The Deadliest Game by H. E. Joyce

The Deadliest Game by H. E. Joyce Purchase:

    Hold onto your seat for this bang ’em, knock ’em dead thriller.

    Laura thought she’d left her past behind, following a move to Maine with her young son. Desperate to rid their lives of pain and manipulation of her now dead abusive husband, Laura aims to create a peaceful existence in the stormy small town of Brooksville.

    A chance encounter with local attorney Michael leads to a whirlwind romance and marriage. Still struggling to trust, Laura quickly becomes suspicious of Michael’s activities and hires a private detective to confirm her doubts.

    As if mistrusting her new husband wasn’t enough, the psychotherapist begins treating a peculiar patient who brings about further insecurities and a new round of worries. Soon, strange phone calls and dark secrets are revealed, leaving Laura to question all that she’s ever known.

    Is it possible that her past and her present have come together to turn her world upside down? Can she really put the past behind her when suspicion and doubt plague her every thought?

    FROM H. E. Joyce:

    JodAxbXe_400x400I have had a passion for writing from an early age, and it has never left me. An avid reader, I enjoy losing myself in a really good mystery. Mysteries, thrillers, and the paranormal are the genres in which I like to write, and I try to leave as much to the imagination of my readers as possible. If you like stories with a perfectly happy ending, then my books may not be for you, as I prefer, in most cases, to leave them open to interpretation.

    It has taken many years to finally pursue my dream of becoming a writer and publishing my work. I was a firefighter for eighteen years, which was extremely rewarding, I also worked as a newspaper photographer and as a freelance artist, and I still dabble from time to time. I hope you enjoy reading my novels and short stories as much as I enjoy writing them. I am currently busy working on my next projects, a complete series of paranormal thrillers, and a selection of short stories.

    Review by Jane H.:

    The Deadliest Game is a thriller/mystery that takes place in Maine. The protagonist, Laura, has just moved out to the country after an unnamed tragedy that forced her to leave the city.

    This aspect of the story is hinted at mysteriously at first. As her character develops, the nature of this tragedy is revealed.  After a short time living with her child Jody, Laura meets one of the only suitable bachelors in town. They hit it off, and get married in short order.

    This is where the story gets interesting. Laura begins receiving strange phone calls, her new husband Michael starts acting unaccountably, she (Laura’s a psychotherapist by the way) finally gets a client who’s all sorts of weird, and to top it off she starts seeing things. I thought that this was all very gripping and hard to put down.

    The characters were well developed. The author used a combination of flashback and anecdote to humanize Laura and her husband Michael. There were points where I was happy for the main characters, concerned, anxious, and even angry when they did something stupid.

    He also did a nice job giving the minor characters unique, memorable voices. This made it easy to keep up with who was who.

    As always, Joyce does a beautiful job describing the scenery without going on and on about it. I could picture the scene, but I didn’t skip over anything.

    Well, I could keep going but I suppose it would be better if I just wrapped this one up. Overall, I really enjoyed this story. The Deadliest Game is a perfectly placed mystery that keeps the reader wanting more. I’ve read just about everything this writer has put out, and I think this one is my favorite so far.

    Review by Amazon Customer:

    Occasionally a book comes along that reminds us of evil. At the great many books that I have read, I come across great stories, yet many of them fizzle into a diluted tale. Often times we are asked what a novel is about. Is it easy to sum up in one word what a hundred thousand words tells you? How would you do this in one sentence? The writer should know this.

    Certainly H.E. Joyce knows. He has taken his theme seriously.

    Meet Laura, who has been through the trauma of killing an abusive husband. She is innocent, after all.

    None of this makes it easy on her son, Jody, as she is put under the microscope, psychoanalyzed, and regurgitated to the real world. She must now cope with her past.

    Life is less than blase as she tries to put the past behind her.

    Along comes the spider … or is he the knight-in-shining-armor?

    We move ahead through one year of marriage with Michael, who, later she learns, has secrets to hide. Are they to hurt her or help her? Joyce keeps you guessing.

    It seems everyone has a past in this novel.

    Hold onto your seat for this bang ’em, knock ’em dead thriller, which I give five stars.