Published: August 20, 2019
Publisher: Celadon Books
Genre: Mystery, Thriller
Pages: 355 (Hardcover)
My Rating: 4.0/5.0
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…
My first recommendation would be not to read this book unless you’re in a good places, mentally and perhaps even physically. Don’t read it next to open windows at night, or you might hear the whispers…. It was dang creepy and kind of depressing.
Tom Kennedy and his son Jake are having a rough time of it since Tom’s wife died suddenly. He’s struggling with being a single dad, the loss of his wife, and stressing about having not worked on a new novel in too long. They’re planning to move to a new town and a new home without all the dark memories associated with their current home. The little town of Featherbank seems nice enough, except when you look at it’s past – this is where the Whisper Man kidnapped and murdered several children. Frank Carter has been in jail for decades though, but that doesn’t make anyone feel better when another little boy is kidnapped under similar circumstances. Something sinister is afoot and it’s hauntingly similar to Frank Carter’s crimes decades before except it seems that Jake may be the next target.
This isn’t a book that makes you feel good, but it does make you feel. The Whisper Man is a series of difficult situations woven into a tapestry of hopelessness. That’s actually a little overly-dramatic, because the characters have moments where they can get their heads above water and maybe see the light. The situations might get better, this is just a snapshot of their worst moments. On top all this, there’s the added creepiness of a boy who seems to know far too much. Jake’s best friend is imaginary and she seems to know things she shouldn’t, he mentions the boy in the floor, and has draws things he’s never seen before.
This was a moving story and while it doesn’t quite merit a 5-star review from me, it was certainly memorable. I enjoyed and was thoroughly disturbed by the quasi-supernatural moments where Jake says downright disturbing things. I’ll be keeping an eye out for more books from Alex North in the future.