From a teenager I have loved reading novels by Stephen King (all except the Dark Tower series) and Mr Mercedes is a superb cat-and-mouse thriller, rather than the horror stories he is probably most famous for writing.
Mr Mercedes starts with a stolen Mercedes driving into a crowd of early morning job-seekers waiting for a job fair to open. 8 are killed including a baby and 15 are injured. The killer escapes with the police none the wiser to his identity.
Months later retired detective Bill Hodges, who has served 40 years in the police, receives a letter from the killer. Detective Hodges was the lead investigator on the Mercedes case and retired without ever coming case to finding a suspect. The letter is goading Hodges to kill himself (he already has thoughts of suicide) but all it does it perk his interest and his desire to catch the killer.
Meanwhile Mr Mercedes is already planning his next mass murder and it is up to Hodges and his misfit friends (a teenage schoolboy and a woman with mental health issues) to stop him before he can kill thousands.
Overall, Mr Mercedes is an excellent non-stop riveting crime thriller featuring an unlikely bunch of heroes with none of the paranormal you expect from Stephen King (although there is a reference to his classic IT). While is a different genre than I usually enjoy from Mr King it was a riveting story filled with tension and suspense.
While not one of the best stories he has ever written I found it to be extremely enjoyable and was unable to put it down.
This is the first book in the Bill Hodges trilogy and I loved it, so I will have to get the second installment Finders Keepers.
RRP: £20 (Hardback) / £7.99 (Paperback)
Available to buy from Amazon here.