First Monday Crime Book Review – The Whisper Man by Alex North @writer_north @1stMondayCrime

First Monday Crime is back at City University, London on Monday, 4th November at 18.30 p.m. We have another stellar line up for you which includes, Alex North author of The Whisper Man, Louise Candlish author of Those People, Abir Mukherjee author of Death in the East and Victoria Selman author of Snakes and Ladders. The panel is being moderated by Sophie Goodfellow.

Earlier in the year I read Alex North’s The Whisper Man and it is still one of my top reads of the year. I’m re-sharing my review below. And if you would like to come along to First Monday Crime, you can find all the details where you can reserve your FREE space at the end of the blog post.

BLURB

If you leave a door half-open, soon you’ll hear the whispers spoken . . .

Still devastated after the loss of his wife, Tom Kennedy and his young son Jake move to the sleepy village of Featherbank, looking for a much-needed fresh start.

But Featherbank has a dark past. Fifteen years ago, a twisted serial killer abducted and murdered five young boys.

Until he was finally caught, the killer was known as ‘The Whisper Man’.

Of course, an old crime need not trouble Tom and Jake as they try to settle in to their new home.

Except that now another boy has gone missing. And then Jake begins acting strangely.

He says he hears a whispering at his window . . .

MY THOUGHTS

I remember first hearing about The Whisper Man way back, early in 2018, and I was desperate to get my hands on a copy. I first read about it in ‘The Bookseller.’

I was slightly worried, as it had received a lot of early praise if it would live up to my expectations, and I’m relieved to tell you that it certainly did. This is one of the best crime novels I’ve read this year. Alex North’s writing is totally immersive and the line “if you leave the door half open, soon you’ll hear the whispers spoken,” chilled me. This is a very well thought out book with a spooky and creepy atmosphere, and it was done really well.

Tom and his son Jake move to the quiet town of Featherbank following the death of Tom’s wife and Jake’s mother, Rebecca. They’re hoping for a fresh start, but soon strange things start to happen. Jake begins talking to imaginary friends. Tom, as you can imagine, has a lot of concerns about his son’s behaviour.

Fifteen years ago, a serial killer abducted and killed five children; one child remains missing. In the present day, another child has disappeared, and soon the killer has their eyes set on Jake. But there are some scary similarities to the crimes that took place decades earlier. But the man responsible for those crimes is in prison. Is this a copycat? Or is something much more sinister going on?

This is a novel with a huge amount of heart. Tom confesses in the opening lines how he has struggled to bond with his son, but you can really see their relationship develop throughout this book, and this makes the final scenes so tense and gripping. I couldn’t be sure where we were going to end up at the end, and there were some times when I almost couldn’t bear to find out as I didn’t want anything bad to happen to the characters. A book is only gripping, I find if you care a lot about the characters, and this is what Alex North has achieved with this book.

There is real depth to Alex North’s writing. I really engaged with Tom and his son as they tried to make a new start. You can see just how difficult this is for them and there are some scenes that I’m sure will pull at the heartstrings of many readers. Right from the start of the novel, I just got the feeling that something terrible was going to happen, and this darkness ran right from the beginning to the heart-pounding conclusion.

The Whisper Man is a top crime novel, one I’m certain will hit the bestseller lists. Alex North is a writer who I’m sure will jump straight to the top of my TBR pile whenever he has a new book out. Brilliant and captivating. I highly recommend it.

Publisher: Michael Joseph

Publication date: 13th June 2019

Print length: 400 pages

If you would like to purchase The Whisper Man, you can do so by clicking on one of the following links below. 

Amazon UK  Kobo  Waterstones

If you would like to come along to First Monday Crime, you can reserve your space by clicking on the link below.

The nearest Tube stations are Farringdon and Angel. Afterwards we’ll be heading to The Dame Alice Owen for a drink.

RESERVE YOUR SPACE

@1stMondayCrime September Panel @claremackint0sh @VickyNewham @bethklewis @lucyatkins

First Monday Crime is back after a summer break and the next panel will be at the usual venue at City University, London on Monday 3rd September 2018. First Monday Crime really is the place to be if you’re a lover of crime fiction.

I think you will agree with me that there are some top authors attending next week’s panel and I can’t wait to hear them discuss their books and their writing. So let’s take a look at who will be appearing and I will have all the info about where you can reserve your free space at the end of this post.

Let Me Lie: The Number One Sunday Times Bestseller by [Mackintosh, Clare] Clare Mackintosh

Clare Mackintosh really doesn’t need any introduction in the thriller world. I still rave about her debut novel I Let You Go whenever I’m chatting to anyone about books. I don’t think a twist in a novel has shocked me as much since I read it back in 2015. How is that three years ago? Her latest novel is Let Me Lie you can read my full review by clicking HERE and here is a little bit about what you can expect from the book.

“In her latest novel, Let Me Lie, Clare weaves an intriguing tale centering on the suicide of a young woman’s parents and her quest to find out what really happened to them. She is determined to prove that there is more to her parent’s death than what meets the eye.”

Turn a Blind Eye: A gripping and tense crime thriller with a brand new detective for 2018 (DI Maya Rahman, Book 1) by [Newham, Vicky]  Vicky Newham

Vicky Newham’s first novel Turn A Blind Eye was released earlier this year and it is the start of what promises to be a thrilling new series. It follows DI Maya Rahman who is investigating the murder of a respected head teacher. The shocking murder has taken place at the school she attended when she was growing up in London’s East End. Cryptic clues left by the killer lead the police to believe that someone form the local Buddhist community is involved. To find out more about the book you can read my full review by clicking HERE and here is a little bit about what you can expect.

Turn A Blind Eye by Vicky Newham is an intelligent and confident debut and DI Maya Rahman is a character who will keep crime fans coming back for more. Vicky has created a complex case for her lead character to get to grips with in her first novel. This book is perfect for fans of Sarah Hilary’s Marnie Rome series.”

Bitter Sun by [Lewis, Beth] Beth Lewis

Next up we have Beth Lewis. Beth Lewis’s second novel, Bitter Sun was released earlier in the year and it’s one I haven’t got round to reading yet but I am really excited about it. Isn’t the cover stunning? Every time I look at it it keeps taking me back to the recent heat wave.

The Night Visitor: The gripping psychological suspense of the Summer by [Atkins, Lucy] Lucy Atkins

And finally we have Lucy Atkins whose latest novel is The Night Visitor. This is another novel which has been on my TBR pile for far too long and I can’t wait to get round to finally reading it, it’s one that I have heard so many good things about.

The panel is being moderated by Rod Reynolds author of, The Dark Inside, Black Night Falling and Cold Desert Sky.

As I mentioned earlier, the event takes place at City University, London and it starts at 6.30 p.m. After the panel we’ll all be heading across the road to The Blacksmith and Toffeemaker for a drink. The nearest tube station is Angel and all you do is turn left out of the station and walk straight down St. John’s Street. You can reserve your free space by clicking the link below.

RESERVE YOUR SPACE