17 November 2014

Review #79: Roadrage by M.J. Johnson

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Nenia Campbell, an American author, has been quoted while saying:

“It takes many sheep to satisfy one wolf.”

M.J. Johnson, an English author, has spun a spectacular psychological thriller in his new book, Roadrage . And honestly, if you ask me how the book was, I'd rather say that I never ever read anything so dark, vulnerable and so sick!! M.J. Johnson has not only written it from the view point of creating a sick trauma and fear in the minds of his readers but he has delivered the whole book with a hell lot of compassion, thus it made me completely hooked to the story till the very end, and after reading this book, I'm now an official fan of Martin and will be looking forward in reading his next book.

Gil Harper is traveling home in severe weather conditions when he encounters another car on a deserted motorway. The other driver provokes him into a dangerous race at high speed. Although deeply shaken by the experience, Gil eventually gets away and completes his journey safely. A short time afterwards there begins a series of apparently unrelated events. What seems at first to be a vindictive game escalates into a terrifying ordeal with lethal consequences, not only for Gil, but for all those he loves and cares about. Trouble isn't always personal.

Well, we can't get a clear picture from what's written at the back of the book. In a nutshell, Gil has been a widowed man for the last 10years, but recently he found his lady luck in a theater costume designer, Sally whose nature will strike you as very secretive and someone who holds a grudge to her past. So you can imagine what happens when someone like Sally crosses her path with such a gentle man like Gil- the inevitable sparks fly with lots of fireworks. And within a fortnight, Gil's life takes an ugly turn, when Sally's insane ex-boyfriend, damages Gil's car and poisons Gil's dog. But when Sally's ex-boyfriend is found murdered- a classic hit-and-run case, in the middle of a road, fingers point to both Sally and Gil but all through the back-ground, a suspicious person is stalking Gil day-and-night under the nose of Gil. Who is this man? What is he want from Gil?

Gil and Sally both will strike you as the most interesting characters that you ever read in any thriller. Gil- the gentle guy, who always gets the blame when something goes wrong- the perfect fall-guy, who loves his dog like crazy and Sally- will sound like very vindictive and secretive, always holding back something especially when she's around her strange friends. And the rest of the other characters are too quite powerful, which impacted the story a lot. Moreover, it sound like whenever anything happened from dog-poisoning to car art-attack to car chasing on the highway, I simply couldn't put a finger to the real villain, because everyone sounded like a suspect to me!

The writing was plain and simple, something which you can relate to. The descriptions were striking enough to see things quite clearly. And the twists were kept well hidden till the very end and the mystery kept building higher and higher. The climax was marvelous which completely threw me off the edge. I mean I didn't see that coming. Totally unexpected and utterly brilliant! Yeah the climax matters a lot to the thrillers, I mean how the story will finally unfold from its last fold, that matters a lot, and Martin and skillfully delivered the climax. With such a flawless narration, you can only imagine yourself blending into the whole drama of sick murders. And mind it, while reading those sick notes (diary entries) of that psycho-stalker, will only make you look over your shoulder!
P.S: That enthralling book cover will certainly give you an eerie feeling about the plot! And that enthralling book cover is designed by the author's son, Tom Johnson!

Verdict: This is a must-read and you certainly can't piss this sick, bloody and deadly page turner mystery.

Courtesy: Many, many thanks to the author, M.J.Johnson, for giving me the opportunity to read and review his incredibly compelling novel! 

Author Info:
Martin was born in South Wales. He trained as an actor at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art and has worked extensively in all areas of the theatrical profession. He is married and has one son. 'Niedermayer & Hart', a supernatural thriller, is his first book. His most recent novel, a psychological thriller called 'Roadrage', is now available. He is working on a new book but he still isn't talking about this yet.
Visit him here 

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  1. HI Aditi, I wanted to say thank you for your delightful review of 'Roadrage'. It is a dark story as you point out, and in many ways it is considerably darker (I think) than my first book 'Niedermayer & Hart' which is a horror/thriller and therefore has better credentials for doing this, or so you'd imagine. The difference is I think is that with horror/fantasy the reader is always aware at the back of their mind, no matter how much they are able to suspend their disbelief, that it isn't really possible, whereas with a story like 'Roadrage' we are in territory that is terrifyingly all too feasible. Of course, I didn't want the book to be so scary so that it frightened all its readers away, so once I'd completed 'RR' I spent a considerable amount of time trying to get the balance right - I had to tone the book down in parts for this reason! At the end of the day it's simply a piece of entertainment! The aim of the book was to keep its readers on the edge of their seats, not to scare them completely out of their wits. Once again thank you for such a marvellous review - my first from India! Reviews really are the lifeblood of us Indie Writers and without them there would be no possible way to find and reach readers. All best wishes, Martin

    1. Thank you so much for your reply! You are so talented that you can turn a simple story into such a scary read for your readers and moreover, the readers can connect with your story! I was simply honored to read your book and write a review for the same!
      Thank You :-)


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