Friday, May 22, 2015

The Killing Lessons by Saul Black

Rowena Cooper, a widowed mother, was living in a farmhouse a mile from the nearest neighbour and three miles from the town with her thirteen-year-old son and ten-year-old daughter. Her world crumbled under the weight of her false sense of security when she saw two men standing in the back hallway with a shotgun and a long blade.

The Killing Lessons by Saul Black opens with a scene that sent a shiver down one’s spine as one awaits the fate of Rowena and her two children, Josh and Nell. You can feel your blood rushing, and I must admit that I was genuinely terrified. Needless to say, it is a beautifully written part-horror and part-thriller that is gripping enough to take you through the nearly four hundred pages (Adobe Digital Edition) though you’ll be compelled to watch your back quite a few times along the way.

You have a homicide detective whose life is falling apart due to a disastrous love affair, Valerie Hart, at the head of an investigation assigned to look into the murder of several women spanning a period of three years. She is assisted by Special Agent Carla York who Valerie feels wanted her to fail. And Valerie has nothing to show for the painstaking effort she has made. All she could do was to wait for clues, and that means more victims. But she can’t afford for more victims to surface as she has been hard pressed and haunted for the last seven months.

You may or may not correctly guess the ending, but you can easily guess that Saul Black is a pseudonym used by author Glen Duncan as the book was copyrighted to him (Glen Duncan) and not Saul Black. But that is the least of the interesting part as one turns the pages of this fast-paced and exciting mystery crime thriller which is full of suspense and spine-chilling moments. Glen Duncan may change his name but there is an unmistakable strain of irresistible style criss-crossing throughout that he cannot simply alter with the stroke of a brush.

What I really like about The Killing Lessons is the characterization. While it may be far from perfect, it is almost flawless. The eclectic cast of characters, from the alcoholic detective Valerie to Nell to the killers are wonderfully portrayed. What truly sets this apart is the manner in which the author showcased each of them, and of how their past influenced their present. The Killing Lessons is one hell of ride with heart-stopping twists that will leave you petrified and satisfied all at the same time.

Kindle edition available now
Hardcopy available September 22, 2015

Visit my Amazon review of the book 

Monday, May 18, 2015

A Dark Lure by Loreth Anne White

Twelve years ago Olivia West escaped a brutal killer and helped put him behind bars where he died. The ordeal cost her marriage and child, and life as she knew it. Now, still struggling with PTSD and horrific scars, she's living under a new name and believes she's finally found sanctuary on Broken Bar Ranch.

But as the twelve year anniversary of her abduction nears and winter begins to close an icy fist around the Broken Bar wilderness, a dying cop's pledge for justice lures a killer out the woods. And when a fresh victim is found gutted and hanging from a tree, bearing startling similarities to the Watt Lake slaughters, Olivia must face the impossible—could the Watt Lake Killer be back? Or is it a copycat determined to finish the butcher's job.

Only one man can help her in the isolated wilderness setting—Cole McDonough, notorious adventurer and writer, heir to Broken Bar Ranch, a man as untamed and rugged as the mountains around them. A man with his own broken past.

But Cole also re-awakens something darker in Olivia, a smoldering desire, a need to be held. And she faces a choice: Can she expose herself, her scars, her horrific past, to this man? Can she learn to trust again? Or will her fear of intimacy—her shame—cost them both a second chance at love? Or worse, their lives?

Review: Multiple award-winning author, former journalist and newspaper editor Loreth Anne White adds ever more depth to her long line of romantic suspense by infusing a chilling tale with breath-taking literary prose and rhythms in A Dark Lure, a romantic suspense thriller with dark currents.

Set in an out-of-the-way secluded and far removed wilderness, with misty fog covering the air, author Loreth Anne White’s story is dark and suspenseful as one follows Sarah Baker, also known as Olivia West. A Dark Lure is the gripping story of Sarah Baker who is compelled by circumstances to change into Olivia West. It is the story of a woman troubled by her awful past. But it is also a story of a woman who wants a future and is determined to survive at all costs.

A Dark Lure is a superb read by all means. It is extremely engaging, suspenseful and a top-notch thriller. Author Loreth Anne White crafted a story that will fascinate and mesmerize lovers of romantic suspense. The characters are well-conceived, true to the nature of the story and combined well to make a fantastic story.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Finders Keepers by Stephen King

A masterful, intensely suspenseful novel about a reader whose obsession with a reclusive writer goes far too far—a book about the power of storytelling, starring the same trio of unlikely and winning heroes King introduced in Mr. Mercedes.

“Wake up, genius.” So begins King’s instantly riveting story about a vengeful reader. The genius is John Rothstein, an iconic author who created a famous character, Jimmy Gold, but who hasn’t published a book for decades. Morris Bellamy is livid, not just because Rothstein has stopped providing books, but because the nonconformist Jimmy Gold has sold out for a career in advertising. Morris kills Rothstein and empties his safe of cash, yes, but the real treasure is a trove of notebooks containing at least one more Gold novel.

Morris hides the money and the notebooks, and then he is locked away for another crime. Decades later, a boy named Pete Saubers finds the treasure, and now it is Pete and his family that Bill Hodges, Holly Gibney, and Jerome Robinson must rescue from the ever-more deranged and vengeful Morris when he’s released from prison after thirty-five years.

Not since Misery has King played with the notion of a reader whose obsession with a writer gets dangerous. Finders Keepers is spectacular, heart-pounding suspense, but it is also King writing about how literature shapes a life—for good, for bad, forever.

Coming this June 2