Lethal Game

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Pub Date 11 Nov 2021 | Archive Date 13 Nov 2021

Description

He knows your name. Where you live. The car you drive.

If you don’t play, your family will die. If you lose, you will.

When DI Joel Norris and DS Lucy Rose begin investigating the death of a young woman, murdered on a quiet country lane, they can’t imagine what lies ahead.

This killer uses his victims like chess pieces in a life-sized contest, with the highest stakes imaginable.

Now Norris and Rose are pawns at the mercy of a twisted rulebook.

Can they beat him at his own game before the next round begins and more innocent lives are taken?

A totally addictive, edge-of-your-seat, crime-thriller that will leave you breathless. Perfect for fans of Cara Hunter, Ian Rankin and Stuart MacBride.

Readers are gripped by Charlie Gallagher:

‘OUTSTANDING! STUNNING! THRILLING!’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

‘Unputdownable!’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

‘Nail-biting, can't-put–it-down thriller!’ Goodreads reviewer,⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

‘I was gripped from first page… So many unexpected twists…FANTASTIC THRILLER!’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

He knows your name. Where you live. The car you drive.

If you don’t play, your family will die. If you lose, you will.

When DI Joel Norris and DS...


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ISBN 9780008445553
PRICE A$11.99 (AUD)

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Average rating from 64 members


Featured Reviews

Well this book certainly did not disappoint. The first chapter had me wondering what it was all about. The story line is a unique idea which is followed through the book. Another real page turner as the plot developed and you were left wondering who and why the next victim would be. The story line left you guessing nearly to the end as who to believe. Joel and DS Rose were excellent throughout and it was good to see the start of their characters developing. I always make sure my diary is clear for a couple of days before I start one of Charlie Gallagher’s books as they never fail to keep you turning the pages until it is finished. Perhaps the best one yet.

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Good grief………….where to start reviewing this one, Charlie Gallagher! I remember commenting on The Friend, the first book in the Norris & Rose series that it started differently, a bit more slowly………..well trust me this one certainly does the opposite. Book two starts with Joel Norris and Lucy Rose literally waiting for some jobs for the fairly newly set up Serious Crime Investigation Team. The team has expanded with a new DCI Jim Kemp (who I took to straight away) and a brand new to policing intelligence officer/analyst who is a quite a character, extremely efficient, quite bossy and disapproving but in a likeable way. Then a job comes in……………………. I’m not going to précis the book for you, that’s done by far better writers than me on the book itself! All I will say is that I cannot think of anything scarier than the scene that starts the book off! This book explodes into a nail-biting, breath-holding, scary ride that I loved every minute of! The pace continues at helter-skelter breakneck speed and the tension mounts as they realise they are involved in a real-life gruesome game. I didn’t realise who the perpetrator was until the moment it was revealed in the book! I love that! I love to be surprised! But even then the game isn’t finished and the tension just keeps on mounting! Charlie Gallagher is my favourite author in this genre, I can never get enough of his books and this one is right up there as quite possibly the best yet……………till the next one! My huge thanks go to Charlie and his publishing team, and to NetGalley for an advanced reader e-copy in return for an honest review. Absolutely my pleasure!

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400 Pages 5 stars DI Joel Norris and his Sergeant Lucy Rose are two very competent and determined officers. Following the near-disaster of his last case, Joel finally gets a new case. The young woman is found stabbed and shot to death in a phone booth in an isolated area. She is wearing a sack-like dress. This doesn’t look right. At the same time, the police get reports of another young woman who looked beaten up and also wearing a sack dress. She boarded a bus, begging the driver for a free ride. They follow her with CCTV, but lose her. Finally identifying her, she has fled from her lodgings. What is going on? An intense investigation is undertaken, and clues begin to appear. They meet Margaret, the mother of the murdered woman and her next door neighbor. His name is Billy Easton. Billy is obsessed with a role playing board game. He designed it. He started a company to promote the game, but lost it. Time passes, more facts are uncovered and Billy Easton becomes the prime suspect. Joel, however, doubts that Billy is guilty. His demeanor just doesn’t match the situation. After intense questioning, Billy is released. The reader also is a witness to the first hand suffering of the “participants” in the “game.” Mr. Gallagher has a talent for coming up with original premises for his books. I have read his books since the first one, and the novels just keep getting better. I really like the way he paints pictures with his words. The writing is clean, without gore and gratuitous sex. The police team get along very well and I appreciate that very much. I also like the way we are shown snippets of Joel and Lucy’s home lives. It helps to flesh them out as people, without intruding on the story line. Extremely well done. Mr. Gallagher! Keep up the exemplary work!! There are a significant number of typos which I assume will be corrected before publication. There is also a problem with a couple of transitions toward the end of the book. The transitions from the police to the victims are squashed together and it’s a little jarring. I want to thank NetGalley and Avon Books UK for forwarding to me a copy of this most entertaining and exciting book for me to read, enjoy and review. The opinions expressed here are solely my own.

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DI Joel Norris is starting to get used to his new role, but with very little to do still isn't gaining much on the job experience. All that is about to change when his new boss introduces himself early one morning and gives him details of a new case the team have been assigned. Although team might be stretching it a bit as there are just the three of them, Joel and Lucy having been joined by Eileen, an analyst who wears her carpet slippers and hand knitted cardigan at the office! Now, with a crime scene in the Kent countryside and an unidentified victim on the slab, Joel knows they are once again up against the clock to find a ruthless killer but nothing could prepare him for what is discovered next. As the victim is finally reported missing it becomes clear they're up against someone with an agenda so twisted none of them can even begin to guess at what is to come. This is so good! Charlie Gallagher writes from experience and it shows. The second Joel Norris investigation happens at breakneck speed and with periods of enforced inactivity, both adding to the tension and Joel's frustration which is palpable. There is also an opportunity to learn more about DS Lucy Rose which added a lot to her character development and why she behaves the way she does. The culprit is also expertly crafted twisting and turning their way to the end and I was completely drawn in the entire way from start to finish. After his previous successful series it is clear Charlie Gallagher is onto another winner with Norris and Rose. As in his Maddie Ives series the action is written in such a manner it leaps from the page and I was very sorry to finish a book which is easily one my favourites so far this year. I was able to read an advanced copy of this book thanks to NetGalley and the publishers but the opinions expressed are my own. This is absolutely excellent, I recommend reading book one first and prepare for enjoy another brilliant series from an expert crime writer.

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Charlie Gallagher has definitely scored another hit involving Inspector Joel Norris and Sgt Lucy Rose. Right from the first page you are taken on a roller coaster ride of emotions - willing the characters on to beat the game that has been set, knowing it could end in death - for someone. A race against time when the connection to the deaths and missing characters is recognised as following the same pattern as a board game. I couldn’t put this down once I’d started it and highly recommend this and any Charlie Gallagher books if you are new to this author

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Another fabulous crime thriller from one of my favourite authors, Charlie Gallagher. This is a very intense story, one that focuses on a human contest, betting one person as pawns against each other. The stakes are high and the lives of you and your family are balancing on the edge and there is really no way out, you have to play the game. Sound like this scenario will keep your attention? Well it truly kept mine, what a thrilling ride this was. Lots of actions and deep breaths wondering where this is going and how any of the characters will come out alive. Fast paced, full of tension and suspense, I highly recommend this book to anyone who loves an addictive crime tale, you will find yourself glued to the pages. Five stars.

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Thank you Avon Books UK and NetGalley for this intriguing new story from Charlie. Lethal Game is and extremely enjoyable story that held me captive till the very end of this book! What I enjoyed most were the characters they were intriguing and so interesting. The writing was phenomenal in every way possible. The plot.... Man this plot was everything! An atmosphere of spine-tingling malevolence permeates the pages with heart-pounding, terrifying suspense. This gripping story will have you on the edge of your seat. And its one you won't want to miss!

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I found it enjoyable, entertaining and very cleverly plotted. Don't be fooled, just because Charlie Gallagher is an ex police officer this is not true life crime, but more of a puzzle to work out, centered around an adult strategy board game. Its a quality read with interesting characters, who have intriguing background. Very well written. I am looking forward to seeing how the characters develop and progress.

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I couldn't wait to read this the second in the DI Joel Norris series. The first is the series The Friend, is my favourite Police Crime thriller I've read this year. It starts with a bang, a young woman tethered to the wall in a farm building, preparing to race for her life, knowing the winner lives and second place dies. The characters are excellent and refreshingly human and fallible, there is some very nice characters development in the characters we already know. The plot is original and the plotting is complex, multi-layered and unpredictable. After the initial race to survive I found it took a while to build up momentum, but when it did I was completely hooked. As always, ex-Police Office Charlie Gallagher writes the Police aspects with a convincing, easy confidence and once again builds up to a nerve-shredding tense action finale. Strap yourself in for another dark, twisting and deeply unpredictable thriller. Thanks to Netgalley and Harper Collins

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LETHAL GAME is eerie and heart-racing from the very start, followed by a gruesome discovery. Terror rises in a nightmarish scene. Secrets and lies complicate the cryptic mystery raising tension. It's like a sinister and diabolical rollercoaster ride into a house of horrors. Another grisly find precedes a hellacious maze of mirrors making this mystifying conundrum unsolvable. When new information comes to light, a fast paced, action packed race against time ensues. Spine-chilling, edge of your seat suspense permeates every page keeping them flying by right through to the hair-raising dynamite, explosive finish. DO NOT MISS THE CHILLING AND INNOVATIVE LETHAL GAME!

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Charlie Gallagher never let's you down. This fast paced, electric thriller races from page to page and keeps you guessing until the very end. Strong lead characters and a brilliant plot. Everything you could ask for in abook

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Firstly a massive thank you to net galley for a chance to read this early in exchange for an honest review. This is the second in the series and after reading the first i knew i had to read the second. I really enjoyed the first book, and i wasnt disappointed with the second. I spent the whole book wondering who was responsible and when i thought id got it, i was proved wrong, then i was proved wrong all over again . This definitely left me on the edge of my seat. A brilliant thriller, which did not disappoint at any time. If you are a fan of detective thrillers, then i definitely recommend this as it has it all, the suspense, the tension, and all the detective content of a great detective thriller. Another great 5 star from Charlie Gallagher. Roll on book number 3 as id love to see whats next for the joel and lucy. Great read, well done Charlie

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I’ve only discovered Charlie Gallagher books this year and this one is another page turner. To have a criminal so twisted to make people play out a survival board game in real life! I had to keep reading to find out what was going to happen next. Thanks to NetGalley for an advance copy of this book. I noticed a number of spelling errors but I’m sure these will be corrected before the book is finalised.

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Imagine waking up in an unknown location, tied to the wall and told that you will be running for your life. Win the race and you win your freedom. If you lose? You die. If you refuse to play? Your family will die instead. This is the dilemma that faces the unlucky participants of a sick game - one in which they cannot afford to lose. When the body of a young girl is found in a rural phone box, with signs of torture and multiple stab wounds, DI Joel Norris and DS Lucy Rose are sent to investigate. The one witness to the crime has disappeared, leaving them clueless but pawns in a game much bigger than they realise. Can they find and stop a killer who always seems to be one step ahead and just using them as pawns in their sick game? This is a really good book - one I requested on a recommendation from a friend, and I'm very glad I did! The crack team of Joel, Lucy & Eileen are very warm and likeable and it was a very easy read. I did manage to work out who the perpetrator was around about halfway through the book, but the author cleverly subverted my expectations so that I was never 100% confident until the official reveal! An easy 5* choice for me.

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I haven't read the first in Gallagher's series, but I was able to enjoy this great read despite that. A fantastic gripping opening chapter that made me question what on earth was going on. Then slowly drip fed the answers through a very well researched police procedural. Norris and Rose have great energy between them, and I was kept guessing up until the final few chapters. Fab. Thanks to Avon and Netgalley for the opportunity to read and review

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This certainly did not disappoint, second in the series following DI Joel Norris this was a fast moving thriller packed for of unexpected twists. Joel and his sergeant, Lucy, are sucked into a game they definitely don't want to be a part of. Cleverly written, I raced through this! If you're a fan of a thriller I would recommend, and definitely check out the previous series too!

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A fabulous page-turner of a book! Full on action from the first chapter, and a fabulous thriller that kept me guessing right up to the very end. Really enjoyable read and thoroughly recommended.

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Yet another fantastic read from Charlie Gallagher, full of intense moments , a plot like no other, couldn’t put it down at points . So many twists and turns, when you think you have it all worked out it twists again. Highly recommended.

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At first I thought Charlie had fallen into an old plot line used by many others; sadistic rich men hunting weak sex slaves. Silly me. I had not taken into account his love of the twist. The first one settled my nerves and had me on edge at the same time. This was cruel and, yes, sadistic. Two young women, perfectly matched, facing off against one another. To quote Highlander "There can be only one". I never have liked claustrophobic red telephone boxes but now they are on my list of things never to use, along with electric knives and scuba diving gear. Closely following the women came the men. But they had a plan. They would turn the tables on the bad man. Most women know that men are useless at following plans. these two ran true to form and Charlie provided the details. Bloody, gory details (add scissors to my list). Charlie Gallagher's talent grows with every book. I gave five stars to his first so now he has so many out in the sky making his own astral body. Forget Orion's belt this guy is providing a full set of armour. Fair warning this book is gruesome in places and emotional in others. If you live near a telephone box in the country this may not be for you 😐

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Brilliant book. Kept me on the edge of my seat from start to finish. Charlie is one of the best crime writers around.

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Oh my goodness! What a brilliant thriller. I held my breath so many times, it was just so scary. The plot is original and the malevolence of the perpetrator of the terrible crimes leaps off the page. Absolutly love the all police team, but I have developed a real soft spot for Eileen and her slippers. Charlie Callager is a writer I have followed from his first novel and he just gets better.. His police experience helps him to create the best thrillers.possible and he never disappoints. I highly recommend this book, quality reading from a writer at the top of his game. My thanks to Charlie, his publishing team and to NetGalley for an advanced reader e-copy, absolutely my pleasure!

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A non-stop thriller that keeps you on the edge of your seat. You will not want to put this one down! The plot and the characters are well developed and makes you feel as if you are there. Thank you to #NetGalley for the ARC in exchange for my honest review.

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With many thanks to Charlie Gallagher, NetGalley and Avon for allowing me to read this ARC in exchange my honest review. Charlie Gallagher is my favorite author and I love this book very much. You won't put it down till the end. It's another excellent case for DI Joel Norris and his DS Lucy Jones. The plot and the characters are very well-developed and it just gave you feel you would there with the detectives. It's really fast paced with action-packed race, and tensed with lots of twists and turns. It kept you at the edge of your seat. You are hooked from the beginning. You couldn't predict what would happen next and this book is real dark, twisting and gripping thriller. The characters are intriguing and interesting. You definitely love those characters. If you are a fan of detective thrillers, I highly recommend to you. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

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What I enjoy best about Charlie Gallagher’s stories is the sense of realism that he creates and lines the plot with an element that I refer to as the believability factor. LETHAL GAME is his latest gripping crime thriller, and to get straight to the point this is great stuff - I couldn’t put it down. So, a deadly race against time is, in fact, a race in which two innocent victims are forced to run for their lives in a “winner lives” race. No one can afford to lose. Winning is a life-saver. Detectives Norris and Rose assigned to investigate the case find themselves being played in a twisted adaptation of a disturbing board game that has come to life with fatal consequences for the loser. Sharp and engaging, LETHAL GAME lived up to my expectations and I am certain you too will find it to be a rewarding good read. I highly recommend it to fans of the suspenseful, spine-chilling good yarns. .

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Gripping, dark and sinister. This is a unique crime thriller and police procedural that will leave you chilled by what people are capable of. Lethal Game is the second book in this new series by Gallagher, and it picks up shortly after that of The Friend ends, with ramifications of the last case looming over Norris and Rose. I particularly liked the deeper dive we were able to get into Rose’s background. Both Norris and Rose continue to evolve as this series finds a comfortable footing. A game is supposed to be fun. This one gets taken way too far and comes with dire consequences. And it’s a gritty, jaw clenching game. Just when the police think they are understanding the rules, they become pawns in this escapade. There are a lot of moving pieces that will keep you guessing. The sense of foreboding is heavy in this new book. With years of experience in the criminal justice system, Gallagher lays out a complex yet believable, edge of your seat thriller. It’s well executed and obviously steeped in insider knowledge. Thank you to Charlie Gallagher, Avon Books UK, and NetGalley for the opportunity to read and review an advanced copy of this book.

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Another great book by Charlie Gallagher. A fast paced storyline with some twists and turns to keep you engrossed. The characters are very strong and you can’t help but like them. They are dragged into a game they most definitely don’t want to be a part of and all the action that comes with it. I highly recommend this book and author.

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Charlie Gallagher creates some brilliant reads, characters that you become invested in and unique story-lines. This latest Joel Norris installment is no exception. A great, slightly disturbing, premise for this one. I am very much enjoying the developing characters and their growth, both individually and as a new team. The new DCI seems great and I love the formidable Eileen and her carpet slippers. Looking forward to more from this team. Thank you Charlie.

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This is the second book featuring DI Joel Norris and DS Lucy Rose and it doesn’t disappoint. A fast paced action packed thriller which keeps you gripped from start to finish. I am looking forward to more from this author.

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This is the second book in the series, and Joel is given another case to solve with DS Rose. Once again, although a new DCI is introduced to the team, we don’t see hide nor hair of him much throughout the book, there is a new team member who is an analyst, Eileen, and various members in the background, but apart from learning a bit more about Joel and Lucy, we do get a little more insight at the end, and I, personally like descriptions of the characters and their lives outside police work. I think it adds dimension to the story, and gives you an insight into their behaviour. Noel can be a tad hot headed, but Lucy seems to sort him out! However, this is a cleverly written tale, based on a gaming idea. Now, I for one, have never played computer games, so it was alien to me, but those who have will thoroughly enjoy this book. It’s a race against time as two opponents are pitted against each other, and it’s just nail biting tension as to who survives. The climax at the end is brilliant and I could feel for all those involved but won’t say anymore in case I give the game away, excuse the pun! I think with a bit more detail to the characters and a few more police operatives that we could get to know, this will be an excellent series, as the stories are well thought out and descriptive. I have to say though I did love Maddie Ives and I wish Charlie would bring her and her team back. My thanks to Charlie, Netgalley and the publishers for the ARC.

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This book was fantastic, the second book in the Norris and Rose series, on the crime investigation team Joel and Lucy, that I so enjoyed, so much better than the first I just couldn't put this down, there's so much action, packed with oh my god moments this author has written a proper nail-biter, Reader's are going to love it, you wont be disappointed and the characters work so well together, well done and thank you to Charlie for this read that has left me a happy contented booklover. 5stars***** from me.

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As an avid reader of Charlie Gallagher’s books I’ve been looking forward to this book and I wasn’t disappointed. It had me hooked from page 1. Lots of twists! A real thriller! I love the way Charlie makes you care about the characters too. I thought I’d miss Maddie and Harry from an earlier series but I’m really enjoying Joel and Lucy. Thank you Charlie and Net Galley for the ARC.

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This is the second book in the DI Joel Norris and DS Lucy Rose series and it is every bit as thrilling as the first installment. In this book the detective's start by trying to solve the brutal murder of a young woman and unravel the secrets her mother is keeping. When another body is discovered it soon becomes clear the killer is living out a real life board game which results in gruesome murders. The team need to find the killer and save others victims before they encounter the same torture and suffering. In this book we discover more about the team's home life, especially Lucy's which I particularly enjoyed. We also get introduced to new team members including DCI Kemp and police analyst Eileen, who I believe has the potential to be developed into quite a favourite character in this series. This author has written some fantastic crime thriller series, and this is just as good, if not better. Be warned though, it's not for the faint hearted as he does not hold back in the gruesome details. I thoroughly enjoyed this book, a definite 5* read and I highly recommend it.

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After the best part of 5 years I have decided to give up reviewing books prior to publication. In that time I have reviewed over 300 books and I'm so pleased that my last review, Lethal Game, is up there with the best I have read, The above is I guess of little interest to anyone scanning this review but during this time I have been very fortunate to read all of Charlie's books before they were published. I have to admit that, for me, the first series about George Elms will always be the best. It has lots of police team sarcasm and wit as well as lots and lots of twists. For once the title, Lethal Game, actually summarises the book rather than a typically two word title that could have been concocted from a random page turn in the dictionary! This book is superb, the characters are extremely well detailed - both goodies and baddies - and you do feel a part of the book. So, thoroughly recommended, to any prospective reader who loves crime novels with a bit of bite and depth. Thanks Charlie

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I was given this book by NetGalley for an honest review - - What a book!! What a game!! A killer who moves people like pieces in a game. Detective Norris and Lucy investigate the murder of a young woman and discover the game. Can they find the murderer before the next game?

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What an apt title! Probably one of the most exciting novels I have read in a while. From the first page it is gripping and the suspense builds right up to the thrilling conclusion. It is both a thriller and a police procedural and very well done. The plot is complex and with nothing forensically it seems impossible to solve. The three main characters have a strong bond and although this is the second in the series, I didn’t feel I was missing out. I have no hesitation in recommending it as a ‘stay up late to finish it’ book! Thanks to Avon and NetGalley for an ARC in return for an honest review.

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What a fantastic read! From the minute the story opens giving the reader a real sense of the panic of the young woman playing the ‘lethal game’ to the grim end I was hooked. This is a gripping police procedural with likeable but inevitably flawed characters. It was skilfully written to persuade the reader to believe the perpetrator and follow the police along his misdirections. I’d read more from this author. Thank you netgalley and Avon Books UK for the opportunity to read in exchange for an honest review.

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What a brilliant storyline, almost too unbelievable to believe but that's fiction for you. It's very entertaining and full of suspense, you need your wits about you to keep up with the fast pace and to unravel the twists and turns. It is the first book that I have read by this author but it won't be the last.

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5⭐️ gore score 2/5 #2 in the DI Joel Norris and DS Lucy Rose series I read and loved the first book ( a rare 5⭐️) so was keen to read this one. It had lots to live up to. It’s a fusion between crime thriller with psychological aspects and police procedural. It works really well. I am finding that I’m tiring of the straight police procedurals as they are samey. This is more weighted to the police procedure than the first book. Bit of intro from the blurb -If you don’t play the game those you love will die, he knows where to find your family. You you don’t win you will die. It gets off to a great start. That prologue certainly gets you in a tight grip. It’s emotionally loaded. The anguish is palpable. It’s so tense! My brain was whirring trying to work out the possibilities of what’s going on. The characters of Joel and Lucy have really grown on me during this book, both are very likeable, and very committed to their work and really gelling as friends. It has a full on action hero movie style ending. There are a couple of acronyms that are not given an explanation for. PSD and CAD Down to the verdict as to whether it lived up to my high expectations… it sure does! with cowbells on! There were even a few tears too. You really need to read this book!! I would love to see an adult strategic board game launched in conjunction with this book. I think it would be an excellent cross over between fact and fiction for crime readers.

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This book was a fantastic read , I have read all of Charlie Gallagher’s books which are all brilliant and such good twists and turns in all his books and this one definitely did not disappoint, is one of the best so far and such a great story from start to finish , it amazes me what really good thrillers he writes one after the other with such great stories. I would so highly recommend this book and all his others he has wrote.

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Great fast paced and twisted story line. Really grabs you right from the start. Looking forward to more from Charlie Gallagher

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Fans of Charlie Gallagher will be pleased to learn he has done it again with another page turning thriller that includes some brutally violent scenes. In the second book of this series we see the small team of DI Joel Norris, DC Lucy Rose and their clerical assistant Eileen begin to forge a good working relationship as they investigate the brutal murder of a young woman. It soon becomes apparent that someone is bringing to life a board game of survival, but who is "The Captor", and why is he intent on luring The Police into his murderous game? This fast paced novel races to a suspenseful climax and a race against a rising tide. In his usual style, the author cleverly draws us into the background of the main characters and drip feeds us a little more about what makes them tick, hopefully meaning more to come in this series.

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What a thrilling & sinister read! It starts off with a bang - a life or death race - and never really lets up. There's a few twists that keep you on the edge of your seat, and the fast pace of the story keeps you hooked. I thought DI Joel Norris & DS Lucy Rose were great characters- this is book two in the series, and based on this, it's going to be fantastic.

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Two young women that have never met are pitted against each other in a terrifying race to freedom; only one can survive. DI Joel Norris and RD Lucy Rose return and are drawn into the investigation of a deadly and terrifying game that seems initially as though the victims are random strangers targeted by a cunning and ruthless game master.

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I have not read the first of this series but was able to enjoy this thriller. DI Joel Norris and DS Lucy Rose are called to investigate the death of a young woman found brutally murdered in a quiet country lane. They find themselves part of a strategy game with real live participants - pawns in the killer’s twisted contest. I read this is one sitting determined to know who, how and why! I also liked the development of the team and the main characters - Lucy and Joel. It was good to find out about their backstories. I shall lookout for more from this author.

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Holy Smokes!! Evil = Lethal Game’s villain! After reading the prologue alone, my pulse rose and my heart just about jumped right out my chest! Needless to say, the story that followed was a fast-paced, action based thriller featuring an exceptional game of cat and mice (with the mice being victims (or potential victims) at the hands of one of the sickest serial killers imaginable!) I don’t think the hard time is figuring out “the who”; (I did that early on) the hard part for me was going to be “the how” that would be revealed, and how and IF this monster with a mastermind for maximum terror would be caught. Hold on to your shorts folks - this is one thriller of a ride! 4.5 Stars My thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for an ARC in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

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DI Joel Norris and DS Lucy Rose are caught up in a murder case like no other.... The victims are real chess pieces in the most twisted game imaginable. And as for rules..... Joel and Lucy need to beat the killer before another round begins and more innocent people die....

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The best word I can use to describe Lethal Game is enthralling. This is a true-crime thriller that ticks all the boxes. A real roller-coaster of a ride, from beginning to end. This is an intelligent and intriguing premise with an unusual twist. A killer, who likes using his victims like chess pieces in a life-sized contest. This is quite unusual and a change from the norm. DI Joel Norris and DS Lucy Rose are a brilliant double act. They have this great rapport that makes for great teamwork. We see a bit more depth to the characters this time around as the narrative unfolds. There are twists and misdirection aplenty as the squad try to solve this complex case. Getting drawn into a game where they do not know the rules was always going to be difficult for Norris and Rose. As a police procedural novel, Lethal Game is excellent. It is not too heavy on the dialogue, and what there is happens to be very realistic. I thought this was well written and well researched as crime novels go. The storyline and subplots are spot-on, and the characters are superb. The pace is relentless, and you soon find the time flying by. I always enjoy crime thrillers that leave you guessing right through till the very end, and such is the case with Lethal Game. Thank you NetGalley and Avon Books UK, for the ARC.

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Lethal Game by Charlie Gallagher I give this book 4.5 stars This killer uses his victims like chess pieces in a life-sized contest, with the highest stakes imaginable. Now DI Joel Norris and DS Lucy Rose are pawns at the mercy of a twisted rulebook. Can they beat him at his own game before the next round begins and more innocent lives are taken? The first book I’ve read by this author and ……….wow what a great start! Book 2 can be read as a standalone (l did) The dark storyline reeled me straight in and l was immediately hooked.A tense race against time has you frantically turning the pages.Joel and Lucy are a great duo.Go grab your copy of this pacy non stop action thriller….. you won’t be disappointed! With thanks to Netgalley,Charlie Gallagher and Avon Books for my chance to read and review this book

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Someone’s playing a board game called “Escape” only with real people as the pieces. Two women kidnapped and then set free to take part in a race for their lives. Their families are threatened so that they don’t inform the police. DI Joel Norris and his DS Lucy Rose have the case ably assisted by their analyst Eileen. Every move the killer makes is linked to the game and when things don’t go to plan with one stage he manages to involve the police in a killing. Absolutely loved this book. A total page turner from the start with loads of twists and turns - couldn’t put it down. Thanks to Netgalley, Avon Books and Charlie Gallagher for the ARC of this book in return for an honest review.

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I would like to thank Netgalley and Avon Books UK for an advance copy of Lethal Game, the second novel to feature DI Joel Norris and DS Lucy Rose of Kent Police. When the body of a young woman is found murdered on a country Lane Joel and Lucy get their first case in months. Unfortunately for them the killer appears to be playing games and manipulating them is one of his main games, even more unfortunately it becomes apparent that he has no intention of stopping. I enjoyed Lethal Game, which is another high octane read with plenty of twists from Mr Gallagher. I must admit that I didn’t find it as compulsive as some of his previous offerings, but I have distractions in my life just now so it may just be my mood. The novel is told from various points of view, notably Joel, Lucy and the victims, so there is still plenty of room to guess the killer’s identity and motive. I think the novel is really clever and I loved the way the author constructs it. It is all smoke and mirrors, hiding a really petty motive. In fact the grandiosity of the crime tells you all you need to know about the perpetrator’s narcissism. I freely admit to being clueless until about two thirds of the way in when the killer is arrested and interviewed, except he’s not, just a man with enough limited knowledge to bring the reader up to speed. And the hunt continues to a tense and dangerous finale. The novel oozes tension and frustration, along with some pretty creative murders and these keep the reader turning the pages, itching for resolution. I like Joel and Lucy, who are both still new to murder investigations. They have built a strong bond making them an effective, if unorthodox investigative team. He is a happily married man, although that might not last if he keeps up the long hours. She is more of an enigma, although this novel fleshes out many of the missing pieces, making her more approachable and easier to understand. Lethal Game is a good read that I can recommend.

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Lethal Game is the second book in the Norris & Rose series by Charlie Gallagher and it is a very entertaining read which builds on the promise of the first book. In Lethal Game both main characters grow without distracting from the main storyline which is fast moving and keeps the pages turning. My favourite scene was the first main interview scene which definitely has a twist or two and brings out the author’s experience from his previous job!!! Overall a definite recommendation

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I received this book from Avon & the author via Netgalley for a review. A great book. Charlie Gallagher is fast becoming one of my favourite authors. Well written, fast paced with good characters, loved it.

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ethal Game by Charlie Gallagher is shocking, suspenseful, and heartbreaking. It has aspects of both a crime thriller and a police procedural. Detective Inspector Joel Norris and Detective Sergeant Lucy Rose are assigned the case investigating the death of a young woman murdered in a rural area in England. The killer is playing a game with people’s lives. Can Norris and Rose catch him before more innocent people die? Joel and Lucy along with analyst Eileen Holmans are likeable characters that are easy to connect with quickly. Joel and Lucy have more depth and are featured more in the novel. Readers get insight into their personal lives as well as their professional lives without detracting from the investigation. They seem to balance each other professionally. Joel is more headstrong and fiery and Lucy is more controlled most of the time. Both have flaws and strengths that affect their interactions and lend believability to the story. The secondary characters are a good mix and provide the needed professional and personal conflict or support. How will the new Detective Chief Inspector Jim Kemp affect the team dynamics? The antagonist is crafty and evil, reveling in anticipation of the victims’ fears and struggles. What a prologue! Will you guess what happens next? It hooked this reader immediately. This author knows how to pull readers into a story and keep them turning the pages. The plot is well developed, the pace fast, and the story line is action-packed. The twists and turns take readers on the journey with Joel and Lucy. Will you guess who the killer is and what his motivations are or will you go down the wrong path? Everyone in the novel experiences a variety of emotions from frustration, disdain, fear, and anger to hope, excitement, and glee. Readers may be surprised by who is experiencing which emotion and why. This book is exactly what you would expect from a well-written crime thriller. It’s dark, clever, and gripping with great good and evil characters as well as a tense and twisted story line. Readers should be aware that there are some gruesome details and some chilling and emotional scenes. The author’s experience as a U.K. police officer lends realism to this novel. Overall, this book was suspenseful, intense, riveting, fast-paced, action-oriented, and entertaining. If you enjoy crime thrillers and police procedurals that have both strong male and female characters, then this may be the novel for you. While this is the first book I have read by this author, it is the second book featuring DI Norris and DS Rose. I can’t wait to read the first one and continue with the series. Avon Books UK - Avon and Charlie Gallagher provided a complimentary digital ARC of this novel via NetGalley. This is my honest review. Opinions are mine alone and are not biased in any way. Publication date is currently set for November 11, 2021. This review was originally posted at Mystery and Suspense Magazine.

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I was hooked from the first page and struggled to put it down, as it was a unique storyline that was clearly incredibly well researched and thought out. Inspector Joel Norris and Sergeant Lucy Rose are called out when the body of a young woman is found with horrific, multiple injuries. As they continue their investigations, they discover that the perpetrator has set up a twisted game and the officers are in a race against time themselves to catch the killer. Lots of twists, turns, and nail-biting moments will keep you gripped to the very end. I can’t recommend it highly enough. Thank you to NetGalley and Avon Books UK for an advance reader copy in return for an honest review.

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