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The King of Terrors (a psychological thriller combining mystery, crime and suspense) [Kindle Edition]

D. M. Mitchell
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (127 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Prepare to have your beliefs about life and death turned upside down...

150,000 downloads in the past 12 months alone.

With his acknowledged individual storytelling expertise, D. M. Mitchell pens yet another taut psychological thriller with a difference that twists and turns to its deliciously devious and unexpected conclusion. Discover for yourself why D. M. Mitchell is being hailed as one of the most exciting new writers of thriller and supernatural tales in the UK.

From reviews of The King of Terrors:

'Artfully written to keep the reader wanting more...'
'This book is the best yet, having all the twists and turns expected now of this author.'
'DM Mitchell proved his abilities with Max and House of the Wicked, and this new one for fans of his style should not takes a lot to scare me!'
'I had a hard time putting this book down'
'An extremely well written book. Would love to read a sequel.'
'Mitchell's books become increasingly "want more"!'
'I really enjoyed this book. I bought it on a whim and I am glad I did.'

“Hell, sir, I haven’t seen anything like this in all the time I’ve been on the force.” He took a cigarette from a silver case, offered me one, which I refused. “Are you sure you don’t want one?’ he said as he flicked his lighter into life and touched the flame to the end of the cigarette. “You might find you’ll need it.”

It begins in the year 1929. DCI Thomas Rayne discovers the decomposed body of an unknown man in a Suffolk barn, a strange black symbol painted on the barn wall. A crime that Inspector Rayne never solved. A case he would go to his death calling his Curse.

More than eighty years later in 2011, guilt-ridden Gareth Davies seeks a quiet life in rural Wales. But his self-enforced solitude is soon to be violently shattered. Driving home one night in a snowstorm he knocks down and nearly kills a mysterious young woman in a country lane.

He doesn’t know it but his life will never be the same again. The woman claims to be his twin sister Erica – a sister he never knew he had, because his unknown mother abandoned him in 1976 as a baby at Cardiff Central railway station. But his newfound sister brings with her a dire warning: his life is in great danger. When she disappears unexpectedly, he decides he must find her. That’s when his nightmare truly begins.

Police find false ID papers in a Manchester flat, bearing Davies’ photo; a flat in which a woman has been murdered. Moreover, the details of the gruesome murder mirror those exactly of the man found in the barn by DCI Rayne in 1929.

Why is Davies being followed by a strange Canadian man? Why is ninety-year-old Sir David Lambert-Chide, wealthy pharmaceutical giant, desperate to find Davies’ sister too? Who is the attractive but mysterious red-haired woman who warns him he is being hunted by the deadly Doradus? And who or what exactly is Doradus?

What becomes clear is that someone wants him dead, whilst others want him very much alive. His life in the balance, he finds he’s being hunted for reasons he cannot fathom, with no one to turn to, not knowing who to trust and caught up in dark forces many hundreds of years old.

Entering Dean Koontz territory, The King of Terrors is a breathtaking rollercoaster of a thriller that never lets up from its gripping and mystifying beginning to its shocking conclusion. With an array of well-drawn, memorable characters, its many delicious twists and turns and its complex, intelligently written, multi-stranded plot, this is D. M. Mitchell at his most ingenious, dark and profound.

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Product Details

  • File Size: 1204 KB
  • Print Length: 433 pages
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B009I3TO4S
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #231,666 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
18 of 21 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Okay but sub-standard for this author November 23, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Let me say first don't judge the author's talent based on this story alone. Whether you like this book or not, do read the author's other books, as they are very good. Elements of that talent are in this story- riveting premise, plot twists you didn't see coming, and interesting characters. Except here it wasn't seamless, transitions were jarring, and I felt at times I was going to need to draw up a timeline, re-read a few chapters, to keep it straight. And there were too many instances where the character basically had to say, "Okay here's how it went down..." I am glad I stuck it out and remain a Mitchell fan, and I've certainly paid a lot more for less of a story written by others, but I'm conflicted on a sequel, frankly. I'm sure I would buy it-- still a fan, but would hope I didn't feel so chronologically bumped around.
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37 of 50 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Misleading classification, occult not crime April 27, 2013
By Fei
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I expected a standard whodunit and was disappointed to find that the killert and victims are about people who live for hundreds of years. I feel conned by blurb that gave no indication this was not a thriller about the human race as we know it
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The king of Terrors crazy gud read. April 3, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
When i started this book i knew it wouldnt be your average serial thriller and boy was i right. There was everything in here a brilliant story, murder and mystery. As i read each chapter it just kept getting better and better and better. Couldnt put it down. When i came to the end of a chapter a revelation so i kept saying just one more chapter until i finished the book. I was totally engrossed. It started with the "Body in the Barn" in 1929 and years later body in "Manchester Flat" but the stories came together so seamlessly. Magic. This is my first read by D.M. Mitchell but it will not be my last. Well done Highly recommended.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars No let up from start to finish January 14, 2013
By Ashrae
Format:Kindle Edition
Talk about edge of the seat - this thriller has more twists and turns than a road to Twyford! Great characters, action packed pacing, enough description to make the story flow but not too much to distract. All that along with a storyline that kept my attention piqued all the way through. I usually have trouble with stories that jump around in time but Mr Mitchell seems to cover this very well and I didn't lose the thread at all.
This is not the first DM Mitchell book I have read (I have previously enjoyed Max: (a psychological thriller combining mystery, crime and suspense) ) and it certainly won't be the last. As to the question asked in chapter 50, if you can do it justice then yes, otherwise no. Either way I trust your judgement.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Couldn't put it down January 13, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This was a real page turner. I recommend it and I would like to see a sequel. This author has a tremendous talent.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A Bit Confusing April 22, 2014
By Meg
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I did ultimately like this book. However, there were far too many characters. Between keeping track of all the different time periods and all the characters, it felt like a lot of "work" to read. I am glad I stuck through it because it was all wrapped up nicely in the last 2 chapters. I could see this book having a good sequel. I was surprised by the identity of the main antagonist at the end. It would be interesting to get more of his story. And I feel a sequel might be a good reward for all the hard work I did reading this one :) However, I would hope the author would involve far fewer characters!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The king is dead. Long live the king! July 12, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Apologies for the review title - I couldn't resist that one. Now to weightier matters, the book.

Probably derived from my lifelong dislike of tools which claim to be 'multi-purpose' and then break when you try and use for them for anything practical, I'm not a great fan of mixed genre books. That's what 'The King of Terrors' is - a mixture of the occult, the (literally) super-natural (sic) and crime. Add in the vaguest hint of romance and, apart from an alien invasion or the cavalry arriving, I reckon we've just about covered the complete set.

I'd far rather a book stick to one genre: for example, even if it's something like a romance set on board a space ship, it's still a romance. I noticed that I'm not alone in this feeling - other reviewers have said similar and have lashed back with some punitive star-scorings.

For the most part, the book is well constructed with few errors although the density of these did increase towards the end. I think that there's a clue here. The end seemed particularly confused and I wonder if the author had a little panic attack - perhaps worrying about pulling it all together. I do think that, for a book which had a fair share of originality about it, the ending was horribly corny.

The question of 'should there be a sequel?'. I don't think this book is strong enough to merit it. What loose ends there were have been largely tied up (not as satisfactorily as I'd have liked) and I think 'let it lie'. The voice of commercial reason must be heard, though, and if the book's flying off the virtual shelves, then 'go for it', I suppose.

Three stars because it's solid and holds together but not the fourth star for being particularly well done nor the fifth for star quality.

Would I want to read the sequel? No. Would I want to read another book by the author? Yes (as long as it's not multi-genre!)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Artfully crafted, intriguing. June 16, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Firstly, Mitchell writes well, which is an enormous plus. Secondly, the story is so well crafted that its crux remains hidden for quite some time without losing the reader's interest. Having said that, the only real shortcoming was in the slightly clumsy use of time-disjointed narrative, in that a whole page can pass before the current time, place and characters are identified. It's a little disconcerting and perhaps deliberately so as the protagonist himself remains disconcerted 'til the end. Some dialogue is hackneyed / trite... but, in context, doesn't greatly detract from the story or character.

On the plus side, this is a captivating story. Reminiscent of Umberto Eco, Highlander and (better than) Dan Brown, it is well worth reading. The ending is a satisfying finish to this tale whilst leaving room for more... Yes, please, Mr Mitchell, more?
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Nicely done
Lots of twists and turns. Characters you can like and some you can hate. It did take some time to pull the story together. Good suspense. I enjoyed it.
Published 27 days ago by traveler
1.0 out of 5 stars One Star
Very long and uninteresting. I could barely get thru it.
Published 1 month ago by Kathy
4.0 out of 5 stars The King of Terrors
This book does keep you guessing as to who is good and who is evil. As such, it kept my interest until I finished. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Lucille K. Gress
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read!
I very much enjoyed this book I hope Mr. Mitchell will decide to continue the story and write a sequel.
Published 1 month ago by Jeanne Moss
3.0 out of 5 stars but I was disappointed to find there was science fiction too
Yes, there is mystery, crime and suspense, but I was disappointed to find there was science fiction too. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Leonie Jean Gifford-moore
2.0 out of 5 stars strange tale and to long.
I was trying to keep all the characters in my mind and also the separate plots, but I still got lost in the Tale.
Published 1 month ago by Brenda C. Hendricks
5.0 out of 5 stars What a great read.
This book was a unique blend of intrigue and flashback filling in the blanks. Normally, I do not like flashback type sequencing. The author makes it work well here. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Erin M. Metz
5.0 out of 5 stars Extremely intriguing and captivating novel by D.M. Mitchell !!!
Excellent story with engrossing characters. Each chapter more than I anticipated at first. After getting into the storyline, it was difficult to put down. Read more
Published 1 month ago by John H. Kuhl, CPCM
4.0 out of 5 stars Definitely looking for the next one.
Took me a while to see where he was going. Glad I stayed with it. You should too. Next one.
Published 1 month ago by Lynnette Morrison
4.0 out of 5 stars Surprisingly good!
This would have been a 5 star rating for me if it had been a little more suspenseful. I had a hard time at first getting the storyline, but it got better at the present timeline. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Anitra S. Driver
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More About the Author

D. M. Mitchell has been compared to Ruth Rendell, Martina Cole, Stephen King, Dean Koontz, Linwood Barclay, Dickens and even the Bronte sisters! This wide array of writing styles is appropriate - though Mitchell is known for his psychological thrillers, he is determined that each of them will be different, so they might be set in different eras, may be straightforward thrillers or have a supernatural or horror twist, and he avoids like the plague the standard and unimaginative serial killer format! You'll find he uses different styles of writing to suit different types of books - it also keeps him from getting bored...

D. M. Mitchell was born into a small mining community in Yorkshire, England. His career advisor said he had two options - go down the mines or become a policeman. Being scared of the dark and never having much meat on his bones, he declined both and in his early years bounced like a pinball from job to job - warehouses, cinema projectionist, market trader, salesman - you get the picture. He sort of made a success of himself and now lives in a money-pit of a cottage in a tiny village in the cream tea heart of the South West of England.

His first remembered attempt at pushing the boundaries of creative writing was during a school lesson at the age of nine. Titled simply 'Rain' his proud masterpiece began with 'It started to rain' then there followed eight pages of nothing but the words 'pitter-patter', concluding with 'and then it stopped'. It was handed over and duly reviewed by his brick wall of a teacher, whose eyebrows flickered up and down ominously, his cheeks flushing bright red, before declaring it total rubbish. He tore it up into ribbons, showered him with his first, and no doubt only tickertape ceremony, and gave him a meaty slap around the head (they could do that sort of thing in 1967). He made him write 'I will not write stupid things for eight pages' for eight pages. Thus he learnt a number of valuable early lessons - the meaning of irony, writing is very subjective, everyone's a critic, and no-one likes a smart-arse.

He persevered, his first novel appearing in 1986 and disappearing into the attic the same year. It's still up there. Many manuscripts later he used to save the piles of rejection slips to paper his bare walls. So the adage is, keep at it, in these times of economic depression you'll soon have the house fully redecorated. Nowadays, writing is the one thing he feels totally comfortable with, except perhaps for a cup of Horlicks on a cold winter's night when the rain goes pitter-patter against the window panes (there it is again...).

Characterisation is an important and noticeable aspect of all Mitchell's novels. It allows him to be whoever he wants to be when he gets fed up of being himself, which is quite often. So too is a sense of mystery and the exploration of the darker side to humanity. There are always strong elements of a complex puzzle to be solved in a D M Mitchell novel, many disparate parts ultimately coming together, tragedy and comedy sitting side by side. As in life, nothing is as it first seems. He takes a keen interest in history, a thread which runs through his writing, whether it's the 1960s or 1970s, as in 'Max' and 'Pressure Cooker', or the Victorian 1880s, as in 'The House of the Wicked'.

His favourite novelists include Barry Unsworth, Thomas Hardy, John Steinbeck and Graham Swift. Top two favourite historical books: Culloden, by John Prebble and The Face of Battle by John Keegan. He also collects first edition novels and takes a keen interest in anything old, tatty and in need of love and restoration. His wife says he needs to get out more.

He has three grown children and also enjoys photography, painting and walking the Blackdown Hills with his wife and an overly excitable Border Terrier - or is that an overly-excitable wife and a Border Terrier... One of the two.

He'd like to thank his growing legion of fans for allowing him to practice being a writer and sharing in his strange and lurid imaginings.

The story 'Rain' has not yet been made available on Kindle...


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