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Ratings and Book Reviews ()

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  • This book will keep you on the edge of your seat.

    Secrets of a Serial Killer is a suspenseful thriller that will have you on the edge of your seat trying to figure out what will happen next. This is a fictional book about a serial killer that goes unnoticed for years until a teenage girl goes missing and her friends and family find articles about the suspected serial killer. The story is from four character's perspectives, one is the serial killer and one is the last girl he kidnapped. I really enjoyed how the story started out as four different stories and merged to one story during the course of the book. It is unusual to get to hear the perspective of the serial killer which I found interesting. All of the characters had very different stories. Secrets of a Serial Killer keeps you at the edge of your seat. Many chapters end with a small cliffhanger, so it is impossible to only read one chapter. I recommend this book to anyone that likes creepy thrillers from different characters perspectives. It is also character focused which is something I enjoy in books. Thank you Net Galley and One More Chapter for providing this book in exchange for an honest review.

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  • Gripping!

    Once the action started, I had to keep going to find out what the next page would bring. This is definitely gripping, scary, and fairly realistic. This was a very different spin on the "usual" serial killer thrillers (if there is such a thing) which I appreciated. I ended up getting really angry with a couple of parents! Overall, a decent read--I do recommend it.

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  • Good Debut Novel

    Secrets of a Serial Killer by Rosie Walker is a psychological thriller. First, let me thank NetGalley, the publisher Harper Collins/One More Chapter  and of course the author, for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own. My Synopsis:   (No major reveals, but if concerned, skip to My Opinions) Leonard McVitie is a serial killer who died in 1985 in the Lancashire Lunatic Asylum.  He passed his know-how on to others. Zoe is 17, her boyfriend Dane 24.   They attend a bar with Zoe's friends Abbie and Max.  Zoe disappears from the bar. Helen, Zoe's mother, is an architect, who is re-designing the old mental hospital into luxury apartments.  Thomas and Maggie are 11-year old cousins, forced to spend some time together.  Maggie is a bit of a daredevil, and often gets the two of them in trouble.  They discover a trailer near the asylum to use as their spy headquarters.  Maggie wants to investigate the asylum. My Opinions:    Sometimes titles and covers can be deceiving.  I was hyped to read this book.  Perhaps a little over-hyped. The story is told from different perspectives, including that of the killer, and a website interested in true crime.  It started out with a creepy old mental hospital,  a serial killer who passed on his methods to others, the recipient of that know-how, and a missing girl.   The premise is great, the different perspectives a good way to tell the story, enough creepiness and suspense, but something was missing, and I'm at a loss to know what.  It may have been the pacing.  I felt the first half was quite slow introducing all the characters, and then it picked up, but the the end seemed rushed. It's a good book, especially for a debut novel...I honestly don't know why it isn't great.

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  • Psychological Action Thriller

    Leonard Mc Vitie is a (fictional) serial killer that got caught in 1959 after killing at least 48 people. He had a very peculiar MO: first, he would select someone he would frame and incriminate this person by leaving evidence and taking over their identities before he killed his victim. Several of those people got convicted for his crimes. Mc Vitie was considered insane and never stood trial but spent the remainder of his life (he died in 1985) in Lancaster Lune Asylum. He turned out to be a prolific writer and somehow managed to collect ‘students’ whom he tutored in his speciality, manipulation and serial killing. Helen is an architect that doesn’t live far from the now derelict asylum and is commissioned to convert the building into luxury flats. They’re only in the preliminary stages trying to get the appropriate planning permissions and such. Her daughter Zoe (17) has a boyfriend that’s 7 years older who makes her feel slightly uncomfortable for no obvious reason. When Zoe and her friends go out to the pubs one evening, she and her friend Abbie stay behind when their boyfriends go to meet other friends in another pub. Both girls get roofied, but only Zoe is taken and due to the particular circumstances no-one notices her missing until the next day. Abbie’s boyfriend Matt is obsessed with serial killers and has done research into Mc Vitie. He’s sure that in the 80ies, there was another serial killer in the area that was never caught and was dubbed Mr X by the cops. A local journalist writes an article about the unusual number of young girls that goes missing from the area over the last years. She’s certain that there’s a serial killer behind this but unsure whether this is still Mr X or a new predator. The police claim that there are no bodies and no evidence of crimes. A couple of brave 11-year olds explore the woods around the Asylum and discover an abandoned caravan that they claim as their ‘clubhouse’. They’re frightened by a piercing scream nearby and run like hell. But the girl lost her older brother’s ‘borrowed’ knife and they’ll have to return and find it. With nothing more than the title to go on, you do know that there’s a serial killer involved in this story. The author exploits that very cleverly by liberally sowing the seeds of suspicion. The book has a slow start with descriptions of a whole day filled with the activities and actions of the main characters (and there are quite a few of those). One of those voices belongs to the killer. If you look closely at the male characters, you’ll notice that as long as the identity of the killer isn’t revealed, they all look slightly suspicious. It reads like a solid psychological thriller where the creepiest moments are those everyday situations when you’re unsure what everyone’s motivation really is. But once you know who the criminal is, the book changes completely and it becomes fast-paced and more like an action/adventure thriller. The ‘big chase’ feels a bit obligatory and there are a few rather unlikely things happening in this part of the book but they certainly add to the suspense. When you think that all’s resolved, the psychological bit kicks in again and you’re left with a few unanswered questions as to what happens next/later. It can be an opening to write a sequel but it’s a fitting end for this story. In life, we also don’t know what’s waiting behind the corner. It’s very crafty engineered, this book. It makes you question everything and everyone. I thank Harper Collins UK, One More Chapter and Netgalley for providing me with a free ARC. This is my honest, unbiased review of it.

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  • High-octane Suspense

    High-octane suspense from beginning to end is just the beginning of what to expect from this dark and twisty path of two days in the life of a serial killer. What I Liked The novel is a rapid read that I didn’t want to put down while at the same time wanting to look away for fear of what was going to happen next. It has elements of horror that left me unsettled long after I closed the book. It was interesting how focused the plot is on what turns out to be just around forty-eight hours. It is incredible how much can happen in only a short period. The setting is perfect for the tale – an ornate and sprawling former insane asylum deep in the woods. A very creepy setting for a terrifying story. The old trashed camper in the woods near the asylum is an excellent little touch, too. I loved the touch of the dark web and the online newspaper full of articles about mysteries. It provided an unusual conduit for information on the antagonist and how that killer came to be. What I Wish I wish that the characters had been developed more, even if just the main characters. Though the suspense is nonstop, I didn’t know enough about any of the characters to feel a connection that would have served to deepen that suspense. To Read or Not to Read If you enjoy light horror and stories about serial killers, this is the perfect read for you. Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for providing me with an advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

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