When a mother is targeted by a dangerous group of masterminds, she must commit a crime to save her kidnapped daughter—or risk losing her forever—in this "propulsive and original" award-winning thriller (Stephen King).
It's something parents do every morning: Rachel Klein drops her daughter at the bus stop and heads into her day. But a cell phone call from an unknown number changes everything: it's a woman on the line, informing her that she has Kylie bound and gagged in her back seat, and the only way Rachel will see her again is to follow her instructions exactly: pay a ransom, and find another child to abduct. This is no ordinary kidnapping: the caller is a mother herself, whose son has been taken, and if Rachel doesn't do as she's told, the boy will die.
"You are not the first. And you will certainly not be the last."Rachel is now part of The Chain, an unending and ingenious scheme that turns victims into criminals—and is making someone else very rich in the process. The rules are simple, the moral challenges impossible; find the money fast, find your victim, and then commit a horrible act you'd have thought yourself incapable of just twenty-four hours ago.
But what the masterminds behind The Chain know is that parents will do anything for their children. It turns out that kidnapping is only the beginning.
"McKinty is one of the most striking and most memorable crime voices to emerge on the scene in years. His plots tempt you to read at top speed, but don't give in: this writing—sharply observant, intelligent and shot through with black humor—should be savored."
"A masterpiece. You have never read anything quite like The Chain and you will never be able to forget it." —Don Winslow
"Diabolical, unnerving, and gives a whole new meaning to the word "relentless". Adrian McKinty just leapt to the top of my list of must-read suspense novelists. He's the real deal."
"Pairing an irresistible concept with a winner protagonist, The Chain promises to be your new addiction once you succumb to the first enticing page."
"A grade-A-first-rate-edge-of-your-seat thriller. I can't believe what went through my mind while reading it." —Attica Locke
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
The premise behind this story made our skin prickle. When Rachel Klein receives a phone call from someone who says she has just kidnapped Rachel’s 13-year-old daughter, Kylie, her world begins to collapse. “It’s not about the money,” the woman on the phone says, “it’s about the chain”—a torturous scheme that means in order to save Kylie, Rachel must commit an unthinkable crime herself. Adrian McKinty, the acclaimed author of the Sean Duffy detective series, has crafted a spellbinding thriller with characters who had us riveted with their ability to face down impossible choices.
An original premise, relentless pacing, and strong female characters lift this nail-biter from Edgar winner McKinty (the Sean Duffy series), which takes a no-holds-barred look at how far a parent will go to protect her child. Divorced teacher Rachel Klein, a cancer survivor, lives on Massachusetts's Plum Island with her 13-year-old daughter, Kylie. She's driving to Boston one day to see her doctor when she gets a call from an unidentified woman who sounds upset. The woman tells Rachel that she has kidnapped Kylie, and the only way to get Kylie back is for Rachel to kidnap another child. The woman, whose own child has been kidnapped, and Rachel are now links in a chain of abductions. If Rachel doesn't follow the program, Kylie will die. In desperation, Rachel and her retired military brother-in-law, Pete O'Neill, eventually kidnap a random child to win her daughter's release. At that point, an angry Rachel and Pete, ignoring warnings to continue to remain silent and do nothing, go on the offensive to track down the people responsible for the kidnapping chain, culminating in a violent confrontation in a marshy area south of Plum Island. Readers won't be able to put this thriller down.
Intriguing concept that kept me turning the pages.
You won’t put it down
Gripping from beginning to end. A nightmare situation that the author unravels with perfect timing, keeping the reader eagerly engaged to know more.
Kept me interested
It’s okay but not great. It kept me interested until the end. But it wasn’t a book I would look forward to reading every night.