I’m very excited to be on the blog tour today for the fantastic Killing State by Judith O’Reilly. I really enjoyed this book and recommend it to everyone who loves fast paced, cleverly plotted thrillers.
Killing State is available in Kindle format now here, and will be available in paperback in March but is available to pre-order.
The bullet in his brain isn’t the problem. She is.
Michael North is a hero, with a bullet in the brain to prove it. A bullet which has rewired his neural pathways and heightened his sense of intuition. A bullet which is driving him mad. Working for an extra-governmental agency called The Board, North knows one thing for sure. He is very good at killing very bad guys. But what happens when a hero is ordered to kill a good woman rather than a bad man? Because it turns out that rising political star, Honor Jones, MP, can’t stop asking the right questions about the wrong people.
He should follow orders.
From the fantastic opening line this book drew me in with it’s intriguing story line and fast paced action. I loved the description of the secret agency with a slightly murky mission run by a gentleman who reminded me or a character from a James Bond movie to our hero North, the Killer with nothing to lose. I found it fascinating and kept reading hoping to discover more about it. My enjoyment was heightened by the added mystery of what had happened to Peggy and what she had got her self involved in. I had a variety of theories about this, none of which proved to be correct which is always great when an author has the ability to keep you on your toes, and keep you guessing!
My favourite character was Honor. I thought she was very brave to put herself in danger for her friends sake and to try and discover what had happened to her, particularly after her own near miss with the mysterious agency. I’m sure many people would have been put off by less and I admired the fact that she chose to carry on. There are some descriptions throughout the book describing Honor and peggy’s relationship and it was very touching to see how close the pair of them where and how much they meant to each other. It was brilliant that the author provides the reader with some background information throughout the book as it helps you to understand the character more and explains why they are behaving the way they are. I also quite liked North, the killer with a heart. I felt that he had had quite a hard life and I wanted him to have the happy ending i felt he deserved. Some of the plans and methods for escape he had were ingenious and at times I felt like actually cheering when they went his way and he managed to get away. I was never quite sure if he had a hidden agenda which made me quite weary of him and helped increase the tension in the book as I wasn’t sure how he would react.
I thought the book was very well written and paced with the right amount of action and slow moments to keep the reader guessing and on their toes. The quieter moments were necessary I felt as they often involved giving the reader a bit of background information about the characters or the case which helped the reader get a more holistic view about what was going on. I did find the back and forth a little tricky to get used to at first, but I soon got into it and found that I quite enjoyed the flashbacks at the end as they often gave me some fascinating insights into events.
This is the Judith O’Reilly’s third book, but her first thriller and the first book by her I have read though it won’t be my last, particularly as I believe there are future plans for further Michael North thrillers. If you like fast paced and well plotted thrillers that keep you on your toes then you will love this book.
Huge thanks to Anne Cater and Loughman Press for my copy of this book and for inviting me on the blog tour.
About The Author:
Judith O’Reilly is the author of Wife in the North and A Year of Doing Good (both published by Viking Penguin, 2008 and 2013 respectively). Wife in the North reached number three in the UK bestsellers’ chart and was in the top ten for five weeks. It was also a top ten bestseller in Germany. It sold into ten countries, was serialised by The Sunday Times and the Daily Telegraph, was a BBC Radio 4 Book of the Week, and was based on Judith’s eponymous blog which was named as one of the top 100 blogs in the world by The Sunday Times. Judith’s blog is credited with kicking off the popularity of domestic blogging in the UK. Wife in the North and A Year of Doing Good were both non-fiction. Killing State is a commercial political thriller and Judith’s first novel. At least the first one she’s allowed to leave the house without her. Judith is a former political producer with BBC 2’s Newsnight and ITN’s Channel 4 News, and a former education correspondent with The Sunday Times where she also covered politics, undercover reporting and general news. She still writes for The Sunday Times, and has acted as a strategic communications adviser for both government and business.
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