Monday, August 03, 2020

Review: The Nothing Man by Catherine Ryan Howard (audio)


Title: The Nothing Man
Author: Catherine Ryan Howard
Narrator: Alana Kerr Collins, John Keating
Published: August 2020, Blackstone Publishing
Length: 9 hours 57 minutes
Source: Netgalley audio

Summary:
At the age of twelve, Eve Black was the only member of her family to survive an encounter with serial attacker the Nothing Man. Now an adult, she is obsessed with identifying the man who destroyed her life.

Supermarket security guard Jim Doyle has just started reading The Nothing Man--the true-crime memoir Eve has written about her efforts to track down her family's killer. As he turns each page, his rage grows. Because Jim's not just interested in reading about the Nothing Man. He is the Nothing Man.

Jim soon beings to realize how dangerously close Eve is getting to the truth. He knows she won't give up until she finds him. He has no choice but to stop her first ...


 
My thoughts:  This is the first book I've read by Catherine Ryan Howard but it certainly will not be the last. And thanks to Netgalley offering audiobooks, I jumped when I saw that this one was available as an audiobook galley. 

I absolutely loved this book. It is so cleverly crafted and kept me hooked from start to finish. There were so many little twists here and there that I wasn't expecting and the tension really builds all the way through so that you are kept on the edge of your seat. There are some really chilling parts to this book, especially the parts where we find out about all the victims of the serial killer, but I always think being in mind of a serial killer can be haunting in it's own way.

I am obsessed with the whole book-within-a-book format and I loved how it was done here. Reading parts of the chapters along with the killer was just sheer brilliance, getting his reaction as he goes through the book. But even having Eve's point of view as she works on the book gives such insight to what she went through and why she ultimately wrote the book in the first place.

This was one of the best cat and mouse games I've ever read. This book isn't about finding out who the killer is - we know that right from the start. Rather, it is about the killer getting caught. And being in the mindset of the killer is so haunting and chilling. I've read other books where we are privy to a killer's thoughts and stream of consciousness, but never have I been as freaked out as I was while reading this book. It was pure brilliance.

I loved the way this book came together. It totally gets under your skin, but I wouldn't have it any other way.  It's definitely an addictive, binge-worthy thriller that I won't be forgetting anytime soon.


Audio thoughts: I loved this audiobook. I thought the narrators, Alana Kerr Collins and John Keating did a fantastic job with this audio, bringing their individual parts to life. Both narrators have Irish accents and with the book taking place in Ireland, the accents seemed natural. They really brought this book to life, and their pacing and intonations were spot on. I felt they infused just the right amount of tension and suspense into their voices as needed and I thoroughly enjoyed listening to this audiobook.


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