This is a thriller I´ve read many years ago. And with the book coming out soon as Trade paperback, I thought it deserves a place here on my blog. I don´t know how she does it, but Sandra Brown simply knows HOW to fascinate her readers by writing thrillers with a brilliant psychological finesse and a very blunt, but always sophisticated style. 

by Sandra Brown 
Publisher Hachette on October 29, 2019
Genre Thriller 
Pages 560
Format Trade Paperback
Source Library 

Envy is the second mortal sin – after arrogance. But unlike arrogance, envy can be deadly …
Maris Matherly-Reed is a renowned New York book editor, the daughter of a publisher and the wife of bestselling author Noah Reed. It’s not often that an unsolicited submission tantalizes her, but a new manuscript with blockbuster potential inspires her to search for the elusive author. On an obscure island off the Georgia coast, amid the ruins of an eerie cotton plantation, she finds Parker Evans, a man determined to conceal his identity as well as his past. Working with him chapter by chapter, Maris is riveted by his tale of two friends who charter a boat with a young woman for a night of revelry . . . an excursion from which only one person returns. As the story unfolds, Maris becomes convinced it is more than just fiction. Disturbed about her growing attraction to Parker and gripped by a chilling suspicion about his novel’s characters, she searches for the hidden truth about a crime committed decades ago. Then someone close to her dies while an evil presence looms even closer: a man who will use anyone — and anything — to get what he wants . . .
The young Maris Matherly, publisher and CEO of Matherly-Press discovers one afternoon in a pile of new, unsolicited sent manuscripts, the prologue to a book that inspires her. She is convinced that it will become a bestseller. In addition to her everyday work and her private life, Maris sets out to find the unknown author. She finally finds him on a small island off the coast of Georgia, visits him, and from there, her life takes a private and business turn that she could not have imagined in her wildest dreams. Parker Evans fascinates her, and regardless of this fact, her marriage to Noah is in a crisis. With much patience and even more passionate dedication to her work, Maris gets Parker Evans to write his thriller chapter by chapter and together they develop the plot during their stays on the island. When Maris discovers that the thriller is telling a real story, two mysterious and deadly accidents have happened, and she realizes Parker Evan´s role in this cat and mouse game, it´s too late for her. She stands on the brink and the awakening is more than bitter.

Sandra Brown´s language is relentlessly open and mercilessly direct, which does not hurt the style of the thriller and the storyline. On the contrary. Their language only makes the characters more believable and convincing. Nothing in “Envy” is what it seems at first glance. The tempo is fast-paced and captivating, and the author leaves the reader in the dark as to how she will resolve the conflicts.

Only one thing is clear:  it will be deadly.

The author has brilliantly put her characters on paper and provided with features that gradually show up in reading. At the beginning of the first chapter, I had the funny feeling that one of the characters was a bit strange, somehow too smooth, too accommodating, and in the course of the story, I realized why. The figures around Maris reveal sides that not only come to light without warning but are also often very ugly. The characters are real in their appearance and respective actions, believable, and offer a fascinating insight into the dark side of human psychology.

Sex, murder, and cold vengeance make a top-notch master thriller, along with an excellent plot and a brilliant choice of words. For every Sandra Brown fan a Must-read. And a great opportunity to discover the author for all those, who shouldn´t know her already.

Happy reading

*I read the German edition by Blanvalet published on January 8, 2004

Sandra Brown
Sandra Brown ©Gregory Heisler Studios

Sandra Brown is the author of seventy New York Times bestsellers. Brown began her writing career in 1981 and since then has published over seventy-five novels. Bringing the number of copies of her books in print worldwide to over eighty million. Her work has been translated into thirty-four languages. A lifelong Texan, Sandra Brown was born in Waco, grew up in Fort Worth and attended Texas Christian University, majoring in English. She is much in demand as a speaker and guest television hostess. Her episode on truTV´s Murder by the Book premiered the series in 2008. She appeared in 2010 on Investigation Discovery´s new series, Hardcover Mysteries. In 2009 Brown detoured from her thrillers to write Rainwater, a much acclaimed powerfully moving story about honor and sacrifice during the Great Depression. Brown holds an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from Texas Christian University where she and her husband Michael Brown, have instituted the ELF, a scholarship annually awarded to a student pursuing a fiction writing career. In 2008, she was named Thriller Master, the top award given by the International Thriller Writer´s Association. Other awards and commendations include the 2007 Texas Medal of Arts Award for Literature and the Romance Writers of America´s Lifetime Achievement Award. In 2011 she and four colleagues went on a week-long USO tour to Afghanistan, meeting with service members on numerous bases. Sandra is the past president of the Mystery Writers of America in 2012. She lives in Arlington, Texas, with her husband, Michael Brown.


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