Deserve to Die
Author: Miranda Rijks
Publication Date: July 31st 2019
Genre: Psychological Thriller
Publisher: Inkubator Books
Dom and Stacey have the perfect life. Until they meet Tamara. Brilliant, beautiful, she hides a horrifying secret. One that may destroy them all.
Happily married with two wonderful children, Dom and Stacey are living the dream. He runs a successful design agency, she is finding fame as an author of children’s books.
Everything is perfect. But then they meet the mesmerizing Tamara and their lives are changed forever.
Because Tamara is a woman with a plan. She executes it step by step – patient, systematic, methodical.
And as her plan unfolds, Dom and Stacey find their lives slipping out of control. Taking them from heaven into the deepest, darkest hell…
Deserve to Die is a compelling psychological thriller with a heart-stopping ending that will keep you gripped until the early hours. Perfect for fans of K. L. Slater, Teresa Driscoll and Andrew Hart.
I received this book in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts are my own. Thanks to Emma@Damppebbles for my spot on the blog tour.
When Emma @ Damppebbles book tours sent out an email asking if there was interest in taking part in the blog tour for Deserve to Die I knew I just had to be involved. The cover and the blurb just had all my thriller Spidey senses tingling. The title spins a yarn of game playing, deceit, mental illness and past hurts. You can change everything about yourself but only one thing is certain – you can never outrun your past.
A beautiful woman and a career focussed man. Tamara and Dylan start dating, and she is round at his house. The first chapter introduces these two characters and the starting point of a plan finally being put into action. Tamara’s POV gives us significant insight into her state of mind and gives us small clues into what she is aiming to do. She seems hateful and really quite bitter. It’s obvious she has a deep story but it’s equally obvious she has something evil and deceitful planned. Who is her target and why is she doing this?
Stacey appears to have the perfect life. She has the perfect husband. Caring and attentive and the best father she could ever have dreamed of having. Two beautiful, healthy children who are lucky enough to attend private school. A beautiful home, stunning cars and she is an emerging author and illustrator with a lucrative publishing deal and the book being optioned for film. To everyone else she has the white picket fence and the 2.5 kids, but life has a funny way of shaking your idyllic life on its head.
Life for Stacey is perfect. That is until Tamara breezily walks into her family’s life. She has filled the grief-fuelled gap that Dylan’s death has created. He was a member of the team and now it appears he left a suicide note detailing how he was deeply unhappy and there was too much pressure at work. It affects them all. Tamara applies for the position of Accounts Director and low and behold gets the position. Tamara has a list of aims and she’s ticked off one already – what could possibly be her endgame? Even at this early juncture I had real issues connecting with Tamara – although quite clearly a beautiful character, she was deeply flawed, and nothing was going to stand in her way of her plan being executed.
I think we can all relate to a character like Stacey. Plagued by her past experiences and understandably affected by poor mental health due to trauma. She has proved herself to be resilient and has moved on from that difficult period in her life. She obviously loved her husband and children very much and it was just heart-breaking to watch the events unfold in front of our eyes. The systematic destruction of Stacey’s life was painful. The self-doubt of her own mental health was both dramatic and realistic. I wanted her to discover the root of her misery – she wasn’t mad, but she had to work that out for herself. Unfortunately, things got a whole lot crazier before she did.
There is no time for self-pity – Tamara has inserted herself so fully into Stacey’s life that it’s going to take a miracle to undo the damage that the scarlet woman has created. Stacey is in hospital after a series of events that lead to her massive fall from grace. How on earth do you search for the truth when your mental health has been deemed unstable. Something that should be simple to prove, just isn’t. How can she prove these things have happened to her ? How can she discredit someone that seems much more credible than her?
The plot in this book was exquisite. Fast paced and moved at the speed of a Lamborghini. I could feel my whiplash taking effect. Everything was just so well written – Stacey and Dom’s relationship, the effect of memories and the past literally only a grasp away. This is what I love about Psychological Thrillers. Heart wrenching. This is a Thriller done absolutely RIGHT. Unique plot with an even more unique ending that had me guessing right up to the very end.
Miranda’s writing is tack sharp. She has been able to successfully nurture a serious idea and weave it so amazingly that had me in awe of her skill for engaging the reader at all times. No page is wasted. She has the right formula of tension, romantic relationships and horrifically scary moments. When Stacey’s family is on the line, she delves deeper into herself than she ever has before, and she fights with the gusto of a mama bear. We could all decipher what Tamara’s end goal would be, but it was the manner in which she calculatingly destroyed Stacey that provided us with that edge of the seat moments.
What does it take to destroy a life? Well, little subtle things it would seem. A doubt here, a doubt there. Life is a fragile thing and the past is never truly escapable. We are all products of our experiences and Miranda shows us this in horrifying high definition.
Deserve to Die, is a fierce, all-consuming read with fast paced action with beautifully broken characters that has your stomach churning and your heart breaking. If you only read one book this summer, make it Deserve to Die.
Miranda Rijks is an author of suspense novels.
Miranda has an eclectic background ranging from law to running a garden centre. she’s been writing all of her life and has a Masters in writing. A couple of years ago she decided to ditch the business plans and press releases and now she’s living the dream, writing suspense novels full time. She lives in Sussex, England with her Dutch husband, musician daughter and black Labrador.
Miranda loves connecting with her readers, so you can reach out to her at www.mirandarijks.com