The Killer on the Wall by Emma Kavanagh



The first body comes as a shock.

The second brings horror.

The third signals the beginning of a nightmare.

When fifteen-year-old Isla Bell finds three bodies propped against Hadrian’s Wall, her whole world falls apart. In such a close-knit community, everyone knows the victims, and the man who did it.

Twenty years on and Isla has dedicated her life to forensic psychology; studying the brains of serial killers, and even coming face to face with the convicted murderer who turned her world upside down. She is safe after all, with him behind bars.

Then another body appears against the Wall.

And another.

As the nightmare returns and the body count rises, everyone in town is a suspect.


I’m not really sure where to start with this review. I think the overwhelming feeling I’m left with after finishing this book, is one of disappointment.

Twenty years ago, fifteen year old Isla goes for a run and finds three bodies propped up against Hadrian’s Wall. Living in a small village, everyone knows the victims and the man who did it. But now, all these years later, another body is found at the wall. Is there a copycat? Was the wrong person convicted?

On a positive note, I really like Emma Kavanagh’s writing style. It’s immensely descriptive and atmospheric. The story of The Killer on the Wall is dark, haunting and disturbing. I felt it had a lot of potential but I’m not sure my expectations were fulfilled.

First of all, I didn’t really enjoy all the different points of view. It wasn’t quite working for me. This was not helped at all by the fact that there isn’t a single character to like or connect with. If I’m pressed to choose, I’d go with Mina who doesn’t give up looking for the truth, no matter where it may lead her or what the consequences may be.

I felt that overall, this story was lacking some oomph. I was expecting the pace to pick up at some point but that didn’t really happen. Personally, I wasn’t at all surprised to see who the killer was as I’d had an inkling from the start. But I would have liked to have known more about the “why” of it all. That fell a little flat for me.

However, and this is why I started with a positive note, I would read another book by this author again because I do really like her writing style. This book just wasn’t for me.

The Killer On The Wall was published in April.

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10 thoughts on “The Killer on the Wall by Emma Kavanagh

  1. This one didn’t work for me either, and I think I had pretty much the same arguments in my review. Especially the why was unsatisfying for me. I have read The Missing Hours by this author before this one though and that one was much better so I’m happy to hear you won’t give up on this author!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. In an odd way, I’m always a little relieved to see it wasn’t just me. Especially because it was getting some great reviews at the start. But yes, there’s always a next time!

      Thank you for stopping by! Have a great weekend! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Excellent critique, Dee. You hit the highs and the lows really well! I loved After We Fall (Falling), but that one had some likeable characters to cheer for. I have to have that.

    Liked by 1 person

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