Brady Hartsfield, perpetrator of the Mercedes Massacre, where eight people were killed and many more were badly injured, has been in the Traumatic Brain Injury Clinic for five years, in a vegetative state. According to his doctors, anything approaching a complete recovery is unlikely. But behind the drool and stare, Brady is awake, and in possession of deadly new powers that allow him to wreak unimaginable havoc without ever leaving his hospital room.
Retired police detective Bill Hodges, the unlikely hero of Mr. Mercedes and Finders Keepers, now runs an investigation agency with his partner, Holly Gibney, who delivered the blow to Hartsfield's head that put him on the brain injury ward. Brady also remembers that. When Bill and Holly are called to a murder-suicide with ties to the Mercedes Massacre, they find themselves pulled into their most dangerous case yet, one that will put not only their lives at risk, but those of Hodges’s friend Jerome Robinson and his teenage sister, Barbara. Because Brady Hartsfield is back, and planning revenge not just on Bill Hodges and his friends, but on an entire city.
In End of Watch, Stephen King brings the Hodges trilogy to a sublimely terrifying conclusion, combining the detective fiction of Mr. Mercedes and Finders Keepers with the supernatural suspense that has been his trademark. The result is an unnerving look at human vulnerability and up-all-night entertainment.
About Stephen King
Stephen King was born in Portland, Maine in 1947, the second son of Donald and Nellie Ruth Pillsbury King. He made his first professional short story sale in 1967 to Startling Mystery Stories. In the fall of 1973, he began teaching high school English classes at Hampden Academy, the public high school in Hampden, Maine. Writing in the evenings and on the weekends, he continued to produce short stories and to work on novels. In the spring of 1973, Doubleday & Co., accepted the novel Carrie for publication, providing him the means to leave teaching and write full-time. He has since published over 50 books and has become one of the world's most successful writers.
Stephen lives in Maine and Florida with his wife, novelist Tabitha King. They are regular contributors to a number of charities including many libraries and have been honored locally for their philanthropic activities.
I had to do this one because it was just announced that King will be coming to my town in June! Confession: I’ve never been to a single author signing. For King to be the first one I ever go to? There are no words to describe my crazy emotions. Chandler understands.
A small Georgia town erupts in panic when a young college professor is found brutally mutilated in the local diner. But it's only when town pediatrician and coroner Sara Linton does the autopsy that the full extent of the killer's twisted work becomes clear.
Sara's ex-husband, police chief Jeffrey Tolliver, leads the investigation—a trail of terror that grows increasingly macabre when another local woman is found crucified a few days later. But he's got more than a sadistic serial killer on his hands, for the county's sole female detective, Lena Adams—the first victim's sister—want to serve her own justice.
But it is Sara who holds the key to finding the killer. A secret from her past could unmask the brilliantly malevolent psychopath .. or mean her death.
In a small town in Georgia, a tragic and horrific murder shakes its residents to the core. The murder took place in a bathroom of a diner, shortly after the lunch rush, and no one heard or suspected a thing. Sara Linton, the town’s coroner discovers the victim, Sibyl Adams, just barely hanging on to life, with a cross carved into her chest, but is unable to save her. Sara’s ex-husband, police chief Jeffrey Tolliver is investigating and discovers that another girl is now mysteriously missing only to have her body discovered on the hood of Sara’s car with the wounds of a recent crucifixion. The religious aspects of these crimes have Sara fearing that their deaths are actually related to something that happened in her past and wondering if she knows exactly who is committing these atrocities.
Blindsighted is Karin Slaughter’s debut novel, however, I’m clearly behind since she has a massive amount of books under her belt at this point. But holy. cow. Blindsighted is rife with intensity. The forensic detailing is meticulous, the crimes are horrendously intricate, and yet I couldn’t put this down for anything. What I loved the most about this one though was the characterization. Sara Linton is clearly the main character but didn’t completely take center stage, giving side characters like Jeffrey and Lina enough page time to build their stories as well. Sara Linton was written perfectly average with strong medical skills but her and her actions never gravitated towards the impossible making this story and all the horror that came with it all the more plausible.
I made a new shelf specifically for this book (and I anticipate the other books in this series to be future additions) called “super-sicko”. When I was a teen, thriller/suspense novels were my go-to reads and my mom always called them my sicko books. While I haven’t read too many of them in recent years, this one most definitely qualifies and managed to even horrify me at times.
I’m happy to say that my iron stomach is still sufficiently intact.
Much thanks to Wendy for recommending this to me years ago and finally sending me my own copy thus giving me the kick in the pants I needed to finally start this. You know me so well. 🙂
The game is once again afoot in this thrilling mystery from the bestselling author of The House of Silk, sanctioned by the Conan Doyle estate, which explores what really happened when Sherlock Holmes and his arch nemesis Professor Moriarty tumbled to their doom at the Reichenbach Falls.
Internationally bestselling author Anthony Horowitz's nail-biting new novel plunges us back into the dark and complex world of detective Sherlock Holmes and Moriarty--dubbed the Napoleon of crime" by Holmes--in the aftermath of their fateful struggle at the Reichenbach Falls.
Days after the encounter at the Swiss waterfall, Pinkerton detective agent Frederick Chase arrives in Europe from New York. Moriarty's death has left an immediate, poisonous vacuum in the criminal underworld, and there is no shortage of candidates to take his place--including one particularly fiendish criminal mastermind.
Chase and Scotland Yard Inspector Athelney Jones, a devoted student of Holmes's methods of investigation and deduction originally introduced by Conan Doyle in "The Sign of Four," must forge a path through the darkest corners of England's capital--from the elegant squares of Mayfair to the shadowy wharfs and alleyways of the London Docks--in pursuit of this sinister figure, a man much feared but seldom seen, who is determined to stake his claim as Moriarty's successor.
A riveting, deeply atmospheric tale of murder and menace from the only writer to earn the seal of approval from Conan Doyle's estate, Moriarty breathes life into Holmes's dark and fascinating world.
Anthony Horowitz is the author of the international bestseller The House of Silk and the New York Times number one bestselling Alex Rider series for Young Adults. As a television screenwriter he created both Midsomer Murders and the BAFTA-winning Foyle’s War, both of which were featured on PBS’s Masterpiece Mystery. He regularly contributes to a wide variety of national newspapers and magazines, and in January 2014 was awarded an OBE for his services to literature. He lives in London.
“But the man had hereditary tendencies of the most diabolical kind. A criminal strain ran in his blood.”
Professor Moriarty is a criminal mastermind and nemesis of the brilliant detective Sherlock Holmes. Moriarty brings to life occurrences following the disappearance of the duo after they vanished into the mist of Reichenbach Falls, Switzerland. Picking up the narrative of this story is Pinkerton agent Frederick Chase who has traveled to Europe intent on following the trail of an American criminal by the name of Clarence Devereux who supposedly intends on taking over Moriarty’s criminal activity now that he’s gone. When the trail leads Chase to Reichenbach Falls where Inspector Athelney Jones of Scotland Yard is investigating the incident, the two inevitably team up to assist one another.
Leaving Switzerland, Chase and Jones travel back to London intent on determining the identity of Devereux but shortly into their investigation, the brutality begins. Their first key witness is brutally murdered as well as his entire household with no apparent reasoning behind the extravagant violence. Unfortunately, this ends up being only a sneak peak as to what’s in store for the rest of their investigation. Dark and dangerous, the longer the search continues the more mysterious things begin to appear. The mystery felt very jerky and was missing a cohesive flow in comparison to Silk. The evidence that Jones would find which inevitably took them to the next location to search for more clues felt like they were being pulled out of thin air rather than when Holmes would discover evidence and would then rationalize how he came to that conclusion it always led to an a-ha! moment that lacked perfect sense once explained. Jones modeled his life and habits after Holmes and made a decent attempt at learning his tricks of the trade and while he might have transformed himself into a clever copy he was still highly identifiable as far from the real thing.
Watson played narrator in Silk and did a superb job, but in Moriarty, we’re given Frederick Chase and suffice it to say I definitely missed Watson. It’s easy enough to compare the two books (Silk definitely comes out on top) however, the two are so vastly different in several regards that it’s a disservice to do so. When comparing Moriarty to the original canon, it’s bound to disappoint, however, judging on its own merits it’s a fairly solid mystery with an incredibly shocking twist that makes you rethink everything that came before. I had my suspicions that all was not as it appeared, and I was right, but my guesses were still far from the truth.
It’s not necessary to enjoy this story even if you haven’t read all of the Holmes classics, however, I would definitely recommend you’re at least familiar withThe Sign of the Four and especially the short story The Final Problem. Moriarty definitely felt less authentic as a pastiche than Silk did but for Holmes fans looking for anything to scratch that itch, this will satisfy it albeit temporarily.
This post was a part of the Moriarty blog tour. Click the button below for a complete list of tour stops.
A new type of serial killer is stalking the streets of New York – one more devious and disturbing than ever before.
They call this butcher The Skin Collector: a tattooist with a chamber of torture hidden deep underground. But instead of using ink to create each masterpiece, the artist uses a lethal poison which will render targets dead before they can even entertain the prospect of escape . . .
Drafted in to investigate, NYPD detective Lincoln Rhyme and his associate Amelia Sachs have little to go on but a series of cryptic messages left etched into the skin of the deceased. As the pair struggle to discover the meaning behind the designs, they are led down a treacherous and twisting path where nothing is as it seems. And with the clock rapidly ticking before the killer strikes again, they must untangle the twisted web of clues before more victims – or they themselves – are next.
A woman is discovered dead in an underground passage after being tattooed by poison with only a partial message “The Second”. Is this the second victim or is it only a partial message meaning that more deaths are in the works? The killer, known as Billy Haven, is seemingly killing at random and is constantly two steps ahead of the brilliant NYPD detective Lincoln Rhyme. It’s discovered that the killer has not only been researching Rhyme and Saches and their past cases together but one case, in particular, receives the most attention; the one where it all began: The Bone Collector. The two killers modus operandi seem entirely different and the detective is left grasping at straws in an attempt to collect clues for one of his most difficult cases to date.
I do so hate to criticize a lifelong favorite of mine but we all have our off days, right? I’ve been reading the tales of Lincoln Rhyme and Amelia Sachs for well over a decade but this mystery was completely lacking in more ways than one. I found the killer tattooing people with poison to be definitely crazy and creepy and it kept me guessing for sure but there was a second storyline that was actually ongoing from a previous installment in the series where the man that Rhyme caught had just recently died in prison. It was completely unnecessary and forced setups that we all could have done without. The tattoo killer mystery keeps you completely in the dark for the majority of the story only to give you an ‘ending’, but oh wait! Just kidding. Forgot that pesky second storyline… okay, let’s just combine the two stories even though neither seems to have a single bit to do with one another. And then we’ll have the requisite bad guy at the end tell all to make it all seem super legit. I had a similar reaction to another longtime favorite of mine I read last year and it makes me wonder if I’ve simply read too many of these authors works and at this point, I’ve become bored with their tried and true formulas or if they’ve just lost their spunk.
Are there more installments to come? No doubt after that ending. Will I be picking it up? I’m a sucker for continuing a series after this damn long. I’d love to see Deaver get back to his roots where the bad guys were sick and twisted and the mysteries weren’t so bizarre and outlandish that they ended up falling apart at the end. The Coffin Dancer, The Empty Chair, and The Stone Monkey are the best of this series and I’d love to see more installments along those lines.
A brilliant debut mystery in a classic vein: Detective Cormoran Strike investigates a supermodel's suicide. After losing his leg to a land mine in Afghanistan, Cormoran Strike is barely scraping by as a private investigator. Strike is down to one client, and creditors are calling. He has also just broken up with his longtime girlfriend and is living in his office.
Then John Bristow walks through his door with an amazing story: His sister, the legendary supermodel Lula Landry, known to her friends as the Cuckoo, famously fell to her death a few months earlier. The police ruled it a suicide, but John refuses to believe that. The case plunges Strike into the world of multimillionaire beauties, rock-star boyfriends, and desperate designers, and it introduces him to every variety of pleasure, enticement, seduction, and delusion known to man.
You may think you know detectives, but you've never met one quite like Strike. You may think you know about the wealthy and famous, but you've never seen them under an investigation like this.
Detective Cormoran Strike life has seen better days. He recently broke up with his girlfriend and is sleeping on a camp bed in his office, he’s got a single client that isn’t paying their bill and a whole slew of creditors that are demanding money yesterday. He’s fortunately hired to investigate the much publicized death of Lula Landry, a supermodel who fell to her death from her penthouse balcony. Her brother, John Bristow, is convinced that someone is to blame.
Okay, so the whole world knows by now that this is the work of J.K. Rowling. She first delved into Contemporary Adult Fiction last year with ‘The Casual Vacancy’. I had several of the same issues with TCV (which I put on hold about halfway through and have yet to make it back to it.) Even setting aside your ‘Harry Potter’ sized expectations, there really isn’t anything spectacular about The Cuckoo’s Calling. I applaud J.K. Rowling for having the gumption to take a leap into adult fiction because it’s such a far cry from what we’ve come to expect from her. Unfortunately, her Contemporary novels are just not my cup of tea.
Cormoran Strike has been praised in publications for his intriguing personality but I found him to be no different than any other detective/cop/investigator and he clearly dreamed about being Sherlock when he was a kid. Yes, he was a war veteran and he lost his leg and there’s a whole backstory there that is delved into but still didn’t manage to add anything super intriguing to the mix. Publications have also commented on the ‘brilliant mystery’ but honestly? It’s been done before and I didn’t find myself gasping in shock when the big reveal happens. It felt very much like a Sherlock Holmes tale where he’s about to piece together evidence from seemingly nothing and it’s all eluded to until the very end when he reveals all to the bad guy. It was all very yawn-inducing and worthy of a few eye-rolls to be quite honest.
In addition to the mediocre storyline and characters, the writing style is what ultimately caused my massive disappointment over this novel (and this is another issue I had with The Casual Vacancy). There are some truly fabulous lines that showcase her brilliance, but more often than not she tries far too hard to make it even more evident that THIS IS AN ADULT NOVEL. As if we weren’t aware of that fact already. Towards the end of the novel there was a line which caused the cringe of a lifetime:
‘She looked away from him, drawing hard on her Rothman’s; when her mouth puckered into hard little lines around the cigarette, it looked like a cat’s anus.’
Disgusting and totally unnecessary. Bottom line, her writing is just too crude and unrefined for my liking. I doubt I’ll give up on future novels of Rowling, but I won’t likely be continuing this particular series. I would so love to see more fantasy from her though.
The feds want Miami bookmaker Harry Arno to squeal on his wiseguy boss. So they're putting word out on the street that Arno's skimming profits from "Jimmy Cap" Capotorto--which he is, but everybody does it. He was planning to retire to Italy someday anyway, so Harry figures now's a good time to get lost. U.S. Marshal Raylan Givens knows Harry's tricky--the bookie ditched him once in an airport while in the marshal's custody--but not careful. So Raylan's determined to find the fugitive's Italian hideaway before a cold-blooded Sicilian "Zip" does and whacks Arno for fun. After all, it's a "pride thing..".and it might even put Raylan in good stead with Harry's sexy ex-stripper girlfriend Joyce.
Pronto tells the story of Harry Arno: he’s a Miami bookie, is dating a topless dancer named Joyce and plans to retire to a villa in Italy within the next year. Harry has been skimming profits from his boss Jimmy ‘Cap’ for years but has so far remained undetected until the Feds decide to set him up in order to get to Jimmy thus forcing him to move up his retirement date and has him fleeing town immediately.
I decided to pick Pronto as my first Elmore Leonard novel because of the fact that I love ‘Justified’ so much. While my love of the show centers around the character Raylan Givens (or, if I’m being quite honest, mainly because of Timothy Olyphant) he doesn’t play the leading character as I would have expected. Pronto is a dialogue driven narrative with a large cast of engaging characters that are all given their share of the spotlight in this story. The mob bosses are hysterical and their simple mindedness is portrayed well and with good humor. Raylan Givens is a small-town cowboy that is much smarter than his persona would imply. Harry is a thief who uses and abuses anyone that can be a benefit to him but still manages to still be a character you care about. Pronto is an entertaining blend of western and crime fiction with a subtle dash of humor.
This was enjoyable on audio with narrator Alexander Adams capable of using a multitude of different voices and even managed to make the occasional Italian dialogue sound authentic. Now that I’ve had my first experience reading an Elmore Leonard book I can safely say it won’t be my last.
There are just 74 days to go before a deadly asteroid collides with Earth, and Detective Hank Palace is out of a job. With the Concord police force operating under the auspices of the U.S. Justice Department, Hank's days of solving crimes are over...until a woman from his past begs for help finding her missing husband.
Brett Cavatone disappeared without a trace—an easy feat in a world with no phones, no cars, and no way to tell whether someone’s gone “bucket list” or just gone. With society falling to shambles, Hank pieces together what few clues he can, on a search that leads him from a college-campus-turned-anarchist-encampment to a crumbling coastal landscape where anti-immigrant militia fend off “impact zone” refugees.
The second novel in the critically acclaimed Last Policeman trilogy, Countdown City presents a fascinating mystery set on brink of an apocalypse--and once again, Hank Palace confronts questions way beyond "whodunit." What do we as human beings owe to one another? And what does it mean to be civilized when civilization is collapsing all around you?
How would you spend your remaining days if you knew an asteroid was on target to destroy the Earth in a few short months? Would you pack everything and travel the world? Would you finally do all those things you’ve been pushing off and just haven’t ever gotten around to? Or would you continue living your life as if nothing has changed?
Henry Palace is no longer employed with the Concord Police Department, but that doesn’t stop him from solving various mysteries. Sure, the Earth is in the direct path of an asteroid but he continues working because that’s what makes sense to him. That’s always been what his life was about, what gave his life meaning and he isn’t going to stop now just because his days are numbered.
A missing person case has become quite simple in this day and age where people are running away from their lives to fulfill bucket lists and the like. Palace’s lasted missing person investigation leads him to a group of revolutionaries that are slowly building their own society with their own new set of rules. As the clues begin falling together Palace realizes that not only is this not a simple missing person case but this is one individual that is on a crusade and doesn’t wish to be found.
While I’m a huge fan of post-apocalyptic novels, I’m beginning to understand the appeal of pre-apocalyptic novels as well. Being able to witness a society that is slowly preparing themselves for catastrophe and watching the evolution of society and civilization and watching things slowly change for the worst is not only mesmerizing but frightening in its realism. It will definitely leave you wondering how you would respond: would your survival instincts kick in or will you scramble away in fear?
While the mystery aspect didn’t hold the same intensity as the one in The Last Policeman, this was still an engaging installment. Society as we know it has reached its saturation point and the situation is bound to get worse. I eagerly await the final installment of this thrilling pre-apocalyptic tale to find out the fate of the Earth and the whole of civilization.
It was a "million-dollar bullet," a sniper shot delivered from over a mile away. Its victim was no ordinary mark: he was a United States citizen, targeted by the United States government, and assassinated in the Bahamas.
The nation's most renowned investigator and forensics expert, Lincoln Rhyme, is drafted to investigate. While his partner, Amelia Sachs, traces the victim's steps in Manhattan, Rhyme leaves the city to pursue the sniper himself. As details of the case start to emerge, the pair discovers that not all is what it seems.
When a deadly, knife-wielding assassin begins systematically eliminating all evidence--including the witnesses--Lincoln's investigation turns into a chilling battle of wits against a cold-blooded killer.
Once again, Lincoln Rhyme and Amelia Sachs have been asked to help investigate a crime, yet this is one of their hardest to date. The victim is a United States citizen that had been recently targeted by the U.S. Government and is found to be assassinated in the Bahamas. The biggest problem they face is the complete lack of evidence and the fact that someone appears to be two steps ahead of them and is going back and covering up their tracks by destroying evidence and eliminating witnesses.
‘He didn’t believe he’d ever had a case like this, where the evidence was so fragmentary and sparse. Bits, scraps, observations, 180-degree changes in direction. Nothing else…’
As is common with Jeffery Deaver novels, the mystery is intricate and detailed and unfurls slowly building in intensity with each turned page. These details may seem superfluous but are simply small pieces of a very large puzzle. I really loved the complexity of this mystery though and how despite the lack of major evidence even the smallest pieces inevitably helped solve the mystery regardless. The Kill Room focuses mainly on political reasoning and while I wasn’t completely sold on the premise, it still was an impressively detailed mystery.
‘I have a bad feeling about this one, Rhyme…’
While I thoroughly enjoy having the story told from the point-of-view of Lincoln Rhyme as his ability to solve crimes based on seemingly inconsequential evidence is uncanny, the switch-up in points-of-view between him and the man they’re hunting for was the perfect touch. It definitely added an unsettling touch as this ‘bad guy’ is incredibly disturbing.
Yet another palpable mystery from an incredibly talented crime writer, The Kill Room proves that this series is far from losing steam.
From Jeffery Deaver--the New York Times bestselling author of the upcoming Lincoln Rhyme novel THE KILL ROOM (on sale June 4, 2013)--comes an original short story featuring Rhyme.
When a young woman is found brutally murdered in a parking garage, with a veritable mountain of potential evidence to sift through, it may be the most challenging case former NYPD detective Lincoln Rhyme has ever taken on.
‘It was clear that the classic textbook procedure for running a case forensically wasn’t going to work’
Lincoln Rhyme is renowned for his forensic knowledge but even he is tested when a recent murder is buried, literally, in evidence. The perpetrator has attempted to cover any evidence they personally left in the smartest way possible; by flooding the scene full of incidental evidence. Extremely smart, except he detailed that exact scenario in his highly prominent forensic textbook. The more digging his team does in uncovering the relevant pieces of evidence, the greater Rhyme’s suspicion that someone may be using his textbook against him to get away with murder.
I’ve read eight of Jeffery Deaver’s ‘Lincoln Rhyme’ novels but this is my first short story of his. His books always contain a mystery so skilfully constructed it’s almost as if you’re watching a puzzle slowly disassemble itself as you turn each page. All of his novels are quite large and the disassembling takes time so I was interested in seeing how well he’s able to build a mystery with so few pages. Admittedly it doesn’t have the same flair that his full-length novels have but it was still an enjoyable and quick read. Any of the Lincoln Rhyme novels work fairly well as a stand-alone, but if you’re a newbie to Deaver’s works I’d recommend A Textbook Case to give you a glimpse at what he’s capable of.
Once upon a time I had the perfect family. I had the perfect husband. I had the perfect children. I had the perfect life in the perfect home. And then, as in all fairy tales, evil came into our lives and destroyed us.
Four years after the unsolved disappearance of her sixteen-year-old daughter, Lauren Lawton is the only one still chasing the ghosts of her perfect Santa Barbara life. The world has given her daughter up for dead. Her husband ended his own life in the aftermath. Even Lauren's younger daughter is desperate to find what's left of the childhood she hasn't been allowed to have.
Lauren knows exactly who took her oldest child, but there is not a shred of evidence against the man. Even as he stalks her family, Lauren is powerless to stop him. The Santa Barbara police are handcuffed by the very laws they are sworn to uphold. Looking for a fresh start in a town with no memories, Lauren and her younger daughter, Leah, move to idyllic Oak Knoll. But when Lauren's suspect turns up in the same city, it feels to all the world that history is about to repeat itself. Leah Lawton will soon turn sixteen, and Oak Knoll has a cunning predator on the hunt.
Sheriff's detective Tony Mendez and his team begin to close in on the suspected killer, desperate to keep the young women of their picturesque town safe. But as the investigators sift through the murky circumstances of an increasingly disturbing case, a stunning question changes everything they thought they knew. In Down the Darkest Road, #1 New York Times bestseller Tami Hoag proves again why she is one of the world's most beloved storytellers.
Set in the early 90s, ‘Down the Darkest Road’ is the third installment in Tami Hoag’s ‘Oak Knoll’ series. Once again we’re thrown into the world of Vince and Anne and Mendez where the current investigation deals with missing 16 year-old Leslie who disappears without a trace and her mother Laura who is left to cope with her absence. This was definitely a heartbreaking and emotional story; one that could have been plucked right from the front pages which made it scarily realistic.
I’m becoming a big fan of Tami Hoag’s mysteries as she’s such a talented writer who is able to successfully write a concrete mystery with strong characters. Each detail is described extremely well and the story practically absorbs you straight into the pages. The pages flew with this one and I quite enjoyed the wrap-up on this one. The books in this series continue to be intense and exciting. Definitely recommended for existing Tami Hoag and for fans of mystery/thrillers!