Cover Image: The String

The String

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Member Reviews

Wow. I just finished The String and it was outstanding. Completely exceeded my expectations. I didn't even know about this book until I saw the review opportunity and once I read the description, I knew I had to read it. I'm a huge fan of Steven James' thrillers and The String reminded so much of his books -- which is the highest compliment I can give a thriller. ;)

The book starts off right away with action. The beginning scene was so scary and left me needing to know what was going on. I kept feeling like the story HAD to be almost done (because nothing more could happen), but then another twist would happen and then I'd realize why there was so much left to read.

I thought the characters were realistic and the story was written very well. I was never bored and couldn't read fast enough. The ending was crazy and I NEED the next book right now!

I highly recommend The String to fans of thrillers.

*Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention/review it on my blog. I was not required to give a positive review, only my honest opinion - which I've done. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own and I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning
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What would you do if you found yourself in a position of risking others’ lives if you didn’t obey a madman’s crazy orders?

Campus police officer and SWAT candidate, Markus Haas learns the hard way that if you’re chosen to become part of The String, you don’t go against the rules. Still, Markus is an honorable man caught in an insane and deadly game that threatens the woman he loves and her two little girls.

I liked that Markus was a regular guy, though he had experience and determination that made him a thorn in The Conductor’s side.

This one starts creepy, ends creepy, and is downright creepy all the way through with twists and suspects and danger to some people, while the majority go through their days without a clue. The Conductor is maniacal, manipulative, and a cold-blooded murderer.

The story can be a little hard to keep up with if you’re trying to guess the identity of the mastermind by what goes on and the opportunities afforded The Conductor. He seems to be everywhere and know everything, which stretched the imagination a little. And there are numerous suspects. It doesn’t get any easier once the mask is removed and you’re looking at it with hindsight.

But this is a psychological thriller that keeps rolling, keeps the reader turning the page. My one caution is that you go into it knowing it’s a series with a continuing story line. This one ends…but does it?

There’s not much meat with regard to the Christian message, but I’m giving The String 4.5 stars and a definite recommendation if you enjoy stories to read with the lights on.
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I have received a copy of the book fro Net Galley in exchange for an honest review.
Thank you, NetGalley for an opportunity to read this book. if I didn't know it was a debut nobvel I wouldn't believe it. It was so twisted and complicated, So dark and enjoyable. The only criticism I have i that in a second-half o the book it became a bit hard to keep up with all the "knots" and twists. "The Conductor" is a twisted headed individual, I will say. I am looking forward to a sequel.
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Buckle up for this fast paced, nail-biting suspenseful, wild ride that never stopped. This story kind of reminded me of the movie starring Shia LaBeouf titled Eagle Eye where strangers are thrown together by a mysterious force threatening their lives, and family if they didn’t do what is requested of them. It’s a race against time (just like this book) as the characters face a series of increasingly dangerous situations, using technology to track and control their every move.

The sociopath blackmailing random people is called the Conductor. He’s truly an evil guy who manipulates his victims to cooperate with him, threatening to hurt the ones they love and kill others because he can. (just like the movie) The stakes are high.  

What makes this story different from the movie I mentioned is the fact that this mysterious conductor person focuses on a campus cop, named Markus Kaas, has an obsession with music and has rules. For the string (he calls his victims) which he refers to as sheet music, with notes of all shapes and sizes, tones, and pitches. You’re a note…I’m your conductor.” He says. 

” Welcome to the string. Participation is mandatory. And refusal will ensure a dear price is paid.” Rule one of the string. : “Each person gets a positive and negative reason to play their part…

Rule two: dictator decision. But I’m not the dictator. You are. You have the power to destroy not only your own life but the lives of every knot in the string.” 

He gives the example of an orchestra playing a piece of music. When everyone does their part, we all succeed when someone freezes, fails. “Every last person on stage would suffer.” 

The main character Markus Kaas, campus police at a university. He realizes the woman he’s been dating, and her little girls are in danger. He finds some others who are willing to join him in breaking free of the conductor’s grip, each has a unique skill set to help break this guy’s power and insight. Markus teams up with county sheriff detective Cody, in order to find out what villain is playing this deadly game. 

If this were a movie, I don’t think I’d be able to watch it because of the villain, the violence and the fact that the Conductor has a white makeup covered face (I imagine a clown like Stephen King’s It) with a creepy voice. I’m not sure where the author will take book two. I felt like it ended well. 

Breakey is a good writer, he delivered an intense, psychological thriller, I couldn’t put down. It’s filled with situations that are very real. Perils happen one after the other (just like the movie I mentioned) No one knows who’s in charge and who to trust. It lacked any spiritual thread, except that Markus’s girlfriend Stephanie is a Christian. Markus is sort of thinking about his faith. He doesn’t go deeper than that. If you and your book club are looking for an action adventure story this is for you.
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This book is hard to put down! It sucks you into the story from the get go and makes you want to stay up late reading into the night.
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Gulp. Christian mystery and suspense, oh my! F-Five S-S-Stars. I wanted to give it more, but, but, well, you know. Not allowed. The first of the Deadly Games series, and oh, what a stage Mr. Breakey has set.

Where can we hide? It seems everyone we meet is one of the knots on the string and forced by the conductor to ....

I'm not sure when (or if) I've read a book with such tension. When I had to close the book to go to sleep, it kept running through my mind. Through my dreams too. Caleb, you naughty-naughty knot!

I was given a free copy of this book, but my reviews ALWAYS reflect only my own opinions.
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“What is the string, you wonder? Think of the string as one long sheet of music, with notes of all shapes and sizes, tones, and pitches. You’re a note.” 

“Eyes of a dark soul, trying to show it’s capable of light.”

“The conductor was here. The string was here.”

Wow, wow, and wow! I’ve read over 100 books this year and this one has been my favorite! It was intense, creepy, and wonderful in every single way. Markus Haas is a Trenton University cop with a few secrets. He’s in love with a woman with two children from a bad marriage. He has a best friend named Cody who never knows when to shut up. And oh yeah, there’s a psycho white faced clown killer who calls himself The Conductor that is terrorizing Markus and Trenton University. And the worst part is that the Conductor has knotted together a string of accomplices to do his bidding for fear of their lives or of their loved ones. So Markus never knows who to trust. 

I loved the writing, I loved the climax, I loved the characters, and most importantly, I loved the story that ultimately left me breathless. It even had some spiritual elements. It’s an edge of your seat, action-packed thriller from a debut author with tons of promise. This is definitely for fans of Steven James and some of Ted Dekker’s books. And the ending left room for a sequel which I will definitely read as soon as it comes out. 

* I received a complimentary copy of this book from Netgalley and Revell Publishing Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.*
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Title:  The String

Author: Caleb Breakey

Series: Deadly Games book 1  

Pages: 320

Genre: Suspense, Psychological thriller

Rating:  4.5 in general3.5 stars (for me)

I enjoy reading suspense books but with The String by Caleb Breakey I discovered that I am not really a fan of those suspense books that bleed over into Psychological thrillers. But that's okay because not every book is for every reader.  I believe this book was the first book in a while that kept me up all night for two reasons, I wanted to finish it in one sitting, because even though I didn't enjoy the book it was a fast paced read.  The other reason being it sort of gave me a slight nightmare.  I think mainly because I am such a visual reader. I can picture the setting a book in my mind to point that it's almost like watching TV. 

That being said the book is well written, plotted in a manner that allows the story to flow quickly; allowing a reader to read it in one sitting.  However, I wouldn't recommend reading it at night or when your home alone.  Even though I didn't love it I know that readers who love psychological thrillers will love it. Even those fans who don't read Christian fiction will still enjoy the read.  I'm still willing to give future books by this author a try though anymore psychological thrillers of his I plan to approach with caution.    My rating is due to personal reasons based on the reaction I had to the book it kind of freaked me out. However, for readers in general and the writing, voice, and plot of the novel I would give it 4.5 stars. 

I received a copy of this book from the publisher through as part of a blog tour. I was not required to write a positive review. All opinions expressed are mine alone.

I received a copy of this book from the publisher through netgalley. I was not required to write a positive review. All opinions expressed are mine alone.
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Yes, yes, yes!!! Let's hear it for The String! This extraordinary suspense was an all-nighter nail biter. I can’t say enough about it. Some scenes were on the verge of gruesome but author Caleb Breakey kept it clean while the conductor kept me pysched out on my toes ;)! 

 Sure to be enjoyed by thriller readers, this is one I recommend for my ladies friends who say “What do you recommend for my husband?” Caleb brought it home, and left me thirsty for book 2.
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It was hard for me to believe that this was a debut book.  It was wonderful.  Every time I thought I might know who the manipulated was something else happened.  I loved the characters and the suspense.  I am so looking forward to reading the next book in this series.  I received a copy of this book from Revell for a fair and honest opinion that I gave of my own free will.
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The String is a well written inspirational suspense reminiscent of Ted Decker.  Suspense fans will not want to miss this book.  Thanks to the publisher for my advance ebook.  This is my unbiased review.
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Caleb Breakey has come out with a BANG in this debut novel. I was quite shocked to discover this was a debut, as the writing seemed very much like that of a seasoned pro. With the intricate story line, I would say that is quite a feat.

This book will have you at the edge of your seat from the very first pages right through until the end. You'll find yourself wondering who the conductor could possibly be, how far does the string go and will they catch him in the end? I couldn't wait to find out.

I read a lot of Christian suspense, but I have to say that this one is quite different for a few reasons. First and foremost, I do feel as though it is darker and perhaps even scarier. I would really put it more into the category of thriller even. There is a lot of violence, and we're dealing with a true psychopath rather than your every day run of the mill suspense novel killer. To be honest, to me this reads more like a secular novel. There is no language or otherwise inappropriate content, but there is little Christian content either. There is some talk about faith, so it is certainly there...just not in the forefront as it is in others in this particular genre. Had it not been from Revell (a Christian publisher), I likely would not have thought of it as such. So, if you're looking for something a little more faith based, this might be it. But if you love a good thriller, without language and explicit scenes, this one is certainly that! 

Overall, this was an action packed thrill read that I would definitely recommend to anyone who enjoys a little scare! I look forward to seeing more from this new author! 

**I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher for consideration. All thoughts are 100% my own.
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This book is a study in the actions of a sociopath. It includes a truly evil villain who manipulates and kills through that manipulation. It was a hard novel for me to read. Not only was the subject matter depressing but the intense action was repetitive. We readers are kept in the dark as to the villain's reasons for his evilness until late in the book. One of the characters says about 70 percent through the book, “What has this guy done that makes sense?” (2734/3884) Exactly. Since we did not have any clues to his motives, his actions did not make any sense. Some foreshadowing about his motives would have been helpful and might have grabbed my interest. 

Another distraction was the villain's resources. He had all kinds of technological gizmos and lots of secret information on people. Where in the world did he get the finances for all of it? That becomes an even more serious issue when the identity of the villain is revealed.

And where is the spiritual lesson in this book? There was a vague exploration of not knowing why God does what He does, such as letting people suffer. That was it. Considering the nonfiction Breakey has written, I expected a much stronger spiritual message and was disappointed there was nothing about the power of God in battle against the forces of evil.

Readers who like a psychological thriller with repetitive action that lacks any Christian message might like this novel. Breakey is a good writer and can create intense scenes. He gets points for that. But he loses points for having an unrealistic villain, unrealistically funded, and not being confronted by the spiritual power only God can provide.

I received a complimentary egalley of this book from the publisher. My comments are an independent and honest review.
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When a Sociopath who calls himself The Conductor decides to run a social experiment on a collage campus, nothing good is going to happen. Nothing. *Cue creepy dramatic music*

This book is intense, morbid, and a bit gruesome. The story is not as simple as just catching the bad guy and throwing him under the jail either. There’s a lot of psychological craziness going on. It is borderline horror, the Villain is beyond EVIL, so be warned. 

What I love most about this book, is the main group of character’s that is forced to play the games. They are not spending the entire book panicking, blaming or fighting with each other, or randomly stumbling into a solution, and so on. They join forces and really try to figure out how to deal with this. 

BONUS POINTS to the Author for not having the women turn into sniveling damsels in distress who cry or scream at everything, but Smart Chicks with Grit. *Applause and Thank You To Author*

This is a Mystery/Thriller (Psychological Thriller), so it’s an intense, bone chilling, heart pumping, page turner. All the while still staying a “Clean” read with a great message woven into it.

I loved this book, it was hard to put down this intriguing and engrossing book once I started it. I am looking forward to the next book in this series. Although its not for everyone. If your a fan of Ted Dekker, Frank Peretti, or James Rubart, then Caleb Breakey and The String should be on your list.
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“The String” by Caleb Breakey was an intense read!  I read that this book was in the great suspense tradition of Ted Dekker and Steven James.  That is exactly true!  I have read books by both of those authors, and this book reminded me a lot of those other books.  In other words, I really enjoyed this read.  I couldn’t wait to see who was controlling “The String”, and I had no idea who it was.

I loved the way this book wasn’t like the typical suspense I usually read.  There is a madman/woman who calls himself The Conductor.  He sends really disturbing threats and tries to get others to do what he wants them to.  He calls it controlling “The String”.  It is a race against the clock to try to find out who he/she is and stop them!

I definitely recommend this book to anyone that enjoys a good, clean, thriller.  I don’t think you will be disappointed.

I received this book from the publisher for my honest opinion.
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The String is a suspenseful game of a book, but not without its flaws.

The pros:
-The storytelling kept me interested throughout the whole book. 
-The bad guy was interesting and I enjoyed the theme of the “conductor”.
-I liked following along with the main protagonist, Markus and I liked Cody was well.
-I enjoyed the pacing of this story. 
-I read this genre a lot. Compared to the books/author I normally read, this is a light, easy read. Not too dark or complicated, though I like that stuff, it was a nice break.
-It is clean of content, such as profanity, without seeming fake.
-The plot was great and exciting.

The cons:
-The ending or non-ending really. There were questions that never got answered. Even if it is a series, it is crucial to me that each book is a complete story in itself. With a real ending. This one felt like a cop out and left me disappointed and confused.
-The writing in general needed some reworking.

I’m giving it four stars instead of three because I would still be interested in reading the next book and I believe the rest of the story is worth the read, even with the ending.

I think The String is a good attempt at the genre and I hope to see it improve even more with the second book.
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The String
by Caleb Breakey



Pub Date 16 Jul 2019

I am reviewing a copy of The String through Revell and Netgalley:

The String is a game of decisions that are impossible to make, and deadly consequences.  Participation is not optional it is mandatory and if any one refuses to play, the threats will come to pass.

The String is a deadly social experiment as a Sociopath called The Conductor, delivers disturbing threats and twisted Moral dilemma’s to unsuspecting students and staff.

As the instinct for self preservation sweeps through the campus, one man must make a grave decision.  Will Markus Haas, the university cop play the game to protect his loved ones.  Or will he break The String and on-site horrible chaos, and even death.

I found The String to be a powerful novel, full of intrigue and suspense, a novel that draws you in from the first word to the last.

Five out of five stars!

Happy Reading!
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In The String, a novel by Caleb Breakey, readers are introduced to Markus Haas who works as a policeman at Trenton University.  None of his usual duties included dealing with a sociopath who calls himself the "conductor" and who  has now become part of his life.  The conductor has drawn Markus into his evil and diabolical game.  Not participating is not an option.  Caleb has too much to lose.  Not knowing who he can trust, he is certain he has to stop the conductor one way or another.  Can he do it?

There is a great deal that happens in this complex and gripping page turning psychological thriller. The conductor is a ruthless villain who is obsessed with power and control. His victims are put into life altering situations.  Masterfully paced and filled with spine tingling suspense, tension mounts rapidly.  There are unexpected twists throughout.  Haunting and memorable, this book is well worth reading.  Highly recommended.

I received a complimentary copy of this book through Revell and NetGalley.  The opinions expressed in this review are my own.
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This book was impossible to put down – it had me hooked from page one.  It was an imaginative, unpredictable, and mesmerizing tale, one that kept me entranced right up to  “The End".   I look forward to reading more from this masterful storyteller!
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An enjoyable thriller from Breakey. 

I started The String excited to get into a cat and mouse tale. All the elements were there: the good-hearted hero in Markus Hass; the manipulative villain, the Conductor; and the devious plot dismantling the routine of a university campus. I delightfully set off reading thinking I knew where everything was going. 

It didn’t take long before I looked up to notice I was caught up in the strings of the conductor learning answers along with the characters. 

Breakey paints an exciting suspense story but stirring beneath the surface is insight into the corruption of men’s souls as they fight to control their own lives and to control others. 

A promising debut for Breakey.
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