The Fourth Monkey by J.D. Barker

For over five years, the Four Monkey Killer has terrorized the residents of Chicago. When his body is found, the police quickly realize he was on his way to deliver one final message, one which proves he has taken another victim who may still be alive.

As the lead investigator on the 4MK task force, Detective Sam Porter knows even in death, the killer is far from finished. When he discovers a personal diary in the jacket pocket of the body, Porter finds himself caught up in the mind of a psychopath, unraveling a twisted history in hopes of finding one last girl, all while struggling with personal demons of his own.

With only a handful of clues, the elusive killer’s identity remains a mystery. Time is running out and the Four Monkey Killer taunts from beyond the grave in this masterfully written fast-paced thriller.

I received a free copy of this book courtesy of the publisher.

Wow, what an incredible read The Fourth Monkey has been. This is the first book I’ve read by J.D. Barker, and that is often the make or break when trying a new author. I can wholeheartedly say that this is one of the best crime thriller novels I have ever read. The killer is highly enigmatic and mysterious. A dark and shadowy figure foiling the police at every turn. The discovery of another body, the body of the killer throws a curveball at the team investigating his crimes. Clues on the body start to point to one last victim with little time left and clues to his background.
J.D. Barker has found a fantastic approach to making the threat ever present as we follow the team in their hunt for the victim, while they also seek an answer to who the Four Monkey Killer was and why he did what he did. A diary of sorts provides some answers, chronicling the life of the killer as a child and events that developed him into the man he became.

I found The Fourth Monkey to be a rare book. While there are many I have loved, this is one of the few that kept me wanting for the next chance to sit down and find out what happened next. I needed to know where this killer came from. I needed to know what becomes of his final victim. I needed to know who the Four Monkey Killer was. And even once the identity became clear, somehow the twists and thrills did not let up there.

The only disappointment came when I read the final sentence. I had answers, but that wasn’t enough. J.D. Barker has produced a novel that left me wanting more. Thankfully for me, books two and three are on my shelf ready for me to dive right in to. This is possibly one of the best crime thrillers I have read.

My rating:

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