Social Media Icons

Thursday, May 27, 2021

#ATBR2021 Review: Kill All Your Darlings by David Bell

Kill All Your Darlings
by David Bell

Huge thanks to GetRedPR for this copy and IG Live with the author.

Publisher: Berkley
Publish Date: July 6, 2021
416 Pages
Genre: Thriller

When a student disappears and is presumed dead, her professor passes off her manuscript as his own--only to find out it implicates him in an unsolved murder in this new thriller from the USA Today bestselling author of The Request.

After years of struggling to write following the deaths of his wife and son, English professor Connor Nye publishes his first novel, a thriller about the murder of a young woman.

There's just one problem: Connor didn't write the book. His missing student did. And then she appears on his doorstep, alive and well, threatening to expose him.

Connor's problems escalate when the police insist details in the novel implicate him in an unsolved murder from two years ago. Soon Connor discovers the crime is part of a disturbing scandal on campus and faces an impossible dilemma--admit he didn't write the book and lose his job or keep up the lie and risk everything. When another murder occurs, Connor must clear his name by unraveling the horrifying secrets buried in his student's manuscript.

This is a suspenseful, provocative novel about the sexual harassment that still runs rampant in academia--and the lengths those in power will go to cover it up.

My Review:

Imaging mourning the loss of your wife and child and having the added pressure of having to publish in order to reach tenure at your Uni. Imagine a star pupil of yours drops a hand written novel in your lap as her thesis but then happens to go missing and is presumed dead. Um, problem... meet solution. But solution becomes problem again when missing/presumed dead girl shows up at his house. INSTANT HOOK!

Y’all - the synopsis of this books tells a lot about the story, but not *quite* everything and the trio we as readers take us fun, fun, fun! Oh, did I mention that the book also describes a murder that happened IRL in detail and now he’s a suspect? EEP! We get Madeleine’s (not so missing girl) past & present POVs and Connor (widower and plagiarizer) & Rebecca’s (writing student) present POV. But can we talk about the true star, Grendel? I mean, pets are always the star, am I right? 😏. Whatever, he’s adorable and I love his name!

Look, Bell brings us yet another binge worthy thriller that touches on grief, writer’s block, plagiarism and the all too real issue of harassment of all kinds inside the academic world. With the different POVs, there’s overlapping stories which can feel repetitive but lends to the story itself. I do think it could’ve been trimmed down a bit but reads so fast that this is just being nit picky. I wasn’t expecting that final twist and I wish we got a *bit* more to make it more plausible but honestly, in thrillers, if the characters didn’t surprise us... well, what fun is that? 😏


Jessica's Review:

Another thriller from David Bell that did not disappoint! If you’re wanting something you can binge with plenty of good twists and suspense, then you can never go wrong with picking a book by David Bell. KILL ALL YOUR DARLINGS is no different and we’re brought into the academic world where plagiarism and a disappearance are the focus. What would you do if the perfect story fell into your lap?

English Professor Connor Nye is struggling. Not only is he grieving the death of his wife and son but the pressure is mounting for him to be published to secure his tenure at the university. Dealing with writer’s block, the perfect manuscript crosses his desk in the form of a student’s senior thesis. Madeline goes missing and Connor saw his opportunity and took it – “My Best Friend’s Murder” is now his best-selling novel and everything is looking up. Years later, the presumed dead, Madeline shows up on his doorstep demanding the credit and fame that was rightfully hers.

As if this isn’t enough, his best-seller has caught the attention of a detective because there are some details in the book that are eerily similar to am old cold case. Details that only the killer would know as they were left out of any reports to the public, so naturally he’s become a person of interest. Is Madeline involved? How can he implicate her without admitting to his plagiarism?

I loved this and the suspense. Definitely one you’ll want to clear some time out for. I feel like there could have been shorter in some places but otherwise the POVs we got were great and really kept the pace up. And now the wait begins for the next David Bell release!

4 stars 

1 comment:

  1. Adding this to my TBR!! THAT COVER is lovely!! Awesome review!