The Resident by David Jackson

You know there’s a serial killer on the loose

You don’t know he’s hiding in your attic

There’s no perfect time to read a thriller about a serial killer trapped in a house. I read David Jackson’s The Resident during the first lockdown in Ireland and it captures the claustrophobia and fear that has become all too prevalent this year. Jackson may be most well known for his books featuring DS Nathan Cody, and, like those books, The Resident, which is a standalone, is superbly written. As readers have become accustomed to in Jackson’s books, his short chapters keep the tension going throughout.

In The Resident, Thomas Brogan, a serial killer on the run, finds himself in an abandoned house on the end of a row of terraced houses. He finds himself with no food or drink and must come up with creative ways to get these, which brings him into contact with some of the residents of the neighbouring houses. Brogan finds a way to move through the row of houses and he becomes a voyeur and is eventually involved with the different individuals including Elsie, an elderly woman, Martyn and Colette, a young couple, and an older couple. Brogan’s sadistic side is soon revealed as he plays mind games with the residents, particularly with Colette who he becomes fascinated with.

The book is unusual because of the inner monologue between Brogan’s different personalities that fight for space within his head. They’re expressed as different voices so, despite much of the book featuring Brogan on his own, his constant conversations with himself means that the pace never lets up. The book also features recollections of his childhood and his younger self which are then discussed and analysed amongst his inner voices.

Jackson’s writing is always evocative and exciting. He writes vividly about confined spaces which is something we’ve all experienced more of this year. I look forward to his next book, The Rule, released in 2021.

Viper, 16 July 2020

About the writer

David Jackson is the bestselling author of Cry Baby. His debut novel, Pariah, was Highly Commended in the Crime Writers’ Association Debut Dagger Awards. He lives on the Wirral peninsula with his wife and two daughters. Follow David @Author_Dave.

On Maternity Leave!

IMG_1995Life is strange. This time last year, myself and my husband had just lost our little boy. 2019 was an incredibly hard year for us. I was on maternity leave from work so I concentrated on recovery, reading, blogging, writing my first book (which still isn’t finished), and attending writing events around Ireland. I met some wonderful people and some of my favourite writers at some fantastic events including Noireland, the Listowel Writers’ Week, and several events in Dublin and Cork organised by the formidable Vanessa Fox O’ Loughlin. I also learned so much about the writing process and got lots of ideas. Thanks to all of the fantastic writers and publicists that sent me ARCs for the last few years. I love reading and reviewing and hope it’s always something I can do.

This year is a bit different because we’ve just welcomed our little girl. Our rainbow baby. So for the next few weeks/months, I probably won’t be posting reviews for newly published books. Instead, I’m taking a break and I’m going to try to get through some of my TBR pile which includes a lot of books published in the last two to three years that I didn’t get a chance to read. I also have a lot of Stephen King books that I’ve wanted to read for a while. I might post reviews of these older books if I have time and I might also blog about my own writing if I get any time to write!

I don’t know how long I’ll be gone for but I’ll see you on the other side 🙂

Six Wicked Reasons by Jo Spain

44154597._SY475_From the international number one bestseller comes the most clever and gripping thriller of 2019.

It’s June 2008 and twenty-one-year-old Adam Lattimer vanishes, presumed dead. The strain of his disappearance breaks his already fragile family.

Ten years later, with his mother deceased and siblings scattered across the globe, Adam turns up unannounced at the family home. His siblings return reluctantly to Spanish Cove, but Adam’s reappearance poses more questions than answers. The past is a tangled web of deceit.

And, as tension builds, it’s apparent somebody has planned murderous revenge for the events of ten years ago. Continue reading

Various States of Decay by Matt Hayward

48478517._UY400_SS400_From the Bram Stoker Award-nominated author of What Do Monsters Fear? and A Penny For Your Thoughts comes twenty new tales of terror!

Including the Irish Short Story of the Year-nominated Intercepting Aisle Nine

From a white doomsday crawling with abominable beasts to the bizarre case of a marketing company advertising within people’s dreams, these stories explore the extremes of Hayward’s prose—contrasting the heartfelt with the deeply disturbing.

These are…VARIOUS STATES OF DECAY Continue reading

Magpie by Sophie Draper

A1qo4jlEeNL._SY600_She’s married to him. But does she know him at all?

Claire lives with her family in a beautiful glass house overlooking the water. But she feels as if she’s married to a stranger – one who is leading a double life. As soon as she can get their son Joe away from him, she’s determined to leave Duncan.

But finding out the truth about Duncan’s secret life leads to consequences Claire never planned for. Now Joe is missing, and she’s struggling to piece together the events of the night that tore them all apart.

Alone in an isolated cottage, hiding from Duncan, Claire tries to unravel the lies they’ve told each other, and themselves. Something happened to her family … But can she face the truth? Continue reading

The Six by Luca Veste

the-six-9781471168147_lgSix friends trapped by one dark secret.

It was supposed to be our last weekend away as friends, before marriage and respectability beckoned. But what happened that Saturday changed everything.

In the middle of the night, someone died. The six of us promised each other we would not tell anyone about the body we buried. But now the pact has been broken. And the killing has started again …

Who knows what we did? And what price will we pay? Continue reading