‘Killing Kate’ by Alex Lake is Fabulous Contemporary British Thriller


“Killing Kate” begins like many murder mysteries. There is a young woman, this one living in Great Britain, who has just broken up with her long-time boyfriend. She is on vacation and mysteriously ends up spending the night with a stranger. Even stranger is that he is from England, too, and lives near Kate.

While she is in Turkey, a murder takes place in the sleepy village in Great Britain where she lives. But that is just the first of several murders, and the scary thing is that the victims all look like Kate. As the ploy unfolds, Lake comes up with some great suspects.

First, there is Kate’s recent ex-boyfriend, Phil. He’s bereft since she broke up with him, and he does some creepy things, like following her around and calling her incessantly. Then there is the stranger whom she bumps into again back home.  Still another suspect is Nate, the guy at work who has a mysterious friend in the police department — and who seems to possess some inside information about the murders.

Lake deftly creates plausibility for all three of the suspects, but doesn’t really give out any clues until two-thirds of the way through the book. Then, when the reader does find out who the serial killer is, there’s still one-third of the book left. And that’s when the action really gets ratcheted up.

What Kate finds out is that she was the intended victim of the killer all along. But when she is kidnapped, she must use her all her wits and find the inner-strength to outwit the killer.

Other characters add to the suspense, including a few flashbacks to the the fourth girlfriend in Kate’s close knit group of friends. That flashback tells the story of what happened to their friend, and that becomes interwoven with the current action.

It’s all beautifully written and quite suspenseful.

Please note: This review is based on the final paperback book provided by the publisher, HarperColling360, for review purposes.

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