The Whisper Man

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 13 Jun 2019

Member Reviews

Well, I probably won't be sleeping again. I think this is a debut novel, in which case it's extremely accomplished for a first book. Tom and his son Jake have suffered the appalling loss of their wife and mother, Rebecca. Jake is showing great signs of distress, especially as he found his mother dead at home, so Tom decides they need a fresh start and at Jake's prompting, chooses a curious and some might say scary house in Featherbank. But as they arrive, a boy is taken, bringing back memories in the community of the child murders carried out 20 years previously by The Whisper Man.

This is a multi layered book which is a proper edge of your seat thriller. Alex North pulls all the strands together at the end, and I was desperate to get there to see how he did it. Really nicely done and a strong plot and characterisation.
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If you have been stuck in a reading rut lately then The Whisper Man may be the book you need. Yes, it's a crime fiction novel with both a damaged detective and shadowy serial killer at it's centre. But these elements are handled deftly and there are many delightfully chilling layers. The book really grabs you and there were several moments that made my blood run cold. I'm amazed that this is a debut novel, Alex North is one to watch.
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When a young boy goes missing on his way home, DI Pete Willis wonders if it is connected to the infamous Whisper Man case. Willis put Frank Carter in prison but he's always wondered if Carter had an accomplice. Meanwhile Tom Kennedy and his young son Jake move to the sleepy village of Featherbank following the death of Jake's mum. Jake has always been quiet and a loner, prone to imaginary friends, but Tom becomes even more worried when Jake says a man is whispering to him at night.

There is a nice balance of crime and paranormal aspects which stops it from being your usual crime read. I thought the characters of Tom and Jake were very sympathetic and although there were one or two coincidences which drove the story along, overall it was a very good read. Recommended to anyone who likes a slightly different take on the crime novel.

Thanks to NetGalley and publishers, Penguin UK - Michael Joseph, for the opportunity to read an ARC.
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This is a seriously creepy, scary, eerie and menacing read. I found it to be very unsettling and didn't want to read it late at night, without checking the doors were locked, because if you leave a door half open.........
Tom Kennedy and his son Jake, are suffering, following the death of Rebecca, wife and mother. They move to Featherbank, a quiet , safe village in order to rebuilt their lives. But the village has a horrifying past, a serial killer murdered five young boys years ago, and now another youngster has been taken. Before each boy disappeared, they heard someone whispering at their windows. 
Now Jake hears these whispers and someone tries to break into the house. Tom is concerned about Jakes imaginary friend, a little girl in a blue dress, whom he draws in several pictures. And, who is the boy in the floor?. 
This is a brilliant , thoughtful story about the love between father and son, and how it is to be treasured. And, how it can go so wrong. It is so full of pain and tension, I felt the misery of the loss being suffered. It was an addictive read, and with writing of such quality, it will be a best seller. 
I was so delighted to guess the identity of the girl in the blue dress, before it was revealed !! I will leave a copy of this review on Goodreads with a five star rating. Thank you so much for letting me read this novel and give my honest opinions.
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This book was very interesting and eerie. I couldn't help but be intrigued from the very first page. 

I loved how the story was set out, jumping from first and then to the third person. It was like seeing it from all eyes, and connecting with the protagonist of the story. 

The book was so very eerie, especially with Jake and 'The Whisper Man'. It gave an eerie aura which although creeped me out a bit, pushed me to read through. 

The suspense of the book is what mainly made me hold on, especially with a few scenes in the book, and the ending surprised me a lot! Was not expecting that at all. 

The Whisper man is a chilling, suspenseful read that will keep you reading to the very last page. 

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Tom Kennedy and his young son Jake are struggling to come to terms with their grief after Tom’s wife, and Jake’s mother, passes away. They move to the sleepy village of Featherbank for a fresh start. Unknown to Tom, Featherbank has a dark and murky past. Twenty years ago a serial killer known as The Whisper Man abducted and murdered five young boys. Tom doesn’t feel the need to be worried about such an old crime though, or not until another boy goes missing. Then Jake begins hearing whispering at his window…

If you leave a door half open, soon you’ll hear the whispers spoken…

Creepy line huh? That’s a pretty good indicator for how this whole book goes to be honest. Things are unsettling and creepy from very early on, building tension as you read further. All the way through you know something horrible is going to happen, but are hoping it doesn’t. It’s a really clever plot that plays on fears that many people would have, such as hearing strange noises in your house or feeling unsafe in your own home.

I really felt like I connected with the characters in this book. Strangely it’s the second in a row that ice read featuring a father who is struggling to raise his son alone after his wife passed away. This one felt a lot more authentic and believable than the last one. It seemed like Tom and Jake were both trying so hard to be the best they can for each other, but somehow just not quite connecting as they were hoping. I quickly became attached to both of them which made me want to keep reading to make sure they both come out of the book OK!

The book switches between various points of view, between Tom and Jake, Pete and Amanda – the police officers leading the case, and the killer himself. I thought this worked really well, it means you get a properly well rounded view of what it going on, but also that you are kept in the dark about a lot of things which helps to build suspense. The different voices were very clear and easy to pick out, whilst still feeling totally natural. Jake was an interesting kid, and his sections were written excellently. I enjoyed being inside his head and seeing how his mind worked.

Overall I thought this was a fantastic read. It was incredibly atmospheric and unsettled me right from the start. It’s an outstanding debut novel, and I’ll definitely be watching out for more by Alex North.

Thanks to NetGalley and Penguin UK – Michael Joseph for an arc in exchange for an honest review
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Oh my goodness, where do I start! I suppose behind closed locked and bolted doors is the best place. I am still having rhymes going round in my mind, still listening for whispers in the night and still wishing that I could read this superb book again for the very first time. This is one top class read!
The man that abducted little boys from the village where they lived is still locked away but now another child has disappeared not too long before widowed Tom and his six-year-old son Jake buy a bargain house in the area.
Jake is adorable, lonely and in desperate need of his grieving father’s love.  The relationship between them is one to make you cry in more ways than one. Jake had acquired a special friend after his mum died, a little girl but no-one else can see her. Dad knows all about her but hoped with a new start she wouldn’t be part of Jake’s imagination anymore.  Not long after they move into the new house weird things begin to happen, which you need to read and find out about yourself.
What a heart in your mouth story this is. Emotional, heartbreaking and scared the hell out of me. Playground rhymes become warnings as the story goes from a very dark place to one that will play with your mind. Oh Wow! I still shudder and tingle when I think of it all.
One man that is determined to catch this vile creature who is mimicking the child killer from years ago, is a DI who worked the original case. Emotionally charged, the case becomes extremely personal. There is simply never a dull moment as the story focuses on so many issues. When you think the pace can’t possibly pick up, it began running from page one, it takes Olympic gold for the final few chapters.
An outstanding novel! With the vilest of people you don’t even want to meet in your nightmares. What the heck can follow this!!! Many thanks to NetGalley for an e-copy of this book which I have reviewed honestly.
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Tom Kennedy and his seven year old son, Jake, are battling with their grief following the death of wife/mother Rachel. They live in a precarious state of unbalance, trying to seek out a new way of life, find a new normal but painful reminders of Rachel’s absence make any attempts so much harder. Despite a difficult relationship with Jake, Tom is determined to make it work. To help them both move forward, knowing it’s what his wife would have wanted. Moving house seems like the best step to take, after all how can Jake ever heal when he was the one to find his mother’s body? Their home and way of life has to change. 

Featherbank seems like the best solution. The village is quiet, safe, a perfect place for new beginnings. But Tom is unaware of Featherbanks’ horrifying past. Fifteen years ago a serial killer abducted and murdered five young boys. Before they were taken, each said they heard a whispering at their windows. The clues were scarce but eventually the man responsible was found and imprisoned. For fifteen years, the whispers fell silent. But now they have started again. And when a young boy is taken, is seems the past is on repeat. The Whisper Man is whispering once more.

DI Pete Willis is battling his own inner demons when news of the missing boy meets his ears. With Frank Carter still very much locked up, he is at a loss to who has taken up his infamous mantle. Copycat? Killer fan? It could be anyone. But Pete has a dwindling amount of time before the boy will likely be killed. He was the one who solved the mystery of the Whisper Man twenty years ago. But now, fraught with traumatic memories of his personal life, Pete’s level of desperation rises higher and higher. Soon the boy will be dead and another one will be taken. 

The book is, without a shadow of a doubt, one of my top favourite reads of the year. Filled with a lurking menace, a sense of unease that creeps into the marrow of your bones, this is such a powerful book. The dynamic between Tom and Jake is an emotional roller coaster. In the beginning they seem at odds with one another, unable to voice their feelings, stumped every time they try to meet in the middle. But as the book progresses, a tenderness blooms between them and they find a way to communicate, show their emotions. It’s a beautiful and heart-warming balance to what is a thrilling, ominous thriller. The Whisper Man is a masterful novel that I’m sure will soar. Just loved it!! If you’re looking for something that is a startling and utterly unforgettable, this is the one for you!
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It has been described as the best crime novel of the last decade and as having shades of both Stephen King and Thomas Harris, and I would say that both of those statements are pretty spot on. I don't often say this but it ABSOLUTELY should be on every crime readers to be read pile. It's a riveting psychological thriller that is one of the creepiest books I have ever had the pleasure of reading and an addictive ominous atmosphere lurks throughout. It had me on the edge/anxious and scared of what might be about to happen, and it's rare fiction can do that. It's deliciously dark and suspenseful, and although this premise has been done before I have never seen it better executed.

Serial killer Frank Carter (known as The Whisper Man due to his whispering at the window of his victims to lure them away in the middle of the night) was tried and convicted for his mass murder spree twenty years ago in the small community of Featherbank. But now horrifyingly a killer with the same modus operandi and penchant for young boys is on the loose and seems to know details that were not released to the public about the original crimes. So is there a copycat killer at work or is it someone Carter has spilled the beans to since (like a fan) or did he have an elusive partner who was party to everything back then?

The pacing is ideal, the characterisation impressive but what really stands out is the tension that North creates. It had my heart-pounding most of the time I was reading. There is also a welcome amount of emotional engagement too and I found my heart breaking a tiny bit towards the end (no spoilers). Many thanks to Penguin - Michael Joseph for an ARC.
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Thank you to NetGalley, Penguin UK, Michael Joseph and Alex North for the chance to read this novel in exchange for an honest review.

“If you leave a door half-open, soon you’ll hear the whispers spoken...If you’re lonely, sad and blue, the Whisper Man will come for you”

A boy who hears whispers from people no one else can see echoes the spine-chilling moment in The Sixth Sense when Haley Joel Osment’s character utters the immortal words “I see dead people” in this eerie, menacing, unsettling and sinister novel. This is a book you do not want to read at night!

Six-year-old Neil Spencer disappears when walking home one summer evening. An extensive search yields no clues until Neil’s mother remembers him mentioning whispering outside his window one night. This revelation terrifies Featherbank detectives as the town is still haunted by Frank Carter, a local man who abducted and killed five young boys in 20 years ago. He is also known as the Whisper Man. His final victim’s body was never recovered and there were rumours of an accomplice. Could that be who abducted Neil?

Tom Kennedy and his son, Jake, are looking for a fresh start after the death of Tom’s wife the year before. Tom feels he is failing as a father and that he and Jake are drifting further apart. He’s hoping moving will change that. But it seems their problems have followed them, and the gulf between them only widens and the worrying incidents only increase after they move into the strange new house in Featherbank. With Jake hearing whispers and talking about things he shouldn’t know there’s undertones of something  malevolent lurking in the shadows of the Kennedy home.

I was hooked from the foreboding prologue right until the very last page of this book. The two main characters were well written: Tom is the grieving widower who is struggling to connect with his son in his own grief and also trying to evade the pain of his own childhood. He wishes his son was more “normal” and worries about him being too sensitive. Jake is a lonely child who is scrambling to make sense of the grief, emptiness and fear he feels after his mother’s death. He feels his dad doesn’t like him and takes solace in imaginary friends and his special things. For a lot of the book it isn’t clear how Tom and Jake are connected to the Whisper Man storyline and Neil’s disappearance, and I loved trying to find clues to figure out where the story would go next. I was usually wrong.

The Whisper Man is an exquisite, multi-layered, chilling and emotional novel. There were many twists and turns, some so jarring and unexpected I could only sit there in shock. Spectacularly written, this is a tense and haunting thriller that you don’t want to miss.
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“If you leave a door half-open, soon you’ll hear the whispers spoken...” thanks to Penguin U.K. Michael Joseph for an eARC via NetGalley of Alex North’s debut crime thriller, ‘The Whisper Man’, in exchange for an honest review.

This proved to be an amazing read and clearly worthy of its prepublication buzz. A combination of police procedural and crime thriller, the writing was very impressive and I would also shelve it as literary fiction given its sensitive exploration of the relationship between fathers and sons. 

Recently bereaved Tom Kennedy moves with his young son, Jake, to the village of Featherbank. Featherbank has a dark past as fifteen years ago five young boys were abducted and murdered by a serial killer dubbed by the press as The Whisper Man. This was due to reports by the parents that the children had reported someone whispering to them prior to their abduction. 

Although the killer was caught and imprisoned D.I. Pete Willis has been haunted by the fact that the final victim’s body was never found. Through the years he visits the killer in hope that he might reveal this location. 

However, when another boy goes missing an abandoned theory that there was an accomplice resurfaces and Pete is drawn back into the case.

This only touches on the plot of this excellent novel and as always I am reluctant to say too much as I feel novels like this should be read ‘cold’. The narrative moves between a number of points of view including those of Tom, Jake, Pete and the police. We also have glimpses into the mind of the abductor.

‘The Whisper Man’ started out fairly slowly but soon gained momentum in terms of tension and creepiness. Throughout there is also a suggestion that Jake is sensitive to the Unseen, which brings another dimension to the narrative.

Apparently Alex North is a pseudonym for an anonymous author. I am sure that there will be speculation about their identity given the power and maturity of the writing in this ‘debut’.

This was a brilliant multi-levelled novel that was an easy 5 stars. Highly recommended.
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Wow!! I am seriously impressed with "The Whisper Man" I couldn't put this down I was that invested in the unfolding storyline.
I also understand this is a debut author so that's even more outstanding.
The main focus of this story was Tom Kennedy and his son Jake.
After the death of his wife Tom now a single parent moves his young son into the town of featherbank for a fresh start.
twenty years previous Frank Carter had terrorised this area abducting and murdering young boys he was monikered the whisper man.
now a new little boy is missing and policeman Pete Willis who handled the previous case back in the day is pulled back into the current ongoing investigation.
So this was told in dual POV Tom and Pete.
It was full of twists and turns a cleverly woven mystery that was hard to put down.
Part police procedural, supernatural and Crime Thriller this was in a class all of its own.
I especially liked the way this combined the riveting and at times eerie storyline with the everydays of normal life and the deeper issues of addiction and how this can affect the family.
The way this cleverly manages to weave all the loose threads into a coherent end-game just outstanding.
This was for me a five star read all the way.
I voluntary reviewed a copy of The Whisper Man.
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The Whisper Man is Alex North’s debut thriller, and what an absolutely riveting read it is!

It’s some twenty years since Frank Carter began a life sentence for the abduction and murder of five little boys. Carter had earned himself the nickname ‘The Whisper Man’ after his sinister method of whispering at the doors and windows of his victims in order to lure them outside. Now though, another little boy has gone missing in similar circumstances, and the peaceful village of Featherbank is once again fearful of what the outcome may be.

Tom Kennedy and his young son Jake are still drowning in grief a year after the death of Tom’s beloved wife Rebecca, but Tom is hoping that a move to the sleepy little village of Featherbank will help them start a new chapter in life. The new house isn’t really what Tom would have chosen, it’s a creepy run down old house but when Jake saw it he wouldn’t look at anything else, he loved it on sight and Tom wanted so much for Jake to be happy. He was having a problem communicating with his son, (Rebecca was always the one that Jake turned to) and he hoped that this move would help bring them closer together.

DI Amanda Beck heads the new investigation into the missing boy, but DI Pete Willis ( the investigator in the original Whisper Man case) is also brought in to help. It’s always been thought that Carter may have had an accomplice and Willis’s intimate knowledge of the original case could be crucial.

Told from the POV of Tom, Jake, DI Amanda Beck, and DI Pete Willis, this is a deftly crafted and compelling thriller, where the author has grasped the importance of pace, (and that), combined with a narrative that wastes not a single word, each word being designed to hook you into the next, ensures that it’s a winner.

‘The Whisper Man’ is most certainly a best seller in waiting, and Alex North should be justifiably proud!
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If you leave a door half-open, soon you'll hear the whispers spoken...

Still devastated after the loss of his wife, Tom Kennedy and his young son Jake move to the sleepy village of Featherbank, looking for a fresh start.

But Featherbank has a dark past. Fifteen years ago a twisted serial killer abducted and murdered five young boys. Until he was finally caught, the killer was known as 'The Whisper Man'.

Of course, an old crime need not trouble Tom and Jake as they try to settle in to their new home. Except that now another boy has gone missing. And then Jake begins acting strangely.

He says he hears a whispering at his window...

I heard so many good things about this book, I couldn't wait to find out what all the fuss was about, and, now that I've read it for myself, I have to agree with everyone because it's absolutely brilliant and I refuse to believe that it's the first by this author! The story is so well executed, the characters are authentic and I was gripped from beginning to end. I loved how the author portrayed the relationship between Tom and his son Jake and how they were trying to rebuild their lives after losing Rebecca, I just wanted to hold them both and never let go.  This book is seriously creepy at times and I suggest you lock all the windows before reading this and never leave the door half open, you never know who is on the other side, you have been warned.......

I'd like to thank Netgalley and Penguin UK - Michael Joseph for the approval, I will post my review on Goodreads now and Amazon on publication day.
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Oh this is a great crime thriller.
I was intrigued by the story and was hooked from the first few pages. 
The book starts off as two stories but they soon both come together. 
A boy is missing after walking home and the Police are doing all they can to find him. 
His parents say that he’d told them he’d heard whispering at his window but they thought no more of it. 
DI Beck had already put ‘The Whisper Man’ in jail so is concerned when he hears the rumour about the ‘whispering.’ He arranges to visit him but gets nowhere. 
Tom is struggling to bring Jake up on his own following his wife’s death, and decides to move to a new village. 
Little do they know that the village is where the boy has gone missing and soon the attention is on Jake as the new boy. 
This is a real nail biter and had me on the edge of my seat. I must admit the ‘whisper man’ scared me a bit!
An addictive read that I highly recommend. 
Thanks to Penguin UK - Michael Joseph and NetGalley for the opportunity to read this book.
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With thanks to Netgalley and Penguin for this ARC in exchange for an open and honest review

The Whisper Man was written by an anonymous author who wrote under the pseudonym Alex North.  According to the Penguin website the book has been optioned for film.  I wonder if Alex North is already an established author of another genre and wanted to write something different like J K Rowling did?

The book started with the abduction of six year old Neil Spencer who had been walking  home alone.   DI Pete Willis lived nearby the abduction site and went to join the search.  Twenty years earlier he had arrested Frank Carter also known as The Whisper Man.  Carter had kidnapped and murdered five children.  Pete was still searching for one of the victims Tony Smith who had never been found.   When Neil was not found after 48 hours Peter was asked to assist the SIO DI Amanda Beck.  To help find Neil, Pete had to visit The Whisper Man whose crimes haunted him for the last twenty years.

 Tom and his seven year old son Jake Kennedy had moved to Featherbank.  Tom and Jake were still grieving after the loss of Jake`s mum Rebecca A year earlier.  Shortly after moving in Jake started talking to an `imaginary girl` who warned him of The Whisper Man, ` if you leave a door unopened,  soon you'll hear the whispers spoken`.  One night Tom woke up to find Jake talking to someone through the letter box.

The Whisper Man was a psychological thriller mixed with the supernatural.  The story was told from the POV of Tom, Jake, DI Pete Willis, DI Amanda Beck and `The man `.

The plot was tense and the scenes with Jake made my spine tingle at times.  There were twists and turns a plenty, one minute I knew where the story was leading to and find I was completely wrong.  There were a couple of twists which made me want to hug Jake.

The book was definitely based around the theme of fathers and sons.  I felt so sorry for Tom and little Jake.  Tom adored Jake but because he felt numb with grief himself he found it difficult to reach his son.  I also liked Pete a former alcoholic whose wife left with their son years earlier.  He obviously punished himself each night by sitting with an unopened bottle of whiskey.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book and highly recommend it.  I look forward to more from Alex North.
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The Whisper Man is a creepy ,atmospheric,scary crime thriller.Twenty years ago there was a serial killer that kidnapped and murdered young boys,he was caught and is still in prison but now there us a copycat killer striking again and terrifying a small town . To say anymore would be to spoil it for future readers.The plot is very clever with some surprises,it is a very creepy psychological thriller,an absolutely brilliant debut book.Many thanks to the Publisher ,the Author and NetGalley for my copy in return for an honest review .
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A fantastic psychological thriller that is so CREEPY. I was hooked from the first page. Terrifying moments which gave me goosebumps. In places this read had me sat on the edge of my seat and gasping for breath. The storyline was clever, no brilliant and as for the ending WHAM definitely not what I was expecting. You need to read this book with all the lights on and all you doors and windows locked. You will not forget THE WHISPER MAN!!!!!
An easy five stars and so Highly Recommended. 
I would like to thank the author, Penguin UK and Michael Joseph and Netgalley for the ARC in return for giving an honest review.
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Ooo, this was deliciously dark and suspenseful. 
20 years ago in Featherbank a serial killer abducted and murdered five people. He would lure his victims by whispering at their windows at night and was subsequently nicknamed "The Whisper Man". But he, Frank Carter, was eventually caught, tried and convicted, and things calmed down. Back in the present, a new serial killer appears to be emulating these crimes and the police are desperately trying to figure things out quickly as the town is still scarred and beaten from its past.
Meanwhile, we also follow Tom as he, along with his son Jake, desperate for a fresh start after the death of their wife and mother, Rebecca, coincidentally move to Featherbank. Tom and Jake struggle to get on and they hope this move will help their relationship. 
Detectives Beck and Willis are tasked with investigating the latest disappearance when a boy goes missing but will they find him in time or will Willis have to visit his nemesis in prison to get a lead, something he's not looking forward to? He's visited quite a few times to get the whereabouts of the body of Carter's last victim, which has haunted him, but has always been given the run around. 
The stakes get higher as the body count rises and our story takes a dark turn when Jake wakes in the night to whispering at his window... Did Frank have a partner, a protege, or is there a new kid in town just picking up the baton?
There's quite a bit going on in this book but each element is expertly weaved with the others as the book meanders to its conclusion. It's hard to judge how much to say in a review so as not to spoil it for others but I think I'm OK hinting at some obliquely. We have an incarcerated serial killer, a potential, prolific, copycat, a bunch of hero worshippers intent on hiding evidence, a fractious, awkward father and son relationship, as well as an estranged relationship trying to get mended. All things connect and diverge and some reconnect as the story becomes a race to the truth and its conclusion. 
Characters are well drawn and develop nicely as the story progresses. Each has their part to play and all play them well. Some of their journeys through the book were quite emotional and this was also handled very well. There were definitely many layers to some of them that unravelled nicely throughout.
Pacing was also good. There was a lot of floundering by the police at times but that just added to the interest, intrigue and frustration throughout the narrative. As with most books of the genre things escalate towards the end and it becomes a bit of a race to the finish line. But, unlike a lot of books these days, it didn't feel rushed. 
As with all cracking books that I thoroughly enjoyed, I went to the author profile and was flabbergasted to find that this is their debut book! This makes it even more impressive for me as they have definitely hit the ground running and I really can't wait for the next one. My thanks go to the Publisher and Netgalley for the chance to read this book.
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This book should come with a warning ‘Do not read with the light off’  this book was fantastically creepy, deeply menacing and terrifyingly brilliant. 

It’s not often that’s book has me feeling all creeped out but the whisper man succeeded 100%

Simply brilliant 5 stars
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