The Watcher in the Wall, Owen Laukkanen

The Watcher in the Wall*Minor Spoiler Alert*   The Watcher in the Wall is the fifth book in the Stevens/ Windermere series.  Like the rest, it can be a stand-alone novel, having just enough back stories for everything to mesh well.  I feel, though, that this would be a disservice.  One of the best things about the series is the play and interaction between the characters; and this one had less of it.  In fact, you might walk away thinking less of Carla Windermere.

There’s a chat forum on line for everything these days- even death.    Adrian Miller is a young teenager who is constantly bullied.  The one friend he thought he had turned his back on him.  All there is left for him is this forum, this site, one girl.  A suicide pact.  She wants to watch him hang himself to screw up her courage.  He records it all for her with his web cam.

Andrea, Steven’s daughter, is his class mate.  She feels hurt and remorse- wants the guilty party to pay.  How do you tell your teen daughter there is no guilty party in a suicide?  She wants the jocks that drove him to suicide punished, but that won’t do.  Stevens fears having to tell his daughter his hands are tied until a student comes up talking about the suicide forum.  Looking into it, they learn about the girl from the pact.  Convinced she is another victim, one they might save, they leap into action.  Ashley Frey must be saved.

What if, though, Ashley isn’t in danger?  What if she doesn’t exist?  The more they dig into this site the more they realize that they have a problem.  The girl they want to save is a perpetrator, luring kids into suicide and selling films of their death.  It is a race against the clock to find this killer before they can do it all again.

I don’t want to give too much away, so I will leave it at that.  I loved the book.  While it wasn’t my favorite of the series (Windermere may have gone from bad-cop to lunatic-cop a few too many times), I feel like it was good and necessary for the advancement of the series.  You see some of the “supercop’s” issues, her pain, and get to know her better.  With the next book in the series (and there had better be one), we should see a lot of personal growth there.

This book came out last Tuesday (3-15-2016).  I highly recommend it- heck, go get the whole series!  You won’t be sorry.

On the adult content scale I give it a seven.  Obviously, it has a lot of violence.  The language is there, but minimal considering.

Link to book:

Amazon Kindle


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