I’m excited to welcome you today to my stop on the blog tour for fabulous standalone thriller First Born by Will Dean. Thank you to Jenny Platt and Hodder & Stoughton for giving me the opportunity to read and review this wonderful book.
About the book:
THE LAST THING A TWIN EXPECTS IS TO BE ALONE …
Molly lives a quiet, contained life in London. Naturally risk averse, she gains comfort from security and structure. Every day the same.
Her identical twin Katie is her exact opposite: gregarious and spontaneous. They used to be inseparable, until Katie moved to New York a year ago. Molly still speaks to her daily without fail.
But when Molly learns that Katie has died suddenly in New York, she is thrown into unfamiliar territory. Katie is part of her DNA. As terrifying as it is, she must go there and find out what happened. As she tracks her twin’s last movements, cracks begin to emerge. Nothing is what it seems. And a web of deceit is closing around her.
Delivering the same intensity of pace and storytelling that made THE LAST THING TO BURN a word-of-mouth sensation, FIRST BORN will surprise, shock and enthral.
About the author:
WILL DEAN grew up in the East Midlands and had lived in nine different villages before the age of eighteen. After studying Law at the LSE and working in London, he settled in rural Sweden where he built a house in a boggy clearing at the centre of a vast elk forest, and it’s from this base that he compulsively reads and writes.
His debut novel, Dark Pines, was selected for Zoe Ball’s Book Club, shortlisted for the Guardian Not the Booker prize and named a Daily Telegraph Book of the Year. The second Tuva Moodyson mystery, Red Snow, was published in January 2019 and won Best Independent Voice at the Amazon Publishing Readers’ Awards, 2019. The Last Thing to Burn was released to widespread acclaim in January 2021.
First Born is his second standalone novel.
First Born by Will Dean is a fantastic, edge of your seat read that had me gripped from beginning to end. Very different to his previous books, the first half is more of a slow burn that steadily picks up pace as the story progresses. With twists, turns, shocks and surprises you do not see coming, this is a psychological thriller that had me racing through the pages, desperate to find out what was going to happen next.
Molly lives a quiet life in London. Content to live a secure and structured lifestyle, she gains comfort from the day to day routine of her daily life. Her identical twin Katie (or KT as Molly calls her) is the exact opposite, preferring to be spontaneous and to live life to the full. The twins were once inseparable, but KT moved to New York a year ago and, although they still talk every day, nothing is the same. But then Molly learns that Katie has died suddenly and soon finds herself in unfamiliar territory, on a plane to New York desperate to find out what happened. As she tracks KT’s last movements, Molly begins to uncover a web of deceit and lies. Is anything as it seems?
I don’t want to say too much more about the plot as to do so would take away from the impact of simply experiencing it for yourself. But I can say with complete honesty that First Born is a tense and unpredictable story that will keep you guessing throughout. And I loved it!
Will Dean’s writing is as mesmerising as always and the tension palpable as Molly begins to uncover the truth of what happened to her twin sister. The relationship between the sisters remains a focal point, even as the temperature rises and the thriller aspect of the novel begins to take shape. I loved the ’identical twin’ side of the story, which is always complex and never straightforward. Having grown up with identical twin aunts who no one outside of the family could tell apart, I can categorically confirm that they were identical in looks only, their personalities and outlook on life the complete polar opposite of each other… but with an unbreakable bond that, no matter what, lasted throughout their whole lives.
A tense and gripping psychological thriller, First Born is a fascinating, atmospheric and thought provoking tale that I thoroughly enjoyed from beginning to end. Will Dean’s writing gets better and better with each book and I can’t wait to see what he has in store for us next!
First Born by Will Dean is available to purchase now:
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