Series: Creep #1
Published by Gallery Books on July 5th 2011
Genres: Mystery, Thriller
Pulsing with the dark obsession of Radiohead’s song “Creep,” this taut thriller—Jennifer Hillier’s superb debut—rockets from its seductive opening to a heartpounding climax not easily forgotten.
If he can’t have her . . .
Dr. Sheila Tao is a professor of psychology. An expert in human behavior. And when she began an affair with sexy, charming graduate student Ethan Wolfe, she knew she was playing with fire. Consumed by lust when they were together, riddled with guilt when they weren’t, she knows the three-month fling with her teaching assistant has to end. After all, she’s finally engaged to a kind and loving investment banker who adores her, and she’s taking control of her life. But when she attempts to end the affair, Ethan Wolfe won’t let her walk away.
. . . no one else can.
Ethan has plans for Sheila, plans that involve posting a sex video that would surely get her fired and destroy her prestigious career. Plans to make her pay for rejecting him. And as she attempts to counter his every threatening move without her colleagues or her fiancé discovering her most intimate secrets, a shattering crime rocks Puget Sound State University: a female student, a star athlete, is found stabbed to death. Someone is raising the stakes of violence, sex, and blackmail . . . and before she knows it, Sheila is caught in a terrifying cat-and-mouse game with the lover she couldn’t resist—who is now the monster who won’t let her go.
When I first became an avid reader I read primarily psychological thriller type novels; that’s almost all I read. So when I heard about this one, it not only sounded good, but I realized I had yet to read a single psychological thriller this year I decided to dive into this one right away. My eventual love for this novel was a combination of the long time spent away from the genre and the fact that the novel was truly riveting and I couldn’t stop turning pages (or clicking my kindle button).
Essentially the story is Dr. Sheila Tao, a professor of psychology, and a recovering sex addict. After her first marriage ended when she caught her husband sleeping with his male nurse she went through a hard period in her life where she kept seeking validation of herself as an attractive woman. Waking up in her car one night, half naked, and having no idea what just occurred she knew she had hit rock bottom and needed help. After going through the 12-step recovery process she begins dating a man named Morris and her life seems to be going on the right track again. After the death of her father she relapses and begins an affair with one of her graduate students, Ethan Wolfe. After 3 months into the affair, Morris proposes and Sheila decides to end things with Ethan. What follows is a crazy psychological roller coaster where Sheila realizes Ethan isn’t willing to let her go that easily and that if he can’t have her… well, then nobody can.
This book was exciting enough to have me reading like a madman to get to the end; I finished this in less than 24 hours. The plot wasn’t overly complex, but still managed to throw a few curveballs in that you may or may not see coming. Overall I was incredibly pleased with this novel and will be looking for future books by this author.