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  • Writer's pictureJudith D Collins

Look Closer

ISBN: 978-0399170928

Publisher: PENGUIN Group Putnam

Publication Date: 07/05/2022

Format: e-book and audio

Penguin Audio

My Rating: 5 Stars + (ARC)

“Suspenseful, sexy, involving, twisty and twisted.”—James Patterson

“A dizzyingly clever thriller. Endlessly surprising and great fun.”—Lisa Scottoline

From the bestselling and award-winning author comes a wickedly clever and fast-paced novel of greed, revenge, obsession—and quite possibly the perfect murder.

Simon and Vicky couldn’t seem more normal: a wealthy Chicago couple, he a respected law professor, she an advocate for domestic violence victims. A stable, if unexciting marriage. But one thing’s for sure … absolutely nothing is what it seems. The pair are far from normal, and one of them just may be a killer. When the body of a beautiful socialite is found hanging in a mansion in a nearby suburb, Simon and Vicky’s secrets begin to unravel. A secret whirlwind affair. A twenty-million-dollar trust fund about to come due. A decades-long grudge and obsession with revenge. These are just a few of the lies that make up the complex web...and they will have devastating consequences.

And while both Vicky and Simon are liars, just who exactly is conning who? Part Gone Girl, part Strangers on a Train, Look Closer is a wild rollercoaster of a read that will have you questioning everything you think you know.


"The fun is figuring out what parts of the story — if any — should be trusted. Though Ellis juggles a great many plot strands, he doesn’t drop them; the result is wildly entertaining, not tedious. It helps that just about every character in the book is the very definition of unreliable." —New York Times Book Review

"I’ll tell you what – Look Closer is James Patterson’s Book Club selection. You won’t forget this novel, and these characters – good and bad – for a long time."

--James Patterson

"Impressive...The tale of murder and misdirection is a solid two days of beach escape."

--Chicago Tribune

“Serpentine revelations will surprise even the cleverest mystery readers. This complex tale of triple-crossings and devious revenge should win Ellis new fans.”

--Publishers Weekly

“Twisty, intricately plotted….Even seasoned mystery readers won’t be able to predict all the knots in Simon and Vicky’s tangled web of deception. A roller-coaster ride full of unexpected twists and turns.” —Kirkus Reviews

“A daring, brilliant thriller, full of characters you both love and hate and more unexpected turns than a mountain road at night without your headlights. Tremendous fun!”

--Scott Turow, bestselling author of Presumed Innocent and The Last Trial

"Absolutely dazzling! David Ellis is a master storyteller who keeps us riveted to the pages. A whip-smart and diabolically plotted thriller, with crackling dialogue, nonstop pacing, and tour de force structure. A profoundly insightful study of greed, obsession, revenge, and justice. Riveting, compelling, and completely entertaining!"

--Hank Phillippi Ryan, bestselling author of Her Perfect Life

My Review

What do the following have in common?

💀 The Grim Reaper 🎃 Halloween | Chicago 🤑 $21 Million trust fund 👨‍🏫⚖ Simon: Law Professor 👩‍⚕️ Vicky: Advocate for domestic violence victims. 👩 Lauren: The other woman 👨‍💼 Christian: Financial advisor/con-artist 👮‍♀️ Jane: The Detective 🔫 DOUBLE MURDER

LOOK CLOSER and discover.

The best LIES are the ones closest to the TRUTH.

Bestselling Author, David Ellis delivers a TOP-NOTCH wild roller coaster cat-and-mouse thriller —LOOK CLOSER. One of the "BEST" smartly-written diabolical "literary thrillers" I have ever read!

Yes, it is that great. LOOK CLOSER will be included in my Top 5 Thrillers of 2022. I have read a few of the author's legal thrillers; however, this one is on a totally different level. Go into it blind. NOTHING IS AS IT APPEARS. Evil and deliciously devious. Full of surprises! I have never read anything like quite like it.

The book opens on Halloween 2022 with a hanged body of Lauren in her Chicago home. The murderer is dressed in a Grim Reaper costume. The author carefully sets up the story with all the details and backstories. UNRELIABLE narrators.

From law professor Simon Dobias—his past and present connect. He has lots of secrets. One being an affair.

Vicky, is an advocate for domestic violence victims, with a sordid past and lots of secrets. She seduces financial advisor Christian (con-artist) with her own plan.

A tenth wedding anniversary and a big trust fund payout of $21M. So who will WIN in the end and can they get by with DOUBLE MURDER?

Jane, the detective thinks she has it figured out, but can she prove it?

Highly entertaining, fast-paced, highly creative, with superb writing and plotting, unreliable characters, a brilliant game of cat-and-mouse—Prey or Predator? Obsession, murder, lust, manipulation, deception, lies, greed, and juicy REVENGE!

From journals, pink and green burner phones, costumes, and meticulously planning - it has it all.

Clever, taut, complex, multi-layered, and suspenseful. You will never figure it out until the explosive ending. You are going to LOVE the wickedly devious Vicky and Simon. (They remind me of Blake Crouch's Good Behavior).

Such a fun time revisiting parts of Chicago where I worked for many years. This is a perfect book for book clubs and you must read it again on Halloween!

I read the e-book and audio. The audio was exceptional, narrated by:

SIMON: Will Damron

JANE: Hillary Huber

VICKY: Elizabeth Garrett


If you can only read one thriller this year, this would be it! David Ellis is now on my Top Author List and I bet he will be on yours as well after reading this gem.

Thank you to #PenguinGroupPutnam and #NetGalley for an ARC to read, review, and enjoy. I also purchased the audiobook which was outstanding (highly recommend) and the hardcover copy for my home library.

@JudithDCollins | #JDCMustReadBooks

My Rating: 5 Stars 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

Pub Date: July 5, 2022

About the Author

David Ellis is a judge and an Edgar-award-winning author of ten novels of crime fiction, as well as eight books co-authored with James Patterson. In December, 2014, Dave was sworn in as the youngest-serving Justice of the Illinois Appellate Court for the First District. Ellis lives outside Chicago with his wife and three children. WEBSITE







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