It’s my turn on the blog tour for Keeper by Johana Gustawsson today and I’m so incredibly excited, I may just burst! My thanks to Karen Sullivan at Orenda and Anne Cater for the invitation to join and the fabulous review copy!
Author : Johana Gustawsson
Title : Keeper
Series : Roy & Castells #2
Pages : 303
Publisher : Orenda Books
Publication date : February 15, 2018 ebook | April 28, 2018 paperback
Whitechapel, 1888: London is bowed under Jack the Ripper’s reign of terror.
London, 2015: actress Julianne Bell is abducted in a case similar to the terrible Tower Hamlets murders of some ten years earlier, and harking back to the Ripper killings of a century before.
Falkenberg, Sweden, 2015: a woman’s body is found mutilated in a forest, her wounds identical to those of the Tower Hamlets victims. With the man arrested for the Tower Hamlets crimes already locked up, do the new killings mean he has a dangerous accomplice, or is a copy-cat serial killer on the loose?
Profiler Emily Roy and true-crime writer Alexis Castells again find themselves drawn into an intriguing case, with personal links that turn their world upside down.
In my review of the previous Roy & Castells book, Block 46, I may have uttered the words “sheer perfection”. Quite frankly, I didn’t think Johana Gustawsson could top that and I wouldn’t need to worry about coming up with an even bigger statement than the one I made at the time. I was wrong. So very, very wrong. Because somehow Johana Gustawsson raised the bar even higher and completely blew me away!
If you’ve read Block 46 (and if you haven’t, I may just have to hurt you), then you know Johana Gustawsson combined crime fiction with events set in World War II, which just happens to be one of my favourite topics to read about. In Keeper, she does it again, by seamlessly and effortlessly combining yet another firm favourite of mine, Victorian era Jack The Ripper murders with current events in Sweden and England. How are these connected, I hear you ask? Well, you’ll just have to pick up the book, won’t you?
I will tell you that what follows is a dark, disturbing and deliciously gruesome tale. From the very first page, Keeper had me in a chokehold and wouldn’t let go. Forget sleep! Seriously! Either you’ll be up all night reading, or you will be haunted by nightmares. I gasped, I felt shocked, I even may have felt a little nauseous at times, uttered the words “bloody hell” and sank a little deeper into my sofa, felt somewhat breathless and most definitely speechless. This is what I look for in my books. An insanely awesome experience, a thrill a minute that has me completely absorbed and leaves me desperately wanting more.
Keeper is intensely gripping, utterly addictive and a compelling page-turner like no other. The relatively short chapters urge you on to read just one more, and then another. Johana Gustawsson’s writing is razor sharp and the investigation will keep you on the edge of your seat, biting your nails, frantically trying to figure out the clues. Just when I thought I had it all figured out, the evil mastermind that is Johana Gustawsson (and really, she looks so sweet!) comes up with an absolutely fantastic conclusion that left me spinning as if I’d just gone on a rollercoaster about twenty times in a row.
In short, I loved it and highly recommend you pick this one up! It is of the sheerest perfection (😉) and will without a doubt be in my top 10 at the end of the year! Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to find a thesaurus. Odds are I’m going to need it for the next instalment in the series.
Born in 1978 in Marseille, France, and a graduate of Political Sciences, Johana Gustawsson was a journalist for television and French press. She now lives in London, England.