Book Reviews

Zodiac by Sam Wilson | Book Review

Zodiac by Sam Wilson.

My copy: Pegasus Crime, February 7th, 2017. ARC (review copy), 446 pages.

Source: I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Thank you, Pegasus Books!

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Synopsis:

A starting new thriller with one of the most original concepts in years, where the line between a life of luxury and an existence of poverty can be determined by the stroke of midnight.

In San Celeste, a series of uniquely brutal murders targets victims from totally different walks of life. In a society divided according to Zodiac signs, those differences are cast at birth and binding for life. All eyes are on detective Jerome Burton and astrological profiler Lindi Childs—divided in their beliefs over whether the answer is written in the stars, but united in their conviction that there is an ingenious serial killer executing a grand plan.

Together, they will unravel a dark tale of betrayal, lost love, broken promises and a devastating truth with the power to tear their world apart…


I haven’t read a good thriller in a while. I forgot how much I enjoy the tension, action, and fast pace. Zodiac sometimes meanders, but everything is there for a reason. The chapters are short and snappy, and the information given is all fascinating. It’s a mind game to find a murderer, and while the victims seem pretty random at first — they couldn’t be more darkly connected.

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Book Reviews

Review — The Nightmare Place by Steve Mosby

Book title: The Nightmare Place
Author: Steve Mosby
Publisher: Pegasus Crime (Pegasus Books)
Release date: June 2015
Format: Hardcover, 328 pages
Source: I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Thank you, Iris and Pegasus Books!

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Synopsis:

The new suspense thriller from CWA Dagger winner Steve Mosby, “one of a handful of writers who make me excited about crime fiction.” (Val McDermid)

Sometimes, there’s a thin line between love and hate. Or at least that’s one theory for DI Zoe Dolan, tracking the Creeper—a stalker who’s been breaking into women’s homes and attacking them. But the Creeper’s violence is escalating and there’s no pattern, no clue as to how he’s getting in, and no clue as to who’s next. Until Jane Webster gets a call to the helpline where she volunteers. It’s meant to be a confidential service and Jane is torn—it could be a hoaxer, but the soft voice at the end of the line has the ring of truth about it. He says he loves these women—but it’s a love that ends in blood. When Jane tells the police, it should be the lead that Zoe needs—but it only pulls her further into a case that is already taking her dangerously close to the past she’s never fully escaped. For Jane, Zoe and all the other young women of the city, suddenly nowhere is safe. Particularly their own bedroom at the dead of night…

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Okay, so I’m doing this review a little differently… Trying out a new review format to spice things up!


What is this book about? The Nightmare Place is, in short, a search for a creeper who steals into women’s homes and viciously attacks them. It follows Detective Inspector Zoe Dolan as she tracks down the elusive stalker, whose terrible crimes keep escalating, with help from Jane Webster, a telephone helpline volunteer who gets a call from seemingly the Creeper himself.

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Book Reviews

Review — The Red Chameleon by Erica Wright

Book title: The Red Chameleon
Author: Erica Wright
Publisher: Pegasus Crime (Pegasus Books)
Release date: May 2015
Format: Paperback, 239 pages
Source: I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Thank you, Iris and Pegasus Books!

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Synopsis:

As a private investigator, Kathleen Stone relies on her ability to blend into the background. Aided by her street-smart drag queen friend and the best wigmaker in New York City, she feels confident that her camouflage is up to snuff. But when a cheating spouse she’s been trailing ends up dead under suspicious circumstances, she fears that someone she angered in her past job–busting gangs and drug dealers as an undercover cop–has seen through her disguises. Now she must work with her former colleagues in the NYPD to solve the case before she’s the next victim.


The review:

Kathleen Stone is a Private Investigator and ex-NYPD undercover cop. Her current job has her tailing a potentially cheating husband… until the man ends up murdered and Kat finds herself trying to solve a “whodunit?” case. The mystery, while a pretty standard plot, does have many layers that get uncovered and explored. This is both a good and a not so good thing. Good, because the mystery is actually pretty complex at times, but not always so good because I found myself forgetting various things brought up and mentioned. The plot sprawled a bit too much for my taste.

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Book Reviews

Review — The Killing Season by Mason Cross

Book title: The Killing Season
Author: Mason Cross
Series: Carter Blake, #1
Publisher: Pegasus Crime (Pegasus Books)
Release date: February 2015
Format: Hardcover, 357 pages
Source: I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Thank you, Iris and Pegasus!

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Synopsis:

The first thing you should know about me is that my name is not Carter Blake.

When Caleb Wardell, the infamous ‘Chicago Sniper’, escapes from death row two weeks before his execution, the FBI calls on the services of Carter Blake, a man with certain specialized talents whose skills lie in finding those who don’t want to be found. A man to whom Wardell is no stranger.

Along with Elaine Banner, an ambitious special agent juggling life as a single mother with her increasingly high-flying career, Blake must track Wardell down as he cuts a swathe across America, apparently killing at random.

But Blake and Banner soon find themselves sidelined from the case. And as they try desperately to second guess a man who kills purely for the thrill of it, they uncover a hornets’ nest of lies and corruption. Now Blake must break the rules and go head to head with the FBI if he is to stop Wardell and expose a deadly conspiracy that will rock the country.

Slick, fast-paced and assured, The Killing Season is the first novel in the gripping new Carter Blake series.


The review:

The Killing Season is a strong and impressive debut from author Mason Cross. This action-packed and well-written thriller is a manhunt for the notorious serial killer sniper Caleb Wardell. Wardell (the “Chicago Sniper”) killed nineteen people and is just weeks away from his execution when he escapes and begins another killing spree. The FBI brings on outside specialist Carter Blake, who has an uncanny ability to find those who do not wish to be found. Blake’s backstory is only hinted at, but he’s a compelling main character with brains and spot-on intuition. He’s working with the Bureau, not for it, so he has a lot of freedom to operate how he wants.

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Book Reviews

Review — A Love Like Blood by Marcus Sedgwick

Book title: A Love Like Blood
AuthorMarcus Sedgwick
Publisher: Pegasus Crime
Release date: March 2015
Format: Hardcover, 310 pages
Source: I received this book from the publisher in exchange for review consideration. This in no way affects my review; all opinions are my own. Thank you, Iris and Pegasus Books!

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Synopsis:

In 1944, just days after the liberation of Paris, Charles Jackson sees something horrific: a man in a dark tunnel, apparently drinking the blood of a murdered woman. Terrified, he does nothing, telling himself afterward that worse tragedies happen during war. Seven years later he returns to the city and sees the same man dining in the company of a fascinating, beautiful young woman. When they leave the restaurant, Charles decides to follow . . . A Love Like Blood is a dark, compelling thriller about how a man’s life can change in a moment and about where the desire for truth and revenge can lead.


The review:

A Love Like Blood is a dark and disturbing, suspenseful and scary-ass thriller that had my skin crawling. It’s absolutely not what you think it’s going to be. It teases vampires but goes into something way more sinister. There are also some very graphic scenes that require a strong stomach. The prison escape scene was, for me, the most gut-churning. Just letting you know right off the bat that is a seriously grim book and might not be for everyone.

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