Gallery, Threshold, Pocket Books
From the author of the acclaimed suspense novels Creep and Freak and whom Jeffery Deaver has praised as a “top of the line thriller writer,” The Butcher is a high-octane novel about lethal secrets that refuse to die—until they kill again.
A rash of grisly serial murders plagued Seattle until the infamous “Beacon Hill Butcher” was finally hunted down and killed by police chief Edward Shank in 1985. Now, some thirty years later, Shank, retired and widowed, is giving up his large rambling Victorian house to his grandson Matt, whom he helped raise.
Settling back into his childhood home and doing some renovations in the backyard to make the house feel like his own, Matt, a young up-and-coming chef and restaurateur, stumbles upon a locked crate he’s never seen before. Curious, he picks the padlock and makes a discovery so gruesome it will forever haunt him… Faced with this deep dark family secret, Matt must decide whether to keep what he knows buried in the past, go to the police, or take matters into his own hands.
Meanwhile Matt’s girlfriend, Sam, has always suspected that her mother was murdered by the Beacon Hill Butcher—two years after the supposed Butcher was gunned down. As she pursues leads that will prove her right, Sam heads right into the path of Matt’s terrible secret.
A thriller with taut, fast-paced suspense, and twists around every corner, The Butcher will keep you guessing until the bitter, bloody end.
A love hate relationship with this book:
I have been ruminating over my opinion about this novel for several days and I am still unsure how I feel about this narrative; I loved the premise, I enjoyed some of the characters – I think that the character of The Butcher was a true and vile picture of evilness and horror, (I thought the reveal re the wife’s death early in the piece was dynamic and so unexpected) this character was so well done, yet some of the other characters I thought were a little stereotyped and flat.
There were elements the narrative that was compelling and then a lot that wasn’t. And the biggest let down was I guessed (no reveals here) about Lucy and the final reveal involving Matt and that was disappointing; I like to be surprised and unaware of such things until the very end of a story. Maybe I had too high an expectation of this novel, consequently I have mixed feelings, and maybe the best way to sum this up the writing is inconsistent with a brilliant characterisation of evilness.