The Good Samaritan – John Marrs

35451741  5 Stars

That was a chilling read. Laura is one of the best -or better say worst- characters I have seen in a book for quite a while. As the blurb says, Laura works for a telephone helpline. But she is obsessed with dead and has her own rules to play by. But then she comes across Ryan. His wife killed herself while pregnant. In his grieve he looks for answers and soon he finds out that his wife did call the helpline quite a lot.

Ryan finds out about Laura’s role in his wife’s suicide. He begins to watch her and works out a plan. Soon they are in engaged in some kind of duel. They are trying to bring each other down and ruin their life.

This book is not a very fast paced thriller. Most of the time it is more of a slow burner. First we meet Laura and her way of handling things. Then the story is told from Ryan’s point of view. They are playing a cat and mouse game and Ryan is getting into it deeper and deeper.

This book is a dark and disturbing read. And also very sad. You will meet the most despicable character and you are watching the downfall of a man first hand. The author explains very extensive. That’s what takes a bit the pace out of it. But you are rewarded with a well crafted and very intense and complex story.

I enjoyed “The One” from John Marrs a couple of month ago and I liked it very much. This book is very different but as unique and brilliantly done as “The One”. I admire his talent to create such unusual storylines. I highly recommend this book if you love a good psychological thriller.

I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

Advertisements

Flowers For The Dead – Barabra Copperthwaite

26769832  4 Stars

„Flowers For The Dead“ gives us a serial killer of a different kind. Actually Adam is a serial killer. But he seems also to be a lost soul. Searching for love but unable to interact properly with people he woos the girls he falls in love with in a creepy way.

 

There are two story lines. The first one is in the present where Adam is searching for a new love which he can take care of.  The second timeline shows us Adam as a child. He has an abusive mother and he suffered a great deal during his childhood. And for me the question pops up: was he made the monster that he is by his mother or would he have turn out all the same if his childhood would have been a loving one? Then he also received love and understanding from his grandmother. She taught him to be gentle and respectful to women. So the question for me is if his mother broke him or was it always in him to kill people? I would not say I developed a soft spot for Adam although I pitied him sometimes. He is a sociopath but also has this longing to be loved and share a life with someone who understands him.

 

The author created a clever story and a sociopath to remember. But the story is a slow burner and it also takes all the time in the world to lay out Adam’s life. Only at the end the story picks up pace. That was my only problem with the book. It was a bit too slow and too long. But it is still a remarkable read.

The Foster Child – Jenny Blackhurst

34751037  3,5 Stars

„The Foster Child“ is a disturbing psychological thriller about a creepy child.

Child psychologist Imogen Reid returns to her hometown after the dead of her mother. She has to build a new life for her and her husband. Something happened in her old job in London and they have to make a new start. One of her first cases is elven year old Ellie. Something is odd about the girl. She has a reputation to cause bad things to people who get cross with her. But Imogen takes a liking to that poor girl. She defends her and crosses the lines of what she is allowed to do – again.

There are a lot of creepy thinks going on and I found myself pitying Ellie and a moment later I was scared of her. I got an idea of what was going on while I was reading. It turns out I was almost right. But not entirely.

I think it is better not to know too much about the plot. A lot of the story is transported through the characters involved. And I think it is for the best when you just get to know them yourself. I had some problems with the main character Imogen. I found her extremely unprofessional. She is a complicated character and very changeable. I understand she had a troubled childhood (I would have loved to learn more about that and the reason) but I could not connect to her. Everybody in her surrounding is revolving around her but it is obviously not enough for her. She is very self-centered. For my taste the story stays too much at the surface. A lot of things don’t get explained deeper. And some characters are really plain.

This book is an easy and creepy read although it is a bit superficially. But it is entertaining. And Ellie is a remarkable character.

I received an ARC from NetGalleyin exchange for an honest review

The Last Mrs Parrish – Liv Constantine

34043643  4 Stars

This was an easy and quick read and a real page-turner. I would not call it a psychological thriller. It is more a dark and twisted domestic drama and a romance gone wrong. There are a lot of psychological manipulations going on which made the read so entertaining.

 

I think I should not say too much about the story. I jumped into the book with not much of an idea of it and I that was good. At first I thought everything was going too smoothly for Amber and her aim to get between the married couple. But soon I sensed there was something else going on.

 

Envy, greed, betrayal, abuse, psychopaths – name it, you have it here in this book. It is a dark, twisted and disturbing story. I enjoyed reading it.

The Fourth Monkey – J.D. Barker

31125554  5 Stars

What a twisted and creepy book. It is a fast pace thriller which is highly entertaining and scary.

For five years the 4MK keeps the Chicago Police busy now. He punishes people who did something bad by taking someone they love. First he cuts of one ear, then he takes the eyes and at least the tongue. The sends the body parts in a white box with a black ribbon. The police is still without a clue who he is. Then one day a man is killed in an accident. Obviously he jumped in front of a bus. He carried a white box with a black ribbon. Inside is an ear. So there must be another victim suffering somewhere. But the killer is dead now. But that does not keep him from playing games with the police.

There was a kind of diary found with the body. In this book the 4MK describes his unbelievable bizarre childhood. At first you think it is a normal family but soon it turns out that this is a family of a very different kind.

The story is told alternating between 4MK’s diary and the police work. This book is not for readers who are very sensitive. It is quite drastic and there is a lot of blood. If you have no problems with that you will find a highly entertaining and very unique thriller. There is a little bit of humor, despite all this gruesome things happening all around. The book is very well written. The diary and this horrible family is almost too much, like a parody. It’s unbelievable that there would be a family like that. At least I hope there is not.

All together this was a very entertaining book. It’s full of surprises and twist and it has a unique ending. This book is really different to other thrillers. I enjoyed it very much.

I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

Frances Vick – Bad Little Girl

Bad Little GirlBad Little Girl by Frances Vick
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

The title „Bad Little Girl“ is very suitable for this book. But it also tells you too much about the story.

Claire is a teacher and Lorna is one of the pupils. Not her pupil, but she knows her. Lorna is an outsider and very shy. Somehow Claire keeps an eye on Lorna, even start to really care. She is afraid, that Lorna’s strange behavior comes from some kind of abuse. Claire lives a very quiet life, visiting her mother and doing her job. Claire talks to Lorna’s mother but she denies any abuse and tells her that Lorna makes things up. Of course Claire is sure, that that could not be true. After her mother dies, she somehow got closes to Lorna. One night Lorna is knocking on her door, telling her she has to take now to her cottage in Cornwall because she needs to be safe. Claire, confused, agrees. She is a good person and wants to do the right thing. It never occurs to her, that she is manipulated. For a short time, they both play mother and daughter in this remote cottage. But then Lorna gets bored.

The story is very predictable. I disliked Lorna immediately. She acted strange and I never saw the charms she obviously must have. The story also took very long to get going. Half of the book we see Claire living her life, caring for her mother and watching Lorna. It took a little bit too long until it got moving and something finally happened. A child being a sociopath is unusual but not unlikely. It is indeed quite an interesting subject. But the author failed to make Lorna interesting for me. I found it hard to believe that she charmed to adult women into taking care of her and doing almost everything for her. She was quite lucky to find not one but two women who were more than happy to play her mother because of their personal circumstances.

Well, it was an interesting story. But the pace was very slow and there weren’t many surprises. I liked the idea but I found it also quite unrealistic.

I received an ARC from NetGalley and the publisher in return for an honest review

View all my reviews

Sarah Pinborough – Behind her eyes

Behind Her EyesBehind Her Eyes by Sarah Pinborough
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This is the second book this year which I wanted eagerly to read for a long time and then failed to live up to my expectations.

It is right, you should not know too much about the story. It is a kind of love triangle. There was so much raving about the ending. Seriously? You can see where it is heading too almost as soon as Adele and Louise become friends. Maybe the ultimate twist is something you would not expect. But at this time I already did not care anymore because logic and realistic behavior was long gone until then. The story itself was very unrealistic.

Mostly, I have to say, I disliked the writing style. You can clearly see that the author usually writes YA-books. The writing is quite simple and uncomplex. There is much talking about the affair and Louise feeling great about here wickedness. I read this book in German and there is a very childish expression for sleeping with someone. I don’t know what word was used in English, but in German it sounded very strange. Like teenagers would say it. But besides that, the story unfolds too smoothly, the perfidious plan plays out exactly as it should, everybody plays his/her part as he/she should. It’s all too simple But that’s my problem with YA-books. For me the author did not manage to alter her writing to a more mature style..

This was my second book from Sarah Pinborough after “13 Minutes”. I did not like this book neither because it was definitely a YA-book and way to long and boring. So I think I just delete this author from my reading list

View all my reviews