Review: The Helper – David Jackson

First off I have to say that this book was more than eagerly awaited after I finished the first one in the series – Pariah. So when I got an email from Amazon to say it’d been released earlier than planned, I couldn’t wait to get started…

So I read it all in one go.

Then I was gutted because it was finished! I’d only planned to read a couple of chapters, having started reading it at 10.30pm, but it hooked me from the first line and I flew through it with heart-thumping, page-turning speed to the extremely clever denouement, finally dropping it down the side of my bed at 2.30am, when of course I couldn’t sleep! On uncovering the identity of the killer, I recalled feeling the same way when the twist of The Sixth Sense was revealed… there were clues all the way through, and in hindsight they should’ve been obvious… but they weren’t. Damn you M. Night Shyamalan and damn you David Jackson, you clever, clever people… 🙂

From the back cover: ‘A grisly murder in a shabby New York bookstore seems to hold a special significance for Detective Callum Doyle: the victim’s been marked with a message that could have been left especially for him. But why? Then the sinister phone calls start…’

What I liked most about the story is the way I was learning things and anticipating things at exactly the same time as Doyle, which is not always an easy thing to pull off. There was only one occasion where I overtook him, and I can’t tell you when it was without dropping a massive spoiler, but lets just say it was the character’s name that gave it away for me, and a certain book.

I was also pleased that one of my favourite minor characters from Pariah made a reappearance – Paddy the Barman. I was side by side with Doyle as we walked into that bar!

As well as the ever-brilliant Doyle, who more and more sounds like someone I want to have a beer with, the viewpoint of the killer and his crazy reasoning was both disturbing and fascinating… especially for me.  I do love a good serial killer…

Verdict: Better than chocolate*

*Pretty much nothing is better than chocolate 🙂