I read lots of different genres of novels, but my absolute favourite is books that feature serial killers. Dark and gritty tales of heinous multiple murders committed by clever perpetrators and hunted by flawed and troubled detectives. I recently saw a recommendation for a serial killer thriller by a new author, Sam Holland, and after reading the blurb for the book I was hooked and ordered a copy straightaway – and I’m glad I did! This book is called The Echo Man.
The Echo Man is the debut novel by Sam Holland and is the first book in the Major Crimes series.
Across England, a string of brutal murders is taking place. Each very different in method, but each horrifying and brutal. And whilst they are all very different and seemingly unconnected, they all have something in common, they are all copycat murders of infamous serial killers.
Jess Ambrose a troubled unfulfilled housewife who appears to have the perfect life. But when her house is set on fire, killing her husband, she is soon embroiled in the investigation when she becomes the prime suspect. With her husband dead and the police investigation looking at her, she runs. To prove her innocence, she is relying on disgraced detective Nate Griffin, who is convinced Jess is innocent, to try and find out why her house fire is linked with a sadist serial killer that leaves no clues. But Griffin is just as troubled as Jess and between them with the aid of Griffin’s sister, Detective Chief Inspector Cara Elliott, they must try to solve the impossible perfect murders and try to get ahead of a killer that is echoing some of the world’s most brutal and horrific murderers.
With more and more brutal and shocking murders coming thick and fast, Jess and Griffin discover that this serial killer is not only committing shocking crimes but is copying some of the world’s most notorious serial killers. But whilst imitation may be the sincerest form of flattery, that isn’t enough for this killer dubbed The Echo Man, he has a plan and is going to shock everybody when he creates his own truly brutal and terrifying masterpiece.
Overall, The Echo Man is a fantastically dark serial killer thriller, a perfect debut novel. This is the most exciting, thrilling and completely brutal novel that I have read so far this year. It’s clever, dark and disturbing and a frighteningly thrilling read.
With a serial killer that is using the exact methods of some very real and horrifying true life serial killers it takes the story to a new level, giving a very real shock factor. The pace of the book travels along at a breakneck speed and I just couldn’t turn the pages fast enough to find out what happened next. It is a gruesome read and if you prefer your novels without a lot of gore then this isn’t the book for you, but I absolutely loved it.
The cast of characters are excellent and well-written. They are not necessarily relatable but are dark and edgy, dealing with their personal issues and family dynamics. They are troubled but driven with passion and make fantastic reading. Griffin as the disgraced detective is very dark and interesting and the reasons for his troubles really drive his character and the story. Jess and DCI Elliott enhance his character and push the story along.
The story has been well written and very cleverly. The plot twists are absolutely brilliant.
The Echo Man is a thrilling and exciting read, gory and gruesome and should be the definition of a page turner in the dictionary.
A very impressive, clever, horrifyingly brutal and gruesome debut novel. Not one for those of a nervous disposition, it has a very high body count. Dark and delicious and one that I would highly recommend.
RRP: £14.99 (Hardback) / £8.99 (Paperback) / £2.99 (Kindle)