The Whisperer, By Donato Carrisi

Literary thriller? More a grim tale from the shallow end

The premise for this bestseller is an intriguing one: that an innocent mind can be perverted by suggestion (and so a bad mind made good again by persuasion, or a bad action diverted by rhetoric).

Ian McEwan tried this out in Saturday, an appropriate comparison as this may be crime fiction but Carrisi's debut is described as a "literary thriller". This psychologically shallow and thoroughly grim tale comes straight from Silence of the Lambs: five little girls have been abducted and killed. But Carrisi, in his romantic acknowledgements, doesn't seem aware of this. ("To Daria, and the destiny she gave me. To Maria de Bellis, who guarded my childish dreams.")