The Chain by Adrian McKinty
Genre: Thriller, Suspense, Psychological thriller
BUG Rating: 4/5
Overall: I read this as part of a buddy read with The Lady’s Crime. I was actually reluctant to pick it up – mainly because there had just been SO much hype around it and there’s been a couple of super hyped booked lately that I didn’t think were all that! But … I did thoroughly enjoy this – Tense, gripping and fast-paced would be an understatement!
Number one: you are not the first and you will certainly not be the last. Number two: remember, it’s not about the money—it’s about The Chain.
YOUR PHONE RINGS.
A STRANGER HAS KIDNAPPED YOUR CHILD.
TO FREE THEM YOU MUST ABDUCT SOMEONE ELSE’S CHILD.
YOUR CHILD WILL BE RELEASED WHEN YOUR VICTIM’S PARENTS KIDNAP ANOTHER CHILD.
IF ANY OF THESE THINGS DON’T HAPPEN:
YOUR CHILD WILL BE KILLED.
YOU ARE NOW PART OF THE CHAIN.
The premise for the book was pretty unique – and terrifying. An ordinary family sucked into this ‘chain’ of kidnapping making it feel very real and forces you to question how far would you go to save your child. There were some parts that I thought Really?! Especially around the ‘research’ chapters. But overall I really enjoyed it – I loved the short chapters – making me want to read just one more before bed (2am then comes and goes!). I found it so addictive. I loved the characters, Pete being my favourite, as he struggles with his return from the Marines etc. He was such a flawed personality. I also loved the flash backs to the antagonist’s childhood, and think that actually, it could have done with some more of this/character development. To summarise the above ramblings: Plausible, Haunting and Addictive!
Discussion with The Lady’s Crime (McKenna)
Q: What did we think of the books characters? Were they complex? Did we have qualms about them?
M: For me personally I loved our main character, Rachel. She’s a single mom and full time badass who has battled cancer and now must take on The Chain. Without giving too much away, I really liked the main characters, Pete, the junkie ex-marine and ex-brother-in-law who Rachel employs to help her get her daughter Kylie back. Kylie is also a favorite of mine, taking after her mom with her determination and strong will to survive what has happened to her.
S: I did really like Pete, and honestly, I would have liked to have heard more about his story. He was quite a pivotal part of the storyline, it’s a shame there wasn’t a bit more character development on him. Which is actually what I think about the antagonists too – I wanted MORE back story!
Q: How well does the author ratchet up the suspense? Was the book a nice, slow-burn? Or was it an adrenaline pumping, fast-paced page turner?
M: This book had me turning the pages at the speed of light from the first paragraph! This was a very high stakes, fast-paced read and I don’t think this book could be done properly any other way. Adrian McKinty sure does amp up the suspense more and more with each passing page.
S: The pace was pretty fast for me – there was a few chapters earlier on when I thought the pace could have been ramped up a bit, but overall, like Mckenna said – the book had me turning the pages at the speed of light too. I’ll definitely be checking out some of Adrian’s other books.
Q: A good ending is the key to every great book. Do you feel like the ending did the book justice?
M: Honestly, I loved the book up until the last few pages. I was extremely let down by the ending. I loved the way the last few chapters leading up to the real ending played out and I feel like the book should have been stopped there. Unfortunately, the ending was a flop for me.
S: I kind of feel the opposite to this, for me the ending was good – it wasn’t great because in a way I felt it wrapped up just too fast, and probably linking in with my earlier comment, there could have been a few more flashbacks of the villains.
Q: What are your overall thoughts and feelings of the book?
M: I really did like this book! It has all of the components of a good thriller book for me; fast-paced, children in danger (I’m weird, yes, I know), and dodgy, unreliable characters. I would highly recommend it to anybody looking for a fast paced thrill and I can say that this won’t be my last Adrian McKinty novel, that’s for certain!
S: I really enjoyed the book! My thoughts are above, but what I really enjoyed was actually reading this as a buddy read – it was really great to discuss as we went along all our ‘OMG/wow’ moments as we went through the book!
To read Mckenna’s full review, head over to The Lady’s Crime Blog here.