The Beautiful Dead

Belinda Bauer is an award-winning British crime writer of the highest caliber, whose smart, stylish novels have captivated readers and reviewers on both sides of the Atlantic and earned her a reputation as “the true heir to the great Ruth Rendell” (Mail on Sunday (UK)). Her latest, The Beautiful Dead, is a riveting narrative centered on a down-on-her-luck journalist and a serial killer desperate for the spotlight.

TV crime reporter Eve Singer’s career is flagging, but that starts to change when she covers a spate of bizarre murders—each one committed in public and advertised like an art exhibition. When the killer contacts Eve about her coverage of his crimes, she is suddenly on the inside of the biggest murder investigation of the decade. But as the killer becomes increasingly obsessed with her, Eve realizes there’s a thin line between inside information and becoming an accomplice to murder—possibly her own.

A seamlessly-plotted thriller that will keep readers breathless until the very end, The Beautiful Dead cements Belinda Bauer’s reputation as a master of heart-stopping suspense.

This was my first Belinda Bauer novel. Since I’ve become an addict of Western European mystery authors of late I was attracted to the storyline of her newest book and wanted to give it a shot.

 It definitely opened with a bang as the introduced murderer commits one of many heinous acts to come. From there the pace keeps you on the edge of your seat as the serial killers plays cat and mouse with a journalist turning them into a Clarice vs Hannibal like relationship.

 You’re treated to different perspectives throughout the story from the characters which provided a unique narration. Since I’ve been on a roll lately reading books with strong female protagonists this one fit just perfectly. I liked the relationship between her and her father who is battling dementia, it showed true love and devotion adding to her likability. Her killer was a bit like something out of Scream, Seven or Zodiac especially when he’s first stalking Eve before that encounter makes him decide to use her instead. That scene gave me the CREEPS!!

 I loved the social commentary the book implied about how killers and journalists need the drama, gore and death of humanity in order to make their lives work, to get attention. With the rise in social media journalists now have to face competition from their own viewers so the stakes have been raised.

 Enthralling and even fear-provoking at times with complex characters this is a book that deserves to be read at night so you can get the full thrill.

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