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Caged

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FBI neuroscientist Sayer Altair hunts for evil in the deepest recesses of the human mind. Still reeling from the death of her fiance, she wants nothing more than to focus on her research into the brains of serial killers. But when the Washington D.C. police stumble upon a gruesome murder scene involving a girl who'd been slowly starved to death while held captive in a cage FBI neuroscientist Sayer Altair hunts for evil in the deepest recesses of the human mind. Still reeling from the death of her fiance, she wants nothing more than to focus on her research into the brains of serial killers. But when the Washington D.C. police stumble upon a gruesome murder scene involving a girl who'd been slowly starved to death while held captive in a cage, Sayer is called in to lead the investigation. When the victim is identified as the daughter of a high profile senator, Sayer is thrust into the spotlight. As public pressure mounts, she discovers that another girl has been taken and is teetering on the brink of death. With evidence unraveling around her, Sayer races to save the second victim but soon realizes that they are hunting a killer with a dangerous obsession...a killer who is closer than she thought.


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FBI neuroscientist Sayer Altair hunts for evil in the deepest recesses of the human mind. Still reeling from the death of her fiance, she wants nothing more than to focus on her research into the brains of serial killers. But when the Washington D.C. police stumble upon a gruesome murder scene involving a girl who'd been slowly starved to death while held captive in a cage FBI neuroscientist Sayer Altair hunts for evil in the deepest recesses of the human mind. Still reeling from the death of her fiance, she wants nothing more than to focus on her research into the brains of serial killers. But when the Washington D.C. police stumble upon a gruesome murder scene involving a girl who'd been slowly starved to death while held captive in a cage, Sayer is called in to lead the investigation. When the victim is identified as the daughter of a high profile senator, Sayer is thrust into the spotlight. As public pressure mounts, she discovers that another girl has been taken and is teetering on the brink of death. With evidence unraveling around her, Sayer races to save the second victim but soon realizes that they are hunting a killer with a dangerous obsession...a killer who is closer than she thought.

30 review for Caged

  1. 4 out of 5

    Kendall

    Ellison Cooper's Caged is a well written police driven thriller with a mix of a strong female detective. What I liked about Caged? I really liked how Sayer our main female detective had a strong background in Science. Sayer studies serial killers' brains and the general makeup of how it may appear more or less "normal"then what you would see in a non serial killer's brain. This was something I had never seen before in a crime/police procedural novel. The story takes off with two police officers Ellison Cooper's Caged is a well written police driven thriller with a mix of a strong female detective. What I liked about Caged? I really liked how Sayer our main female detective had a strong background in Science. Sayer studies serial killers' brains and the general makeup of how it may appear more or less "normal"then what you would see in a non serial killer's brain. This was something I had never seen before in a crime/police procedural novel. The story takes off with two police officers come across a mysterious crime scene, where Detective Sayer and Vik are called to the crime scene. Sayer finds the body of a women who happens to be the daughter of a strong senator. Sayer's case takes off from here and she wonders are there others that have been murdered/missing etc? So.. some things that I had issues with... typical police procedural aspects to this one. Nothing unique about Sayer's team... I felt it was just different names but the same characters that you always see in police procedurals! I was expecting more of an original/unique set of characters and dialogue. I was a tad bit disappointed. Also, little over half way there was a break in Sayer's case and it was just very unbelievable and little over the top for my taste. I was rolling my eyes big time... I would recommend this one to those that have not dived too deep into the police/thriller procedural novels and are ok with dark details to the serial killer's crimes. Overall, 3 stars for this one. Thank you so much to Netgalley and St. Martin's Press/Minotaur books for the opportunity to read this novel in exchange for my honest review. Published to GR: 6/13/18 Publication date: 7/10/18

  2. 4 out of 5

    Meredith B. (readingwithmere)

    4.5 Stars! Whew what a fast past thriller! I flew through this book in about 3ish hours. I also did this as a buddy read with a friend on Instagram and it has been really fun to have someone to talk to about this! Sayer is an FBI Agent. She has had a rough past: her parents died in an accident and her fiancee was shot and killed on an FBI mission. One day she's called into a crime scene and they found a girl who has been starved to death and is in a cage as well as an animal with her. From here th 4.5 Stars! Whew what a fast past thriller! I flew through this book in about 3ish hours. I also did this as a buddy read with a friend on Instagram and it has been really fun to have someone to talk to about this! Sayer is an FBI Agent. She has had a rough past: her parents died in an accident and her fiancee was shot and killed on an FBI mission. One day she's called into a crime scene and they found a girl who has been starved to death and is in a cage as well as an animal with her. From here the investigation begins.. The victim is then identified as a high profile senator's daughter and the media is having a frenzy. The FBI is sweating not knowing who is doing the killings. The team goes through a ton of suspects and has a lot of DNA to back it up, however they start to put the pieces together that something is not adding up. Things are getting leaked minutes after they are discovered and documents are starting to get mishandled. Is this a job of someone inside the team? This book is a crime thriller and I haven't read many crime thrillers before. I was totally engrossed in this the entire time. It's a really fast read so if you're looking for something to fly through. I personally enjoy a fast paced book so this was right up my alley! What I loved about this book was that I thought I predicted the ending but it took a twist right at the very end. I thought I had pinned the character who had done the killings but I ended up being wrong. I really enjoyed the way the chapters ended in this book and that they were short. I felt like at each end of the chapter the author made a character announce that they may have found a new development and this made me want to continue to keep on reading. It's exactly what I enjoy in my thrillers. I also enjoyed the deep dive into the human brain and what characteristics can tell us what we are capable of. This was my first read by Ellison Cooper and I would definitely read more. I suggest if you like crime thrillers to pick this one up. It came out on July 10th!

  3. 3 out of 5

    Carrie

    Caged by Ellison Cooper is a police procedural thriller with a bit of a twist on the lead investigator. Sayer Altair is with the FBI and a neuroscientist that has been doing a study of serial killers or more specifically their brains and trying to find anomalies that would distinguish them from normal human brains. When two patrol officers get a call to an abandoned residence to check out a call to 911 from young girl they find the home closed up tight. Neighbors say they haven’t seen anyone comi Caged by Ellison Cooper is a police procedural thriller with a bit of a twist on the lead investigator. Sayer Altair is with the FBI and a neuroscientist that has been doing a study of serial killers or more specifically their brains and trying to find anomalies that would distinguish them from normal human brains. When two patrol officers get a call to an abandoned residence to check out a call to 911 from young girl they find the home closed up tight. Neighbors say they haven’t seen anyone coming or going there and without a definite point of origin for the call they leave. Twelve days later a call comes in for a horrible smell from the same abandoned home. Not only do they find the body of a young woman but both officers get shot. Sayer Altair gets the call to lead the investigation into the homicide of the girl when it looks as if she was left alone to starve to death in a cage. The victim is soon identified as the daughter of a senator bringing the case into the spotlight and with evidence leading them the wrong direction Sayer finds herself struggling to make sense of the case when another victim is in danger. First I’ll say I’m a bit hit or miss with police procedurals, things need to line up just right to make me love them overall. Caged really started off a strong read and I thought I would fall in love with it but slowly along the way I found little things here and there that brought my rating down a bit with this one. First, I liked the idea of Sayer being a neuroscientist but at times I don’t think i was used enough in the book to make it stand out. The characters in here didn’t really stand out much other than the detail about Sayer so I didn’t really fall in love with them. The author seemed to concentrate on making the investigation feel real and sometimes too many little details get a tad boring to me but on the flip side of that some of the things also didn’t feel believable.. say calling up the lab about a test and they run one while on the phone, er those things take time. So as you can see I was a bit up and down with this story as I was going along. Then I’d say fairly early on for this type of read I saw right through and picked out the killer too. Now there were plenty of suspicions and suspects tossed in so perhaps it was just plain luck but I’d also would have been more excited to be wrong so in the end the book ended up a bit meh for me. I received an advance copy from the publisher via NetGalley. For more review please visit https://carriesbookreviews.com/

  4. 5 out of 5

    Krystin Rachel (Here's The Fucking Twist)

    Blog | Bookstagram Okay, here’s my issue: I really over-hyped myself for this one. I heard “police procedural” and “FBI agent” and “serial killer” and just lost my ever-loving crime fiction booknerd mind, expecting to fall rapidly in love with this; for it to be everything I need a book with those descriptors to be. I consciously recognized that I was doing it, in the moment, and I made a decision to allow myself to be hyped for this. Which in any other circumstance, would have been against my bet Blog | Bookstagram Okay, here’s my issue: I really over-hyped myself for this one. I heard “police procedural” and “FBI agent” and “serial killer” and just lost my ever-loving crime fiction booknerd mind, expecting to fall rapidly in love with this; for it to be everything I need a book with those descriptors to be. I consciously recognized that I was doing it, in the moment, and I made a decision to allow myself to be hyped for this. Which in any other circumstance, would have been against my better judgement. …and almost immediately once I started reading, I needed to readjust my expectations because I knew I would be massively disappointed otherwise. So no, this was not the mind-blowing read I wanted it to be. BUT it was still good and I’m definitely on board for this as a series. It has a very dark atmosphere with a Criminal Minds vibe. Profilers and some bureaucracy, but mostly disturbing puzzles that need solving. And this completely connected with me, bringing together a lot of my favourite things, especially the psychology behind the murders. It’s heavy on the procedural, medium on the twists (focused on the science side of the evidence, and less on physical events) and low thrills. But that’s pretty typical for procedurals. There are some explosions, traps and tricks and disturbing content – namely puppies and kittens in danger that will definitely stir your feels if you are anything like me. Speaking of… let’s talk about that for a second. Because what is WRONG WITH ME? People in cages, dying of starvation and dehydration. Scared and traumatized. Me: Animals in cages, dying of starvation and dehydration. Scared and traumatized. Me: Like, I’m already in therapy so obviously this is not an issue that’s getting fixed. *shrugs* The serial killer is as looney-tunes as they come, doing some “experiments” that were definitely an elevated, original take on serial killer motivation that I found super interesting and occasionally disturbing. With a main character who is a neuroscientist, serial killings that rely heavily on science, and evidence that requires a Ph.D. to figure out, this book does a really good job at breaking those things down into bite-size nuggets that us laymen readers can better digest. If it wasn’t for my husband’s obsession with going into the Peru jungle to do ayahuasca, I wouldn’t have known about DMT and the effects. Seriously, I know way more about psychedelics than I ever really wanted to. I guess that’s what happens when you marry someone who lists Terence McKenna among his heroes. This book started off with a huge bang, no pun intended. It was dark and twisty – just how I like it – totally out of the blue, and I really wish the book had kept more of those kinds of surprises coming without relying on the same concept over and over again. There was an element of danger at first, that then became predictable the further into the story you got, so the suspense of the danger dissipated. Also, I’m not sure if I’m a huge fan of Sayer just yet. I like that she’s a smart, fierce doctor who has a mean streak and comes with some heavy baggage. And I like that she’s a PoC running the team, being in charge and looking to make advancements in science. But, she immediately rubbed me the wrong way with how she treats a puppy from a crime scene. I know that might sound stupid, but I honestly don’t trust people who do not like animals. Although she eventually warmed to the dog, her first reaction to a helpless animal was “ugh, don’t make me deal with this creature. What an unwanted burden” and that stuck with me the whole time. The Curse of the Bad First Impression. Is that a Nancy Drew novel? I also found Sayer lacked humour and was pretty one note in her personality. Nothing about her really popped off the page, even when she was at her most manic during the investigation. The flow to which she got to that place didn’t exist, so instead of feeling like we travelled to a new level of her genuine personality, it comes across more like, “this is how other authors would write this moment, so it’s how I’m going to write it.” All it took to undo this was a little more finesse in terms of keeping her personality obvious and canon. It felt like a missed opportunity to really make Sayer a character who could rev up a reader’s adrenaline and admiration. On the whole, that really is the only downside to this novel. It could have used a tad more description and a little bit more personality from all the players. For me, a police procedural can quickly become a five-star read when the characters stand out with unique, tangible traits that can easily define them in the reader’s imagination. Otherwise, the interactions take on a mundane, cardboard quality. A “going through the motions” feel, like the author has watched and read a million other stories in the genre and was just copying what they think they’re supposed to do. The humour feels stale, and the interactions manufactured. I had less of a chance to emotionally connect to the outcome of the novel because I couldn’t get myself care about who was involved all the way. Sayer didn’t feel completely knowable. There was a large chunk of her inner monologue that should have been expressed but wasn’t. Even characters who are emotionally shutdown because of trauma, like Sayer, can be knowable given the right information and reactions. Yes, I get that she can be obsessive about a case and angry at the drop of the hat, but that felt like surface information, pretty typical of these kinds of novels. I wanted more depth. I need more depth from what I read. And often that affects my rating. With just a little bit more time taken to flesh out the characters and make them their own people, to express thoughts and feelings in a more genuine way, and work on the dialogue so it didn’t feel so robotic/stereotypical, I think this book would have been a near perfect read. As it is, the crimes are twisted, the motivation is stunning and the writing is crisp and clean. It felt original in terms of plot, even if it lacked the originality with the characters on the board. Decidedly, a read worthy of your time. 4 Stars. book source: St. Martin’s Press via NetGalley in exchange for a review.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Sarah Joint

    A finely crafted and disturbing thriller with an incredibly likable main character. Instead of being your run of the mill detective, Sayer is a neuroscientist with the FBI. She holds a special interest in serial killers... more specifically, the brains of serial killers. She's working on proving a theory, but it's not working out quite as well as she had hoped. We're all used to damaged female detectives, but Cooper adds enough to Sayer to make her feel fresh while still relying on the tragic pa A finely crafted and disturbing thriller with an incredibly likable main character. Instead of being your run of the mill detective, Sayer is a neuroscientist with the FBI. She holds a special interest in serial killers... more specifically, the brains of serial killers. She's working on proving a theory, but it's not working out quite as well as she had hoped. We're all used to damaged female detectives, but Cooper adds enough to Sayer to make her feel fresh while still relying on the tragic past authors often use. I think this is an impressive debut. It certainly kept me reading, and my guesses about the ending were dead wrong. This case was always going to make headlines: a young woman's body has been found in a cage, starved and trapped But this case won't go away until it's solved: the young woman was the daughter of a politician. It'll stay in the papers until the killer is brought to justice, not only because of the grisliness of the crime but because of who she was. Sayer is uniquely qualified for the case, and is pulled from her work trying to prove her serial killer theory to solve it. Just as the pressure from the public reaches a breaking point, they discover another girl has been taken. Since the first young woman suffered for quite some time, they have a chance of finding her... even if she's in a cage, wishing she were dead. Will they get to her before it's too late? There was a lot here I liked! I found the main character to be really interesting. Her co-workers need to be fleshed out more, and I hope they will be in the next book. That's right - hopefully we will get more of Sayer! I'm down to read the next book for sure. I can only hope it'll keep me on the edge of my seat as much as this one. I also particularly enjoyed the legends from different cultures represented. And if you add in some lovable animals to any book, it's going to make me like it just a little bit more. (I know, that doesn't seem to fit with the rest of the storyline, but you'll see.) I received a copy of this book from Net Galley and Minotaur Books with St. Martin's Press. Thank you! My opinion is honest and unbiased.

  6. 3 out of 5

    Julie

    This book really captures all the crime TV vibes... think Criminal Mind, which is one of my favorite shows so major win for me.  If you too are a fan of shows such as this than CAGED need to make its way into your life as soon as humanly possible. Ellison Cooper being a debut novelist came as a bit of a surprise to me. Her writing is clean, and the story line flowed with ease. What set Ellison apart is that the events that take place within this story are gore to the core, but are logic and not This book really captures all the crime TV vibes... think Criminal Mind, which is one of my favorite shows so major win for me.  If you too are a fan of shows such as this than CAGED need to make its way into your life as soon as humanly possible. Ellison Cooper being a debut novelist came as a bit of a surprise to me. Her writing is clean, and the story line flowed with ease. What set Ellison apart is that the events that take place within this story are gore to the core, but are logic and not a complete stretch of the imagination. There is just the right amount of thrills, gore, and electrifying suspense. What a mind trick Ellison Cooper plays on her reader! There were SO many times that I thought I was on to who the sociopath committing all these murders was, and while I did catch on before the reveal, it was shocking it took me as long as it did with all the subtle clues that I had missed.  I also am a sucker for novels with a strong female lead and CAGED most certainly has just that with our main female detective, Sayer. I kind of wish this was a series because I ended this wanting to continue stalking out serial killers with Sayer.  "I prefer to edify my mind rather than fill it with tripe and horror." Front start to finish this novel had me captivated. There was not a moment where I wanted to pause the action that just kept elevating all the way to its satisfying ending. While I wish that there was further elaboration on the topic in which this novel ends, it was a satisfying cliffhanger. This ending will leave you pleading for more. I cannot wait to get my hands on whatever Ellison releases next. I'll leave you with this passage from CAGED where I feel Ellison described her very own book perfectly : "it was like writing a mystery novel: throw in a few red herrings, a few exciting breakthrough...honestly its better than any of those crime drama TV shows" Blog | Instagram | Twitter

  7. 3 out of 5

    Dennis

    If you like the show Mindhunter, look no further because Caged is ready to deliver you to the world of crime-fiction, meets police drama. Ellison Cooper's debut novel takes place in Washington DC, focusing on FBI neuroscientist Sayer Altair and the police force investigating true crime in the area. After two police officers stumble on a mysterious crime scene, agent Sayer Altair and Vik are staffed to figure out what happened. Sayer is still coping with the death of her fiance Jake, and in the If you like the show Mindhunter, look no further because Caged is ready to deliver you to the world of crime-fiction, meets police drama. Ellison Cooper's debut novel takes place in Washington DC, focusing on FBI neuroscientist Sayer Altair and the police force investigating true crime in the area. After two police officers stumble on a mysterious crime scene, agent Sayer Altair and Vik are staffed to figure out what happened. Sayer is still coping with the death of her fiance Jake, and in the midst of providing research on murderers and their genetic differences to why and how they can commit these heinous crimes. Once engulfed into the crime scene, Sayer finds the body of daughter Gwendolyn Van Hurst, the daughter of a media hungry senator. Gwendolyn has been missing for a year now, and her discovery just begins to form new questions about a mysterious case. Are they dealing with a serial killer? Are there other victims? And who is the mastermind in this whole production? I'm very surprised that Caged is a debut novel, because Ellison Cooper's writing is very crisp and smart—she can tell a story while it crafts in your imagination. While Caged is dark and mysteriously, it's plagued by police procedural/detective novel clichés. Without spilling too many of them in this review, Sayer comes from a rough past, no matter how privileged her upbringing. Also, the relationship between Sayer and her team in the DC FBI is just so standard and typical of crime-fiction novels, that you can literally take the dialogue, switch out the names of the people, and BAM it's the next crime-fiction novel at your fingertips. I was expecting more original dialogue and a more interesting arc. A little over halfway through, a break in the case is so unbelievable that I knew I just needed to get this story over with. That being said, the crimes committed in Caged were dark, disturbing, and yet oh so intriguing. This is definitely not the type of book that you'd read late at night without checking behind the shower curtain beforehand. I kind of got OA (on Netflix) vibes while reading about the victims. Caged provides the shock value that readers come to expect with this genre. I would recommend readers to pick up Caged if they haven't dabbled too far into the crime fiction novel, but have a strong stomach for the grotesque.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Dee Arr

    I was doing well, enjoying “Caged” and guessing along with the agents who the killer might be and what could be done to save the next potential victim. Unfortunately, the one thing I hoped wouldn’t happen, happened. The story is very good, and the cast of characters have enough separation of personalities to keep them from blending together. The main character, Sayer, has personal issues that wind into her life without overshadowing the action (which is a welcome change from many of the special I was doing well, enjoying “Caged” and guessing along with the agents who the killer might be and what could be done to save the next potential victim. Unfortunately, the one thing I hoped wouldn’t happen, happened. The story is very good, and the cast of characters have enough separation of personalities to keep them from blending together. The main character, Sayer, has personal issues that wind into her life without overshadowing the action (which is a welcome change from many of the special agent/detective novels on the market). While the serial killer idea has been done, author Ellison Cooper adds a few twists that make this story her own. What I suspected might happen to the plot direction suddenly became more reality than fear. Like all readers, I enjoy when the author can devise a twist that is totally unexpected yet still makes sense. In her attempt to fool the reader, Ms. Cooper has elevated this story to the fantastic (as in unreal) level, forcing me to accept a possibility that frays the last remaining strands of my belief structure. Could this story happen? Maybe…possibly…then again… What kept me reading until the end (and why I will recommend this book) is that despite the plot twist, Ms. Cooper’s writing saves the story from becoming a crash-and-burn. All the pieces tie together neatly, justifying the killer’s identity and providing an ending that, while unrealistic, still appears logical. The author even drops clues along the way, daring us to guess (good luck to you, I wasn’t even close). Bottom Line: “Caged” is an enjoyable, satisfactory read, a crime thriller that will wrap you up in its structure and force you to keep reading until the last page. Even with the issue I described above, it is impossible to give this book less than four stars. My thanks to St. Martin's Press and NetGalley for a complimentary advance copy of this book.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Laura Rash

    This was really different. A new twist to a detective thriller with a “bad guy” I didn’t guess after assuming the whole time I had it figured out early on. This kind of eludes to another book & I’m hoping that is so. Thanks to Minotaur for this early copy:)

  10. 4 out of 5

    Brandy

    Wow! Wow! Ummmm.... yeah.... Wow! Caged was a pulse pounding, edge of your seat, who the hell done it, I didn’t see that coming thriller! It kept me guessing the entire read. It has all the mix needed for a good read: a strong female FBI agent with a twisty past, a sick twisted psychopath killer running wild, as well as a fun mix of other characters to keep you reading and keep you entertained. 5 stars for this one! Loved it!❤ Wow! Wow! Ummmm.... yeah.... Wow! Caged was a pulse pounding, edge of your seat, who the hell done it, I didn’t see that coming thriller! It kept me guessing the entire read. It has all the mix needed for a good read: a strong female FBI agent with a twisty past, a sick twisted psychopath killer running wild, as well as a fun mix of other characters to keep you reading and keep you entertained. 5 stars for this one! Loved it!❤️

  11. 4 out of 5

    Steffi

    4.5 Ich lese in letzter Zeit eigentlich nur noch selten Thriller, aber ab und an spricht mich dann doch mal ein Klappentext an, so auch "Todeskäfig". Von Beginn an hat sowohl die Geschichte als auch der Schreibstil der Autorin sehr gut gefallen und ich mochte das Buch nicht wirklich aus der Hand legen. Der Fall ist spannend und überzeugt mit einigen Ungewöhnlichkeiten. Man erfährt in dem Buch viele interessante Fakten sowohl zur Neurologie als auch Mythologie. Dies fand ich eine sehr spannende Kom 4.5 Ich lese in letzter Zeit eigentlich nur noch selten Thriller, aber ab und an spricht mich dann doch mal ein Klappentext an, so auch "Todeskäfig". Von Beginn an hat sowohl die Geschichte als auch der Schreibstil der Autorin sehr gut gefallen und ich mochte das Buch nicht wirklich aus der Hand legen. Der Fall ist spannend und überzeugt mit einigen Ungewöhnlichkeiten. Man erfährt in dem Buch viele interessante Fakten sowohl zur Neurologie als auch Mythologie. Dies fand ich eine sehr spannende Kombination. Zudem fand ich die Ermittlerin Sayer Altair sehr sympathisch. Sie hat ihre Eigenarten und ebenfalls ihre Päckchen zu tragen, ohne die kommt ein Ermittler heutzutage wohl nicht mehr aus, aber sehr sympathisch fand ich, dass sie dennoch eine nette und umgängliche Frau ist. Nichts kann ich weniger leiden, wenn die Ermittler völlig in Selbstmitleid versinken, so war dies ein sehr positives Merkmal für mich. An mancher Stelle hätte ich gerne noch einen Tick mehr Spannung vertragen, auch wenn man sich niemals sicher sein konnte, wer der Täter ist, so hatte man doch manchmal einen richtigen Gedankengang. "Todeskäfig" war für mich endlich mal wieder ein Top Thriller und ich freue mich auf weitere Fälle mit Sayer Altair.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Jessica Woodbury

    While I see this referred to as a "procedural," I wouldn't put it in that bucket. To me this falls firmly into "thriller." Yes, it does follow an investigation from the inside, but when I think Procedural I think of a slow series of steps and a close-ish to reality plot. This is not that. This is a Thriller where there's a new twist every five pages, with short chapters, and a highly unrealistic story. I keep waiting for the Thriller that really does it for me, but this wasn't it sadly. The setu While I see this referred to as a "procedural," I wouldn't put it in that bucket. To me this falls firmly into "thriller." Yes, it does follow an investigation from the inside, but when I think Procedural I think of a slow series of steps and a close-ish to reality plot. This is not that. This is a Thriller where there's a new twist every five pages, with short chapters, and a highly unrealistic story. I keep waiting for the Thriller that really does it for me, but this wasn't it sadly. The setup was way too out there, the neuroscience hook was not scientific (oh no, 3 out of 12 don't fit my hypothesis, I must throw out the whole idea, honey that's not how science works), and the ticking clock didn't add to the stakes. This is how I react to most thrillers, though. So if Thrillers are your jam, this will probably suit you just fine.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Jay -hooked on books

    Sayer Altair is a neuroscientist with the FBI. When the body of a young woman is found, abducted and subsequently left to starve to death in a metal cage in an abandoned house, Sayer gets called in to lead the investigation. As a researcher who studies serial killer brains, Sayer has come across gruesome homicide cases, but it is soon evident that this investigation she's leading will surpass all other cases in its infamy and depravity. The stakes are upped when the investigators realise there's Sayer Altair is a neuroscientist with the FBI. When the body of a young woman is found, abducted and subsequently left to starve to death in a metal cage in an abandoned house, Sayer gets called in to lead the investigation. As a researcher who studies serial killer brains, Sayer has come across gruesome homicide cases, but it is soon evident that this investigation she's leading will surpass all other cases in its infamy and depravity. The stakes are upped when the investigators realise there's a young woman who could be alive, but well at the brink of death, and they need to unearth every piece of evidence and find the person behind all of this. Caged is a suspenseful tale chock-full of twists and turns. It will keep you guessing and wondering till the end. As Sayer is forced to question every thing they're uncovering, so will the reader, because all is not as it seems. By the end of the book, you will find yourself rooting for more of Sayer Altair, more of her partnership with Vik, and to know more about the events that have shaped Sayer into who she is.

  14. 3 out of 5

    Nancy McFarlane

    Sayer Altair is a neuroscientist whose main research is to study the brains of serial killers to see if a common anomaly can be detected. She joined the FBI expecting to mostly do research but soon finds herself the lead on the hunt for a sadistic killer who starved a young girl to death locked in a cage. When a second young girl is kidnapped the hunt to find her alive intensifies as does the pressure on Sayer from her boss and from a prominent senator whose daughter was the first victim. The sc Sayer Altair is a neuroscientist whose main research is to study the brains of serial killers to see if a common anomaly can be detected. She joined the FBI expecting to mostly do research but soon finds herself the lead on the hunt for a sadistic killer who starved a young girl to death locked in a cage. When a second young girl is kidnapped the hunt to find her alive intensifies as does the pressure on Sayer from her boss and from a prominent senator whose daughter was the first victim. The science and forensics are amazing; the motive of the killer is totally unexpected as is his method of achieving his goal. The action is non-stop and the well-developed characters leave you wanting to continue to be a part of their lives.

  15. 3 out of 5

    Laura von Eden

    Agent Sayer Altair bekommt einen grausamen Mordfall auf den Tisch. In einem großen Tierkäfig wird ein totes Mädchen gefunden, das elendig verdursten musste. Handelt es sich vielleicht um einen Serienmörder? Nachdem Sayer und ihr Team eine Weile im Dunkeln tappen, finden sie immer mehr Hinweise und lüften die Identität des Mädchens. Unglücklicherweise handelt es sich bei dem Opfer um die Tochter eines hochrangigen Politikers, welcher ihnen daraufhin die Ermittlungen ziemlich erschwert. Als man he Agent Sayer Altair bekommt einen grausamen Mordfall auf den Tisch. In einem großen Tierkäfig wird ein totes Mädchen gefunden, das elendig verdursten musste. Handelt es sich vielleicht um einen Serienmörder? Nachdem Sayer und ihr Team eine Weile im Dunkeln tappen, finden sie immer mehr Hinweise und lüften die Identität des Mädchens. Unglücklicherweise handelt es sich bei dem Opfer um die Tochter eines hochrangigen Politikers, welcher ihnen daraufhin die Ermittlungen ziemlich erschwert. Als man herausfindet, dass bereits ein weiteres Mädchen in einem Käfig eingeschlossen ist, setzt Agent Altair alles daran sie zu finden. „Todeskäfig“ ist ein klassischer Ermittler-Thriller, in dem wir unserer Hauptfigur Sayer durch die Ermittlungen hinweg begleiten. Unterstützt wird sie von einem Team, das wir nach und nach auch etwas besser kennen lernen dürfen. Sayer erfüllt wieder mal so manches Klischee einer zurückgezogenen Ermittlerin, die nach einem tragischen Unfall niemanden mehr an sich ranlässt. Doch ganz langsam bröckelt auch bei ihr die Fassade. Ich war wirklich ganz fasziniert von der Geschichte, die eine gute Mischung aus allseits bekannten Abläufen in Thrillern und einzigartigen Elementen ist. Viele Dinge hat man so schon mal in anderen Büchern gelesen und auch die grundlegende Idee in der Auflösung kannte ich schon durch andere Bücher. Und doch gibt es viele Dinge, die mir neu waren, oder auch auf neue Art verknüpft wurden. „Todeskäfig“ habe ich sehr schnell durchgelesen gehabt, da die Story einfach sehr rasant und auch packend war. Die Autorin beherrscht einen sehr packenden Schreibstil, der dazu anregt, das Buch am liebsten in einem Stück wegzulesen. Da „Todeskäfig“ der Auftakt zu einer ganzen Reihe sein soll, freue ich mich sehr auf die nachfolgenden Bände. Teil 2 erscheint leider erst im Sommer 2019 auf Englisch, wir müssen uns also noch eine Weile gedulden. Für mich war der Auftakt absolut gelungen!

  16. 3 out of 5

    Michelle

    Book review can be found on my blog here: www.booksonthebookshelf.wordpress.com This book is gripping, thrilling and oh so good from the beginning. It pulls you in and keeps you hooked from the first page. This is a great crime/police type book.  In this book FBI neuroscientist Sayer works with the police force to solve a crime after the body of a girl is found in the basement of what appears to be an abandoned house. The girl appears to have been murdered, but by whom? The FBI and local police fo Book review can be found on my blog here: www.booksonthebookshelf.wordpress.com This book is gripping, thrilling and oh so good from the beginning. It pulls you in and keeps you hooked from the first page. This is a great crime/police type book.  In this book FBI neuroscientist Sayer works with the police force to solve a crime after the body of a girl is found in the basement of what appears to be an abandoned house. The girl appears to have been murdered, but by whom? The FBI and local police force work hard to try to uncover what happened, who is responsible, and why. They then face the question - are there more victims? Is this an isolated case or are they in search of a serial killer on the loose? This book I found very interesting. It keeps your interest throughout, as you try to uncover the mystery of what exactly happened and who was responsible. I thought I figured out who the murderer was only to find out I was completely wrong. And the truth shocked me, did not expect that at all. This is a great book that was a true pleasure to read. Thank you to NetGalley and Minotaur Books for a free ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Janelle

    Many thanks to Minotaur Books for providing my free copy of CAGED by Ellison Cooper - all opinions are my own. This is one creepy, chilling, twisted thriller! A gruesome crime scene is discovered as a young woman is found starved to death and locked in a cage. FBI agent and neuroscientist Sayer Altair gets called in to lead the investigation. This is a horrendous case and Altair has seen her fair share of evil; she conducts research on the brains of serial killers, however this case is next level Many thanks to Minotaur Books for providing my free copy of CAGED by Ellison Cooper - all opinions are my own. This is one creepy, chilling, twisted thriller! A gruesome crime scene is discovered as a young woman is found starved to death and locked in a cage. FBI agent and neuroscientist Sayer Altair gets called in to lead the investigation. This is a horrendous case and Altair has seen her fair share of evil; she conducts research on the brains of serial killers, however this case is next level with depravity she’s never seen. It’s not long before she discovers a second girl has been kidnapped and the clock is ticking for Altair to locate the latest victim before it’s too late. My favorite thing about this cop versus serial killer thriller is the plot. It’s highly entertaining, grisly, grotesque, and downright fascinating. I mean, a serial killer that holds his victims captive in a cage for so long they die of dehydration, is riveting. The other aspect I love is the introduction of neuroscience used as a tool to help solve the case. I am completely into all things science and the study of human behavior so I love that it is a skill used by the main protagonist. Also, I can’t believe this is a debut thriller because Cooper does an incredible job laying out the evidence and details of the case complete with a standout ending and a teaser for the next book. There was some overuse of law enforcement stereotypical dialogue that I can only stomach on a crime television show, but overall it didn’t keep me from enjoying this cinematic, exciting read!

  18. 4 out of 5

    Alice Blanchard

    I crave a good book that unfolds like a movie. “Caged” opens with the police entering a house they’d already checked out the week before and, after a shocking setback, discovering a dead body suspended in a cage in the domicile of a demented serial killer. Great premise. Enter FBI Agent Sayer Altair, a neuroscientist who studies serial killers’ brains – how they think, why they do the horrific things they do. It’s the perfect set up for a summer read and it doesn’t disappoint. The tick-tock pace I crave a good book that unfolds like a movie. “Caged” opens with the police entering a house they’d already checked out the week before and, after a shocking setback, discovering a dead body suspended in a cage in the domicile of a demented serial killer. Great premise. Enter FBI Agent Sayer Altair, a neuroscientist who studies serial killers’ brains – how they think, why they do the horrific things they do. It’s the perfect set up for a summer read and it doesn’t disappoint. The tick-tock pace never lets up, and as I’ve said before, I’m a sucker for vivid prose: “The man filled the space around him like a mountain forged from solid rock. Thick jowls hung like slabs of meat off his face. Matted blond hair sprung from his head like a bird’s nest.” Sayer is driven by the idea that serial killers’ brains are hardwired differently from the rest of us, and ultimately she hopes to spot and prevent evil from taking hold. While pursuing the killer, she must crawl inside his creepy head - by studying the diary he left behind - in search of more clues, crawling through the catacombs of psychopathy, right up to the face-punch ending. Highly recommended.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Natalie [genreneutralreader]

    When I first got going on this book I realized it reminded me a lot of the early John Sanford Prey novels. It is gritty, rough, and doesn’t shy away from uncomfortable details. After a while I saw that Ellison Cooper definitely has her own voice and a unique perspective. Caged gets scientific without talking over the readers’ heads. There is no pretentiousness, which I absolutely love when reading novels that incorporate science into their fiction. Sayer, Vic, and Ezra are all characters I would When I first got going on this book I realized it reminded me a lot of the early John Sanford Prey novels. It is gritty, rough, and doesn’t shy away from uncomfortable details. After a while I saw that Ellison Cooper definitely has her own voice and a unique perspective. Caged gets scientific without talking over the readers’ heads. There is no pretentiousness, which I absolutely love when reading novels that incorporate science into their fiction. Sayer, Vic, and Ezra are all characters I would like to read about in future novels if this were to become part of a series. I must also note that whether or not the reader figures out the whodunnit before it’s spelled out, I can almost guarantee there will be some parts of the mystery he/she will never before have seen in another thriller. Overall, I thought Caged was a riveting thriller with good twists and turns and a cast of characters that would lend themselves well to a series. Thanks to author Ellison Cooper, St. Martin’s Press and Netgalley for my advance reader ecopy of Caged! I thoroughly enjoyed it!

  20. 5 out of 5

    KC

    FBI neuroscientist Sayer Altair hopes to one day unravel the mysteries of the human brain and she may get her chance when assigned to a bizarre murder case where a young woman's body is found in a suspended cage. When another girl goes missing, Sayer must race against the clock to unlock the killer's motives before this murderer claims an additional victim. This is a fast paced thriller which reads like a prime time television show.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Darcia Helle

    Despite the brutal content, Caged is ultimately a forgettable book for me. I expected psychological suspense, based on the description, but this book is a straight forward police procedural. Sayer, the lead character, is a neuroscientist, yet her part is mostly interchangeable with any cop character. The brain science touched on regarding the specific serial murder case is minimal. The research Sayer is privately working on reads like it was lifted off a pop culture social science book. In fact, Despite the brutal content, Caged is ultimately a forgettable book for me. I expected psychological suspense, based on the description, but this book is a straight forward police procedural. Sayer, the lead character, is a neuroscientist, yet her part is mostly interchangeable with any cop character. The brain science touched on regarding the specific serial murder case is minimal. The research Sayer is privately working on reads like it was lifted off a pop culture social science book. In fact, the research she talks about is now fairly well known and is certainly no longer groundbreaking stuff. I was disappointed that Sayer's neuroscience background wasn't a stronger part of the story. The pacing is slow. We investigate along with Sayer, and then we go to the team's daily meetings and rehash everything we've already learned. These scenes could have been condensed for better flow. I found myself skimming a lot. Character development is weak. Sayer slowly comes alive but gives us mixed messages. She rides a motorcycle, does her own thing despite what people think, and is independent. Yet she's also overly dramatic and, at times, seems desperate for approval. She continually ignores her grandmother's calls for no clear reason, leading us to believe they have a strained relationship at best, but then we later see they have a strong and loving relationship. The mixed messages make it difficult to get an honest sense of Sayer's character. The other characters don't have standout personalities, but only fill their intended parts. This book has a solid start and definitely grabbed my interest. But all too quickly the pace slowed and the characters didn't give me anything special. The graphic content with the killer felt almost gratuitous; a way to grab the reader when the plot and characters weren't doing enough. And, finally, the ending was far too overblown and implausible for me to buy into the story as a whole. *The publisher provided me with an ebook copy, via NetGalley, in exchange for my honest review.*

  22. 5 out of 5

    Kristina Nowell

    Let me start off by saying that I’m not a huge fan of novels that follow Detectives and the likes, but #Caged May have changed that for me. Caged follows a Neuroscientist with the FBI named Sayer Altair as she embarks on a journey to finding the serial killer who had booby-trapped the house where he was holding a girl imprisoned in a suspended cage, and wounded a D.C. officer along with killing another. As Altair and her partner Vik begin unraveling the events that led to the young girls death d Let me start off by saying that I’m not a huge fan of novels that follow Detectives and the likes, but #Caged May have changed that for me. Caged follows a Neuroscientist with the FBI named Sayer Altair as she embarks on a journey to finding the serial killer who had booby-trapped the house where he was holding a girl imprisoned in a suspended cage, and wounded a D.C. officer along with killing another. As Altair and her partner Vik begin unraveling the events that led to the young girls death due to dehydration in that cage, they fear that there may be another girl being held hostage somewhere else by the same killer. With that, begins a very fast paced and eventful novel of one woman’s will to find an innocent girl in hopes of doing so before time runs out whilst also battling her own demons that came about after losing her fiancé in the field a year prior. Ellison Cooper manages to fully entice her readers with a story not only full to the brim with suspense but also a deep psychological thrill that raises your hairs on their ends. Whilst all the signs were pointing in one direction, I knew that a masterfully crafted novel such as Caged wouldn’t go down such a predictable road, and it definitely did not. The ending was definitely a shocker and I enjoyed that the novel was finished off with room for a sequel or even a full on series. This book would also make an AMAZING film and I truly hope to see a movie adaptation of this novel in the near future. If you are looking for a book that channels it’s inner Thomas Harris-esque type of style, this is the book for you! I can’t wait to see what Ellison Cooper decides to release next. Special thanks to #NetGalley, #EllisonCooper and #StMartinPress and #MinotaurBooks for the ARC of this novel in exchange for my honest review.

  23. 3 out of 5

    Lindsey

    Many thanks to Minotaur Books for my free advance copy in exchange for an honest review. Seeing fellow reviewers compare this book to UNSUB had me over the moon excited to read it. I was also nervous after hearing about some animal involvement, but I decided to proceed with caution and give it a chance after several people assured me I wouldn't be traumatized. Coming from the person who refuses to watch movies like Marley and Me and has to look away during THAT scene in I Am Legend, I can comfort Many thanks to Minotaur Books for my free advance copy in exchange for an honest review. Seeing fellow reviewers compare this book to UNSUB had me over the moon excited to read it. I was also nervous after hearing about some animal involvement, but I decided to proceed with caution and give it a chance after several people assured me I wouldn't be traumatized. Coming from the person who refuses to watch movies like Marley and Me and has to look away during THAT scene in I Am Legend, I can comfortably say that Caged is safe for animal lovers. There was brief mention of an animal's death but there is no torture, mutilation or sacrifice, all of which would have had me throwing my book across the room. Caged is fast paced, addictive and pleasantly dark and disturbing. Towards the end there was one aspect of the plot that began to feel a little repetitive, but the way that it was first introduced was brilliant. I had the killer pegged earlier than was probably intended, but it still made for a good twist and a great read. The very last page made me want to scream. There's one big unanswered question that's thrown in your face, which I might have hated if I hadn't found out there is already a sequel in the works. I'm looking forward to reading the next installment in the Sayer Altair series.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Emily Duchon

    i read a lot of police procedurals, and i tend to gravitate towards those with strong female protagonists, so it goes without saying that they all tend to blend together. as my fiance' says when i brag about the number of books i've read this year, "you haven't read 140 books; you've read one book 140 times." oh, he so cray! this one was better than most and just shy of perfection. okay, so the good: *likeable main character (no major quirks though, which is odd) *good flow, easy read *interesting c i read a lot of police procedurals, and i tend to gravitate towards those with strong female protagonists, so it goes without saying that they all tend to blend together. as my fiance' says when i brag about the number of books i've read this year, "you haven't read 140 books; you've read one book 140 times." oh, he so cray! this one was better than most and just shy of perfection. okay, so the good: *likeable main character (no major quirks though, which is odd) *good flow, easy read *interesting crime *fun facts aka historical and cultural references you want to look up after reading the book problems: *i figured out who the sleuth was 1/2 through and found that part a tiny bit unbelievable. okay, a hell of a lot unlikely, even. it was a fun reveal though for sure. 4.5 stars. i read it in 24 hours even with work and hiking and cooking things with kale. kale=the anti-yum. ~e

  25. 4 out of 5

    Terri Wino

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. This review contains minor spoilers, but nothing revealing major plot points. I was really looking forward to this book because the description made it sound like an absolute page turner. Unfortunately, it didn't quite live up to the hype for me. First, the positives. It is definitely fast-paced and there weren't really any boring patches. I liked the character of Sayer very much; she is someone you want to see succeed and there honestly wasn't anything about her I didn't like. This book starts o This review contains minor spoilers, but nothing revealing major plot points. I was really looking forward to this book because the description made it sound like an absolute page turner. Unfortunately, it didn't quite live up to the hype for me. First, the positives. It is definitely fast-paced and there weren't really any boring patches. I liked the character of Sayer very much; she is someone you want to see succeed and there honestly wasn't anything about her I didn't like. This book starts out strongly and sucks the reader in -- you immediately want to find out what's going to happen next and what kind of twisted villain we're dealing with. The first half of the book is pretty damn good, especially for a debut author. Unfortunately, things sort of started to fall apart for me around the halfway mark. First of all, I had a REALLY hard time finding it believable -- and here's the minor spoiler -- that a character who had just lost both legs in an explosion would be jumping right back into work from their hospital bed within mere days. I mean, the psychological effect alone of losing a limb (not to mention more than one), and the physical pain, I would think would be mentally debilitating to the average person. I just found this part of the book so unbelievable. While there were a few red herrings, I thought it was pretty easy to guess who the unsub they were chasing would turn out to be, and my guess turned out to be correct. That in itself wouldn't detract from my enjoyment of the book, but when the culprit is finally revealed and the sheer number and manner of their crimes is uncovered, all I could think was, "Oh, come on! You have got to be kidding me." This person must be the ultimate supervillain from a comic based on their life of crime. And the reason behind their current series of attacks? Sorry, I just had a hard time swallowing that one. Is this book worth the time to read? Despite my negatives about it, I would absolutely say it is. This author had a great concept, but I just feel the end result wasn't as good as it could have been. I really like the cast of characters that Ellison Cooper has assembled here and, despite the disappointing factors in Caged, I would 100% purchase another book by this author and absolutely hope she writes another book featuring Sayer and company.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Anne

    Why I'm a fan of serial killer novels I'm not really sure, but this debut was a stunner! FBI agent, Sayer is a neuroscientist studying killers' brains to determine the chemical makeup and how it may differ from "normal" brains. But when a local politician's daughter is discovered dead after being caged and drugged, Sayer is pulled into the maelstrom that will envelop this case. It's a wild ride to say the least, bringing ancient mythology and reincarnation into play. At times gruesome and gritty Why I'm a fan of serial killer novels I'm not really sure, but this debut was a stunner! FBI agent, Sayer is a neuroscientist studying killers' brains to determine the chemical makeup and how it may differ from "normal" brains. But when a local politician's daughter is discovered dead after being caged and drugged, Sayer is pulled into the maelstrom that will envelop this case. It's a wild ride to say the least, bringing ancient mythology and reincarnation into play. At times gruesome and gritty, with lots of red herrings, this one may keep you up at night! I look forward to Cooper's sequel; there must be one in the works as some of Sayer's past remains unanswered at the end. A great read! Thanks to NetGalley for this ARC!

  27. 4 out of 5

    Gabis Laberladen

    4,5 Sterne Darum geht's: Zwei Streifenpolizisten machen einen schrecklichen Fund. Im Keller eines leer stehenden Hauses ist ein junges Mädchen grausam verdurstet, denn sie wurde in einem Käfig gefangen gehalten. Die FBI-Agentin Sayer Altair wird mit der Leitung der Ermittlungen beauftragt und verzweifelt an dem Fall, der zusehends komplizierter und brisanter wird. Zuerst stellt sich heraus, dass das Opfer die Tochter eines Senators war, der sich - nicht besonders hilfreich - in die Ermittlungen ei 4,5 Sterne Darum geht's: Zwei Streifenpolizisten machen einen schrecklichen Fund. Im Keller eines leer stehenden Hauses ist ein junges Mädchen grausam verdurstet, denn sie wurde in einem Käfig gefangen gehalten. Die FBI-Agentin Sayer Altair wird mit der Leitung der Ermittlungen beauftragt und verzweifelt an dem Fall, der zusehends komplizierter und brisanter wird. Zuerst stellt sich heraus, dass das Opfer die Tochter eines Senators war, der sich - nicht besonders hilfreich - in die Ermittlungen einmischt. Und dann wird klar, dass es irgendwo noch ein Mädchen gibt, das in einen Käfig gesperrt wurde - und vielleicht noch lebt. Meine Meinung dazu gibt’s hier

  28. 5 out of 5

    Emma L.

    I was a bit disappointed with this book. There were a few clichés and some things were just plain unbelievable.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Wendy-Lynn

    Received from Net Galley and the publisher for my honest review. This book was not my cup of tea. Just an okay read.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Samantha

    Summary from Goodreads: "FBI neuroscientist Sayer Altair hunts for evil in the deepest recesses of the human mind. Still reeling from the death of her fiance, she wants nothing more than to focus on her research into the brains of serial killers. But when the Washington D.C. police stumble upon a gruesome murder scene involving a girl who'd been slowly starved to death while held captive in a cage, Sayer is called in to lead the investigation. When the victim is identified as the daughter of a hi Summary from Goodreads: "FBI neuroscientist Sayer Altair hunts for evil in the deepest recesses of the human mind. Still reeling from the death of her fiance, she wants nothing more than to focus on her research into the brains of serial killers. But when the Washington D.C. police stumble upon a gruesome murder scene involving a girl who'd been slowly starved to death while held captive in a cage, Sayer is called in to lead the investigation. When the victim is identified as the daughter of a high profile senator, Sayer is thrust into the spotlight. As public pressure mounts, she discovers that another girl has been taken and is teetering on the brink of death. With evidence unraveling around her, Sayer races to save the second victim but soon realizes that they are hunting a killer with a dangerous obsession...a killer who is closer than she thought." My Thoughts: Oh my goodness - this book is easily a five star, going on my top reads of the year list type of book! I enjoyed my time reading this one immensely to say the least. I feel like this type of book is totally my own personal reader catnip if you will. It features a female lead detective (in this specific case she is a FBI agent but you get the gist) that is emotionally closed off due to her past. It's a police procedural which I absolutely adore (or FBI procedural - take your pick). And it focuses on a dark, twisted mystery that pulled me in until the very last page. What more could you want in a book like this? It's everything that I love all wrapped up into one amazing read! Now I need more books just like this or at least just as good! It's funny but before I started this one I remember seeing a slightly negative review (I don't remember the specifics or anything - just that the reader wasn't wowed by it) so I didn't know what to expect when I picked it up. I knew it sounded like my type of read but would it live up to those expectations? It sure did and then some! This is one of those books that just sucks you in and doesn't let you go. It wasn't one that I felt the need to read fast or fly through the pages. Instead I found myself unable to set it down and just so immersed in the ongoing investigation. I took my time with this one and loved every minute of it! Every time I thought I had a handle on it, the author was able to turn it around so completely that I just knew that I was wrong. I didn't figure out the ending until exactly when Sayer did which was the perfect way to experience the book. This book was just so unexpected and fresh compared to much of what is out there in the world of thrillers nowadays. I don't want to spoil anything so I won't say too much but this is exactly the book that I hoped it would be and so much more! Overall, I'm pretty sure that it is clear that I loved this book! I read the majority of this book during a long break in my daughter's softball tournament which was the perfect way to read this one! I just couldn't stop reading as I had to see how everything would end. I'm absolutely stoked that this is the beginning to a series so I have another book featuring Sayer to look forward to. Especially as the author set up another mystery outside of what was going on in this book that she left open for possibly the next book. I'm so intrigued and will be impatiently waiting to get my hands on that book whenever it releases! I just cannot say enough good things about this book. I can highly, highly recommend to those who love mysteries and thrillers. It's going on my top reads list this year without a doubt so that should tell you everything you need to know! Bottom Line: A five star read that I can't stop gushing about! Disclosure: I received a copy of this book thanks to the publisher and NetGalley. Thoughts are my own.

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