The Killer on the Wall – Emma Kavanagh

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The Killer on the Wall was published by Cornerstone on 20 April 2017 and is available to buy here

The first body comes as a shock

The second brings horror

The third signals the beginning of a nightmare

When fifteen-year-old Isla Bell finds three bodies propped against Hadrian’s Wall, her whole world falls apart. In such a close-knit community, everyone knows the victims, and the man who did it.

Twenty years on and Isla has dedicated her life to forensic psychology; studying the brains of serial killers, and even coming face to face with the convicted murderer who turned her world upside down. She is safe after all, with him behind bars.

Then another body appears against the Wall.

And another.

As the nightmare returns and the body count rises, everyone in town is a suspect.

Who is the Killer on the Wall?

My thoughts

Emma Kavanagh’s psychological novels are a thing of beauty. She does something a bit different and unique this time, with the horrors of small town murder.  The Killer on the Wall is the latest to hit the shelves.

Isla Bell, a teenager on a morning run, discovers three bodies murdered and displayed at Hadrian’s Wall in Northumbria. This leads to her fascination with killers. She pursues a career investigating them, using technology to identify psychotic tendencies through biology. In the present day, Isla is a Professor of Criminal Psychology and is married to one of the victims. The so called ‘Killer on the Wall’ was caught by Isla’s father and is behind bars, much to the relief of the community. This man is Heath McGowan. Isla seeks Heath out for her studies, like Clarice Starling meeting Hannibal Lector. When a new body is found propped up on Hadrian’s Wall in the present day, this sets off a chain of events. The town is soon under renewed fear and distress. Mina Arian, Detective Constable and newcomer to the locality, is part of the investigative team. She is the only one looking at the case objectively and with intelligence. Did the killer have an accomplice? Or is something far more disturbing the case?

As we have come to expect from Emma Kavanagh, this is intelligent and blisteringly thought-provoking. She brings her background in psychology to the book and a shed-load of research. It is ever so apparent in the insight we get from Isla Bell, into the killings and the behaviour of psychopaths. Fascinating, we see the case that psychopaths may be identified via brain scans. We would all like to spot evil in our midst. We can all identify with Isla trying to outwit killers and make sense of what she has been through. Isla Bell uses imaging on convicted killers to spot any biological differences. Imagine if this was to be let loose on the general population. Wow!

I love the small town creepy atmosphere, where no one feels safe. A walk home from the pub at night might result in murder. You could be outside one minute and just disappear. He might be in your home. He might be lurking around street corners. Kavanagh gets the tone and atmosphere very right!

Clever, consuming and just a little bit worrying! Yes, I am still wondering who the psychopaths around me are. A truly disturbing and quality psychological drama, from a must-read author! Recommended!

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About Christine

Welcome to my blog. #crime #thrillers #books Twitter @northernlass73
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