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Nathan Ripley Books In Order

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Publication Order of Standalone Novels

Find You in the Dark (2018)Description / Buy at Amazon
Your Life Is Mine (2019)Description / Buy at Amazon

Journalist Nathan Ruthnum writes literary fiction under the pseudonym Nathan Ripley. Nathan grew up in Kelowna and spent the majority of his twenties in the city of Vancouver, and he made many trips to the Pacific Northwest, where he set his first novel. Nathan would attend many concerts here, and conduct research, eventually.

Interest he had in thriller, horror, and pulp fiction never waned even while he was focused on writing literary fiction and criticism.

His essays and stories have been published in Sight & Sound, The Walrus, and Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine. He also published a book of essays called Curry, which he published under Nathan Ruthnum.

He has won a McClelland & Stewart/ Writers’ Trust Journey Prize in the year 2013 for his short story “Cinema Rex”. “Find You in the Dark” was an immediate bestseller and was a finalist for the Best First Novel award from Arthur Ellis.

Ripley always wanted to write crime fiction from very early in his twenties, and genre is his true love. That’s not the only thing he writes however. He likes to write screenplays, as well, something that he had wanted to do since he was fourteen years old.

Writing his thriller fiction under a pen name was an easy thing for him to do, since he still wrote short stories under Nathan Ruthnum.

“Find You in the Dark” lacks graphic descriptions of the murders that happen, which Ripley says comes from his reading a true crime book. The descriptions were so detailed, in a long forgotten book from the nineties, it read strangely. The book felt like erotic fiction, but it was describing corpses.

One of the things that Ripley wanted readers to see while reading the book is to wonder if Martin Reese is really doing the right thing. From his point of view, he definitely is, but other perspectives will show that in fact, no he is not doing the right thing.

Ripley also tried to dance around a bunch of tropes that show up in thrillers. There is the obsessed cop looking for justice, and the obsessive guy trying to atone for something from his past. He was able to put pressure on both of these things by making his hero much creepier than he realizes or believes he is.

By putting pressure on these expectations, it gives the readers something interesting to talk about. Otherwise, it is the same stereotype that has been done before.

Ripley wanted to break away from what typically happens in thrillers or genre fiction. Just insert a character with an odd quirk into some sort of thing that has been done many times before.

His debut novel, “Find You in the Dark”, was released in the year 2018. Ripley’s work is from the mystery genre. The book is going to be published by Simon & Schuster Canada and Atria in the US simultaneously. The two-book deal Ripley got netted him sub rights sales in New Zealand and the UK, a six-figure advance, as well as an option for television from eOne.

“Find You in the Dark” is the first stand alone novel, which was released in the year 2018. Martin Reese’s hobby is to dig up murder victims. He buys police files on serial killers that have been stolen, and uses them to locate and dig up missing bodies. He calls in his findings anonymously, and taunts the cops for their failure in doing their job.

Detective Sandra Whittal takes this a tad personally. She is suspicious of this mysterious caller, who she dubs the Finder. It might be that he is the one that leaves the bodies behind. If he isn’t, who can really say that he will not start doing so soon?

While Whittal starts to hone in on the Finder, Martin makes a stunner of a discovery. It appears that somebody, somebody deadly, is highly unhappy about the corpses he has been digging up.

He finds himself hunted by a killer as well as a cop. To escape all of this and keep his own family safe, Martin might have to go deeper inside the world of murder than he ever thought.

Nathan does a superb job of building atmosphere and the entire read is creepy. All of Martin’s narration, as well as his remarks about his own dark secrets keeps you on edge. The book takes its time gathering its head of steam. Overall, this book does a superb job of being a different type of novel and not just another stereotypical psychological thriller.

“Your Life is Mine” is the second stand alone novel, which was released in the year 2019. Blanche Potter never planned on facing her past again, but she is unable to escape it.

Blanche, who is on the rise as a filmmaker, has distanced herself in every possibly way from her dad, who is the infamous cult leader and murderer named Chuck Varner. In the year 1996, he went on a shooting spree before he turned the gun on himself, while she was only a small child.

Blanche finds out that her mom has just been killed. She goes back to her childhood home, where she quickly finds there is more to this death than the police are first willing to reveal. The officer that is handling the case is holding back on information, and there is a journalist that is nosing around in the investigation that takes an unusual interest in Blanche’s family.

Blanche starts to suspect that the cult her dad formed has begun a new life, and her mom’s killing was the start of the cult’s next chapter. Then there is another killing.

Ripley did an excellent job of introducing different elements that will tug at fragile strings and another that hold Blanche together emotionally. Blanche’s character is well handled, and you wind up seeing that she is good at compartmentalizing and isn’t fine whatsoever. Some readers flew through this and enjoyed every single instant of it, with all the intense thrills it elicits at each and every turn.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Nathan Ripley

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