I was the girl who survived the Nothing Man.
Now I am the woman who is going to catch him …
At the age of twelve, Eve Black was the only member of her family to survive an encounter with serial attacker the Nothing Man. Now an adult, she is obsessed with identifying the man who destroyed her life.
Supermarket security guard Jim Doyle has just started reading The Nothing Man—the true-crime memoir Eve has written about her efforts to track down her family’s killer. As he turns each page, his rage grows. Because Jim’s not just interested in reading about the Nothing Man. He is the Nothing Man.
Jim soon begins to realize how dangerously close Eve is getting to the truth. He knows she won’t give up until she finds him. He has no choice but to stop her first …
A Note From the Publisher
“Gripping, beautifully written, and genuinely chilling, The Nothing Man had me from page one. Simply stellar.”
-Meg Gardiner, Edgar Award–winning author of The Dark Corners of the Night
“Catherine Ryan Howard is a gift to crime writing. Her characters are credible, her stories are original, and her plotting is ingenious. Every book is a treat to look forward to.”
-Liz Nugent, internationally bestselling author
“The Nothing Man is the most original and chilling thriller I’ve read in a long time, and is perfect for fans of Serial and The Fall.”
“Expertly crafted—storytelling at its best.”
“A book to steal your waking hours and haunt your sleeping ones. Chilling and brilliant.”
“The queen of high-concept crime fiction strikes again: this is the first novel I’ve read that really captures the chills and twists of the true crime that obsesses us. Catherine Ryan Howard has always been thrillingly good at what she does but she’s just getting better and better with every book.”
“I was truly blown away and couldn’t read it fast enough. I can’t shower it with enough praise. Terrifying, brilliantly plotted, and extremely satisfying.”
“Utterly compelling, completely original, The Nothing Man will be the standout novel for 2020. This is a book you won’t forget as Catherine Ryan Howard brings crime writing to a new level.”
Edgar Award-nominated, USA Today and Irish Times bestselling author
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Author website: CatherineRyanHoward.com
Also available: Distress Signals, The Liar’s Girl, and Rewind
Available on NetGalley
Average rating from 121 members
Loved this book so.much i was torn between wanting it to end and wanting it to slow down so.it wouldn't end. Readers are in for a treat with this one.
A LOT OF SOMETHING GOING ON WITH THIS NOTHING MAN!!! So what if it's been over 20 years since the murders and assaults occurred. There's no statute of limitations on murder. There certainly isn't any statute of limitations on the fury and rage that's been building up inside of Eve Black since she was twelve years old and became the sole survivor of the Nothing Man's last known attack, which killed her entire family. The serial killer known as the Nothing Man was never caught. Eve, now in her 30's, plans to rectify that. She publishes a book, a tell all about her experience that awful night, including his attacks on previous victims as well. She teams up with a detective who worked the original cases and they continue the investigation themselves. She is determined to find and catch the Nothing Man once and for all and she believes her book will help her do exactly that. As her book achieves wide success it ultimately catches the eye of the man himself. The Nothing Man decides he must read her book. The story is told from the Nothing Man's POV as he is reading Eve's book, and then alternates with excerpts from Eve's book. It is a fantastic storytelling method. Kudos to the author on this unique method! It made for a compelling experience for the reader. I really enjoyed switching back to see the killer's reaction after each excerpt. What it's like for him to read about himself like this? Was it getting to him? Was he upset or nervous? Was he going to go after Eve to finally finish what he started? The reader got to be inside his head for all of that! Fascinating! This was a great ride!! A bit anti-climatic at the end, but overall a well done suspenseful novel! I will be looking to see what else this author has written! *Thank you to Blackstone Publishing via NetGalley for the digital review copy!
The Nothing Man by Catherine Ryan Howard was one of the most gripping books I have ever read in my life and that’s saying a lot because I read a lot of books. Eve Black is the sole survivor of a horrific tragedy that involved the murder of her entire family by a serial killer when she was twelve years old. Despite best efforts, the killer was never found. Two decades later, Eve decides to write a crime memoir regarding the tragedy and the serial killer, Jim Doyle, happens to come across the book unexpectedly and reads it, reigniting all the rage in him over again. He is determined to stop his identity from coming out as a result of this book being published. We are taken back and forth Eve and Jim’s perspectives and it is absolutely fascinating. This book is a slow burn, and the suspense is breath-taking. If you’re big on studying the minds of serial killers and how they work, as well as the clever investigations that take place trying to connect the dots between their horrific crimes, then this one is for you. I was actually disappointed that the book ended, knowing that it will be quite some time before I get to read something written by Catherine Ryan Howard again. She is truly an amazingly gifted writer and I cannot wait to see what she comes out with next.
It’s been years since the serial killer known as the Nothing Man killed Eve Black’s entire family. Only 12 at the time, she has become obsessed with finding the man and making him pay for ruining her life. She’s even written a book about him, a book the killer has read, and now he’s determined to make Eve pay.
The Nothing Man by Catherine Ryan Howard is one of the most intriguing stories that I've read in quite some time. This book tells the story of a serial killer in Ireland who was never caught. He was dubbed The Nothing Man because he never left behind any evidence at the crime scenes. The Nothing Man has been dormant for 18 years and has not killed since he murdered 3 members of the Black family. Only 12 year old Eve Black survived The Nothing Man's final attack. Now, at age 30, Eve has written a book about The Nothing Man and she publicly vows in the book that she intends to identify The Nothing Man. Jim Doyle is working as a security guard when he sees the book The Nothing Man on sale at the store that he is working in. He is shocked to see a book written about his other name because it is written about him. As he reads Eve's account of his attacks and her search to reveal his true identity, Jim begins to unravel. Does Eve solve the mystery and identify a serial killer or will The Nothing Man make a return to silence Eve once and for all? First of all, I have to say that I loved that the book had an embedded story. While we were reading from Jim's point of view, he was reading Eve's book and we were able to get the story from her point of view. This was a very creative way for us to get both points of view. Eve's story was written as if it were a true crime story and it seemed very real, plausible, and was well done. She also speaks about how serial killers have been mythologized and are seen as being evil geniuses or crazed madmen, but in reality they are people who have failed in many aspects of their own lives and the only thing they were truly successful at was in taking the life of others. Overall, I really enjoyed this book. It was a fresh take on a psychological thriller without a lot of the usual very overplayed tropes. It was refreshing! The story line was riveting and the characters were believable. I read this in one sitting because it was that good. The only thing that I didn't like is that I didn't want it to end. I highly recommend this book to anyone who likes thrillers and/ or people who like books with serial killers, especially from the view point of the serial killer.
The Nothing Man was one of the most unique books l have read in a long time. The premise is that a woman who survived the attack on her family 20 years ago writes a book about her experience and her quest to identify the man who attacked her family. The twist of The Nothing Man is that the man who attacked her family is reading her book along with the reader of Catherine Ryan Howard’s book. This builds the tension gradually as he realizes she probably knows who he is. I loved the concept of a book within a book. Catherine Ryan Howard is a new favorite author of mine. I look forward to her next one!
Excellent literary technique of seamlessly placing a story within a story. As the serial killer reads the story of his work, the sole survivor (and author of the book the murderer is reading) seeks to find justice/closure.
Frightening, Thrilling, & Chilling! What more can one provide in another five star review for this fab author Catherine Ryan Howard. I've not come across any of her books that don't make me scream with excitement and shake with fear. She's truly an incredible writer that makes you feel if you are experiencing every twist and turn as she writes them with explosive action packed drama that plays out right before your eyes. This story begins with Eve the only survivor of a serial killer that took her entire family. He was a member of Garda but now is working as a supermarket security guard whose intrigued by Eve's caption of events in her memoir of the killings. After all she ducked for cover in the bathroom which saved her life. Now she's ravaged by the terrible memories of that horrible day and vows to get revenge if it's the last thing she does. Eve is on a mission to stop him but first she must play his game and win! Her mother was brutally murdered in bed and was sadly forcibly raped while the other family members were killed one by one including Eve's father and 7 yo sister. A rope was used as she was stabbed 14 times and left for dead. It's a sad horrendous action that went unpunished till now... The ending and Eve's peaceful days ahead with her partner were quite refreshing after so much horrid details of events. This was a true thriller with the podcasts/memoir/justice channel feel. Loved every second of this gem. Thank you to Catherine Ryan Howard , the pub, NetGalley, and Amazon Kindle for this ARC in exchange for this honest review.
WOW! That was really good. A book within a book. Did not want this one to end. One of the best, unique thrillers I’ve read. Thank you @netgalley and @blackstonepublishing for this eARC.
This is the best serial killer mystery I’ve read in quite awhile. I don’t want to give too much of the great plot (and twist) away, but it is told in alternating viewpoints: a book about the killer written by a surviving victim who was a child when it happened, and the thoughts of the killer as he is reading the book. Though many thrillers like to say they are unputdownable, this one actually is. I loved that the primary focus was on the strength and resilience of the victim, and the killer was shown as basically a weak little petulant man who needed to feel strong by killing women. It’s too bad more serial killers aren’t seen as they really are and are given mythical status (a subject the book also addresses). This book also has a fantastic and very rewarding ending. I would give this book more than five stars if I could! Definitely going to seek out more books by this author ASAP.
This is a near-perfect mystery/thriller. A tad anti-climactic at the end, but an engrossing ride for the most part. Thanks to the publisher and to Netgalley for supplying this copy for review.
There is no doubt that this will be a contender for 2020 BOOK OF THE YEAR from yours truly! Before you read further, just know it’s fiction (as my blurb sounds like it is a true story). THE NOTHING MAN is told in two ways: 1) Eve Black was 12 years old when her mother, father, and younger sister were murdered by The Nothing Man (nickname due to the lack of evidence left after his crimes). She survived due to a stolen can of orange pop that she snuck before bedtime, and happened to be in the bathroom when she heard horrid noises in the middle of the night. She learns that he has raped and/or killed and or/brutally harmed others, and years later decides to write a book about her investigation into catching him. Us readers get to read the book through alternating sections. 2) Jim Doyle is a grocery store security guard, a miserable and unhappy man who happens to see the book sold in the store he’s working in. He’s not very happy with the publicity, given that he is the Nothing Man. It is extremely rare that a novel scares me, but there are some moments that genuinely gave me goosebumps, caused me to look around and make sure lights were on, and made my deodorant fail. I was absolutely gripped from start to finish. This is the kind of book where you don’t want it to end because it is THAT good! It would also make an excellent movie! The book is taut, tightly plotted, and satisfying to the very last page. I binged all of the author’s previous books in a marathon last summer. This takes the cake! P.S. For those who have read it, did you notice that Catherine Ryan Howard is listed in the acknowledgements in the book within a book? :-) Thank Blackstone Publishing, Catherine Ryan Howard, and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for a candid review.
Wow what a great book! Thank you Netgalley and Blackstone Publishing for allowing me to read this ARC. If you like reading books about serial killers, this book is for you. Reading about the killings was a little disturbing, but the story is so good. The tension never lets up so be prepared fro not being able to put this book down!
The Nothing Man by Catherine Ryan Howard is a book that I have been desperate to get my hands on, having seen it so unanimously praised on various social media sites. I am very sad to say that after numerous failed attempts to download this digital ARC, I have only succeeded in acquiring the first chapter, and it has certainly left me more determined than ever to access it in its entirety. I am awarding the novel 5 stars based solely on what I have read, and the rave reviews of trusted friends. To the publisher, thank you so much for granting my request, and I would love another opportunity to read this book in the very near future. It promises to be a must read of 2020. Many thanks to NetGalley and Blackstone Publishing for this ARC.
This is the first book I’ve ever read by this author, but it will not be the last, The premise is captivating and innovative. A woman writes a novel about her experience being the only survivor of a killer that took her whole family. To catch him. She writes the book in an attempt to lure him. There is an entire book within a book and it’s brilliant. I particularly love the way the first few pages are subtle. A scene in a department store, with the focus on the mundane, and in particular the store security guard. Who happens to be the killer. Fabulous. Can’t wait to get my hands on a physical copy of this one as the digital was broken up in an almost dizzying way.
The book within a book is a unique take on the genre. A crime novel where the villain is reading a true crime story by his only survivor is one I think will stick with readers long after the last page. It was an intense and suspenseful story with gripping characters. I will definitely be reading this author again.
Wow. Wow. Wow! Another hit by Catherine Ryan Howard! Absolutely chilling, thrilling, twisty and turny, and shocking! I’m a huge fan of Howard’s and this book has only made me be a bigger fan! She knows how to use those twisted stories to chill you to the bone, gasping in shock, and flipping pages like a crazy person! Absolutely a must read! Highly, highly recommend! You will not be disappointed! Will make sure to buzz it up on the different platforms and use low amazon reviewer number on release date!
First things first: I highly and wholeheartedly recommend you read this book. It's well written and clever in a way that sort of puts it in a very rare category of fiction. But I can't tell you why because it would spoil the whole thing for you. I will say that it's creepy without being a horror story, and it takes its time drawing you in, painting a picture and then kind of mixing and mashing reality and fiction together into a beautifully crafted, suspenseful and sometimes sad and painful story. Just read it. You'll be glad you did.
A very solid thriller from Catherin Ryan Howard. A recommended first purchase title for collections where the genre is popular.
Thanks to Netgalley and Blackstone Publishing for providing this arc in exchange for an honest review. Jim was a serial killer about 20 years ago but he is now retired from that and working security at a grocery store. Eve, a woman whose family was killed by Jim when she was 12, writes a book about the killings called The Nothing Man. Jim sees it and becomes obsessed with reading it every chance he gets. This novel is basically Eve’s true crime book along with Jim’s thoughts and actions as he is reading the book. I liked this book. It is certainly a unique way of telling the story and it is well done. I felt the same about this author’s previous novel, Rewind, on both counts. She is a talented writer. I thought this got a little slow, going through all of the different families that were murdered by Jim, so it wasn’t a 5 star for me but I will definitely read her next novel.
4.5 stars for this riveting thriller! I loved the book-within-a-book format and the fact that you're essentially getting a a true crime memoir and a serial killer thriller rolled into one. I found myself totally engrossed in both elements of the story and could not stop reading! My only gripe is that the ending was a little too anti-climactic, but overall I would for sure recommend for any thriller fans. Side note: The formatting was really off in my arc, so I'm interested to see how the transitions between Jim's story and Eve's book will look in the print version. Once it's available at my library, I'll be grabbing it to take a look.
Add this one to your list! Eve Black is the last victim and sole survivor after a serial killer known as The Nothing Man kills her parents and younger sister when she is only 12 years old. She goes into seclusion until a creative writing class in college prompts her to start sharing her story. Her story, turns into a popular article as Ireland is obsessed with whatever happened to The Nothing Man. So a publisher approaches her about turning it into a book. Her sole reason for writing the book is the hope that it will lead to his capture. She teams up with the detective obsessed with the case and they begin combing through all the 20 year old data, meeting with the few other remaining victims, and begin piecing it together. Her book hits the shelves and The Nothing Man can not believe what he is reading after all this time. Something must be done. I could not put this book down. It shifts back and forth between Eve and the man known as The Nothing Man. It is a collision course that had me flying through the pages. This book will be released in August and I highly recommend you put it on your radar. I, in the meantime, am excited to learn this is not the author's first book and I will be looking into her early works. Thank you #Netgalley and Blackstone Publishing for allowing me to read an advanced copy of this book. #TheNothingMan
This thriller is by far the best thriller I've ever read and I've read a lot! Inventive and absorbing! A must read.
12 year old Eve Black was the only survivor of her families brutal murder by a criminal known as the Nothing Man. Almost 20 years later, Eve publishes a true crime memoir detailing her efforts in tracking down the man who killed her family. Jim Doyle, an aging supermarket security guard, begins reading Eve's book; each page rekindling memories of the crimes and igniting his rage towards Eve. Nobody knows the crimes better than Jim because he is the Nothing Man. Jim knows that Eve won't stop until she finds him, new clues are bringing her closer to uncovering the truth about his identity, and Jim will be left with no choice but to finish what he started. The Nothing Man is an exciting new thriller by author Catherine Ryan Howard. I had previously read her novel Rewind and although I enjoyed it, I connected more with this novel and felt that it was it was a much better fit for me as a reader. The novel is written partially as a book within a book, detailing the events surrounding the crimes committed by The Nothing Man. Jim Doyle, an aging security guard who happens to be the Nothing Man, begins reading the book in order to find out if Eve has enough information to uncover his identity. This unique novel allows the reader to get both a perspective of a true crime novel paired with the insight into the criminal mind. I really enjoyed this novel and had a hard time putting it down. Although there is no surprise in the identity of the killer, there are some surprise twists along the way. Compelling and engaging, this is a must read thriller for 2020!
My God, what a book. I predominantly read mystery/thrillers and I can honestly say this is one of the great ones. The one that keeps you up all night even though you have an early 6appointment in the morning . The writing is strong as are the characters and the interweaving of the characters. Damn, I hated it ending. Highly, highly recommend. Do not let this one get by you. Thank you, thank you #BlackstonePublishing and #Netgalley
Before picking the book itself, I was super intrigued by the whole premise. The survivor of a serial killer’s last killing now writes a book about the incident after 20 years. The killer is still free and ends up reading the book. The faceoff between them definitely was explosive and is satisfying after all these years. The survivor, Eve was 12 when the whole terror occurred and what she is planning to do by writing the book now after all these years? The serial killer, Jim is now an old man working as a security guard at a store. How does this book affect him now? Do we get all the answers? The author’s debut novel is a pretty clever one with a book within a book making it interesting. It is written from Jim’s POV but the book within the book is by Eve. It was confusing a bit with this pattern as the other characters are constantly in and out but it gets more clearer pretty soon. With the POVs, the narrations move between past and present giving few clues step by step to unravel the killings. It almost feels like a true-crime fiction novel. Overall, an engaging thriller!
“I miss my family like phantom limbs. Their absence in my life, the tragedy of their fates and the pain they must have suffered is a constant ringing in my ears, a taste in my mouth, and itch on my skin. It’s everywhere, always, and I can’t make it go away. Time hasn’t healed this wound but made it worse, turned the skin around the original cut necrotic. I understand much more about what I lost now, at thirty, than I did when I actually lost it at twelve”. “Colette, my father’s mother—whisked me away to a place called Spanish Point on Ireland’s Atlantic coast. We arrived there in the middle of October, just as the last few seasonal stragglers were packing up, and moved into a tiny white washed cottage that she said had been there since before the Famine”. Eve Black is the soul survivor of a horrific triple family murder — She wants to be a normal child. When she starts her new school... she never tells anyone the truth about how her parents died. Years later, Eve writes a book about what happened. Jim Doyle is a serial killer. Alive. He’s reading Eve’s book... The writing is brilliantly clever ( with it’s true crime background) .... To say much more would truly spoil the thrill factor.... Other than... I devoured this laconic, atmospheric page-turning novel in one sitting. Thank you Blackstone Publishing, Netgalley, and Catherine Ryan Howard
Yay, a mystery/thriller that I enjoyed! The Nothing Man is a book-within-a-book about a serial killer who is reading the true-crime memoir that one of his victims wrote. Eve lost her mother, father, and sister to The Nothing Man when she was twelve years old, and she hopes with writing the memoir about him and all of his victims that maybe she will be able to solve who he is. I really enjoyed the author's use of Eve's memoir and The Nothing Man's reactions to her book; I found it to be very unique. I would highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys true crime and thrillers. Thanks to NetGalley for the ARC. All opinions are my own.
The Nothing Man is a slow burning mystery with clever plotting and intriguing characters. It took me a while to really get into it, but when I did, I couldn't put it down!
What a great mind blowing read! It was absolutely brilliant and chilling read! The story is told from the killer's point of view and the victims. It is a book within a book and that works well . I will not give anything away and will only say don't miss The Nothing Man, you will be looking over your shoulder and it will stay with you for some time. Thanks to NetGalley and Blackstone publishing for a fantastic read!
I love Catherine Ryan Howard; I've read Rewind (a five-star read, for sure), The Liar's Girl, and Distress Signals. The Nothing Man was good, especially as it neared the end. For me, however, it was more difficult to get into than the author's other novels--I think because of the book-within-a-book approach. While I realize that detailed information was necessary to build up to the story's powerful ending, the momentum just wasn't there for me until about two-thirds of the way through. I'm glad I continued reading, though! I also thought it was fun that Eve Black mentioned Catherine Ryan Howard in the acknowledgements of her book. :)
If I could give The Nothing Man more than five stars, I would without a shadow of a doubt! Catherine Ryan Howard deserves a place on the New York Times Bestseller list for this one. She essentially wrote a book within a book and the framework works flawlessly. Readers will be captivated instantly and taken on a journey as Howard starts connecting dots between Eve Black and the Nothing Man's attacks, but also delves into what the Nothing Man's daily life looks like. For people who like to predict the end of Criminal Minds episodes, myself included, there are still surprises that you won't see coming! Having read all of her previous novels, I think The Nothing Man is easily my favorite (and this comes from someone who *loved*) Distress Signals!
First, a thank you to Netgalley for sharing the ARC in exchange for an honest review. When I first came across this ARC I was really excited about it because for some reason, either based on my own assumption or from a review I read a while back, I thought it was nonfiction. I haven't read a lot of nonfiction so far this year, so that was a plus point. It was also the reason I was dragging my feet since true crime was something I loved as a teen, but not so much more. Prefer it fiction. So, when I realized that I'd read and loved previous book, Rewind, my I took off running. Luckily it didn't disappoint. Although for a fairly short book, it was not at all a fast read, and it too me a while to get in the flow. I'm guessing that it's the ARC as there are a lot of blank pages and others with only one sentence which means there a lot extra scrolling, but such is a minor issue. The book being written within a book, with the killer reading the final version upon publication as a fascinatingly unique premise (if there are others I haven't read) and I really enjoyed the book's distinction. In a way it reminded me a lot of Capote's In Cold Blood, both in story line and avant-guard feel. It would make a good movie - I'd watch it - and I will definitely be ordering it for our library.
"The Nothing Man" was an addictive, cat-and-mouse-style psychological suspense thriller following the alternating story of serial killer Jim Doyle, and the one victim that survived, Eve Black. You will not be able to put this down!
I don’t know what words to use to accurately describe how phenomenal this book truly was. I was a huge fan of I’ll be Gone in the Dark primarily due to the raw emotions McNamara wove throughout the story. Catherine Ryan Howard did the same thing in The Nothing Man. While I knew it was a work of fiction, I couldn’t help but feel as if I was reading a real life true crime book. Eve was such a strong female character and when I realized what she was doing, I cheered out loud. The formatting of this story was fascinating. It’s an interesting concept to think about a killer reading a book about their crimes after having gotten away with it for so long. All the elements I would expect to be possessed by the killer were present. He was narcissistic, misogynistic, and had a small victim complex. Getting into his head was both fulfilling but equally disturbing considering this is probably exactly what James DiAngelo was like. I couldn’t get enough of this book. I could have read it in one sitting. Any true crime fanatics will feel right at home reading this novel and is a must-read for everyone. I can’t wait to check out Catherine’s other work
I received an advanced audiobook edition and egalley for THE NOTHING MAN by Catherine Ryan Howard in exchange for an honest review. Thank you to Blackstone Publishing and Netgalley for the chance to read and review! I really enjoyed the author’s 2019 release REWIND, so was very excited to read this one! Publication Date: 8/18/2020 Rating: 4.5 / 5 THE NOTHING MAN begins with the release of a new true crime book written by Eve Black, the only survivor when her family is killed by a man known as The Nothing Man. Now an adult, Eve is taking a hard look at what happened to her family when she was just twelve years old and to the killer’s other victims. The Nothing Man moniker came about because it was said the police had nothing on him, but Eve is determined to identify him and bring him down. Jim Doyle is a security guard who spots Eve’s memoir on the shelf and is instantly drawn to it because he is the unknown man at the center of the book. The more he reads of Eve’s take on his story, the more he fears that she’s closing in on him. With the publication of her book, the case is getting new attention and Jim must protect himself at all costs. This book was so unique and so well written and I was incredibly hooked. The book is written in two POVs. For Eve’s part we are reading her actual published work along with Jim. Interspersed with Eve’s case reports and personal recollections, we get inside Jim’s head to see how he is feeling about what he’s writing, his own memories of the killings so many years before, and his life now. Each perspective uncovers secrets that bring twists that I didn’t see coming. The author does a great job of distinguishing these two voices. From Eve we get personal accounts, but in a way that makes sense for an edited, published memoir for public consumption. From Jim we follow along with his thought tangents and paranoia as his worry gets more and more intense. The audio did this very well also in using two different narrators for the two different POVs. I highly recommend you add THE NOTHING MAN to your TBR and I’d encourage you check out the audio as well!
I was super psyched to get an advance ecopy of 𝘛𝘩𝘦 𝘕𝘰𝘵𝘩𝘪𝘯𝘨 𝘔𝘢𝘯 because it sounded like everything I love in a book: a thriller with a true crime twist (the Nothing Man is a serial killer in Ireland like The Golden State Killer) where the story is told thru the eyes of the uncaught killer who's shocked and intrigued when his last surviving victim releases a book about him. The book takes place as he's reading said book. This format was fascinating! I stayed up far too late reading through the wonky formatting (advance ebooks don't always get the formatting right) to finish this because I had to know what happens! If you like True Crime and Thrillers, this is the book for you! Especially if you were interested in the GSK case!
The writing of this thriller is fantastic, but the intensity of the story is a little more than I can handle at the present. I plan to revisit it down the road.
Sometimes when I’m deciding which book to read next I go to Goodreads and check what my friends have thought about a book. I don’t read much of the reviews because I want to go in mostly blind but I look at star ratings and the first sentence or two just to get a sense. Here’s what I found when I looked up The Nothing Man: “5+ outstanding stars!” - Lindsay - Traveling Sisters Book Reviews “WOW what a thriller!” - Berit “This book completely caught me off guard in the best way.” - Dennis “Honestly, THIS is what a thriller should be!” - Chelsea That was certainly enough testimony to get me excited to pick up this book next and I’m so glad I did!! The book starts with Jim, a security guard at a grocery store, seeing a customer with a new book called The Nothing Man. The book is written by Eve who was the only survivor twenty years ago when her family was murdered by the serial killer known as The Nothing Man. He earned that name because the police had nothing on him. She’s written this book in an attempt to find him. Why is Jim so thrown off to see the book? Because he was The Nothing Man. Does Eve know? Is there a chance they are on to him? Told in alternating perspectives between Jim and Eve (through her book) this was a great twist on the typical thriller. We know who the killer is right from the start - but will he get caught? Thank you to the publisher and Netgalley for the free ebook and audiobook copies to review.
Eve has lost her entire family when a serial killer targets her family. The signs were there, but she did not know what they meant. When she gets into college, she decides to write a book about her experience and those of the other people that were targeted. She has a plan to draw the serial killer out of hiding. At the same time, the serial killer has discovered that a book has been written and becomes obsessed with meeting her and decides that he wants to make her go away for good. I liked that this book went back and forth between Eve and the killer. I loved the ending and really ended up liking this book. Thanks for the ARC, NetGalley.
I cannot stop talking about this book! It is such a fantastic, all consuming, addictive read. Quick Synopsis: Eve Black’s Family was murdered 18 years ago by a serial killer dubbed The Nothing Man because he leaves nothing behind- no evidence, DNA, nothing. Eve was just a kid when The Nothing Man broke into her house in the middle of the night and murdered her parents and sister. Eve survived and went on to write a true crime memoir detailing the events of that night in hopes of catching the killer. Meanwhile, we are introduced to Jim, aka The Nothing Man. Jim is an ex cop turned security guard. He is also the serial killer, The Nothing Man. Jim picks up Eve’s book and we get to read his point of view as he reads her book. The chapters alternate between Eve’s perspective and Jim’s perspective as he reads the book. This was such a cool format and is what made this such a unique, fun read, full of suspense and tension. I liked that we knew who the killer was right off the bat, but this doesn’t mean we know everything- there were still twists and turns throughout the book. If you have found yourself bored by the thriller genre and are looking for a refreshing read, look no further! Even the most avid thriller readers will enjoy this one! I also recommend the author’s previous book, Rewind.
When she was just 12 years of age, Eve Black was the only member of her family who survived a serial killer's attack. It's been 20 or so years and she is still obsessed with the man tho stole her family and has never been caught. Teaming up with Ed Healy, one of the police officers who investigated her family's deaths, she writes a true crime novel, putting it all out there... hoping it will incite the killer to try again.... The Nothing Man .. that's what the newspapers called him. There were never any clues to his identity ... no motive that anyone could detect .... and he is reading her book. The Nothing Man knows she will never give up looking for him ... This utterly compelling story is expertly crafted. It's like reading a book within a book ... uniquely original. The reader knows who the killer is as eve relates her story of past events merging into today's actions. It's also the story of the killer ... his reactions to Eve's telling ... as he secretly reads her book... his coming to understand that Eve knows much more than he ever suspected... his sorrow at leaving her alive. All I can really say is .. WOW! I read this one practically in one sitting. It's a real nail-biting page turner. Highly recommend this one! Many thanks to the author / Blackstone Publishing / Netgalley for the digital copy of this riveting, suspenseful crime fiction. Read and reviewed voluntarily, opinions expressed here are unbiased and entirely my own.
The Nothing Man is a true crime book about a serial killer encased in a captivating thriller. A book within a book, Eve Black was twelve years old when a serial killer came into her home and killed her whole family. Fast-forward almost twenty years later, Eve is writing a book about The Nothing Man's killing spree and to hopefully draw him out of hiding. The author did a wonderful job in telling the story through the perspectives of the survivor and the killer. She takes us inside the mind of a killer who reads an account of his own crimes. Everyone knows the name of the serial killers, but it's the names of the victims we need to remember. Thank you to NetGalley, Blackstone Publishing and Catherine Ryan Howard for a copy of "The Nothing Man" in exchange of an honest review.
The Nothing Man was a chilling and complex story. It was the story of Eve Black and her novel that she wrote describing her attack by the Nothing Man. The story goes between covering Jim Doyle's side of the story and the novel that Eve wrote. It's a fascinating way to tell the story and away I really enjoyed it. I loved this thriller and would highly recommend for anyone that loved Home Before dark. It's a story within a story. A great one! Thank you to Blackstone Publishing and Netgalley for my advanced copy.
“Books must be finished long before they get stacked on the shelf and, perhaps, by the time this one is finally in print, the Nothing Man’s name will already be known. Perhaps you, dear reader, even know what he looks like.” Every word of every page in this journey of a book was compelling, heart wrenching, and deeply interesting. I will try my best to explain the masterpiece that is The Nothing Man. Thank you THANK YOU to Catherine Ryan Howard, Blackstone Publishing, and Netgalley for this absolute gem of a book. This book is written like if The Golden State Killer read the book I’ll Be Gone in the Dark right after it was published. The premise alone is genius and so well done. A serial killer reading a book from one of his escaped victims. A book within a book. Brilliantly throughout and masterfully written, this book follows The Nothing Man years after he finished killing. A surviving victim from his last and worst attack writes a book about her experience, and he see it on the shelf. This book follows him reading the book and basically switches between the actual book the victim wrote and the killer’s current experience. Thoughts: I loved the plot of this book. It was written in a way that completely sucks you in from the first page and is perfect for lovers of true crime. The book within the book read just like Michelle Mcmanara’s I’ll Be Gone in the Dark. The bigger story does an amazing job of describing how a serial killer would feel if they were reading about themselves. It was everything I could ask for in a book- fast-paced, well-written, and completely one of a kind. I loved the main character of Eve and hated Jim, just like a reader should. There were so many suspenseful moments that led to a fantastic ending. I LOVED this book- highly recommend it to anyone who likes thrillers, true crime, mysteries, or crime fiction! 5-stars!
I could NOT put this book down, if you are in the mood for a pageturner/thriller, this is one you should absolutely pick up!
I agree with some other reviewers. The POV being told from the killer’s perspective was so intriguing. To read his about his crimes, get a feel for his frustration and anger, it was so emotional and captivating. I have read a few books from a killer’s POV (most of which you did not know they were the killer at first). Catherine Ryan Howard did this so well, it’s scary. It was so interesting to see Jim’s reaction., often extreme, to then see him interacting with people at work and at home. Scary to think that this actually happens. This book really gave me some creepy vibes. Thanks to Blackstone Publishing and NetGalley for this copy of The Nothing Man.
Absolutely fantastic and doubling terrifying in light of the Golden State Killer. The best thrillers for me aren't the ones with the mastermind predator but the ones where people we view as normal or don't see at all are the culprits.
QUICK TAKE: A unique spin on the serial killer thriller, almost a fictional take on I'LL BE GONE IN THE DARK. I thought the narrative was fast-paced and fun, though I found the book excerpts interspersed between the serial killer story to be a little tedious. The bookstore scene was excellent, and while I figured out the twist pretty easily, I enjoyed see it play out.
Eve Black’s family was murdered in their family home when she was a child. Twelve-year-old Eve was the only survivor with her mother, father and younger sister brutally murdered. Two decades later, the murderer still has not been found. He is a serial killer dubbed The Nothing Man by reporters as the police had nothing on him. He was linked to several other murders and rapes in the area. Hoping to rekindle interest in the case, as well as adding information and opinions about the murderer, Eve writes a book outlining each of The Nothing Man’s victims including her own family. Working with a detective, she painstakingly adds information that no one else would have known. Her goal to antagonize the Nothing Man in the book and during interviews is successful and he can no longer sit back and allow her to live any longer. This was a creepy, suspenseful story that had me staying awake at night. This book is written in such a way that it sounds like a true crime book and that really hooked me. This was an intense read about a serial killer and his surviving victim playing a game of cat and mouse. It is not overly graphic which I liked, but you know that his crimes were terrible. As I read, I did not know who would win the game, which had the suspense high. The writing and narration were wonderful. I definitely recommend this one to anyone who likes a thriller, and this one is written in a very clever and different way.
When Jim starts his security duty shift at the local department store, he wasn’t expecting to be surprised. Nothing surprised Jim. Distracted by a woman acting suspiciously in the book section, Jim finds himself staring at a row of books with a title that stops him cold: The Nothing Man. He knows that name. He knows that name because he’s him. He’s The Nothing Man. Eve Black was — is — the sole survivor of The Nothing Man‘s final and most gruesome attack that left her mother, father, and sister (“seven years old then and forever“) dead. After a personal essay she wrote about the experience of being a survivor went viral, she was convinced that telling her story could help, not just herself, but the other survivors. And maybe, just maybe, they could finally catch this killer. Jim can’t help himself: he has to read. As he opens the cover of his version of The Nothing Man, the physical book (or audiobook) appears to start over. Title page, copyright information, and brand new narrator. Jim might be reading the book, but Eve tells the reader her story, in her own words, and in her own voice. For me, this is what made the book stand out especially as an audiobook experience. It wasn’t a single narrator doing the voice for both Jim and Eve. Of course, the way Catherine Ryan Howard wrote The Nothing Man, you can feel the shift from Jim to Eve even reading the physical book. Eve goes into the details of the attacks that came before the attack on her family. Her motivation was clear: she wants people to know what she and others went through in maybe a pointless hope that they’ll care. Jim, though, voices what I felt: people just want to be witnesses to other people’s misery. What The Nothing Man seems to set out to do is to remind the genre that there are real people behind their escapism. The criminal mind might be something that is fascinating to hear about, but criminals leave bodies and blood in their wake. A fictional answer to Michelle McNamara’s I’ll Be Gone in the Dark, The Nothing Man is a twisted, fascinating look into both sides of a crime story.
5 STARS At the age of twelve, Eve Black was the only member of her family to survive an encounter with serial attacker the Nothing Man. Now an adult, she is obsessed with identifying the man who destroyed her life. Supermarket security guard Jim Doyle has just started reading The Nothing Man—the true-crime memoir Eve has written about her efforts to track down her family’s killer. As he turns each page, his rage grows. Because Jim’s not just interested in reading about the Nothing Man. He is the Nothing Man. Soon he begins to realize how dangerously close Eve is getting to the truth. He knows she won’t give up until she finds him and that has no choice but to stop her first … . . . WOW. This book was FLAWLESS. I seriously can't get over how good it was. If I could afford to, I would be buying copies and shoving them into crime lover's hands. Instead, I will sing it's praises on social media. What I loved most about THE NOTHING MAN is that it was a "book within a book" - which is a favourite trope of mine. I enjoyed "reading" the true crime novel by Eve while simultaneously being put into the mind of Jim, the actual Nothing Man. It felt dark and voyeuristic to experience the story through Jim's perspective and I was contently on the edge of my seat, waiting to see what his next move would be. I just had to know if Eve would be able to reveal the true identity of the Nothing Man or if he would find her first. No spoilers here, you'll just have to read the book to find out! Highly recommend to literally EVERYONE. 5 STARS At the age of twelve, Eve Black was the only member of her family to survive an encounter with serial attacker the Nothing Man. Now an adult, she is obsessed with identifying the man who destroyed her life. Supermarket security guard Jim Doyle has just started reading The Nothing Man—the true-crime memoir Eve has written about her efforts to track down her family’s killer. As he turns each page, his rage grows. Because Jim’s not just interested in reading about the Nothing Man. He is the Nothing Man. Soon he begins to realize how dangerously close Eve is getting to the truth. He knows she won’t give up until she finds him and that has no choice but to stop her first … . . . WOW. This book was FLAWLESS. I seriously can't get over how good it was. If I could afford to, I would be buying copies and shoving them into crime lover's hands. Instead, I will sing it's praises on social media. What I loved most about THE NOTHING MAN is that it was a "book within a book" - a favourite trope of mine. I enjoyed "reading" the true crime novel by Eve while simultaneously being put into the mind of Jim, the actual Nothing Man. It felt dark and voyeuristic to experience the story through Jim's perspective and I was contently on the edge of my seat, waiting to see what his next move would be. I just had to know if Eve would be able to reveal the true identity of The Nothing Man or if he would find her first. No spoilers here, you'll just have to read the book to find out! Highly recommend to literally EVERYONE. Thank you to Netgalley, the author and publisher for my ARC! THE NOTHING MAN is out now. Thank you to Netgalley, the author and publisher for my ARC! THE NOTHING MAN is out now.
My Thoughts "The media calls him The Nothing Man because they have nothing on him." No witnesses, no fingerprints, no DNA. I don't know what it is about books with the word "Man" in them, but I have yet to read one I didn't love. The Chestnut Man, The Whisper Man, The Chalk Man and now The Nothing Man! Eve is the only survivor of an attack that killed her parents and little sister. Her family was the last of 5 attacks, and then the case went cold. Years later she is telling her story because The Nothing Man still roams free, and she wants justice. Right away we find out who The Nothing Man is, and it's underwhelming. I love that we got to find out exactly what happened to all of The Nothing Man's victims. He didn't start out killing, but he progressed to it quickly. It was so creepy that he left a rope, the same rope, and a knife under his next victims couch cushions. Oh the chills that ran up my arms when I read that! That meant the attacks weren't random, that he had been in the house before he attacked. So that leads us to the questions of: How did he choose his victim's? Why did he stop after Eve's family? This book was everything I could possibly want in a thriller. Fast paced, on the edge of my seat page turner. I am happy that I waited for my husband to return from an out of town trip to read it, because this one creeped me out! If I read a book like this one where the killer attacks while everyone is sleeping, I can't be alone at night! I also read it in hours. Not days, hours. I checked all my doors and windows before I went to bed that night. Thank you Blackstone Publishing, Catherine Ryan Howard and NetGalley for my #gifted copy! This one is available now! Book Rating: 5/5
I loved reading and listening to The Nothing Man by Catherine Ryan Howard. It was fascinating to me how two books were intertwined in this true crime thriller (all fiction says the disclaimer at the end of the book). If you look closely at the book's cover, you can see how one book is transformed into two with the cover torn. Eve's name has been removed to reveal Howard's name at the bottom. You can also see the notes and tabs. This is an ingenious way of giving a snippet of what is inside.
At 12 years old, Eve was the only survivor of The Nothing Mans attack on her family. Now that she is an adult she is determined to find him. She is also finally ready to tell the story in her new book. Jim is at his job when he comes across the book. Jim immediately buys it so he can find out how much Eve has figured out about his past. I loved this book! I loved the switch from reading Eve’s book, to changing the pov to Jim’s reactions to reading it. This one had me flipping pages well past my bedtime! It was such a unique way to write this thriller, and I am totally here for it! If you haven’t read this one yet you are missing out!
Holy crap was this good! Admittedly I haven’t read a straight out thriller since last years ‘The Chestnut Man’ and The Whisper Man’, so it’s been awhile since I got caught up in a book that I could not put down, but let me tell you, this was that book. (Side note, what’s the deal with ‘man’ being in every title in this post? 😂) Catherine Ryan Howard has taken a clever narrative structure in a story about a woman who, when she was twelve, was the only surviving member of her family in a home invasion murder. Years later she sets out for closure by writing a true crime book of the killer that hits the bestseller lists and resurrects the past. But it also awakens the sleeping dragon who has been dormant for years, who decides to set out to finish off the grisly job he didn’t finish. Half of the book is Eve’s story told both in the present tense threaded with sections from her book including his other victims, while the other half is the terrifying Nothing Man. The audio version which I alternated with is top notch, the Irish readers, especially hers, adding to an already thrilling read. if you were a fan of the @netflix series, ‘The Fall’ this will be right up your alley. It’s definitely creepy, has some good twists, and should keep you up well into the night to finish. Trigger warnings for Murder, home invasion & rape.
In this mystery thriller, you know the “who” from the very beginning. But why? And how did he get away with it? The book alternates between the viewpoint of the murderer and the text of the true crime memoir of one of his victims. Eve Black’s family was murdered by The “Nothing Man”. She writes a book of the same name and the murderer picks up the book and reads it. The book inside the book is compulsive and surprising. I loved this twist in the alternating viewpoints and that the book explicitly discusses how serial killers are celebrated and the victims are forgotten. This book centers the victim in an interesting way. The audio book was wonderfully narrated, the alternating actors made it easy to follow.
This was my first read from Catherine Ryan Howard, and won't be my last! This was the definition of a cat and mouse game. I love books within a book, and the way this story unfolded was perfect. Reading Jim’s thoughts and responses as he read the book was nothing short of terrifying. I applaud the author for writing a book where the killer is known from the start but the tension and suspense is maintained. Thank you Netgalley and Blackstone Publishing for this ARC in exchange for an honest review.
If you haven't read it yet and you're looking for a great fall read, I highly recommend The Nothing Man by Catherine Ryan Howard. I love the fact that it is a book within a book and that mixed with Jim Doyle's viewpoint made it a very layered and suspenseful novel. So many people were blown away by this one, and although I'm not quite there, it was still a very solid 4 stars for me and definitely a thriller I will be recommending! It is also a great one to go into blind so I will try to keep this review short (probably won't happen). I started by reading the eBook and it has such an amazing beginning, but then I started getting a little distracted, so I decided to wait and listen to the audio. The audiobook helped keep me fully engaged and I really liked the narrators. Alana Kerr Collins voices the parts from Eve's book while John Keating voices Doyle. I think listening to it makes it even creepier, especially for Doyle's POV. I loved the dark humor, and the way the author wrote this one was just so incredibly clever. I ended up really loving the end and was very satisfied with it, although it may be slightly anticlimactic for some readers. The Nothing Man is a very unique take on a book where you already know who the killer is and watching his progression as he reads Eve's book was a great take on a serial killer thriller. Overall I really enjoyed The Nothing Man and I'm looking forward to reading more by this author. I have already read Distress Signals which was a bit of a miss for me, but I can tell how she has progressed in her writing and I will definitely be reading her newer books! Thank you to the publisher for providing me with an advance review copy of this book via Edelweiss and NetGalley, all opinions and thoughts are my own.
ALL THE THRILLING STARS! Holy moly - this is the book I've been waiting for this month in the thriller category. Not only do I LOVE getting the POV of the killer, but then you throw in the killer finding a book written by his youngest survivor and now you've got two for the price of one! So thriller and true crime fans - this is THE book for you! I'm actually kicking myself for waiting so long to read this. Howard is an autobuy author for me and this is my fourth (and third 5 star) book by her. I can't recommend her books enough! So let's get into the nitty gritty of it all. Jim Doyle, as we know from the blurb, is The Nothing Man. We get to watch him unravel as he reads the true crime book written by his victim, Eve. Could you imagine walking into a bookstore and being confronted with a book about YOU?! The way the author integrates these is nothing short of brilliant. I was equally fascinated with Eve's story as I was with watching Jim escalate. Howard brings us a thriller where we already know who the killer is so there's no guessing on how the crime was committed or who will be revealed. Instead we are just instantly drawn into what is going to happen now that it's 20 years later. Book within a book stories are a bit of a hit or miss for me and quite honestly, this is probably one of, if not THE, best ones I've read. Obviously I recommend this book so go out and get yourself a copy... and if you already have one on your shelf, stop everything and pick it up NOW!
This was such a unique, creative twist that blended the true crime genre with a dual POV mystery. I’m not normally a fan of a book within a book stories but the execution of this one was great. It did lag a bit as we were reading two introductions simultaneously but the beginning hooked me enough to push me through to a fantastic ending.
Thank you to the publisher for my copy of this - all opinions are my own. Catherine Ryan Howard has QUICKLY become one of my must read authors - and this book is just more evidence as to why. I was sucked in from the SYNOPSIS on this one - I love a good serial killer book, and the idea that this one would be told partly from the perspective of the killer, who had since retired from killing and had never been caught was fascinating to me. I was NOT disappointed - this one absolutely FLEW by, I devoured the entire book in one afternoon as I could literally not set the book down. I loved the concept of the book within the book, and that you were reading along with the killer, watching as his fragile mental state unfolded. I won't offer any spoilers but I will say that concept alone ratcheted up the tension considerably and I was on pins and needles waiting to see how things would play out. I loved it, honestly, it was such a fresh and unique take on the genre, and absolutely nailed the vague sensation of Golden State Killer vibes that inspired the book. A must read for thriller book lovers this year!