- Author: Ian David Noakes
- Series: Standalone (Hoping to read more of the MC, though!)
- Published: June 30th, 2014 by Austin Macauley
- Reviewed: May 4th, 2017
- Tags: Horror | Thriller | Suspense | Mystery | Supernatural | Dark | Japanese Folklore
- Recommended to: Mystery/ suspense fans that like a supernatural element
- Content warning: Graphic Violence | Sex (dark vanilla | Dick-biting😱 … & eating.
- Overall Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
- Note after the last page: It’s almost 12am. I’m going to bed. So glad I’m a female. ‘Honey, bring the bat.’
I bet men read this clutching their jewels in horror and sleep with the light on. Not that it stopped the thing hounding the male residents of Hourglass Heights. They just got a good view of her before nails, teeth & shocking strength destroyed them.
Who is brutally murdering the male residents of the Hourglass Heights apartment complex? At first glance, it would appear that their spouses are the killers, but Detective Marcia Tanaka believes that a serial killer is responsible.
Through the course of her investigation, Detective Tanaka is pulled into a world of Japanese folklore and the supernatural as she explores the darker side of relationships, sex and psyche. She must learn to defeat her own personal demons before she can defeat one that is far more sinister.
The story is told from the protagonist, Tanaka’s, POV, while the supporting characters in Third. It suited this story perfectly, the characters were vivid, entertaining and fleshed out well.
Tanaka? Well, she followed her father’s footsteps in becoming a detective and she’s a very flawed one at that. I loved the gritty, honest journey she had. At first, she seemed to be a car crash waiting to happen, punishing herself for the death of her father as she spiralled in her sorrow and guilt. Then explored feelings, relationships and self-awareness pushed her development to where she was still flawed, but fierce as hell. I was completely taken with her and would love to read more about her adventures. I had hoped another character would join her in future adventures, perhaps seeking out the same kind of troubles… Regardless, I’ll be excited to see more of this character.
The plot in itself unravelled perfectly and was all kinds of dark, think (original) Grudge meets Basic Instinct. Throughout, I kept wondering how on earth they’re going to stop
the murders from happening while noticing I had sweaty palms when the Siren appeared.
I think the erotica tag it may get needs to be left behind, though. There’s a lot of sex, but this story won’t turn you on. In fact, for Tanaka, I wanted her to have some enjoyable/ or gentle loving amongst the (rough) one night stands she punished herself with. But at the same time as one did unravel, I kept thinking don’t fuck him, don’t you do it! Because I knew what intimacy brought the men in Hourglass Heights: graphic mutilation and death.
The paperback arrived yesterday and I read it in one evening. It sucked me in the moment I began the first page and didn’t let go until I was looking over my shoulder as I went up the stairs to bed. The pace drags you around like an empty tracksuit: fast, slow, up, down, and the conclusion ticked all the boxes for me. I think this is a superb debut from Ian David Noakes and I’ll be keeping my eyes open for more adventures with Marcia Tanaka.
The cover: underwhelming/ blurry image, same font. (IMO) I think it may get skimmed over. Which is such a shame because the content is fantastic.
Oh shit, that’s gotta hurt.
EDIT: Guys! I usually add GIF’s to reviews, as you know. I hunted some from the Grudge & went to make my own but fuck that shit. I reiterate that is what I deem the Siren is like. *Cringes*