Book Review: Think of a Number 4.5/5 *

New book by John Verdon

I have a theory about first books. The theory is that there is a lot of competition to get your book published, as a new author. If anyone ever actually gets his book published, his first book is usually a great one. My theory holds true with

    Think of a Number: A Novel

by John Verdon. I fully expect this to make a great screenplay too; it could be very commercial.

The story starts in bucolic upstate NY where our protagonist has recently moved. He and his wife have retired to the country after his active career catching bad guys as a NY city homicide detective. Oh yes, and one more thing, he specialized in serial killers.

Guess what? Some serial murders start happening and he is pulled back into the fascination of cracking the case once again. The murderer sends a letter that says some odd poetry and then, tells the recipient to “Think of a number.” When the person has a number in mind, he is directed to open a little enclosed envelope where the victim, amazingly, sees the number he has just thought of. This psychological thriller is just excellent at clearly building the situation and suspense. I won’t spoil it for you, of course, but it is a very good story.

I hope this new author has more books for us in the years to come. I thought his plot was well-developed and the characters believable. Well done but don’t read this one in the dark!


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