Saturday, February 02, 2019

Blog Tour & Review: Stalker by Lars Kepler

Title: Stalker
Author: Lars Kepler
Series: Joona Linna, #5
Published: February 2019, Knopf Publishing Group
Format: ARC Paperback, 560 pages
Source: Publisher

The internationally bestselling authors of The Sandman and The Hypnotist return with a terrifying new thriller: Detective Joona Linna--recently returned from compassionate leave--reunites with hypnotist Erik Maria Bark in a search for a seemingly unassailable sadistic killer.
The Swedish National Crime Unit receives a video of a young woman in her home, clearly unaware that she's being watched. Soon after the tape is received, the woman's body is found horrifically mutilated. With the arrival of the next, similar video, the police understand that the killer is toying with them, warning of a new victim, knowing there's nothing they can do. Detective Margot Silverman is put in charge of the investigation, and soon asks Detective Joona Linna for help. Linna, in turn, recruits Erik Maria Bark, the hypnotist and expert in trauma, with whom Linna's worked before. Bark is leery of forcing people to give up their secrets. But this time, Bark is the one hiding things. 

Years before, he had put a man away for an eerily similar crime, and now he's beginning to think that an innocent man may be behind bars--and a serial killer still on the loose. . .

My thoughts: This has become one of my favorite series, ever since reading book 4, The Sandman, last year around this time. These are the types of books that once you start reading them, you find yourself completely consumed in them, despite the fact that they are incredibly dark, haunting, and disturbing. They are addicting and binge-worthy and I find myself reading huge chunks of the book in one, if not the whole book in a day!

Since there was such a big gap between the release of book 4 and book 5 being released, I had the time to go back and read the earlier books and I am so glad I did, as the hypnotist from book 1 really plays an integral part in this book. Not that you really need to have read the earlier books, as Lars Kepler does a great job filling in the necessary information on the hypnotist's backstory pertinent to this case, and to be honest, what we learned about him in book 1 had no bearing on this case, but I just loved that I had a little more history on him, plus I love this series so much that I'm glad I had the time to read those earlier books - they are so good!

This latest book starts off right where The Sandman left off, so I was glad that I had skimmed the end of that book before picking this one up! I will say that while it's not as crucial to read books 1-3 prior to reading this book, I do think you should definitely pick up The Sandman before reading this one. There are too many spoilers that would make it too hard to go back and read The Sandman after reading Stalker. At least, that's my opinion.

This book delves into the world of stalking and man, is it a dark, scary place. The police have been receiving videos of women in their homes, in different states of dress, all alone. Someone is watching their every move and then before they are able to identify who that woman is, they end up being called to their homes and find gruesome murder scenes. They cannot get identifying markers in the videos before the calls come in.

I love the characters that Lars Kepler writes. They are all written so vividly, whether they are the good guys or the bad guys. These characters just get under your skin and you can't think about anything else but what is going on with them. Who is this stalker and why are they doing the things they are doing? What are their motivations? These are the questions that run through your head as you are reading this book. But also with these characters, they tend to stand out, so that you aren't so quick to matter how hard you try. It's the type that you need a good light-hearted, funny, happy-go lucky, sunshiny book afterwards to help erase just how bad they are type of bad guys. And yet I still loved every minute of this book - not so sure what that says about me, but oh well. That's just a tribute to the writing and writers!

Detective Joona Linna finally does end up coming back from the "dead" as he was thought to be, though he doesn't get the warm welcome he was hoping from his colleagues. But if you know anything about him, you know that won't stop him. And that's what I love...his willingness to do just about anything to solve a case. His determination and bullheadedness just might be his downfall one day!

This book grips you and doesn't let up. There are twists and turns that keep you flipping those pages, especially once you get towards the end where things really start coming together. I couldn't read fast enough and was floored when I found out who was behind everything - I totally didn't see that coming! And that ending...when does the next book in this series come out in the U.S.? I need to read it ASAP!!! I think this series just gets better and better with each book and I'm so glad I have been introduced to this's that good and I totally urge you to give it a try - you won't be sorry!

Books in this series:  
  1. The Hypnotist
  2. The Nightmare
  3. The Fire Witness 
  4. The Sandman
  5. Stalker - out in US Feb 5, 2019


1 comment

  1. The Sandman is the only book from this series that I've read. It was really different and dark! It reminded me of an X-files episode.


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