Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Empathy by Ker Dukey

Empathy by Ker Dukey

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

My hats off to you Ms. Dukey. I knew from the beginning that this was going to be a dark read. The blurb clearly states that Blake is a contract killer who didn’t feel empathy. As such, I pretty much knew we were dealing with a sociopath – yes, that master’s degree in psychology does have its uses. What I did not expect was the mind-bending trip down the rabbit hole that is Empathy. The twists and turns that the author introduces throughout the story make for one intense psychological thriller.

If you read the blurb, then you’ve likely surmised that Blake’s “profession” and Melody’s “tragedy” are entwined (and if you think that’s a spoiler, trust me when I tell you I have not ruined the book for you). The author does an excellent job of setting the stage, so to speak, for Blake’s sociopathic tendencies. When Melody makes first contact with Ryan (her classmate and Blake’s brother), it’s clear from the way that she describes his eyes that he didn’t survive that fateful night unscathed either. They take comfort in one another’s presence and their friendship develops. Once Melody learns that Blake and Ryan are brothers, I felt like I could hear her internal groan as she dealt with the knowledge that her best friend was the sibling of a man she hated interacting with. As events unfold, Blake finds himself unable to resist the pull he feels for Melody and when he finally gives in, well the sex is aggressively hot.

While a work of fiction, Empathy is a study of human behavior. The author seems eager to explore the nature vs. environment debate regarding sociopaths – are they born or are they made? I suspect this is just one of the reasons why this book appealed to me so much. That it is also the story of Blake’s redemption and I was constantly left wondering whether or not he would allow his love for Melody and hers for him to redeem him completely appealed to the romantic in me. And that I never saw IT coming, all I can say is well done Ms. Dukey. You’ve just made another fan.

I received a complimentary copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.
Reviewed by Angela at Crystal's Many Reviewers!

Check out the Empathy by Ker Dukey blog post on Crystal's Many Reviewers.

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