Thriller-Suspense

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Cover Image: Deadly MessengersDeadly Messengers
By: Susan May
Review copy supplied by author.
 
Anyone who watches the evening news has a niggling little fear that random violence may one day impact their lives. In our minds, this may take the form of terrorism, a major crime, or the nightmare-inducing imagination of Susan May, who brings our fears home to us with “Deadly Messengers”, a tense tale of mayhem by design.
 
Freelance writer Kendall Jennings forsakes her usual “fluff articles” on beauty tips and fad diets when a mass killing occurs in her neighborhood. The extraordinarily bloody and utterly horrifying massacre occurs at a nearby café, one where Kendall stops for the occasional coffee—once again proving the dangers of caffeine.
 
Kendall’s innate curiosity turns a single need-to-pay-the-rent article into heavy investigative journalism when another mass killing occurs; then a third in quick succession. What could possibly cause an outbreak of multiple homicides? What is turning ordinary people into psychotic killers, and how can Kendall find the truth?
 
During her investigation, Kendall crosses paths with Detectives Lance O’Grady and Trip Lindsay, both assigned to the case. The two detectives take different tacks in dealing with Kendall. Trip is infatuated, and O’Grady is infuriated. Despite initial misgivings, Kendall pushes to dig into the police investigation as well as following other avenues that lead her into more danger and more bloody violence than she could possibly imagine.
 
This story is told in a succession of character viewpoints, including those of the killers. Each characters’ internal dialogue is placed on display, varying from everyday whimsical thoughts to the intensely psychotic rants of a killer in mid murder spree. If you’re prone to cold chills running up your spine, it’s best to save this thriller for a very bright, very sunny afternoon. You don’t want to risk the lights going out and being caught in the dark while reading Deadly Messengers!
 
The Good:  Very plausible plot by a writer who you could almost believe has experience as an ax murderer. The fully-displayed internal dialogue of all the characters is an interesting view, and the insights into the minds of the killers, quite chilling.
 
The Bad: I just couldn’t make myself believe the proposed sexual chemistry between the two main characters, the breezy reporter Kendall and the gruff detective O’Grady. Deadly Messengers is definitely not a light, romantic comedy! A blossoming romantic relationship in the middle of a horribly bloody murder investigation needs fuller development, an extra dose of realism.
 
Rating: Three Stars. I genuinely liked the overall story.
 
Available here.

 

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