Cover to Cover

The Fourth Monkey by J.D. Barker @jdbarker @HQStories #4MK #blogtour #giveaway (UK)

Brilliant. Complicated. Psychopath.

That’s the Four Monkey Killer or ‘4MK’. A murderer with a twisted vision and absolutely no mercy.

Detective Sam Porter has hunted him for five long years, the recipient of box after box of grisly trinkets carved from the bodies of 4MK’s victims.

But now Porter has learnt the killer’s twisted history and is racing to do the seemingly impossible – find 4MK’s latest victim before it’s too late…

Source Format Pages Publisher Genre Publication Date
Netgalley eARC 421 HQ Thriller  27th June, 2017

The #4MK blog tour is coming to a close today! Oh no! But- Oh yes! Because this is only the beginning for the 4MK!

My many thanks to HQ for approving my request via Netgalley and to Sahina for including me in the blog tour…  It has been a helluva ride! To close off this particular event, I bring you my review and for UK residents the opportunity to win a hardback copy of The Fourth Monkey courtesy of HQ.

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I admit, I’m not one of those readers that lives and breathes thrillers only, nor do I have specific favorite detectives. The few thrillers I have read haven’t really had the detective work in them… they’ve been more of the… other sort, somehow. Anyway…

The Fourth Monkey was, in that sense, a new avenue dark alley for me… You may be wondering what does it all have to do with a monkey, because I sure did… Heh, I was a bit miffed with myself for not figuring it out right away but let me tell you… the monkey has EVERYTHING to do with the modus operandi. It ties into The Fourth Monkey Killer past and present, no matter how warped it actually is. But hey, a killer’s brain works in mysterious ways and that’s a fact.

To know me is to know my reasons and there are reasons.

The Fourth Monkey is an all inclusive reading experience which through clever and complex plot delivers the becoming of a psychopath, the present urgency for a detective group to find the latest victim (preferably alive) and the fragile mental state of said victim.

So, let’s break it down a bit…

The detective group working on the 4MK case includes 58 year old Sam Porter, Nash and Clair. What I really enjoyed about the group was the dynamics… The relationships in between those characters wasn’t just dry professionalism. It was friendship, caring and banter. Even more, what I enjoyed about the banter in between them, was that it was different in between Sam and Nash, and Nash and Claire, and Claire and Sam. It wasn’t just this single type of reused humor and that showed consideration in author’s part in making the characters distinct and keeping them consistent.

‘You need to slide the card through the thingy,’ Nash instructed.

‘The thingy? How the fuck did you become a detective?’

‘Forgive me for not consulting my word-a-day calendar this morning,’ he retorted. ‘The card reader over there. Looks like a credit card machine.’

‘Got it, Einstein.’

There is a personal misfortune that happened to Sam and even though it isn’t revealed directly, you can probably guess it quite quickly. I know I did. But it doesn’t take away from the story- the part this certain ‘event’ plays in the story is a part of Sam’s life as you get to know him. It also broke my heart a bit.

The victim (or should I say, the latest victim of the Fourth Monkey Killer) is 15 year old Emory. I will not be revealing her background in any detail but what I can say is this- her POV chapters were engaging in a chilling way. The situation and ‘place’ she finds herself in really bounces off the pages. I could feel myself mentally deteriorating with Emory. I could feel the anguish and what’s more- I realized, that I’m exactly the kind of person who would have those ‘dialogues’ with the imaginary voice as well when in stressful situations. So, on that level, I was connected and slowly going mad with her.

The star of the show… The Fourth Monkey Killer. As a reader, I always want to get into the ‘bad guy’s‘ head. I want to know why, when and how they came into being. My, did I get a full picture.. I got more than I expected, hoped and dreamed of! I found the way author decided to give that information was brilliant- through the killer’s personal diary. The story that unravels on the pages of that little personal black book is one of the most messed up and at one instance made me pray that what was implied was not true… yuck! I can’t recall feeling quite that horrified and a bit sick while reading in a long while… Plenty of psychopath behavior to go down,though, bound to give every single reader more than a single instance of distress. The story of the killer’s past could be a book in its own but it tied in with the present storyline perfectly.

You may guess the killer’s true identity early on, you may not… but I think it doesn’t matter whether you see that fact staring right at you. The primary goal here is falling into this story like Alice down the rabbithole and having a whole pile of psycho action shoved at you. Connect the dots in between past and present, connect the dots with the clues you’re given.

My favorite part of the book has to be the ending! #sorrynotsorry but that ending made me smile! Eh, you know those times when you learn/find out about the serial killer and while what they do is absolutely insane and fundamentally wrong, yet at the same time you can kind of appreciate their certain warped principles? Yeah, well, don’t lock me up yet… I don’t think like that of the 4MK as a whole… there was just that teeny tiny small part that told me- he has some kind of moral code… even though moral is a strong word here and.. you know, I don’t have to excuse myself- You all love a psycho story as much as the next man! 😀 But the ending… It felt just right and so damn satisfying! He may have got hit by a bus (that’s not a spoiler btw!), but is his story really over?

Would I recommend the book? Absolutely… seasoned thriller/crime readers may find some parts predictable but even so I wouldn’t think they’d want to miss out on this mayhem of madness. Chilling, thrilling and nerve tickling! ****

The Fourth Monkey was released on June 27th and you can grab a copy on Amazon UK ¦ USA.

As I mention at the beginning of this post, courtesy of HQ and in association with the #4MK blog tour, I am happy to invite you to try your luck in a giveaway for a hardback copy of The Fourth Monkey.

The giveaway will run until the 7th of July and I will announce the winner on the 8th of July via all available SM channels. The giveaway is UK only. Good luck!

!!!Click here to enter the giveaway!!!