Independently Published (2022)
Reviewed by Stephanie Elizabeth Long for Reader Views (07/2022)
With the intention of getting some much-needed rest and relaxation, the Wincoff’s head to the beautiful Ponocos for the week. But their search for tranquility is blighted when 12-year-old Abigail Wincoff goes missing. Gillian and Lance Wincoff are beside themselves with grief when minutes meld into hours, and hours bleed into days, and the only sign of their beloved daughter is the muddied binoculars Abby used for birdwatching found deep within the forest that overlooked their cabin.
Sheriff Kirkman vows to do everything in his power to bring Abby back to her parents. Still, he quickly realizes that because of the constant downpour they are getting, obtaining DNA will be slim to none. Meanwhile, Abby’s pleading cries haunt the forest where she was murdered, and a young author feels a chilling presence that she cannot ignore. Can Kirkman’s team find the tortured child and bring the murderer to justice, or do they have a serial killer on their hands? Read this spine-chilling novel to find out.
“Birdwatcher” is an engaging crime thriller with supernatural elements weaved into the storyline. Readers will be so immersed in the search for the missing girl, her parents’ plight, and the ongoing investigation, they will be taken aback by the creepiness that ensues.
While I enjoyed the unraveling of the search conducted by Sheriff Kirkman, the most thrilling part of the page-turner was the unearthly sightings carefully curated by the author. The kind that starts like a faint whisper then bellows hauntingly as the story progresses. An eerie glow hovering around your peripherals, the menacing giggle of a small child, and the jerky movements of an apparition all contributed to the hairs on the back of my neck standing on end. For those who want scary, this book delivers a seriously creepy vibe!
Beyond the goosebumps and spine-tingling ghostly encounters, the book was fully stocked with relatable characters with substantial backstories. The grieving parents of an only child who are guilt-stricken over their daughter’s disappearance and an aging sheriff that is torn between retiring and cracking this final case give the storyline multiple layers.
Look no further if you’re searching for a book with a creepy premise and well-developed characters. So, grab a warm cup of tea and sidle up to “Birdwatcher,” but be forewarned; you may need to sleep with the lights on after reading!