REVIEW: James Patterson’s thriller ‘The Murder House’ keeps you guessing, turning pages

"The Murder House" by James Patterson.

“The Murder House” by James Patterson was a thriller full of twists and turns that will keep you guessing every minute of the way.

I had never read anything by Patterson before, but I’m so glad I picked it up.

The story follows detective Jenna Murphy, a former NYC cop who returns to the small beach town of Southampton to work for the police force under the supervision of her uncle and chief of police, Langdon James. Murphy hadn’t been back since her childhood, but her memories come back piece by piece throughout the course of the novel to reveal a twisted reality.

The book is set around an abandoned, multi-million dollar gothic estate along the beach known as 7 Ocean Drive. The mansion is infamous for many gruesome and unsolved slayings that Murphy is determined to solve.

The chapters in “The Murder House” switch back and forth between the perspective of Detective Murphy and other characters in the book, including the unknown killer, who refers to himself as Holden, who still walks the streets of Southampton.

I loved this aspect of Patterson’s writing because I was able to get into the head of the deranged individual and see things from their point of view. The chapters are also very short, which made the book a super easy read, despite it being around 450 pages.

Patterson did a great job of giving subtle hints and evidence so that his audience could draw a conclusion on who they believed to be the one commiting the slayings. Throughout the novel, I changed my mind about two or three times on who I thought it was and still ended up being wrong at the end.

“The Murder House” was everything I wanted it to be. It was mysterious, suspenseful, twisted and a definite page-turner. I was pretty much hooked from the first chapter and couldn’t stop reading.

After reading this, I might have to check out some of Patterson’s other works because I couldn’t put this one down.

Despite its length, the short chapters and captivating plotline made it an easy and quick read. I would recommend this book to anyone who is a fan of suspense, murder mysteries or true crime.

Emma Snyder is a senior in mass communications. The views and opinions expressed in this review are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the Collegian. Please send comments to