Witness X by S.E. Moorhead @semoorhead

From one of the most original new voices in fiction comes a startling vision of a world where hero Kyra must fight the past to save our future. A genre-bending thriller for the Netflix generation, for fans of Altered Carbon, Dark and Mindhunter.

She’s the only one who can access the truth…

Fourteen years ago, the police caged a notorious serial killer who abducted and butchered two victims every February. He was safe behind bars. Wasn’t he?

But then another body is discovered, and soon enough, the race is on to catch the real killer. Neuropsychologist Kyra Sullivan fights to use a new technology that accesses the minds of the witnesses, working with the police to uncover the truth. Will Kyra discover the person behind the murders, and if so, at what cost? And how far will she go to ensure justice is served?

Witness X is a fabulous debut by hugely talented new author S.E. Moorhead. It reminded me a little of the JD Robb futuristic series I’m such a fan of but with a realistic twist that felt very relatable throughout. It’s protagonist, Kyra Sullivan, is a flawed but likeable individual and her determination to make a success of the technology she’s created for the greater good of the general population made me feel incredibly proud of her for standing up for what she believes in.

Set in the near future (far enough away for new technology but not too far so that the plot seems too fantastic) Witness X sees Kyra using a new technology she has invented in order to enter the minds of witnesses so as to find out the truth about a series of murders. A man has been sentenced to jail for the killings but was the right person convicted? Kyra has a deeply personal connection to the case so she’s probably too close to make unbiased, informed decisions and when it looks like she’s the only one able to find a devious murderer, Kyra makes some very questionable choices!

This is a very dark and often disturbing thriller that reminded me at times of a film called The Cell staring Jennifer Lopez. It had the same stylish effects and conjured up a similar feeling of helplessness, of being trapped within someone else’s persona. And I have to admit to feeling as physically sick as Kyra did after each session. The tension it created was often unbearable especially as the narrative also explored the deeply disturbing insights into what was happening to the killers latest victim. So when that personal connection with Kyra reaches breaking point, the events threaten to overwhelm both the characters and the reader…

I thoroughly enjoyed being able to experience Witness X! It mirrored its plot line perfectly by pushing its way into my own thoughts with its violent scenarios and terrifying antagonists, leaving its own aftershocks from the past echoing around my mind long after I’d finished it. It’s a book to make you feel uncomfortable and voyeuristic and maybe not one to read on your own in a dark room! An horrific crime thriller with a difference that I can highly recommend.

Born in Liverpool, S.E.Moorhead has told stories since childhood and uses writing as bubblegum for her over-active brain – to keep it out of trouble. Fascinated by meaning, motivation and mystery, she studied Theology at university.
Over the last twenty five years, apart from teaching in secondary school, S.E.Moorhead has attained a black belt in kickboxing, worked as a chaplain, established a Justice and Peace youth group, and written articles for newspapers and magazines about her work in education and religion.
She still lives in her beloved hometown with her husband Seán and two sons.

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I am a Norfolk girl living in leafy Cheshire with my grumpy Scotsman. A mum and nana who lives for my family but who is also addicted to reading (and Marmite!) I will read almost anything but my preferred genres to review are psychological thrillers, crime procedural novels or women's fiction. My kindle is my life but I also have a substantial bookshelf in my cosy reading room where I can go to escape the stresses of family life with plenty of tea and chocolate. I am a member of netgalley and bookbridg. I review on Amazon, where I'm a Top 500 reviewer, and Goodreads. You can always find me over on Twitter @jocatrobertson for any review requests.

4 thoughts on “Witness X by S.E. Moorhead @semoorhead”

  1. I’m not always a fan of futuristic novels but done right know they can be really enjoyable. I’m intrigued by this one. Might well give it a go.

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