48) The Poison Artist by Jonathan Moore
This was recommended by Laura Wilson on the Guardian’s thriller pages (well worth a look for new ideas / authors), and it’s a strange and intriguing read. A guy in a bar, after a row with his partner, meets a mysterious woman with a penchant for absinthe and whispering in people’s ears – and, as it turns out, a side-helping of chilling violence.
It’s cleverly written, as the reader only finds out things in line with the narrator – and things become increasingly complicated as he walks around the city, finds bodies, becomes more isolated, and is more and more entwined in the crimes being committed (all while developing his own penchant for absinthe, naturally).
It goes a bit nuts towards the end in a brain-mangling kind of way, but still enjoyable and the whole thing was a really atmospheric, alluring read – with no shortage of suspense or engaging characters. It will be very interesting to see what Moore does next.