Posts Tagged ‘Psychological thriller’

The Fourth Victim by John Mead

September 6, 2019 - 5:48 am No Comments

The Fourth Victim by John Mead

Published by The Book Guild by 24th October 2018

207 pages

When a teenager was murdered whilst jogging through the park, the police thought it was an isolated incident. How wrong they were. Inspector Merry is the officer in charge, can he find the person behind the killings.

I always like to read police procedures if you get to follow the case step by step, so this was a good book for me to read. Inspector Merry was good at his job, thorough in his investigation and sympathetic to the victim’s family. Whilst I liked Merry, there were times that he did something stupid and I sat in amazement, as I could not believe what he had just done. His partner Julia Lukula was a no-nonsense cop, working in a man’s environment she always strived to be the best. Throughout the book I had the feeling that she did not like working for Merry, as she thought he was past his prime but then she would do something surprisingly good for him.

Whilst there were quite a few characters, I found the story easy to follow and some of my favourite scenes were the police interviews with “Leanne”.    

This was a quick-paced book that I read in one sitting. The author led you throughout the case and it felt that you were watching the story play out on a TV. Whilst I had my suspicions, the twist in the book had me second-guessing myself. This was well written thriller and whilst this book was not graphic, it was well detailed.

This was the first story I have read by this author and I will lookout for more of his books.

The Alphabet Murders by Lars Schutz

August 30, 2019 - 10:41 am No Comments

The Alphabet Murders by Lars Schutz

Published by Manilla on 22nd August 2019

The majority of psychological thrillers I read involve the police trying to solve the crime, but The Alphabet Murders is something different. Criminal profile Jan Grall has been tasked to help solve the case, but it soon becomes personal.

Jan Grall took me a few chapters to warm too. He is not like the cast of Criminal Minds. He has his own way of profiling the killer and has an unusual way of destressing. Saying that, he is good at what he does and when it does get personal, he goes into overdrive to try and stop any more killings.     

From the start of the book, you are introduced to the killer and you know that you are going to be in for a dark read. The author had a way of keeping my interest throughout the book, by switching between Grall trying to solve the case, one of the victims and the killer himself. This enabled me to get the complete story and even with all this information I still could not fathom who was behind the killings.

This is a psychological thriller so expect grizzly death scenes and the killer’s weapon of torture was not one I have read in any story. It was a pleasant change for me to read a book set in Germany as most of the books I read are set in the UK or US. The style of the writing was descriptive and as it was set in the winter had me feeling that there was no hope for Grall to solve the case.

I read this story fairly quickly as it was non stop from page one. This was a good debut novel and I will look out for more from this author

THREE: Deception Love Murder by KJ McGillick

June 29, 2019 - 6:53 am No Comments

THREE: Deception Love Murder

Inviting a stranger into your home can be dangerous. Inviting a stranger into your life can turn deadly.

How would you feel if you discovered your death was meticulously planned by someone you loved? You didn’t know how or when or even why. All you could do was wait.

Emma has it all-a job she loves and a man who professed to love her.

Or did she? How could she be so blind?

When her lover’s car is found burned and abandoned in another state, the police come asking some hard questions. What she discovers upends her world completely. Jude had been living a double life right under her nose. A deceitful life, a treacherous life. Who was this man that had already groomed another woman to take over Emma’s life? A woman who was Emma’s body double and now dead.  

Why had she so easily trusted this psychopath with her heart? Betrayed on every level, consequences not of Emma’s making were nipping at her heels. Tick. Tock.

THREE is a gripping crime thriller that will have you hooked. A fast-paced psychological thriller that has been compared to the works of Dan Brown. It can be read as a standalone and serves as the first book in the Path of Deception and Betrayal series.

THREE: Deception Love Murder by KJ McGillick

Published by KJRM Publishing LLC on 5th January 2018

330 pages                        

Emma was a lecturer of Art, whilst she had doubts with her relationship with Jude, she was happy with her routine. I took to Emma straightaway, and whilst at times she came across as a bit naïve, as you read this story, you realise how good Jude was at deceiving her. It makes you think, if you were put in this situation what would you do,

It is hard to say much without giving away any spoilers. As the story is written from 3rd POV, you get the whole story by both of the main characters and you soon become aware just how much danger Emma is in. However, she is not alone and her best friend and lawyer Eloise, was there to back her up and put everything into perspective when it all became overwhelming, she was strong-willed and god help any man that came up against her. Also having her back was her Aunt Mary, her elderly aunt who was suffering from dementia, and what a character. She was one of my favourite characters of all time, she did not let her dementia get in the way and some of her one-liners and comments had me laughing out loud.  

This was a fast-paced read and full of suspense as the plot behind Emma’s demise was laid out throughout the story. This book also gives you an insight into how complicated and dangerous the Art world is and I found it informative and interesting. The fine detail of the art, had me googling the pictures so I could see what they looked like. The scenes in the auction house were described in detail and it felt you were there feeling the apprehension of the bidders.

This is a great debut novel by this author and whilst this can be read as a  standalone read, I am off to read the rest of this series. A good psychological thriller and a new author for me to look out for.

Purchase Links:

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Three will be 99 p/c for the duration of the tour.

Book Trailer:

Author Bio –

K. J. McGillick was born in New York and once she started to walk she never stopped running. But that’s what New Yorker’s do. Right? A Registered Nurse, a lawyer now author.

As she evolved so did her career choices. After completing her graduate degree in nursing, she spent many years in the university setting sharing the dreams of the enthusiastic nursing students she taught. After twenty rewarding years in the medical field she attended law school and has spent the last twenty-four years as an attorney helping people navigate the turbulent waters of the legal system. Not an easy feat. And now? Now she is sharing the characters she loves with readers hoping they are intrigued by her twisting and turning plots and entertained by her writing

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Kathleen McGillick


Injections of Insanity by Lorraine Mace

June 20, 2019 - 5:26 am No Comments

I am pleased to review Injections of Insanity, the third in the DI Sterling series, written by Lorraine Mace.

 Injections of Insanity

Detective Inspector Paolo Sterling has just six weeks to solve a series of murders by insulin injection, with nothing to connect the victims except the manner of death and a note left at each crime scene.

The murderer, determined to avenge a wrong from many years earlier, gets close to his prey by assuming various identities.

Can Paolo win in his race against the pretender?

Injections of Insanity by Lorraine Mace

Published by Accent Press Ltd 13th June 2019

221 pages

6 months after Children in Chains and DI Sterling is up against again. With a lot of changes in his home life and at work, he has to find the link between the victims, before he can catch the killer.

Whilst this story was not as dark as the previous two in this series, it felt more intense. As DI Sterling investigated the case, he kept hitting brick wall after brick wall and you could sense he was up against the clock the catch the killer. The use of insulin was a unique weapon of choice and I learnt that something that would save lives would kill others horrifically.

Whilst Sterling was still the star of the show, this story showcases the other members of Sterling team and the more I read of the series the more DS Dave Johnson is growing on me. CC was still full of life and the new member adds another dynamic to the team and I wonder how far this team can go. Like the other books you follow Paolo as he tries and solves the case and he finds out more about the victims. If you are like me you start to guess who is behind the murders and as you read the story you realise time after time how wrong you are.

As usual this can be read as a standalone, but I would encourage readers new to Lorraine Mace to read the others first as you not only get involved in the crimes but also into the character’s personal lives.  I want this series to carry on for ever and hope I don’t have to wait too long for another DI Sterling story.

Purchase Links

UK –


Author Bio – When not working on her D.I. Sterling Series, Lorraine Mace is engaged in many writing-related activities. She is a columnist for both Writing Magazine and Writers’ Forum and is head judge for Writers’ Forum monthly fiction competitions. A tutor for Writers Bureau, she also runs her own private critique and author mentoring service. She is co-author, with Maureen Vincent-Northam, of THE WRITER’S ABC CHECKLIST (Accent Press). Other books include children’s novel VLAD THE INHALER – HERO IN THE MAKING, and NOTES FROM THE MARGIN, a compilation of her Writing Magazine humour column.

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The Refuge by Jo Fenton

June 2, 2019 - 5:51 am 1 Comment

My time has come for my turn to let me share my thoughts on The Refuge, the 2nd in the Abbey Series written by Jo Fenton. Also, a reminder that the competition is still open to be in with a chance to win E-book copies of both The Brotherhood and The Refuge.     

The Refuge

Following the death of The Brotherhood’s charismatic but sinister leader, Dominic, Melissa and her husband Mark resolve to turn the Abbey into a refuge for victims of domestic abuse. But when Melissa’s long-lost sister, Jess, turns up at the Abbey, new complications arise.

The Abbey residents welcome the new arrival but find it hard to cope with the after-effects of her past. As Jess struggles to come to terms with what she’s been through, her sudden freedom brings unforeseen difficulties. The appearance of a stalker – who bears a striking resemblance to the man who kept her prisoner for nine years – leads to serious problems for Jess.

Meanwhile, Mark also finds that his past is coming back to haunt him. When a mother and daughter venture from the Abbey into the local town for a shopping trip, there are dreadful consequences.

A build-up of tension, a poorly baby and a well-planned trap lead Mel, Jess and their family into a terrifying situation.

Can Jess overcome the traumas of her past to rescue her sister? 

My thoughts

The Refuge by Jo Fenton

Published by Crooked Cats Press on 28th May 2019

247 pages

Now Dominic is dead and some of the wardens have done a runner, the residents of the Abbey are trying to move on with their lives. Mark and Melissa are trying to get used to parenthood, whilst bringing the Abbey into the 21st century, turning part of the building into a refuge and being reacquainted with Jessica, Melissa’s long-lost sister.

As you start this story, you get the feeling that everything is working out well, everyone is happy and the abbey is becoming the safe haven, it was meant to be. But as you read further, you can sense that something is not right. Threats of an outside source make the community more vulnerable, you can see that Mark is beginning to crack under the pressure of being helpless, especially when his friends are not safe. Melissa was still the caring strong person as she was in the Brotherhood, but the worry of her sick baby, resulted in her making some stupid mistakes, showing that she was not as confident as she made out to be. Although there were times that I felt that Melissa was not getting the support to run a refuge, it was good that she was still getting support from Inspector Greg Matthews.  

Whilst Melissa and Mark are still at the forefront of the story, other characters that were featured in the 1st book, all have major parts to play in the running of the Abbey and as we follow them round, we get to learn more of their backstory.

The author’s descriptive style, enables you to get fully involved in the story, the character’s emotions were important to the story and you knew straightaway just what the characters were feeling. As in book one, there are scenes than certain readers may find disturbing and as Melissa and Jessica’s relationship becomes stronger, you learn just what a horrific life Jessica had with her capture.

Sometimes sequels to a series are not as good as the first, but with The Refuge, it is as good or even better than The Brotherhood. If you enjoy psychological thrillers than pick up this series.

  Purchase Links:

UK –

US –

About the author

Jo Fenton grew up in Hertfordshire. She devoured books from an early age, particularly enjoying adventure books, school stories and fantasy. She wanted to be a scientist from aged six after being given a wonderful book titled “Science Can Be Fun”. At eleven, she discovered Agatha Christie and Georgette Heyer, and now has an eclectic and much loved book collection cluttering her home office.

Jo combines an exciting career in Clinical Research with an equally exciting but very different career as a writer of psychological thrillers.

When not working, she runs (very slowly), and chats to lots of people. She lives in Manchester with her husband, two sons, a Corgi and a tankful of tropical fish. She is an active and enthusiastic member of two writing groups and a reading group.

Social Media Links – Website            



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