Hello everyone, and welcome back to The Bookworm’s Fantasy! I hope you’re all doing well. Today I’m posting my review of David Jackson’s fantastic psychological thriller/crime novel, ‘Don’t Make A Sound’. I hadn’t heard too much about this book so I went into it fairly neutral – but I was absolutely blown away! A 5-star read! Keep reading to discover my thoughts…
You can’t choose your family. Or can you?
Meet the Bensons. They’re an ordinary couple. They wash their car, mow their lawn and pass the time of day with their neighbours. And they have a beautiful little girl called Daisy.
There’s just one problem.
SHE’S NOT THEIRS.
D. S. Nathan Cody is about to face his darkest and most terrifying case yet . . .
** TRIGGER WARNING ** Explores the theme of child abduction and child abuse in great detail. Includes scenes of torture and graphic descriptions of injuries. Includes references to both physical and mental illnesses.
‘Don’t Make A Sound’ (May 2018) is the third book in the “DS Nathan Cody” series, following on from ‘A Tapping At My Door’ (2016) and ‘Hope To Die’ (2017). David Jackson has also written the “Callum Doyle” series, which features ‘Pariah’, ‘The Helper’, ‘Marked’ and ‘Cry Baby’. Jackson lies on the Wirral peninsula with his wife and two daughters.
The book has received many positive reviews, from the likes of fellow authors such as Clare Mackintosh: “Fast-paced and darkly disturbing”, Fiona Cummins: “Incredibly chilling”, Joanna Cannon: “A mind-blowing, head-rattling, whirlwind of a thriller”, Samantha Hayes: “Hardly breathed the whole way through”, CJ Carver: “A beautifully wrought thriller that had the kid in me cowering beneath the bed covers” and Mel Sherratt: “Dark and disturbing”.
In ‘Don’t Make A Sound’, DS Nathan Cody is given a missing child case to investigate. The Bensons are a seemingly normal couple from the outside – but the children aren’t actually theirs. Will DS Cody get to the bottom of the case, before it’ too late?
The narrative is told from the third-person throughout, with each chapter/section focusing on a different character. Characters such as the Malcolm Benson, Harriet Benson, Daisy, Poppy, Ellie and DS Nathan Cody are explored through the third-person narrative. The novel is split into three parts, making up the main elements of the story. The narrative is distanced yet still intrusive, and is very easy to follow throughout.
DS Nathan Cody is my favourite character in the novel. He’s a very good detective, and puts his everything into the missing child case. He’s always putting others before himself, and would rather die than let the children suffer. He’s definitely not a perfect character though, and he has plenty of flaws. He has struggled with romantic relationships in the past, and he has his own personal demons to deal with. Above all, Cody is a really kind, caring character, and I really felt a great deal of sympathy for him when things begin to go wrong.
Malcolm Benson is very disturbed character. He believes that he is doing his wife a great service by being able to provide her with children, when she is unable to have her own. Malcolm is quick-tempered and easily-angered, and is an unpleasant character to be around. His love for his wife is strong and all-consuming, and he will do anything to make his “family” happy. But when you scratch beneath the surface, Malcolm is actually a very different person than he may first seem… He’s a very complex, three-dimensional character.
Other characters in the novel include: Harriet Benson (Malcolm’s wife), Poppy, Daisy & Ellie (the children), Craig and Maria (Poppy’s parents), DC Megan Webley, DCI Stella Blunt, and various other members of the police team. There is a relatively small cast of characters in the novel, but all bring something fresh and exciting to the story.
** TRIGGER WARNING ** (I apologise for any spoilers here.) This novel explores child abduction and child abuse/neglect in great detail. Many aspects of child abduction are explored, such as the parents’ grief, the physical act of kidnapping and the psychological aftermath. Graphic scenes of torture and graphic descriptions of injuries are included in the novel. Both physical and mental illnesses are explored within the novel, such as a physical brain deformity developed after an accident, and mental illnesses such as anxiety. All of these issues are explored with appropriate sensitivity, but if you feel they may trigger a negative response, I suggest you skip this book.
As the narrative motors onwards, the situation becomes more and more extreme. DS Nathan Cody finds himself in a very dangerous situation, and he must fight to survive. Poppy, Daisy and Ellie must work together to escape … but will they be able to overpower Malcolm?
So, let’s talk about the ending! There’s a very dramatic, life-or-death end scene. All of the characters must work together and focus on the same shared goal, if they are going to survive. I physically couldn’t put the book down during the ending, I just HAD to keep turning the pages! I was really happy with the ending, and felt that it tied everything together brilliantly.
Overall, I highly recommend this book to those of you who enjoy psychological thriller/crime novels that are not too difficult to read. This is a an easy, compelling page-turner that has everything I could possibly want from a novel! Great characters, fantastic plot, plenty of twists and turns … what more could you want? I physically cannot fault this book – a 5-star read from me!
Happy reading 🙂