Redheads, a debut thriller novel by Jonathan Moore out today (Nov. 5), is going to send shock waves through everyone’s end of the year horror and thriller reading, while continuing to make waves well into 2014. Moore will quickly set himself apart from the masses and delve head first into being a well-known suspense author.
Following a pattern of mainstream writers like James Rollins, Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child, David Morrell, the technical writing know-how of the late great authors Tom Clancy and Michael Crichton, and the CSI prowess of Patricia Cornwell, Moore brings a wealth of detailed information both as far as forensics, criminal activity and behaviors, the NSA, and technological surveillance. Though I sometimes can get bombarded with too much technical detail that makes me “tune out,” with Moore’s writing I didn’t. He threw in enough paragraphs of emotional turmoil, decisions, romance, and mystery that it all just propelled me forward through the pages with lightening speed. I must say that Samhain Publishing should have looked into splitting up the paragraghs a tad more though….
As the book opened, I began to imagine what must be one of the most awful serial killers, reminiscent of Jeffrey Dahmer (thinking eating body parts and storing in the freezer) or Hannibal. Actually, more scary than Hannibal. The protagonist, Chris Wilcox, is pursuing this evil killer due to the fact that his wife, Cheryl, was tortured, murdered, and eaten in the most vile way. Yes, I might have wanted to throw up and never eat from my freezer again! And since the murderer only kills women with red hair, I have made a note to myself to make sure my auburn highlights that appear time and again in my dark brown hair, NEVER appear again. And thankfully, I have dark pigment.
Moore sets the scene of the book quickly, drawing in the reader and giving us a glimpse into evil. Except then, we can’t look back. As a reader, I wasn’t going to put the book down till I knew what abominable force could do such acts. As I read, I was educated on DNA and sequencing and though, again, sometimes this can be boring for me, Moore actually wrote it in a way that wasn’t pretentious, but actually educated me and made me want to understand! Moore is one smart cookie and I wouldn’t be surprised if he is actually an undercover FBI agent, part-time NSA agent, and then moonlights as a genetic engineer. The main point here is that he seems authentic and it worked within the book. There were never loose ends that weren’t tied up or explained, so that my thought process never got ahead of the book.
His character development let us glimpse into their emotions and feel their pain for their lost loved ones, both for Chris losing Cheryl, and for the woman who becomes his side kick in their revenge hunting, who lost her sister. I found myself pulling for them and rejoicing in their blossoming affection for each other admist the drama. His secondary characters have some great strength as well.
When we find out, as readers, that the villain is actually a creature that could be viewed as human, but is really ancient in origin, the book really gets interesting. I loved the mystery and the ebb and flow of his suspenseful scenes. Toward the middle he really slowed it down so that he could create some momentum to grab us again with action and horror. The end of the novel will be nothing like the start. I truly wish I could give away the gothic creepiness we find at the end of the book, but all I can say is it’s modern meets ancient. Just remember, other countries in the world are extremely old compared to the United States and we never know what lurks in the dark recesses of archaic times (especially when they have access to modern transportation and technology)!
Which reminds me, I am looking forward to much, much more from the dark recesses of Jonathan Moore’s mind. I bet he’s got some great story lines of murder and mayhem mixed-up with malicious monstrous intent! Moore’s creepy crime thriller, with some suspenseful twists and turns leading to the horrible, should be on your must read list next! Grab a stiff drink, your snuggie and socks, and tuck in tight with Redheads–it will a book you won’t soon forget! Especially if you have a nice head of red hair…..
Stay tuned for my exclusive interview with Jonathan Moore, coming soon!
Chris Wilcox has been searching for years, so he knows a few things about his wife’s killer. Cheryl Wilcox wasn’t the first. All the victims were redheads. All eaten alive and left within a mile of the ocean. The trail of death crosses the globe and spans decades.
The cold trail catches fire when Chris and two other survivors find a trace of the killer’s DNA. By hiring a cutting-edge lab to sequence it, they make a terrifying discovery. The killer is far more dangerous than they ever guessed. And now they’re being hunted by their own prey.
Author Jonathan Moore, Biography~
Before completing law school in New Orleans, he was an English teacher, a whitewater raft guide on the Rio Grande, a counselor at a Texas wilderness camp for juvenile delinquents, and an investigator for a criminal defense attorney in Washington, D.C.
He has yet to put much info up about himself online!