Brought to you by OBS reviewer Caro
Beware of possible spoilers
Rule One—Nothing is right, nothing is wrong.
Rule Two—Be careful.
Rule Three—Fight using your legs whenever possible, because they’re the strongest part of your body. Your arms are the weakest.
Rule Four—Hit to kill. The first blow should be the last, if at all possible.
Rule Five—The letters are the law.
Kit takes her role as London’s notorious “Perfect Killer” seriously. The letters and cash that come to her via a secret mailbox are not a game; choosing who to kill is not an impulse decision. Every letter she receives begins with “Dear Killer,” and every time Kit murders, she leaves a letter with the dead body. Her moral nihilism and thus her murders are a way of life—the only way of life she has ever known.
But when a letter appears in the mailbox that will have the power to topple Kit’s convictions as perfectly as she commits her murders, she must make a decision: follow the only rules she has ever known, or challenge Rule One, and go from there.
Katherine Ewell’s Dear Killer is a sinister psychological thriller that explores the thin line between good and evil, and the messiness of that inevitable moment when life contradicts everything you believe.
I liked this book, I really did. From the moment I read the synopsis to the cover with its red and black colors. The first page of every chapter is plastered with what looks like the writing of the Dear Killer letters. The design is definitely attractive to the readers eye. It fulfield its purpose – it caught my attention. But I do have mixed feelings about the story.
While Kit was shown to be intelligent and meticulous, I can’t help but to think that she made a lot of mistakes from the moment she put aside the letter to kill Maggie, one of her schoolmates. Kit is our resident killer and though she is just a high school girl, she is already famous as the Perfect Killer for her modus operandi. As the story starts to unravel, the reader finds out that Kit learned her abilities and to be cold at the time of a kill from her mother, the previous owner of the Dear Killer mailbox, and the person who started taking justice by her hand in the name of all who wrote a letter. Once the story progresses we see her mother struggle with the ghosts from her past having constant nightmares and feeling that she lives in a house of cards. I couldn’t help but to think that Kit would end up in her shoes, eventually.
Kit had said it herself, she killed on order, but she took so much time befriending Maggie while she just could have killed her as soon as she got the letter, since Maggie always mentioned how alone she was even at home. Maggie was Kit’s mistake that took down the Perfect Killer she had created.
She also gave herself away or was it the mother by inviting Alex, the one in charge to catch her, into their home and sparking her teenage daughter’s interest for him? I guess she taught her daughter to be a killer but not to close her heart. Her teenage feelings betrayed her making her break the rules, and not just her but her mother, too, who had lived by them for so long.
The book was appealing to the point of sparking my own interest to read it, but I would have made some changes to Kit’s character. The story drove me crazy because I knew instantly that somehow she was going to get caught, yet I did not expect it to be the way it was, which was good. One of my favorite scenes is where she encounters Alex; the truth is known, they fight, and Diana tries to help her.
I do hope to see more of author Katherine Ewell’s work in the future, after all this is her first book. I recommend you read this book so you can judge it by yourself. It was written by a young lady that became one of the fifty finalist in the 2011 Amazon Breakthrough Novel Contest, which shows that aspiring young writers can do it, too.
*OBS would like to thank the publisher for supplying a copy of this title in exchange for an honest review*