Emma Reviews Ninth Life

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The Ninth Life

If you enjoy the crime mystery thriller genre, then this will most definitely be a good read for you, — even if one of the opening viewpoints is from the Voice inside the head of the protagonist! Confused? You won’t be …

The story is cleverly written in the sense the author has achieved something different. Not easy to do these days but a joy to discover when you find it. The whole book keeps the protagonist — hereafter called Kate — centre stage whilst keeping the tension, the what-the-hell-happens-next thread, going from beginning to end.

There is the Voice inside Kate’s head that is her instinct, her sub-conscious speaking to her to the point where the reader begins to wonder if Kate has mental health issues. Actually, it doesn’t take long to realise we’ve all got that Voice rattling around in our consciousness at some point or other and this leads onto the reader being in Kate’s head; her emotions become your emotions, her fears are palpable.

The antagonist, Jack, is Kate’s ex-husband and pure evil. He makes his entry early (Chapter Two) and really gave me the creeps. Not only does Kate have health issues (the story opens with her having a a heart attack), but also has serial killer issues with Jack — he’s hiding in the hospital Kate is taken to. Nine lives indeed. By the end of Chapter Two, you maybe asking yourself how the tension can last until the end, but it does. Especially when the few close people around her start to be murdered …
 
 The violence is minimal and ingeniously written. There is some descriptive writing, obviously for the genre, but it is not over-gratuitous and brings out the empathy for Kate as well as those around her. The following is from a scene where Jack had realised one of Kate’s neighbours had noticed him hanging around and he managed to get into the neighbour’s flat:
 
 “He closed his eyes and lifted her head away from the blue patterned lino. Her hands were clutching desperately at his sleeves, fluttering like baby bird’s wings. He thought of Kate and how much he missed her; the familiar mist seeped into his brain as he pounded the old woman’s head against the floor repeatedly until her eyes closed and she stopped breathing. He left her lying there and went back to his van.”
 
 And there you have it. The author keeps the mystery, the thrill right up there, weaving in and out of every word you read. The characters that are vital to Kate’s story come to your attention so

subtlety until suddenly, you wonder how they got there. And how long they may last!

Whilst I felt the conclusion to The Ninth Life ended a tad too soon — I would have enjoyed a more drawn-out scene for the climax — this does not deviate from the overall enjoyment of the book. And besides, Kate’s story is a trilogy, thankfully. Book Two — The Last Life— picks up and carries yet another tension-riddled read around Kate and her struggles. Watch out for the review of The Last Life in the not-too-distant-future.

As soon as I’ve completed Book 3 of the Trilogy, The Broken Life, I’ll be posting about that too.

Look out for an Author Interview on the Blog with Jaye Marie shortly!

Originally published at thereview2014.blogspot.com on December 6, 2016.

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