Psychological Thriller

The Kind Worth Killing [Book Review]

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Rating: 4/5

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Psychological thrillers have increasingly become very popular in the last few years. With Gone Girl turning into a massive hit, there has been a heavy rush of books set in the same genre. I am probably one of those who couldn’t complete Gone Girl in spite of being enthralled by the suspense. I ended up watching the movie to know the ending. Anyway, The Kind Worth Killing is almost very similar to Gone Girl. It’s a revenge saga and every chapter gives account of the happenings from each character’s perspective and as a reader, we need to deduce which one of them is narrating the truth, start reading between the lines and understand that each one of them is leaving out certain details which would entrap them. I really enjoyed reading this book though at the end I felt like, “What a sad and devious story! Sadistic!”

Ted Severson meets Lily, a complete stranger to him, at the airport and begins talking to her about his personal life over drinks. He confesses that his wife was having an affair and how he craves to see her dead. Lily, out of the blue, offers to help him carry out the murder! Insane, right? We then get to know the background life of Lily, how she had always led a lonely life and how she had already committed murders to save herself, how she felt happy after every murder! Ted and Lily meet few more times to discuss their plans. What happens next? Does Ted and Lily succeed in killing Miranda, Ted’s wife? Above that, do they get away with the murder?

As with any thriller, the success lies with the impact of the turning points and how it takes the readers off guard. There were quite a good amount of those moments in this book which makes it really exciting and engaging. Though after a point, I admit it became a routine, predicatable. The author has definitely given a very air tight story. I loved how Lily’s mind worked and how she always made sure all the loose ends are tied. Miranda’s character was a surprise and I am sure who have read the book would understand what I mean. The book doesn’t give a pleasant feeling at the end though. It’s not a pleasant read. There is a lot of wickedness in every character and you realize you don’t like any of the characters in the book. You don’t feel sad and have any sort of sympathy for anyone. May be, that’s what psychological thrillers are all about?

The author has done a very good job in building suspense throughout the book. As a reader, I understood the psychology of every character and the reasons behind their actions. The murky rainy weather added a lot of character to the story. The fact that Lily and Miranda have crossed paths in the past and how that had sowed the intent of revenge was clever work. Having read a good amount of psychological thrillers, I realize I don’t really enjoy them much. But for the ones who love reading this genre, this book is definitely a very entertaining one.

Disclaimer

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Rating: 4/5

Published: 2015

This book has one of the best taglines/synopsis I have read in recent times.

“Imagine if the next thriller you opened was all about you.”

This was more than enough for me to grab this exciting thriller. Disclaimer is a psychological thriller written by debutante Renee Knight. I have always had problems understanding the term “psychological thriller”. I get the meaning but never really witnessed it getting converted on the book. Disclaimer has made me realise what psychological thriller exactly means. I have read many books this year, but this one is definitely on my top 5. I am glad I picked this book.

Catherine Ravenscroft is perplexed. An incident in her life which she had hidden deep within herself, which she had considered a dark secret, something unknown to anyone, is the exact premise of the book she is reading currently. “The Perfect Stranger”. She is the central character of the book and the author’s only intention is to destroy her completely. Scared that someone has learned her secret, even more scared what if her family gets to know, she begins to investigate the identity of the author.

Stephen Brigstocke is the author of the book. With his teenage son and his writer wife dead, he leads a lonely life. One day, while cleaning up his wife’s workplace he comes across a script she had written and a bunch of photographs which sends him to still shock. His entire world comes down when he finds out a dark truth about his son and his death. His wife, Nancy, had known it but hid it from him. She might be dead but the truth isn’t. He determines to take revenge on the person responsible for the death of his son, Catherine Ravenscroft.

Disclaimer beautifully juggles between the thoughts of Catherine and Stephen. Both their accounts of the incident are so sincere that we believe both of them. The story shifts between Summer 2013 and Summer 1993. Both the characters believe in their versions that it’s very difficult to decide who is lying and who is speaking the truth. Our emotions run from sympathy to disgust for all the characters throughout the book. The author has placed the turning points in the right places messing our theory process. The supporting characters- Robert as Catherine’s supportive husband and Nick as her troubled son add more diverse colours to the story. Stephen’s way of getting at Catherine is vicious but it shows the agony of a father. Catherine’s helpless and anxiety is justifiable as she wants to save her family and her own name. This is one of those books with a very satisfying end.

Disclaimer is a must read for psychological thriller lovers. This book definitely played with my psychology. Highly recommended.