Didn't feel like much happened until the last 50 or so pages. It was too detailed and had too many characters IMO.
This was an odd one for me. I never was able to fully get invested in the plot. There was so much that was strange. I did finish because I was curious how it would wrap up, but in hindsight, I probably should have DNF'd. I think this would be a good read for anyone who likes books about the occult and vengenance.
This book had potential but unfortunately it was just too complicated for me to follow. The many characters and POVS made it a bit overwhelming. I tried a few times to continue and while I enjoyed the concept I just didn’t have it in me to finish. It truly was a struggle.
Thanks NetGalley for an ARC of this book. I loved this book. It is told in a before and after way and it was quite compelling. A group of women gather in an unused suite at a hotel and in the room is the head of a man they all hate. Jamie has done horrible things to all of them and each wants him dead. Read this!
This had a ton of potential but as I started for the second time and found my eyes closing, I realized it just didn’t have me. I was falling asleep and after reading an article pointing out that if you’re falling asleep while reading, the book isn’t for you, I decided to stop reading it. I tried twice and can’t put my finger on it but it just didn’t draw me in and life’s too short to read books that don’t draw you in.
“ Seven women are gathered in a hotel room at midnight; a man's head sits in the center of the floor. They all had a motive to kill Jamie Spellman. They all swear they didn't. But in order to protect one another, they have to find out who did.”
What I loved most here were the unreliable narrators and how their stories all seemed to converge with one another. Really creative and well done.
Thank you Netgalley and the publisher for gifting me an advanced reader copy of this novel in exchange for my honest review and opinion.
Thank you to NetGalley & St. Martin’s Press for this galley in exchange for my honest review. This was a page turning mystery that will grip you from the first page. I was very intrigued by the premise and it did not disappoint. I enjoyed the writing style and the structure of the story. The author keeps you on your toes throughout the story. I do regret to say, I don’t like the cover and probably wouldn’t be drawn to this in a bookstore if I hadn’t heard about the premise from one of my favorite bookish podcasts. Overall, I would recommend.
This book is dark... opening with a decapitated head and seven women standing around it. The man at the center of all of the women’s rage represents the patriarchy that governs our society and forces women to adopt beliefs about themselves and other women that are harmful and unhealthy.
It’s December 31, 1999—the eve of the new millennium. The book opens with a man’s head in a run-down hotel room and seven women surrounding it in a circle. This is the story of furious women. Of women who all have a motive to kill the man in the center of the room. The women are angry, but which one of them swung the axe that killed Jamie Spellman?
Earlier in the evening, the seven women received a text message from an anonymous number: Meet in the usual place, tonight, 7pm. Emergency.
No one knows who sent the message… was it one of them in the room? Or someone else? Each woman has a motive to kill Jamie Spellman. Jamie Spellman is a husband and father. He’s done despicable things. He has treated all of the women poorly. But did one of them take justice into their own hands?
Detective Inspector Nova Stoker is called to the shady hotel several hours later and discovers Jamie Spellman’s severed head. The body is missing. The head rests on a stack of bibles, one of which is open to Leviticus 2:16, highlighting the well-known verse speaking on an eye for an eye. Who wanted revenge on Jamie Spellman? The walls have a snake symbol and runes painted on. It could be occult symbols, or perhaps someone wants the police to chase down an empty lead.
The women themselves are diverse, both in race and sexual orientation, as well as lifestyle, work, and age. Ana is a colleague of Jamie’s and a trans woman whom he stabbed in the back. Maureen is the aunt who raised Jamie and saw the evil inside of him. Olive is a vulnerable widow whom Jamie took advantage of after her husband’s death. Sarah has turned to alcohol to numb the pain that radiates through her soul caused by Jamie. Sadia is Jamie’s wife, who was victimized by her own infertility. Josie is a child, merely 14 years old and infatuated by Jamie. Finally, Kaysha is a journalist who was sexually assaulted by Jamie fifteen years earlier, and has tracked down the other six women to form a group to share their stories.
These seven women were each taken advantage of cruelly by Jamie in different ways. They have bonded together through hatred, fury, and trauma.As the book goes on, the women become more complex. Kayshia is dating one of the other women, but she is also having an affair with Nova, the DI working the case. Nova is in a relationship with Ella, though she no longer feels in love with her. Ella has breast cancer.
The women are damaged, and their lives are complicated. The book explores each of their backstories, and often that took control of the narrative above and beyond the murder of Jamie and decapitation. The story uses multiple narrators effectively, though at times I struggled to keep straight who was who until I got into the back half of the book.
The reader will feel rage reading the book, because it highlights things that so many of us have experienced. This is not an easy book to read. The stories are messy and disorienting at times. The book is filled with rage and it’s hard not to take it on yourself. I connected very little with the characters, though it didn’t detract from how I felt reading their stories. None of the women are a perfect victim, but they highlight how our legal system requires women to be perfect if they want a hope at justice.
We all know men like Jamie. Most of us have been victimized by a man like him in one way or another (or in many ways). I can’t imagine any woman reading this and not feeling anger and deep sadness. This is a feminist thriller for all of the women out there who are tired of being silenced.
Thank you to Minotaur for my copy. Opinions are my own.
3.5 rounded up - thank you to the publisher for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!
I love a good mystery/thriller and Speak the Devil did not disappoint. While having so many POV's could have made this very confusing, I think Wilding was able to pull it off. I was interested to find that this was written entirely in third person, which I did end up enjoying! It is an intially slow ride, that does end up speeding up towards the climax of the book. A good starter book for readers new to the thriller genre.
Seven women, inextricably linked by one man, must figure out which of them killed him in order to protect one another in this electrifying debut thriller.
I really wanted to like this one, but there were just too many characters and too much going on. If it had been more streamlined, I might have enjoyed it more.
I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.
This took a minute to find my groove with as there are a lot of different POVs (and I wish the author has figured out a way to give us a little prompt of who each character was at the start of their chapter), but once I did, I really enjoyed this domestic thriller. The book opens with 7 women sitting around a decapitated head in a hotel room. Each woman is linked to the horrible man whose head they sit around and all have motive to be the one who responsible for his death, yet no one is stepping forward to confess. Each chapter explores the history and involvement each woman had with the man and I loved how all the stories started to overlap and weave together. A bit of a slow burn but I found myself on the edge of my seat, rapidly turning pages needing to find out how it would all play out.
There is one severed head with seven women, all possible murderers.
Through story flashbacks and their POVs, we learn about each of the characters and their motives in this slow burn very dark mystery.
I found the story line unique and thought the story telling and the pacing of the plot and the ending really was well written.
Rose Wilding is a new author to me and I would be excited to read more of her future works.
This turned out to be a dark book, a little darker than I expected. The characters were very unlikable, to the point that I did not care about the Who-Dun-It part. There were too many POVs to keep track of. The ending was rushed, and I found that even as the book ended it made no impact on me. I alternated between reading and listening to the audio book, both did not work for me.
I want to thank Netgalley, St. Martin's Press, and Macmillan Audio for an ARC, and advanced listening copy of this book.
Unfortunately, Speak of the Devil was just a bit too complicated for me to follow along - there were so many characters and the jumping around in POVs made it a bit too much for me - particularly since I opted to listen the audiobook.
I did enjoy the concept - and certainly cared to hear some POVs over others. I also did enjoy the ending. Unfortunately, I'm unsure if I would grab something else from the author.
*I received a free copy of this novel from NetGalley and St. Martin's Press and Minotaur Books for my honest review.*
One severed head and seven possible killers. All seven have very good reasons for wanting him dead and the novel explains them all in detail via flashbacks. By the end of the novel, you want to give all of the women hugs and wish that you could have also participated in the killing.
Very intriguing premise and very well done!
This book was nothing like I expected but in a great way. Going in, I thought this would be a single POV and I was shocked that this was seven POV's plus a detective POV. At first I thought this would be overwhelming for me, but I really grew to enjoy the difference in POV voices and stories. I liked how this book was paced and the ending was insane (I thought I knew what was going to happen and I very much did not). 3.5 stars rounded down to 3!
Seven women, one victim and all had a reason to kill him but who actually did it? This one kept me guessing!
Thank you #minotaur and #NetGalley for an advanced copy in exchange for an honest review
What I liked about this book: I liked that each chapter focused on a different character. I liked that each chapter started with the time (and that it starts at the change of the Millennium,,,,, I thought that was a unique time for the story). I also liked that this is a British book. I also love a good British mystery/suspense novel.
What I really liked: All of these women are tied to one man, and he died. And no one knows who killed him, so you slowly learn more and more information as the book unfolds. And they also learn who killed him too.
Such a good book!
Jamie Spellman was a despicable man who had traumatized women throughout his short life. Now seven of these women have banded together in hopes that the authorities will finally believe them. When they discover his severed head at their secret meeting place, they must determine who among them brought Jamie to his final justice. It was challenging to keep all the characters and their individual back stories straight, but I found this debut thriller to be a compelling story overall. Thanks to NetGalley, St. Martin's Press and the author for a copy to read and review.