Thursday, May 18, 2023

The Last Word by Taylor Adams

After posting a negative book review, a woman living in a remote location begins to wonder if the author is a little touchy—or very, very dangerous—in this pulse-pounding novel of psychological suspense and terror from the critically acclaimed author of No Exit and Hairpin Bridge.

Emma Carpenter lives in isolation with her golden retriever Laika, house-sitting an old beachfront home on the rainy Washington coast. Her only human contact is her enigmatic old neighbor, Deek, and (via text) the house’s owner, Jules.

One day, she reads a poorly written—but gruesome—horror novel by the author H. G. Kane, and posts a one-star review that drags her into an online argument with none other than the author himself. Soon after, disturbing incidents start to occur at night. To Emma, this can’t just be a coincidence. It was strange enough for this author to bicker with her online about a lousy review; could he be stalking her, too?

As Emma digs into Kane’s life and work, she learns he has published sixteen other novels, all similarly sadistic tales of stalking and murder. But who is he? How did he find her? And what else is he capable of?

Hardcover, 340 pages
Published April 25, 2023
 by William Morrow
4.5 stars

This is my first time reading a Taylor Adams book. Because of the bookish theme I made it my May book of the month pick.

The Last Word was an addicting, convoluted story that I read in record time. It’s a story of Emma Carpenter,  house-sitting at a deserted beachfront home on the coast of Washington. She spends her time reading and avoiding the past, the past that she is running away from. The revealing of this past is slowly dispersed throughout.

After reading one particular bad horror novel, Emma leaves a one star review which grabs the attention of the author, needlessly to say he isn't a happy camper. What follows is the author tracking her down and thus begins a game of cat and mouse with dire consequences. If it wasn’t such a deadly game, it could almost be comical as every cliché in horror movies plays out. But the thing is it worked here and I had trouble putting this book down.

I will definetly read more Taylor Adams books, but need to let my nerves calm down a bit.

This book was part of my 2023 Reading Off My Shelf Challenge #36

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