than it did with me.... Our third point of view came from Eggs A detective... and that is not my autocorrect that is his actual name! Eggs has some demons of his own and is consumed with a case of young healthy people dying from heartattacks... he was an interesting character as well and I really liked the growth in him throughout the book.... how do all these characters tied together? Well you’re going to need to read the book to find out! Recommend you read this book with an open mind, it is unlike anything you’ve read before, guaranteed! *** many thanks to the publisher for my copy of this most interesting book ***

  9. 3 out of 5

    Tammy

    To be published by Lena Dunham and Jenni Konner’s imprint Lenny, Providence is a book targeted at millennials. I am not a millennial and quite far from it. Although I wasn’t a huge fan of You (Kepnes first book) I thought a different publisher, a different editor and a departure from form would make for a different reading experience. It is that but it isn’t for me. Heavily reliant upon Lovecraft, which I haven’t read since high school, this book doesn’t seem to know what it is. I wouldn’t call To be published by Lena Dunham and Jenni Konner’s imprint Lenny, Providence is a book targeted at millennials. I am not a millennial and quite far from it. Although I wasn’t a huge fan of You (Kepnes first book) I thought a different publisher, a different editor and a departure from form would make for a different reading experience. It is that but it isn’t for me. Heavily reliant upon Lovecraft, which I haven’t read since high school, this book doesn’t seem to know what it is. I wouldn’t call it horror. I wouldn’t call it coming of age. I wouldn’t call it a love story. I wouldn’t call it a novel about abduction. I wouldn’t call it a providential read for me perhaps millennials will like it.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Michelle

    Firstly, I need to mention how very different this book is to Ms. Kepnes' previous books You and Hidden Bodies. So much so that I think peoples reactions to this are going to be all over the place. Where do I stand? I LOVED IT!!!! Where You and Hidden Bodies were dysfunctional (putting it mildly) love stories this is a more of a classic love story. There is never a doubt that Jon and Chloe are in love and what they will do or won't do to preserve that love. Here's the thing....I don't do love st Firstly, I need to mention how very different this book is to Ms. Kepnes' previous books You and Hidden Bodies. So much so that I think peoples reactions to this are going to be all over the place. Where do I stand? I LOVED IT!!!! Where You and Hidden Bodies were dysfunctional (putting it mildly) love stories this is a more of a classic love story. There is never a doubt that Jon and Chloe are in love and what they will do or won't do to preserve that love. Here's the thing....I don't do love stories. I don't do romance. However, sometimes a book just moves your soul and you can't help rooting for the characters. Jon, Chloe, Eggs, & Lo - I loved all of you. I wanted nothing more than for your happiness. There is a strong Lovecraftian theme in this story but I don't think you need to be a Lovecraft fan to enjoy this. I've read some of his short stories years and years ago so truly my knowledge of him is quite limited but still I had no problem following along to this. I'm also not one for supernatural elements but Kepnes made it work for me here. Her writing is so evocative, so lovely....perfection. I commend her for going in such a different direction and making it work. Well done, indeed! Many thanks to NetGalley for providing me with a digital ARC in exchange for my honest review.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Carrie

    Anyone who has followed my reviews may have heard me mention Caroline Kepnes first book YOU and how much I loved that story so of course I was going to grab anything else that she had written. Picking up Providence I was well aware that it was nothing like YOU and that was perfectly fine with me as I don’t want to read the same story over and over again and love mixing things up and branching out. However, after reading Providence I can’t lie and say I really enjoyed this one. The story started o Anyone who has followed my reviews may have heard me mention Caroline Kepnes first book YOU and how much I loved that story so of course I was going to grab anything else that she had written. Picking up Providence I was well aware that it was nothing like YOU and that was perfectly fine with me as I don’t want to read the same story over and over again and love mixing things up and branching out. However, after reading Providence I can’t lie and say I really enjoyed this one. The story started off rather well and I could immediately tell I was diving into a Kepnes story. Readers are first introduced to Jon, one of those awkward kids that often end up the target of bullies. Jon has one really good friend in Chloe and on one excited morning Jon heads out to school excited to see Chloe and takes his normal out of the path of bullies obscure root to school only to be attacked and kidnapped. With Jon missing Chloe of course spirals into despair when searches turn up no sign of Jon but eventually time moves on without Jon. Four years later however Jon turns up from seemingly out of nowhere a completely changed man now. Much larger and stronger than when missing Jon quickly starts to realize his kidnapper had done something to him making those around Jon no longer safe. Up to and after Jon’s return I really thought this one was going to end up very highly rated for me. The whole science fiction fantasy side was really appealing although I’m sure some will be turned off by such an aspect in a thriller I was really loving it. But where things fell apart was when Eggs was introduced to the story, I just never connected to his character or really cared to at all. At that point Jon’s story kind of takes a direction that seemed to dull my excitement too so from then on out it was just pushing myself to turn the pages and finish. While the little twist at the end wasn’t too bad it was just a matter of too little too late to excite me with this one. While this one wasn’t my cup of tea Caroline Kepnes is still a very talented author and I’m sure some may enjoy this one more than I did. I received an advance copy from the publisher via NetGalley. For more review please visit https://carriesbookreviews.com/

  12. 5 out of 5

    Char

    4.5/5 stars! PROVIDENCE is a tale of love and heartbreak, (literally and figuratively), infused throughout with a powerful longing for something that's just out of reach. I. LOVED. IT. !! Young Jon Bronson is stolen away from his life and his first love, Chloe. He wakes up in a body he doesn't recognize because it's been 4 years since he was taken. The only clue he has as to what happened is a copy of Lovecraft's THE DUNWICH HORROR which contains a short note to him inside. He soon discovers this 4.5/5 stars! PROVIDENCE is a tale of love and heartbreak, (literally and figuratively), infused throughout with a powerful longing for something that's just out of reach. I. LOVED. IT. !! Young Jon Bronson is stolen away from his life and his first love, Chloe. He wakes up in a body he doesn't recognize because it's been 4 years since he was taken. The only clue he has as to what happened is a copy of Lovecraft's THE DUNWICH HORROR which contains a short note to him inside. He soon discovers this book is not the only reminder he has of his experience. What is the other reminder? Will Jon be able to resume his life at school, with his parents, with Chloe? You'll have to read this to find out! I'm not going to lie, at first I was disappointed to discover this wasn't a book about Joe Goldberg. Then when I heard this tale was somehow related to Lovecraft I was excited again. Turns out, this tale is actually only tangentially related to Lovecraft, so those unfamiliar with his work need not worry. It also turns out that Jon Bronson is a much better person than Joe Goldberg EVER could have been. That is the fact that made this book so difficult to put down. Look, I'm the type of person that loves it when everybody dies at the end of a story. The fact that I was rooting so hard for Jon surprised even me! There is a whole other subplot going on here, involving Eggs, (a police officer) and Lo, his wife. While the story of Jon and Chloe involves young love with more than the normal obstacles in the way, Eggs and Lo showcase an entirely different tale of love-the long term marriage kind; the marriage facing major obstacles kind. Somehow, Eggs and Lo sneaked in through the back door of the main plot and stole my heart. I just wanted so badly for them to make it through. All of this proves to me how powerful and capable of a writer Caroline Kepnes really is. These are not my types of stories, YOU, HIDDEN BODIES and now PROVIDENCE. I am not a romance reader, but somehow I became wholly invested in the fates of Jon and Chloe, of Eggs and Lo. I hope that that all of their stories will captivate you as well. If any of what I've written sounds appealing to you, go and get this book and find out what happens. Come seek me out when you're done and we'll shed our tears together. My highest recommendation! Available June 19th everywhere, available for preorder now here: https://www.amazon.com/Providence-Nov... *I received an e-ARC of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for my honest feedback. This is it.*

  13. 4 out of 5

    Dan Schwent

    When Jon Bronson disappears on the way to school one day, he leaves his best friend Chloe wondering what happened to him. Four years later, he wakes up in a basement, jacked up and with no memory of the past four years, only a copy of The Dunwich Horror with some notes written inside. Will Jon and Chloe be able to pick up where they left off? This was a Netgalley pick. Edward Lorn and some other trusted reviewers have sung the praises of Caroline Kepnes in the past so I decided to take a chance. O When Jon Bronson disappears on the way to school one day, he leaves his best friend Chloe wondering what happened to him. Four years later, he wakes up in a basement, jacked up and with no memory of the past four years, only a copy of The Dunwich Horror with some notes written inside. Will Jon and Chloe be able to pick up where they left off? This was a Netgalley pick. Edward Lorn and some other trusted reviewers have sung the praises of Caroline Kepnes in the past so I decided to take a chance. Overall, I liked my first Caroline Kepnes experience. The shifting viewpoints between Jon, Chloe, and Eggs held my interest and a main character that gives people heart attacks is a pretty interesting hook in a story of unrequited love. The book is promoted as a thriller but it's really about relationships and intimacy. Eggs and his wife, Jon and Chloe, Chloe and Carrig, all very different relationships between very different characters. Also, fuck Carrig! Since I've read a few hundred detective novels, I had a soft spot for Eggs and his obsession with The Beard. And here's the part that I hated: fully 80% of the book could have been avoided if Jon had just emailed Chloe and said "I give people heart attacks. That's why I'm being a douche nozzle." Considering Jon mostly communicates by text and email anyway, this makes a lot more sense than torturing himself for the better part of a decade. And now we're back at the other piece of bread in this complement sandwich of a review. While their situation was outlandish, I think Kepnes did a great job with the various characters. I had no trouble believing in Eggs, Chloe, or Jon. They were all very fleshed out acted like real people would in the situation, aside from the lack of communication I mentioned earlier. The Lovecraft connection was also well done. I've read the Dunwich Horror a couple times but I think someone could infer what they need to and not feel lost. And here we are at the end of the review. I enjoyed Providence but it wasn't a game changer or something I felt like neglecting my health and/or personal hygiene to read. 3.5 out of 5 stars.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Kelly (and the Book Boar)

    Find all of my reviews at: http://52bookminimum.blogspot.com/ So many thoughts. Please bear with me . . . . The basics of Providence is that it is about a boy who disappeared and returned four years later . . . different than he was before. It becomes his mission over the years to “fix” himself of this change in order to be with the girl he has always loved. In addition to that story is one that runs parallel about a detective trying to figure out what really caused a series of death by heart at Find all of my reviews at: http://52bookminimum.blogspot.com/ So many thoughts. Please bear with me . . . . The basics of Providence is that it is about a boy who disappeared and returned four years later . . . different than he was before. It becomes his mission over the years to “fix” himself of this change in order to be with the girl he has always loved. In addition to that story is one that runs parallel about a detective trying to figure out what really caused a series of death by heart attack in various young/healthy people and the wife who is trying her best to keep their marriage intact. First things first, it goes without saying that I read this wrong. A handful of reviewers received copies before Providence even went on NetGalley and they all creamed their collective jeans over it. Maybe some of my fellow wrong-readers will be joining me in short order, but for now I will occupy the corner of shame all by my lonesome. I’d like to say my “meh” reaction had nothing to do with The Books of Joe, but that would be bullshit. I mean, if I hadn’t fallen head-over-heels in love with Joe and instead had thought he was uggo and 1-Starred his stories I obviously would not have been running people over in order to obtain an advanced copy of this book. I also wouldn’t have had such high (or perhaps unrealistic) expectations for this book. I’d love to be able to say that I didn’t feel like I was missing anything by not being a Lovecraft superfan, but that would also be total bullshit. Part of Kepnes’ charm is that she is willing to go balls out with pop culture references and clearly gives not one rip if these contributions will date her books in the future. My knowledge of all things Lenny Feder . . . Familiarity with a little more than just the basics regarding Jon’s dilemma . . . . And an obsession with The Boss so extreme as soon as a mere song title was mentioned his voice started singing oh so relevant lyrics in my head . . . ♪♫♪“Sometimes it’s like someone took a knife baby edgy and dull and cut a six inch valley through the middle of my soul . . .” ♪♫♪ Definitely added to my reading experience. But it was because of my brain’s complete worthlessness except when it comes to trivia questions that I felt a glaring hole of stupidity and inability to truly “get it” when it came to references regarding I Am Providence and all the secrets that may be (are probably) contained within the pages of The Dunwich Horror - a book I have never read. And worst of all was that I was really into this story at the beginning. I was smitten with little Jon, the outsider, and was enthralled with both his disappearance and reappearance. I was completely ready to fall in love with him as a man and form some freaky polygamist cult with him and Joe (and Eggs) as my brother husbands. The writing (which unfortunately I can’t quote because rules are rules when it comes to ARCs) was BRILLIANT – simply painted onto the page. But then?????? It got so boooooooooooooooooooooring. The knife-blade writing style that defines Kepnes’ voice became dull and nothing happened and there were still like nearly 300 pages left of the book and Chloe was a cardboard cutout of even more nothingness (and maybe she was supposed to be nothing, but she can’t have a voice and occupy so much narration time and be NOTHING FFS) and Eggs who was basically the amalgamation of every Bruce Willis playing the “old man” character you could ever imagine even lost his charm and I was like . . . . I don’t have the genetic makeup that allows me to “DNF” a book, so I can’t say that thought ever crossed my mind. I will say that this should never have taken me more than one sitting to read if I had liked it as much as Kepnes’ prior two novels and I definitely shouldn’t have found my mind wandering to other selections on my TBR and wondering if I should have read them before this. I have no choice but to be honest. I didn’t love this. I am very appreciative for the opportunity to read an advanced copy, I’m even more appreciative that Kepnes and/or her publisher is so generous and appear to be willing to offer copies to nearly everyone who requests them, I’ll absolutely read the next thing she comes up with, but unfortunately for me Providence missed the mark. 2.5 Stars and I’m rounding up because I can’t in clear conscience round down. I can’t wait to see what my friends think. (As long as they leave their pitchforks and torches at home.) Advanced copy provided in exchange for an honest review. Thank you, NetGalley!

  15. 4 out of 5

    Zoeytron

    Copy furnished by Net Galley for the price of a review. Jon Chloe A connection lost, then found again.  Providence, fate, the hand of God.  Spontaneous nosebleeds, instant healing, imagined things becoming real.   I loved this author's You and Hidden Bodies.  This one, not so much, although I suspect aficionados of all things Lovecraftian will dig on it.  I have never read The Dunwich Horror and although I was more or less successful at cobbling things together from the context, the overall read pro Copy furnished by Net Galley for the price of a review. Jon Chloe A connection lost, then found again.  Providence, fate, the hand of God.  Spontaneous nosebleeds, instant healing, imagined things becoming real.   I loved this author's You and Hidden Bodies.  This one, not so much, although I suspect aficionados of all things Lovecraftian will dig on it.  I have never read The Dunwich Horror and although I was more or less successful at cobbling things together from the context, the overall read probably suffered for my unfamiliarity with the book. 

  16. 4 out of 5

    Steven

    Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review. I was a massive fan of Caroline Kepnes' book YOU. It was intense, intriguing, captivating, and terrifying (in an "OMG am I rooting for this psychopath?" kinda way). I've yet to read Hidden Bodies, the sequel, but it's on my plan for this year. When I saw this new standalone from her on Netgalley, I had to request it. YOU was just so compelling that I knew this one would have to be awesome. Unfortun Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review. I was a massive fan of Caroline Kepnes' book YOU. It was intense, intriguing, captivating, and terrifying (in an "OMG am I rooting for this psychopath?" kinda way). I've yet to read Hidden Bodies, the sequel, but it's on my plan for this year. When I saw this new standalone from her on Netgalley, I had to request it. YOU was just so compelling that I knew this one would have to be awesome. Unfortunately, this one felt like a let down after such a great first read from her. The characters were all pretty unlikeable (I only cared for one character, a minor character, Eggs' wife Lo), and not at all easy to root for. There was very little action over all, and the plot felt like a slow trudge through a field of molasses and peanut butter in loose boots that you're not allowed to leave behind. Overall, just meh. I didn't hate it completely, and the story concept was a good one, so I ended up settling on two stars as a final rating. I will say this, if you've not read a Caroline Kepnes book before, either read this one before you pick up YOU, or just go straight to YOU. --- Review to come, but initial thoughts: Slow trudge of a plot Very little action Highly unlikeable characters (Lo is only one I liked) Overall meh-ness lol Disappointing because YOU was amazing!

  17. 3 out of 5

    Kealan Burke

    In YOU and HIDDEN BODIES, the love was toxic. In PROVIDENCE, it’s sweeter, purer, but no less dangerous. My favorite of Kepnes’ books so far, PROVIDENCE is a real heart-stopper.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Sh3lly (grumpybookgrrrl)

    A big thank you to Random House/Lenny Books and Netgalley for providing the eARC. Review also found at: https://dustoffyourmachalo.wordpress.... How do I begin? If you’re one of those great reviewers, you are supposed to use meaningful quotes, take notes, and provide a witty, entertaining recap. I’m an emotional reader. I don’t have time for notes, and I’m a crappy writer. So what you often get with my reviews is random stream of consciousness feely stuff. Like, this book was giving me major Unbrea A big thank you to Random House/Lenny Books and Netgalley for providing the eARC. Review also found at: https://dustoffyourmachalo.wordpress.... How do I begin? If you’re one of those great reviewers, you are supposed to use meaningful quotes, take notes, and provide a witty, entertaining recap. I’m an emotional reader. I don’t have time for notes, and I’m a crappy writer. So what you often get with my reviews is random stream of consciousness feely stuff. Like, this book was giving me major Unbreakable vibes, and I totally think M. Night Shyamalan should make Providence into a movie. (For the record, I love M. Night, so begone haters!) Jon Bronson is an odd kid without many friends. He wore his Spiderman costume when kids were supposed to have outgrown that kind of stuff. He is obsessed with fluffernutter. He can’t ride the bus because he’ll get bullied by the jocks, so he walks to school, taking the long way. (I can relate to this, as the same thing happened to me in elementary school. I literally walked two miles every day to avoid a girl a grade younger than me calling me names loudly on the bus. Incidentally, when I finally stood up to her, she stopped bullying me, but I can’t remember if I resumed taking the bus or kept walking.) Chloe Sayers is the popular girl who is friends with Jon. She is also friends with the jocks and other popular girls, so she is only friends with Jon sometimes. But, she gets him. One day, as Jon is walking the long way to school, something happens (spoiler) and he disappears for four years! Chloe is devastated, stops hanging around her other friends, and begins drawing (she ends up an artist). When he returns, he is very different. I won’t say more because I don’t want to give anything away. The first 25% of the book is told in Jon’s and Chloe’s POV. A new character, an upper-forties-something police officer named Eggs comes into the picture after that. The writing style is similar to You. There’s a sort of stream of consciousness vibe, along with anecdotes from the characters’ lives that blend into the ongoing plot. I found myself immersed instantly and didn’t want to put the book down. I think this is Kepnes’ strongest book yet, although I have not yet read the follow up to You, Hidden Bodies. I liked this one much more than You (although I did enjoy that one too). I don’t usually read contemporary fiction, to be honest, unless it’s quirky. This definitely checks the offbeat box, although it doesn’t overpower the story. Also, there is a fantasy aspect, which really sold me. Kepnes also writes interesting characters, in that they are gray. Sometimes they do good things and other times, you see how flawed they are. For instance, Chloe can be self-absorbed and Eggs is not a very good husband sometimes. I think the characters were really brought to life well and fleshed out. The scene at the end where Eggs finally visits his autistic son brought a tear to my eye (my black shriveled heart rolled its eyes). I liked the ending. Questions are left unanswered, but I felt satisfied. I really liked all three of the main characters! I am left wondering what will happen to them. I guess I will end my review because I really don’t want to give anything away and think you should just read the book. I recommend it for those who don’t mind lots of swearing (just throwing that out there; this isn’t a bland contemporary thriller; it’s got a mouth on it) and who also enjoy quirky fiction with a splash of fantasy.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer

    There is a lot going on in this book, and I really, really wish the author Caroline Kepnes had an interview already released somewhere that reveals her inspiration or intended message. Is this a reimagining of H.P. Lovecraft's short story: The Dunwich Horror? It is the creation of a character meant to reflect H.P. Lovecraft's own personal demons? Or is it simply an involved thriller that originated from the very imaginative mind of its author? Very likely, it's a mixture of all three things. Pro There is a lot going on in this book, and I really, really wish the author Caroline Kepnes had an interview already released somewhere that reveals her inspiration or intended message. Is this a reimagining of H.P. Lovecraft's short story: The Dunwich Horror? It is the creation of a character meant to reflect H.P. Lovecraft's own personal demons? Or is it simply an involved thriller that originated from the very imaginative mind of its author? Very likely, it's a mixture of all three things. Providence follows three characters who each have their own alternating POV's: Jon, Chloe, and Eggs. Jon is our focal character who is kidnapped as a child and returns years later changed to his core. Chloe is his childhood best friend who knows him better than anyone. Eggs is a detective who is borderline OCD, and his current target of rumination is finding the connection in a string of heart attacks that have been occurring to seemingly healthy people. That connection is Jon. Jon was indeed changed...down to his core...down to his very life force. Full of necessary isolation, unrequited love, and intense guilt, Jon was my favorite character as I'm sure he was intended to be. Emotionally speaking, his character is the epitome of all the tragedy that creates superheros...and villains. Chloe's storyline becomes quite involved as she finds a place among all the grief and confusion, and Eggs comes out of the blue and pretty much has his own separate book in this novel. All this plus the H.P. Lovecraft element that is all over this story (literally) and I'll say it again, there's a lot going on. Did it work? I'd have to say yes, but in a small doses kinda way. I read this novel slowly, consuming between five to ten percent a day. Sometimes it was mysterious and engaging, sometimes it was boring, sometimes I was sure I was missing the key to the universe for never having read The Dunwich Horror... so I paused to read it. In my opinion, reading it isn't entirely necessary because Kepnes made sure all the key components are laid out for readers. If interested, I would recommend glancing over random biographical information about H.P. Lovecraft, as I saw some similarities between him and Jon. Is it a coincidence that Lovecraft lived his life from birth to death in Providence, Rhode Island? I think not. Maybe I don't know what I'm talking about though. Only Caroline Kepnes truly knows what this book is about and I will be eagerly awaiting her first interview. You might love it, you might hate it, you might be like me and feel a bit meh about it. It's Caroline Kepnes so you know you're going to read it regardless. Check it out! Thank you to the following for permitting me access to an advance reader's copy (ARC) of Providence. This generosity did not impact my honesty when rating/reviewing. Source: NetGalley Author: Caroline Kepnes Publisher: Random House Publishing Group, Lenny Genres: General Fiction (Adult), Mystery & Thrillers Pub Date: June 19, 2018

  20. 5 out of 5

    Sadie Hartmann Mother Horror

    4.5 stars! After reading YOU and Hidden Bodies earlier this year and falling madly in love with Caroline Kepnes' writing style, you can imagine how eager I was to read Providence by Caroline Kepnes. Now, Providence is not a 'Joe & Beck' story, let's just clarify that straight away. YOU and Hidden Bodies are the Joe & Beck stories and if you haven't read those two books, I highly recommend them (You is my favorite of the two-I have Goodreads reviews for both) Providence is a 'Jon & Chlo 4.5 stars! After reading YOU and Hidden Bodies earlier this year and falling madly in love with Caroline Kepnes' writing style, you can imagine how eager I was to read Providence by Caroline Kepnes. Now, Providence is not a 'Joe & Beck' story, let's just clarify that straight away. YOU and Hidden Bodies are the Joe & Beck stories and if you haven't read those two books, I highly recommend them (You is my favorite of the two-I have Goodreads reviews for both) Providence is a 'Jon & Chloe' story. The magical things that Kepnes does so well as an author are the best things about this book. Caroline has this casual, accessible, and compelling way of storytelling that is immediately captivating. The pages fly by as the "movie" begins to play in your mind. She also builds characters that are like flesh and blood people and she stages the interactions between them with so much realism, I forget that I'm reading a piece of fiction. Dialog exchanges sound like real life conversations-the way people really talk and the characters open up like flowers to the reader with their steady streams of inner mind-chat. The story here was so totally original, I found myself not finding an easy place to drop the bookmark at bedtime...each chapter was an invitation to keep reading. This story is equal parts love story/romance, supernatural sci-fi and maybe even some mystery/hardboiled detective threads. I would not say this is horror at all, as some were suggesting. But genre aside, this book is entertaining on so many levels and Caroline's writing is so engaging, I can't imagine a reader that wouldn't be interested in this book. Seriously, there's something for everyone here. My only real complaint would be that this book checked all the boxes for me except one: Teeth. I felt myself hoping that the story would eventually leap off the page and land in some really dark territory--there was some opportunity with the antagonist where I felt like I needed a little bit more from that part of the story. I wanted more motive there. But that's my only real complaint, the edge of the knife was a bit dull but other than that--everything about this story was speaking my language. Mad love for Caroline Kepnes. She an insta-buy author.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Terrie's Just Another Book B*tch

    Just Another Book Bitch's ALWAYS SPOILER FREE REVIEW Caroline Kepnes is one of the best wordsmiths of our generation. Plain and simple. This highly intelligent suspenseful read is nothing short of breathtaking... You may or may not have read You. (*whispers if you haven't YOU have to!!!) If you have, trust me when I say Kepnes blew it out of the water with Providence. I'm still left hypnotized by her words. The beauty, the pain, the human insight... I almost feel like I'm in a trace. I can't for Just Another Book Bitch's ALWAYS SPOILER FREE REVIEW Caroline Kepnes is one of the best wordsmiths of our generation. Plain and simple. This highly intelligent suspenseful read is nothing short of breathtaking... You may or may not have read You. (*whispers if you haven't YOU have to!!!) If you have, trust me when I say Kepnes blew it out of the water with Providence. I'm still left hypnotized by her words. The beauty, the pain, the human insight... I almost feel like I'm in a trace. I can't form the words to truly express how remarkable this book is. Nothing can or ever will do it justice. The only thing you can do is READ THE BOOK Read it ... Breathe it... and let it consume you. "it's almost as if the tentacles on the book are holding me, as if they've grown out of the cover and onto my hands, snaking up my arms, into my ears" The author's words of course, but exactly how I feel. This is a book that will stay with you. It can haunt you one moment, and inspire you the next. A book that will stay with you to be read and reread. "Being alive is nothing without being able to live" Providence is a brilliantly insightful love story. While observing the characters during their self-discovery you get a glimpse into the human nature. In all its ugliness and all it's beauty. The front row seat we're given into the mystery that is the human heart, with its false truths and its ever-present hunger for its mate. The inevitable damage it ensues. The cracks and the bruises it suffers when we hand it over to others, or when we hold on to it too tightly... Kepnes's words are nothing more than mystifying and humbling. I'm in utter awe of her. There are so many reviews you'll see... Some great, some not so great. I try and write a spoiler free review because I think to live the book is the only true way to read. There are tons of "book report" type reviews out there and if that's your thing go for it! But take a chance. Go in blind. You need to read Providence with no expectations... Let Kepnes' words encompass you and transform you. Providence will move you. Big thanks to author Caroline Kepnes for an early paperback copy and to Random House and Lenny Books. Thank you all for the opportunity to review. Providence will be available June 19, 2018 PURCHASE LINKS Amazon US, Amazon UK, Amazon CA Find/follow me on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter & My Blog Page

  22. 3 out of 5

    Gabby

    What the fuck is this book? This book was my most anticipated book of the year, because You is one of my favorite books of all time. I read this books description and I thought it sounded so cool and I couldn't wait to read it and now I'm just like..... what??? This book was strange. Probably one of the strangest books I've ever read. This book was trying to be so many things at once and failing at all of them. This was part mystery, part romance, part supernatural, part detective story, part th What the fuck is this book? This book was my most anticipated book of the year, because You is one of my favorite books of all time. I read this books description and I thought it sounded so cool and I couldn't wait to read it and now I'm just like..... what??? This book was strange. Probably one of the strangest books I've ever read. This book was trying to be so many things at once and failing at all of them. This was part mystery, part romance, part supernatural, part detective story, part thriller?? It was absolutely nothing like You, which is fine, I like it when authors try something different but this was so different and strange to the point where it felt like a different author. It follows this boy named Jon who is best friends with this girl named Chloe. Jon gets kidnapped by his substitute teacher Richard Blair randomly one day and goes missing for four years. Four years later he wakes up and has no memory of anything that happened in the last four years. He's horrified to discover he has this strange supernatural ability now that harms people he acres about. This description sounded really cool and it's what drew me in in the first place, but from the moment Jon comes back after four years - this book really drags. It becomes this obnoxious love story about Jon just wanting to be with Chloe but he can't because he's afraid he'll hurt her. Chloe was such a bland character, and all of her chapters talk about how much she misses Jon, or she's trying to hunt him down, and she's waiting on his call - like she literally doesn't do anything but talk about Jon. We follows this detective named Eggs as he tries to track down "the bearded man" which is Jon literally the entire fucking book and I couldn't care less about his chapters and his problems in his marriage and I don't understand why he was even included in this story. Overall, this book had so much potential to be great, I thought the premise sounded so cool but this story dropped the ball on pretty much everything. The ending is so cliche and cringe-y and just made the whole thing feel like a huge waste of time. The only reason this gets two stars instead of one is because I really do like Caroline Kepnes's writing style, and because this book kept me curious enough to finish it all in one sitting, which is a good thing for me because lately I've been DNF'ing anything I'm not liking, but this book kept me interested until the end, even though the ending wasn't very good unfortunately. Thank you to Random House Publishing for approving me for an ARC on Netgalley!

  23. 4 out of 5

    Julie

    Read this review on Julie's Bookshelf My, oh my is Caroline Kepnes a unique creature... she needs to be in a genre of her own! Although I’m a romantic, I don’t typically read love stories. Although I’m a fan of shows such as Stranger Things and X-Files, I tend to stray away from novels in the fantasy genre as well. But, I’m seriously convinced I would read anything created from the mind of Caroline Kepnes. This is unlike the YOU series so I encourage you to begin this read with an open mind and w Read this review on Julie's Bookshelf My, oh my is Caroline Kepnes a unique creature... she needs to be in a genre of her own! Although I’m a romantic, I don’t typically read love stories. Although I’m a fan of shows such as Stranger Things and X-Files, I tend to stray away from novels in the fantasy genre as well. But, I’m seriously convinced I would read anything created from the mind of Caroline Kepnes. This is unlike the YOU series so I encourage you to begin this read with an open mind and without the expectation of Joe. Jon is a whole different beast and I fell for him in a completely different manner than I did for Joe. Caroline has a way of making you feel, and oh boy did I FEEL throughout the journey that is PROVIDENCE. Although the words are in black and white, they were so colorful., and this I feel is one of Caroline's biggest strong suits in her writing. It’s impossible not to feel for her characters. Feel their pain, the crack of their voice, feel their happiness, their passions.  I'm a sucker for a good character driven novel and Caroline know just how to serve this up for her readers. My heart soured, my heart exploded, my heart sang, and my heart broke. “Life makes you better after it makes you worse.” Another thing that I absolutely loved was the choice in setting. If a book even captured New England living, this is that book. Being born and raised in Rhode Island, and now a New Hampshire resident for the past five-years, it was really cool having familiarity in locations and establishments that were mentioned. This gave me the feeling of home, which was captured perfectly within both states. I am all about Providence! Seriously ladies and gents this book is a must read this summer. Caroline writing is something I can always get lost in, want to get lost in. Give me a one-way ticket to the fictional world Caroline creates anytime... I’ll be the first person in line to board the trip! Many thanks to Caroline Kepnes and Lenny for a gifted advance readers copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Bark

    Oh, this book. How on earth does one review such a unique book without ruining the experience for others? This is one of those books that you should experience going in nearly cold. Strangely enough this book takes place in a town five minutes from my home. Me, being me, was reading every Nashua reference with a squinty eye looking for a nit to pick but I didn’t find anything to bitch about. Nashua is not a very exciting place, if you ask me, and it was fun imagining this weird stuff happening so Oh, this book. How on earth does one review such a unique book without ruining the experience for others? This is one of those books that you should experience going in nearly cold. Strangely enough this book takes place in a town five minutes from my home. Me, being me, was reading every Nashua reference with a squinty eye looking for a nit to pick but I didn’t find anything to bitch about. Nashua is not a very exciting place, if you ask me, and it was fun imagining this weird stuff happening so close to me. I’m going to give any suspicious men about town even more of a wide berth after reading this, however. If you bought PROVIDENCE because you loved YOU and HIDDEN BODIES and you expect another crazy Joe you do need to know that this book is not at all like either of them. It starts out when the main characters are children and within pages I was so in love with their friendship and engaged with these two characters that I didn’t want to put it down (curse you real life and your constant interruptions). Kepnes managed to do in mere pages what some books cannot accomplish after hundreds of them. She made me care deeply about these two and put my feelings through the wringer. Now that’s a talent! Jon and Chloe just click. They would’ve, could’ve, should’ve been that rare couple who fall in love, marry young and stay together through good times and bad because they were meant to be. But that doesn’t happen because who wants to read that book?! Something unexpected happens to one of the kids and it changes them forever. Waking up with vague memories and a copy of The Dunwich Horror by Lovecraft with a strange letter tucked inside, the parents, best friend and the family soon learn that something has forever changed with this kid. I’m not going to tell you what it is or even which kid it is because you need to experience that gut punch yourownselves. I’ll just leave you guessing with this quote. "I’m starting to get paranoid, starting to think something’s wrong with me… I imagine myself the invisible monster, slaughtering them all." The remainder of the book features these two kids grown and struggling to connect, longing for each other but unable (for reasons I’m still not divulging) to be together properly. Their story is absolutely wrenching to witness. There is also another character named Eggs who makes it his mission to crack a case involving suspicious deaths of young people. Eggs and his story was also filled with pain and heartbreak and tore me all up inside. Geez, this book. I’m going to spoil it if I keep blathering on. Just read it if you want and I hope you love it as much as I did. My favorite quote is this one because it’s so damned accurate for me and most everyone I know that I actually laughed out loud like a genuine lunatic. "Why are you so dressed up? That should be the state fucking slogan of New Hampshire. "

  25. 5 out of 5

    Trina (Between Chapters)

    Worth a read. Loved the concept, but the execution was murky. If you need concrete answers you may feel unfulfilled. I was always intrigued and the audiobook narrators were fantastic. Content: Kidnapping. Human trafficking (very brief). Heart attack. Cancer. R slur used by bad guy. F slur & gay used as an insult by bad guy. Bad guy slaps his girlfriend once. I'm unsure if the attitudes toward an autistic side character were healthy.

  26. 3 out of 5

    Reading.Between.Wines

    ⭐⭐⭐⭐ / 5 I was a little apprehensive going into Providence because of all the less than stellar reviews out there. Not that I wouldn't read it since it is written by one of my favorite's Caroline Kepnes, but I wasn't quite sure what to expect. Well I'm very glad to have gotten a chance to read this book because I really enjoyed it. Providence is about Jon who gets kidnapped only to return 4 years later a completely changed person. He now has certain powers, and fearing for the people around him, ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ / 5 I was a little apprehensive going into Providence because of all the less than stellar reviews out there. Not that I wouldn't read it since it is written by one of my favorite's Caroline Kepnes, but I wasn't quite sure what to expect. Well I'm very glad to have gotten a chance to read this book because I really enjoyed it. Providence is about Jon who gets kidnapped only to return 4 years later a completely changed person. He now has certain powers, and fearing for the people around him, he runs off leaving everyone behind. The book is basically about what happens to Jon after he comes back from the kidnapping, with viewpoints switching from him, his soulmate and one true love who he has to leave behind (Chole), and a detective named Eggs. There are quite a few time jumps as well and I really liked the style that Kepnes wrote this book in. It kept me fully engaged the entire time and I had to find out what was going to happen because this book was just so interesting. There are some great bookish one-liners, as well as some that aren't book related but that I found hilarious. One of my favorites being from Jon's mom: She said she understood why they call it "working out" and that it wasn't the right job for her. I mean how funny is that? There are a lot of references to the author H.P. Lovecraft in the book and while I didn't know anything about the guy, this didn't get in the way of me enjoying the book. It is also extremely important to note that this book is NOTHING like You or Hidden Bodies so make sure you don't go into it expecting something like them because you are going to be disappointed. I appreciated this (even though I do miss my Joe) because it shows just how versatile Kepnes is by writing something completely different from her first 2 novels. Something that I think is REALLY good. I also want to point out that I don't think this book is really a thriller. For me it felt more like a coming-of-age / mystery / romance story with a touch of the supernatural/unexplained. The biggest, and really only, issue I had with the book was that I didn't love how everything was wrapped up in the end. I felt like some of the answers I really wanted, and the resolution I was desperately hoping for, just weren't there. Final Thought: While it won't be everyone's cup of tea, I really enjoyed Providence. I think you just need to go into it with the correct expectations without expecting something it isn't (a thriller/another book like YOU or HIDDEN BODIES). If you like a touch of the unexplainable in your books then you just might like this one. I think Kepnes writing was as great as ever, and there was enough mystery in this book to keep me reading. Also, the romantic aspect wasn't overpowering which was really nice. She is such a strong author, and I can't wait for the next book from her. Providence in 3-ish words: Intense, Gripping, Dynamic

  27. 3 out of 5

    Carlene Inspired

    Available Now: Amazon There is no other way for me to describe this book other than heavy. At times it seems there is no real purpose to this book, there's no glowing happily ever after promised, but as you get into the minds of Jon, Chloe, and Eggs we begin to understand how obsession can take over your life. The teacher was obsessed with a book and a crazy idea, Jon is obsessed with finding a way to be with Chloe and around others, Chloe is obsessed with Jon and popularity, Eggs is obsessed wit Available Now: Amazon There is no other way for me to describe this book other than heavy. At times it seems there is no real purpose to this book, there's no glowing happily ever after promised, but as you get into the minds of Jon, Chloe, and Eggs we begin to understand how obsession can take over your life. The teacher was obsessed with a book and a crazy idea, Jon is obsessed with finding a way to be with Chloe and around others, Chloe is obsessed with Jon and popularity, Eggs is obsessed with finding the answer. Each is in a terrible position where their life is out of control and though each could sit back and accept it, they don't. Providence certainly wasn't the easiest book I've ever read, in fact it took me four days to get through it, but that's mainly due to the weight. The emotions in this book are heavy, it's very sad and disheartening how each character is so affected by a single event. Jon's world is not easy, there's no possible pathforward to make it easier either, but he pushes on and I loved that about him. I ached for him, for his life stunted in his youth, but he took what happened to him and I do feel like he lived in a smart way. His effort to save others, to protect them at all costs, and to still be a productive, functioning member of society is something I applaud. Chloe was impossible to connect to, a flighty woman who really only is herself when she is painting. I liked her and I hated her all at once. Eggs, on the other hand, is this sort of character you are so fascinated by, but you are also terrified of him. Readers grow to care for Jon, we want him safe, he doesn't mean for things to happen, so Eggs' efforts to find him, to take him down, are hard to accept. That said, his desperate obsession with Jon is so interesting, especially with his own personal experiences with life being so out of control, with illness taking over. For me, the heart of this story is in the characters, in the way they obsess and grow and come full circle. Caroline Kepnes uses a sort of odd humor at certain times and the favorited pop culture references she is known for are weaved into the story. I know of H.P. Lovecraft, but I can't say I ever have or ever would read his work, so I felt a bit disconnected from the Lovecraft obsession. Kepnes gives a very solid effort to include details from Lovecraft's books, but when weird fiction just isn't your thing it sometimes just didn't click. I did love that it was a thing though, that there are these people who follow his work, who live by it in an odd sort of way, that Jon could see others who knew the stories even if they didn't know just how much of those stories are a part of him. I didn't quite know what I was getting into when I started Providence, but I'm glad I read it. It's different, a very fascinating story that, though unreal at times, is easily applied to real life. I'm not usually a science fiction fan and lucky for me I can say this doesn't have as much in it as you might think. It's there, it moves the story along, but it isn't what the book is about. I definitely suggest Providence to thriller fans and I think fans of Caroline Kepnes' previous novels should open their minds up for something a bit different. It's not Hidden Bodies or You., but it is Providence and it is very good. ARC provided via Netgalley.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Erin Clemence

    Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher, for providing a free, electronic ARC of this novel in exchange for an honest review. When Jon Bronson disappears without a trace at the age of 13, no one really misses him. No one, that is, except his best friend Chloe, and his parents. Four years later, Jon returns but he is a very different man from the one who was taken. Jon has no memory of the time he spent with his abductor, and only a used paperback with a handwritten message scrawled inside it to r Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher, for providing a free, electronic ARC of this novel in exchange for an honest review. When Jon Bronson disappears without a trace at the age of 13, no one really misses him. No one, that is, except his best friend Chloe, and his parents. Four years later, Jon returns but he is a very different man from the one who was taken. Jon has no memory of the time he spent with his abductor, and only a used paperback with a handwritten message scrawled inside it to remind him that he was ever taken at all. Soon, Jon begins to notice strange happenings. His family dog is killed, his school peers start dropping dead of heart attacks and even the members of his family begin to feel ill and suffer unpredictable nosebleeds. Their only connection is their physical proximity to Jon when they suffer these afflictions. Jon begins to question what happened to him when he was trapped, and struggles to reignite the relationship he once had with Chloe, without risking her life. I read “You” by Ms. Kepnes, and now, with reading “Providence”, this brings my Kepnes book count up to only two. This was enough though, to have notice some similarities. Ms. Kepnes starts a book smoking hot, immediately dragging a reader in. Then, it appears she veers completely off topic and spends some time on a less interesting plot line, before veering off course again, introducing another plot line, and bringing some final entertainment back to the reader. In “Providence”, the kidnapping of Jon was glazed over. There were so many unanswered questions, and a lot of the blanks in Jon’s memory were never filled in. I was sadly disappointed to discover this as I was over-the-moon to delve into Roger’s psyche and understand what made him capture Jon, what he did to Jon, and all the other who’s and why’s of it. Kepnes, however, quickly jumps to four years later in time when Jon is home, and struggling with the teenage-angst of his relationship with Chloe. I was not a huge fan of this part, Chloe was whiny and angsty (aren’t all teenagers, though?)and I really didn’t like Jon’s character in this particular stage. The novel ended picked back up and slammed the reader with action and drama once again. Although a lot of the unanswered questions remain that way (and in fact, more are brought forward), the novel ends as one would expect it to, not particularly surprising but not completely predictable either. As with “You”, it seems that Kepnes is able to develop a unique and creative storyline, but I would much prefer if she would stick to it and carry it through, instead of veering off-track. Her child-abduction/teenage-romance/action-packed drama could have easily filled three (very different) novels. At this rate, Kepnes will quickly run out of ideas!

  29. 4 out of 5

    Mindi

    I did not want to put this book down. I was immediately drawn in, and so in love with the characters and their stories. Providence is another amazing novel from a writer who is quickly becoming one of my favorites. Jon Bronson is the kid that the popular boys pick on. But Jon is friends with Chloe, a beautiful and popular girl who doesn't care what the other kids at school think about her friendship with Jon. They are close, and when one day Jon disappears on his way to school, Chloe's world goes I did not want to put this book down. I was immediately drawn in, and so in love with the characters and their stories. Providence is another amazing novel from a writer who is quickly becoming one of my favorites. Jon Bronson is the kid that the popular boys pick on. But Jon is friends with Chloe, a beautiful and popular girl who doesn't care what the other kids at school think about her friendship with Jon. They are close, and when one day Jon disappears on his way to school, Chloe's world goes into a tailspin. She realizes how important Jon is to her, and she withdraws from her friends and school activities to mourn her missing friend. Flash forward four years, and Jon wakes up in the basement of the town mall. He doesn't recognize his 17-year-old body, and the only clue he has as to what happened to him all those years ago is in a cryptic note left by his abductor in a copy of Lovecraft's story The Dunwich Horror. Jon tries to resume his old life, but he quickly learns that he is very different now, and that being around people can end up deadly for them. Jon tries to reestablish his old relationships, especially with Chloe, but he knows that he can't put the people he loves at risk. Suddenly, Jon has to make himself disappear again. I absolutely loved the story of Jon and Chloe's connection. They are soulmates and star-crossed lovers who long for each other with a heartbreaking intensity. Jon spends his days locked away from society, but he still encounters people and in almost every circumstance those people who cross paths with Jon die. The unusual amount of deaths lead a police officer named Eggs to become obsessed with why seemingly young and healthy people are suddenly dying from heart attacks. Eggs and his wife Lo are fantastic characters as well, and their relationship mirrors Jon and Chloe to a degree, as they also have a barrier of sorts between them. As a reader I quickly fell in love with Eggs and Lo, and absolutely adored how their story progressed. Providence is a story about love and longing, but it has a touch of the supernatural that makes it even more heartbreaking. Kepnes writes characters that you feel like you actually know. She gives them a unique depth, and it makes you love them and root for them even more. This book could definitely be a stand alone, but I'm really hoping that we get to read more about Jon and chloe and Eggs and Lo in the future. I'm fully invested in the lives of these characters, and I would love to know what the future holds for all of them.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Heather *Awkward Queen and Unicorn Twin*

    I GOT APPROVED REVIEW Buddy-read with the fabulous Nenia! I guess I went into this expecting another YOU. Not exactly, but just something as good and dense and witty. I did not get that. Everything that made YOU good was either absent or half-hearted in PROVIDENCE: the writing was not clever, the pop culture references were clumsy, and the observations weren't snappy. The characters were unlikable, and not in a fun way. I never believed in their relationships, which clouded my enjoyment of the entir I GOT APPROVED REVIEW Buddy-read with the fabulous Nenia! I guess I went into this expecting another YOU. Not exactly, but just something as good and dense and witty. I did not get that. Everything that made YOU good was either absent or half-hearted in PROVIDENCE: the writing was not clever, the pop culture references were clumsy, and the observations weren't snappy. The characters were unlikable, and not in a fun way. I never believed in their relationships, which clouded my enjoyment of the entire book. I don't think it's fair to compare the two though, and I doubt I'd have liked this even if I hadn't read YOU first. Because what really ruined it for me was the thin, vague plot. Everything about Jon's kidnapping just didn't work for me; in particular, I didn't understand why the story needed to rely so heavily on H.P. Lovecraft. Why couldn't it stand on its own? I'm entirely unfamiliar with Lovecraft, so maybe this book wasn't for me. Toward the end I felt it got better, but I'd already tortured myself slogging through the first 90% of the book, so I didn't care. 1.5 stars I received an ARC from the publisher via NetGalley.

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...
We use cookies to give you the best online experience. By using our website you agree to our use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.