Cover Image: Don't Even Breathe

Don't Even Breathe

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This was an excellent tale with a great storyline.  The characters were likable and this was a page turner.   I would recommend this book.
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So glad to be given the opportunity to read this book before it was published. Excellent ! Everything seems so obvious, all the clues point to one person as the murderer. Is he or is he being set up ? The victim looks very familiar to the detective, but it can't be who she thinks it is since that person died 20 years ago in a fire. A full on fast paced murder mystery. Loved it !
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This author tied the past and present together in a twisty unforgettable way.  I loved the character of Maggie and her investment in this case.  Get ready for a roller coaster ride. 
Many thanks to Thomas Mercer and to NetGalley for providing me with a galley in exchange for my honest opinion.
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Brilliantly gripping and deliciously creepy. Make sure you clear your day as you won't be able to put down "Don't Even Breathe "
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I received an ARC of this novel from the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.  All thoughts and opinions are my own.

This mystery/thriller novel brings to mind the reasons why I feel in love with the genre in the first place: the high intensity that sits on the heart throughout every page; the heart-pumping questioning the theorizing that takes place from beginning to end; the satisfying and yet sometimes puzzling endings that make you want to read more from this character when the ride ends.  This book hit all of these notes and more for me as a lover of mystery/thrillers.

Keith Houghton started the story off with a bang and ended with one as well.  The plot was captivating and interesting.  Towards the end it became a little messy with some confusing details, but overall the story was clear.  

My biggest worry about male authors writing female characters, especially ones that are supposed to be strong headed, is that the male authors will play the females too safe.  Houghton did a phenomenal job with Maggie, who was both head strong and had her soft spots too.  She has made mistakes, and owns them, but keeps them secret from others because she's insecure about people perceive her in one way or another, like many women do.  She was interesting, dynamic, and the true driving force within this story.

The atmosphere within the novel was just right for me: intense, but not suffocating to the point where all I am focusing on is the atmosphere.  Things felt intense where they needed to be, and didn't where the intensity wasn't needed.  It was a great balance that is often hard to do with thriller novels, which are expected to be at 100% intensity every second until the end.

Overall, with a minor hiccup towards the end, "Don't Even Breathe" is a wonderful start to a series that I will definitely be looking for the next book of.  Houghton's writing has inspired me with my own mystery/thriller, and is truly a great example of ones that are done well within the modern writing realm.

Rating: 4/5 stars
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Maggie Novak is a detective in Orlando.  She is called in to a murder in the woods.  When she finds the body badly burned she also finds that is her childhood friend that she thought had died years ago.  
This novel was so interesting and with so much action.  I am so glad to hear there will be more  stories with Maggie Novak.
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Thank you for sharing the book on NetGallery!

This book was very interesting but a little hard to read. I was expecting something different instead it was very police-filled. Monologues were too long and I found myself skipping some words or lines while reading to get to the next part...

Overall a good book, but not the best, hence the 4 stars.
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Having previously read an earlier work ‘Crash’, which I loved, I had high hopes for this new novel and was not disappointed - it could even be a better written, deeper thriller.  Thrown right into the mystery, it kept gettin better and better.
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I loved this book.  It was a great, fast-paced thriller with a fantastic main character.  The main character was well developed.  The ending was quick and twisty with a great culmination. I would definitely recommend this book and will be looking up more Keith Houghton books.
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DNF 40% 

I was sucked in with the first chapter. I thought it was creepy and eerie and setting us up for an intense read. But by chapter 2 I felt I wasn't reading the same book. I kept trying to get into it but really found the mystery uninteresting. The dialogue between the cops is also a bit tacky for my taste -- like a TV police procedural, which pulled me out of the fiction. I just couldn't get invested in the characters or the plot.
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What a good read.  Maggie Novak is a detective with memories of her past haunting her. Her best friend and whole family die in a house fire. 
20 years later her dead friend turns up, dead again. Maggie has to explore her past and find out what has happened to her friend and her family.with many twists and turns this book makes you think. If you enjoy a good mystery then this is for you. Thank you netgalley for letting me read and review this ARC.
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A new series featuring Maggie Novak as a homicide detective in Florida where the plot evolves around things that happened 20 years earlier when Maggie was 17 years old. 
     For most of the story we are told tiny glimpses of something awful having happened that now has consequences all these years later.  But that’s all we get - tiny little hints and then finally in the last chapter everything is revealed. 
    There’s so many scenarios with a lot of them being musings of Maggie of what could have happened that it’s almost impossible to keep track of what is real or not. 
    It is a quick read and keeps boredom at bay but that’s the best I can say about this book. 
     Thanks to NetGalley for letting me read this book in exchange for my unbiased review.
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"Long before she’d agreed to go on a date with him, Tyler had known he would kill Lindy Munson. One day. Somehow. Preferably slowly. For years, whenever Tyler had thought of the girl with the sallow complexion and the snow-white hair, he’d fantasized about doing something bad to her—probably from as far back as the sixth grade and the very first time she’d caught him studying her from across the school cafeteria. 
Long-legged Lindy, with her teasing personality and her annoying popularity. A throat that was ripe for strangling. Back then, Tyler had meant nothing to her. Not even an irritation. Something less than human . He’d been invisible, her gaze penetrating right through him, as though he didn’t exist. It was a look of absolute indifference that had gobbled up every bit of his universe, until all that had remained was Lindy the Langolier eating into his brain. 
Tyler couldn’t recall the exact moment he’d decided to kill the most popular girl in school. The cafeteria incident had been the first of many, with Lindy’s continued aloofness consuming him through the years. 
What would it take to make her notice him? "
Tyler had asked himself this question countless times during the past four years of high school, usually when he was lying awake at night and visualizing all the ways he could make Lindy see him. He’d lost track of how many abduction scenarios he’d planned out in fine detail, and what he’d do to her once they were finally alone together."

Don't Even breathe  by Craig Houghton starts out loaded with suspence and continues to build to a breath holding, heart stopping, terrifying conclusion! I enjoyed the storyline, the characters, especially Florida homicide detective Maggie Novac, and the twists and unexpected events in in this book. This is a true psychological thriller! 
This is my first experience with this author thanks to NetGalley and I'll be interested in reading more of his works. 

With thanks to NetGalley, Thomas and Mercer publishing, and Craig Houghton for this advanced digital copy for me to read and review.
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Interesting premise but the book itself was only so so, light reading, overly gory and the emotional storyline didn't carry the weight it should have to have it been meaningful.  I also really dislike the formula of inside the killer or possible killer's mind as a first chapter and then on to the story with the main character.
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Edge of your seat mystery thriller with plenty of twists and turns. This was a real page turner from beginning to end. I loved the strong female lead. The author dies a great job showing the true evil of the killer as well. The plot was originally, the writing was very well done and the book over all was menacing. With each page you read your feelings the tension building until you reach the heart stopping ending.
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Detective Maggie Novak and Ed Loomis find a charred body in the woods. Det. It disturbs Novak looking at the body. The victim is identified as Dana Cullen, a school counselor. But for Maggie, she knew her Rita her best friend from high school. But Rita died in a fire accident 20 years ago. Maggie becomes emotionally obsessed with the case. Will she be able to solve the mystery around Rita or Dana’s life?
My take on the book. 
I finished this book in one sitting and that’s a rarity for me. The prologues entice you and keep you hooked to the book from the start. 
This is my first book by the author. I did not know what to expect. 

And it was brilliant.
Maggie Novak is the lead detective. The character was a typical female lead we see on TV or read in a book. She’s all engrossed in her work, not giving time to her relationships. But both the detectives are likable characters. There’s good depth given to most of the characters. There’s some amount of background info for each (recurring, I suppose) characters.
The book sails through the chapters with engrossing suspense and mystery. The pace of the book is perfect. The author has done a good job with the setting. And how each of these elements reminded Maggie of her school days. The words painted a perfect setup of Orange County.
That brings me to the subtle theme about teenage bullying and how sometimes it put a scar for life. Sometimes as a kid we don’t realize how strong our words and actions can hurt. But the author good job in highlighting the topic. 
The ending was a complete surprise. I am sure readers who are crime fiction fans will eventually realize the culprit but only towards the end. 
This book will not disappoint you. 
My rating for the book 4 out of 5 stars. 

Thank you NetGalley and Amazon Publishing UK for giving the eARC in exchange for my honest review.
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Dont move. In fact, don't even breathe.

Both a quote from the book and how I felt while reading this book, I couldn't look away or stop thinking about it. An enthralling, fast paced story from the start right to the finish.

I always find a thriller book more interesting when I'm rooting for the detective to solve the case and that was how I felt about Maggie, I was 100% team Maggie from the start.

There also aren't that many secondary characters in the book which I really liked too, the story doesn't get confusing but wow you get so many twists and red herrings. Although the author has made it sound like this is just book 1 in a series with Maggie as the main character, you get a proper ending  and conclusion to the case this book is about which is always a plus for me.

An earlier contender for the best book I'll read this year for sure. 5/5
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The author wrote a thriller that started with a bang and just kept going!  The twists kept coming, so I couldn't put it down.  I cannot wait to read more from this author!
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This is a well written and entertaining story, full of twists and mysteries. There are some logical problems, but a very good plot for a first in a series.
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This was a great mystery and one that definitely kept me flipping the pages. I couldn't figure out who done it and I kept chasing the same line as the MC Maggie, trying to get one step in front of the bad guy. 

This would have been a solid 4 star book if it hadn't all been a bit too.....neat? There were just a huge whole string of coincidences that held the whole plot together and I just couldn't quite make the leap with the story like the Deathtectives did. I did enjoy Maggie and her struggle to be who she is now and try to make up for who she used to be. I liked the plot and it moved quickly. I'd definitely read more from this author.
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