Izzy is cursed. She has highly developed empathic abilities that mean she can read the emotions of those close to her. And she can always tell when they are lying. As a child she sparked her parents’ divorce by revealing her father’s infidelity. As an adult she has cut herself off from almost everyone except her partner, the only person she knows who has nothing to hide.

But no matter how she tries, Izzy’s abilities cannot be controlled. Young girls are going missing, and the police have no suspects. But when Izzy sees her old school caretaker being interviewed, she knows his story about seeing the latest victim being bundled into a car isn’t true. But why would Kenneth Plumley lie? And when the police won’t take her seriously, Izzy risks everything to discover the truth herself…

My Review

Is Izzy’s gift a curse? How would you feel if you knew when someone was lying? It sounds great but in actual fact it would be a nightmare. It already landed her in trouble when she revealed her father’s infidelity to her mother and triggered their divorce. Now she tries not to get too close to people, because the better she knows them, the more she can see through their untruths.

Talking of untruths, I promised myself I wouldn’t make any comments about politics, but where have you been Izzy? We’ve needed you.

Unfortunately the police don’t believe her when she tells them that her old school caretaker Kenneth Plummer is lying when he says he witnessed the abduction of a teenage girl. She got to know ‘Plummers’ quite well when she was at school (a bit strange – would definitely have been discouraged when I was at school and safeguarding wasn’t what it was back then compared to now), so she can tell he’s making it up.

But why would he lie? The police think Izzy is a crackpot, an attention seeker. Even the lovely DS Josh Frendy is doubtful, though he is the only one who keeps an open mind. Not about Kenneth being involved as Izzy suggests, but about her ‘superpower’.

And Izzy never gives up. She is determined to prove she is correct till even her partner Andy starts getting fed up. Not to mention that trailing someone you suspect of being a murderer is rather risky. Particularly when it includes hanging around his house and following him into dark, lonely places.

No-one writes a serial killer thriller like David Jackson. He can combine kidnapping, abduction, grisly murder and dark humour in one novel without ever veering into the realms of bad taste. One minute you’re burying a body and the next you are laughing out loud.

Many thanks to The Pigeonhole, and my fellow Pigeons for making this such an enjoyable read.

About the Author

From David himself: “I am the author of a series of crime thrillers featuring Irish-American NYPD Detective Callum Doyle. The first in the series, Pariah, was Highly Commended in the Crime Writers Association Debut Dagger Awards. It is published by Pan Macmillan. The follow-ups are The Helper and Marked, and I am hard at work on the fourth in the series. My writing influences include Ed McBain, Dennis Lehane, George Pelecanos, Robert Crais, Michael Connelly and Harlan Coben, amongst many others. My favourite quote about my work is one from the Guardian, now carried on the front of my novels: ‘Recalls Harlan Coben – though for my money Jackson is the better writer.’”

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