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The Killing Game by J. A. Kerley

The Killing Game

Part of the Carson Ryder Series
Thriller / Suspense   Books of the Month   Crime / Mystery   eBook Favourites   
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Selected by Sarah Broadhurst

July 2013 Book of the Month.

Another Ryder/Nautilus case with an interesting new recruit, Wendy Holliday, who hopefully will continue through forthcoming thrillers. Detective Carson Ryder's reputation is on the line when a sociopathic Romanian serial killer embarks on a personal vendetta, constructing his crimes to hit Carson's weak spot. Sarah Broadhurst said of the book ‘It is ace’.

reader reviews

In addition to our Lovereading expert opinion for The Killing Game a small number of Lovereading members were lucky enough to be invited to review this title - 'Tense, gritty, unputdownable, not to mention just a little bit gruesome at times, if you enjoy gripping serial killer dramas, then this is the novel for you' - Nicola Foster. Scroll down to read more reviews.

If you like J. A. Kerley you might also like to read books by Chris Carter, Richard Montanari and Jonathan Kellerman.

Who is Sarah Broadhurst


The Killing Game by J. A. Kerley

After a humiliating encounter with a cop, Romanian immigrant Gregory Nieves launches a vendetta against the Mobile Police Department, Alabama. Nieves can't fight a department, so he selects one man who symbolizes all men in blue: Carson Ryder, the MPD's specialist in bizarre and twisted crimes. Carson has never seen a killing spree like this one: Nothing connects the victims, the murder weapon is always different, and the horrific crime scenes are devoid of evidence. It almost seems he's being taunted. Even laughed at. Carson doesn't know it yet, but he is caught up in a sadistic game of life and death. And there can only be one victor...


We have asked a select number of members and browsers to review The Killing Game. You can read their reviews below.

JB Johnston - 'If you like a good old cat and mouse cop thriller then this is the book for you! I enjoyed the book so much I think I’ll read the others in the series now.' Click here to read the full review.'

Tracey Poulter
- 'In The Killing Game the killer is revealed to you at an early stage, so you can observe the investigation knowing that you know all the answers – but do you?' Click here to read the full review.'

Cyllene Griffiths - 'This physiological detective story is a real thriller indeed... Don’t read this late at night but do enjoy this well crafted detective novel. Click here to read the full review.'

Nicola Foster - 'Tense, gritty, unputdownable, not to mention just a little bit gruesome at times, if you enjoy gripping serial killer dramas, then this is the novel for you.' Click here to read the full review.

Peter Land -
'The Killing Game is an exciting read, where the reader has the advantage of knowing who the perpetrator is and can follow the police investigation as Ryder pursues wrong hunches and stumbles towards the truth.' Click here to read the full review.

Lynda DeFreitas -
'It was hard to put down and I read on until the early hours of the morning. The twist at the end was impossible to predict and made this book a winner...If you are a thriller fan, read this book. You won't be disappointed.' Click here to read the full reivew.

Nailah Afghan - 'The Killing Game is a thrilling, adrenaline pumping book that deals with members of society most would like to forget...a well-written novel perfect for deep thinking readers.' Click here to read the full review.

Jillian McFrederick - 'Well told and riveting, you will love this if you like psychological unmissable holiday read.' Click here to read the full review.

Reba Khatun - 'It's well written and fast paced and although there are other books before this one I was able to follow the storyline. I would definitely read the other Ryder books in the series.' Click here to read the full review.

Donna Smith
- 'The story itself is very good, is well thought through and brought together and the ending leaves me wanting to read the next one as it clearly has a link to the next book.' Click here to read the full review.

Angela Hunt - 'You don't need to have read any of the previous Ryder books. If I hadn't read any of his previous books, I would still be able to follow this. As with any books about serial killers, it can be gruesome at times, but it is central to the storyline.' Click here to read the full review.

Edel Waugh -
'The story pulls you in slowly and is told in two ways, by the officers trying to apprehend a killer and from the killer’s point of view...Highly recommend to those who like their fiction on the disturbing side.' Click here to read the full review.

Linda Rollins -
'I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Carson Ryder investigates a series of brutal and seemingly random murders...I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys intense crime thrillers.' Click here to read the full review.

Julie Bickerdyke -
'This story had my attention right from the start and it never let up. A fast moving and exciting thriller that keeps you guessing all the way.' Click here to read the full review.

Judith Cooper -
'I love the fact that there are many twists and turns and the plot is never obvious. This is a gripping read that will keep you guessing to the very end. Not for the fainthearted or squeamish. Highly recommended.' Click here to read the full review.

Phylippa Smithson -
'I am keen lover of murder-mystery literature and of late been hooked on the excellent works coming from writers hailing from the Nordics and Iceland. However, some plots from US crime writers are also very good. Unfortunately, I did not find J A Kerley’s The Killing Game one of them.' Click here to read the full review.


Praise for the Carson Ryder series:

'Superb stuff
Independent on Sunday

'Kerley will truly scare the pants off his readers. This one's another winner from a writer moving towards the top of the thriller heap'
Publishers Weekly

'Kerley, who writes like a house fire, has a boundless and truly ghastly imagination that'll keep you awake long after you turn the last page'
Kirkus Reviews

'A fascinating and frightening take on the genre'
Independent on Sunday

'A chilling journey into a pitch-black mind'
Michael Marshall, author of The Straw Men trilogy

'A sturdy hero with a clearcut mission and a setting that holds possibilities for fresh adventure. Kerley writes in a thrusting style that pushes the action from crime scene to autopsy table'
New York Times Book Review

'Superb... fantastic'
Sunday Express

About the Author

J. A. Kerley

Jack Kerley worked in advertising and teaching before becoming a full-time novelist. He lives in Newport, Kentucky, but also spends a good deal of time in Southern Alabama, the setting for his Carson Ryder series, starting with The Hundredth Man. He is married with two children.

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Book Info

Publication date

20th June 2013


J. A. Kerley

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Harper an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers


448 pages


Thriller / Suspense
Books of the Month
Crime / Mystery
eBook Favourites

Thriller / suspense



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