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Joseph Knox, known for his series surrounding Detective Aidan Waits, has created a new genre with his latest novel, "True Crime Story". The story follows the disappearance of Zoe Nolan from her university halls of residence. Split into four parts, the reader is taken through the life and disappearance of Zoe through the eyes of her twin sister, other family, friends and professionals, such as the police. The various accounts help the reader get to know Zoe, or at least the Zoe she presented to others. However, the twists and turns at the end of each chapter leave you shocked, confused and unsure of what is true or fabricated. Whose accounts can we trust?

True Crime Story by Joseph Knox

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Buy True Crime Story by Joseph Knox at Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com

Category: Thrillers
Rating: 4/5
Reviewer: Holly Lewtas
Reviewed by Holly Lewtas
Summary: An unusual, chaotic read that will leave you bewildered, yet wanting to read the novel again.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 448 Date: June 2021
Publisher: Doubleday
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 978-0857527707

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"True Crime Story" is simply a peculiar read. The novel is professed to be "True Crime", yet it is also a "Story"? This presented a conundrum, causing me to be muddled many a time, wondering what was fact and what was fiction. Admittedly, after reading the first few chapters, I found myself researching the character's names to see whether I had accidentally picked up a non-fiction work. The novel contains pictures, emails and newspaper clippings, as well as vivid descriptions of authentic locations, several of which I have visited, making the novel feel as real as if a true crime documentary were playing out in my head. Although this was puzzling initially, once I had got used to the format and structure of the novel, I was immersed and fascinated by the story. But, it was hard to get into the swing of it at first. Even the publisher's note at the beginning is fictitious, discussing a non-existent second edition!

The plot is introduced by a fictional Joseph Knox who is carrying on the work of a fellow author, Evelyn Mitchell. The reader is told of how Evelyn began writing a novel about Zoe Nolan, yet it is suggested this led to Evelyn's own death, leaving the reader with a chilling sense of uneasiness. Consequently, Joseph took over the writing of the book and finishing off the investigation, made believable by the frequent snapshots of emails between Evelyn and Joseph as they each draw their own conclusions on the statements collected so far.

The real Knox is very talented in his writing, having to write from the perspective of many different characters. None of them came across as a copy of another character, each being presented as an individual with their own tone and style. Despite the novel being difficult to follow, credit is owed to Knox for his imaginative spin on the Crime/Mystery/Thriller genre. Although I struggled to keep up with the plot at times, I suspect this was even more of a challenge for the author! Whether you are a fan of books following these themes, the unique experience you have when reading "True Crime Story" is exceptional, and I will no doubt be re-reading the novel to see what I missed now I know the ending…

If you are interested in a novel following a similar plot, but written in a more conventional style, I would recommend Death Awaits in Durham (Kitt Hartley Yorkshire Mysteries) by Helen Cox.

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Buy True Crime Story by Joseph Knox at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy True Crime Story by Joseph Knox at Amazon.co.uk Amazon currently charges £2.99 for standard delivery for orders under £20, over which delivery is free.

Buy True Crime Story by Joseph Knox at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy True Crime Story by Joseph Knox at Amazon.com.

Please share on: Facebook Facebook, Follow us on Twitter Twitter and Follow us on Instagram Instagram

Buy True Crime Story by Joseph Knox at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy True Crime Story by Joseph Knox at Amazon.co.uk Amazon currently charges £2.99 for standard delivery for orders under £20, over which delivery is free.

True Crime Story by Joseph Knox Check prices, read reviews or buy from Waterstones. Waterstones currently charges from £2.75 for orders under £20, over which delivery is free. You may also click and collect from a Waterstones bookshop at no charge.

True Crime Story by Joseph Knox Check prices, read reviews or buy from Foyles. Foyles currently charges £2.99 (first class £3.99) for orders under £25, over which delivery is free. You may also click and collect from a Foyles bookshop at no charge.

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