I’ve been reading some pretty okay books lately, but I’ve been dying to read my next FIVE STAR read. Some have come close…. but I wanted something to hit me between the eyes. Something like Run Away or The Neighbour…..because hands down, those were 2 of my top 5 reads of 2019! My book club buddy bought this book before lockdown and kindly lent it to me, because The Whisper Man has been on my lust list since it’s release last year. Our bookclub decided to do a readalong challenge via WhatsApp and we broke the reading up into 5 parts (as the book is actually broken into 6 parts, part 6 is very short though). Okay let me stop rambling and get into this review…. one I have hoped I’d be writing for almost a year!
If you leave a window open, soon you’ll hear the whispers spoken.
If you play outside alone, soon you won’t be going home…
If your window’s left unlatched, you’ll hear him tapping at the glass.
If you’re lonely, sad, and blue, the Whisper Man will come for you.
What is The Whisper Man about?
In this dark, suspenseful thriller, Alex North weaves a multi-generational tale of a father and son caught in the crosshairs of an investigation to catch a serial killer preying on a small town.
After the sudden death of his wife, Tom Kennedy believes a fresh start will help him and his young son Jake heal. A new beginning, a new house, a new town. Featherbank.
But the town has a dark past. Twenty years ago, a serial killer abducted and murdered five residents. Until Frank Carter was finally caught, he was nicknamed “The Whisper Man,” for he would lure his victims out by whispering at their windows at night.
Just as Tom and Jake settle into their new home, a young boy vanishes. His disappearance bears an unnerving resemblance to Frank Carter’s crimes, reigniting old rumors that he preyed with an accomplice. Now, detectives Amanda Beck and Pete Willis must find the boy before it is too late, even if that means Pete has to revisit his great foe in prison: The Whisper Man.
And then Jake begins acting strangely. He hears a whispering at his window…
Characters and Story line
Jake is 7yrs old, and the loss of his mom had a profound impact on him. Tom (his dad) is dealing with the loss in his own way, so he can’t quite be the parent Jake needs him to be all the time. He tries though. In turn, Jake starts acting strangely and even has a creepy imaginary friend. Tom decides they need a fresh start and they then move to the town of Featherbank. The same town that 20yrs ago, had a serial killer on the loose. Not really the type of town I’d have on my list of places to move to, but to each his own I reckon…right?
Shortly before Tom and Jake settle in, a young boy disappears and seemingly, The Whisper Man (who is currently in jail), is ‘brought back to life’. We meet Pete, who is now called in to assist on this case, as he was the one who took The Whisper Man down all those years ago. A case though, that left him battling demons of his own.
The Whisper Man is all I hoped it would be. Firstly, the writing was so crisp and clean (minus a few grammatical errors I picked up). It was free of being overly descriptive or complicated. I didn’t have to read about the green bushes and the night sky, for pages and pages. The focus of The Whisper Man, is the story. As it should be. Throughout all 355 pages, Alex never loses sight of that, which is what I loved! Secondly, there were those moments where I was terrified, I held my breath and moments where I went: I DID NOT SEE THAT COMING! Isn’t that what we want from any suspense thriller?
Lastly, the cover is so stunning! I’ve challenged out bookclub members to create a gold and black makeup look when we do our video call check in during lockdown, in honour of the cover.
We were supposed to read this over 5 days, but on day 3 I caved and read the last 3 parts in one sitting. Don’t make that mistake people…to think you can spread this one out. You’ll want to inhale every page, every word. I usually scan parts of books sometimes, but this one, I honestly read every single word. There were so many underlying themes in this book….and I found that grief was a big one w.r.t. how circumstances shape and mould us.
Guys and gals…I cried, I held my breath, I was confused, I was surprised….Everything I wanted! The book was well paced and I really thought there was good character development. I really felt for all the main characters….I cared about them. That’s another (one of many) skills that Alex North has, while taking us on the journey of The Whisper Man.
The Whisper Man has a Goodreads rating of 4.09 stars out of 5. I’m very happy to add my rating of 5 stars to that rating. There was nothing more that I could have asked of a book. Will you be adding The Whisper Man to your reading list?
Do note that the book does deal with the murder of kids, and if you’re sensitive to that topic, you may want to avoid this book then.