Oct 12, 2015

Review: The Masked Truth by Kelley Armstrong

Title: The Masked Truth
Author: Kelley Armstrong
Publisher: Doubleday Canada
Publishing Date: October 13, 2015
Pages/Format: 320, ARC
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In this heart-stopping suspense thriller, #1 New York Times bestselling author Kelley Armstrong proves herself to be a master of terror and suspense.

Riley Vasquez is haunted by the brutal murder of the couple she was babysitting for.

Max Cross is suffering under the shadow of a life-altering diagnosis he doesn’t dare reveal.

The last thing either of them wants is to spend a weekend away at a therapy camp alongside five other teens with “issues.” But that’s exactly where they are when three masked men burst in to take the group hostage.

The building has no windows. The exits are sealed shut. Their phones are gone. And their captors are on a killing spree.

Riley and Max know that if they can’t get out, they’ll be next—but they’re about to discover that even escape doesn’t equal freedom.

Book in One Word: THRILLFECTION.

A big thank you to Danielle at Love at First Page for lending me her ARC of The Masked Truth!

I didn't have much interest in The Masked Truth until Danielle (who let me borrow her copy) read it and said it was one of the best books she had ever read. Consider me intrigued. Sure, I knew who Kelley Armstrong was. I read her Darkest Powers trilogy years ago and really liked it. But surprisingly, I didn't know--or hear--much about her latest book, which upon further inspection sounded like it's just up my alley. I mean, a group of teens are taken hostage. I love stories like that. So I borrowed the book, and I read it, and, well, wow.

I will keep this review vague for the sake of not spoiling you, but The Masked Truth is pretty much exactly what I want when I read a thriller and a book dealing with kidnappings and the like. This. Is. It. As soon as this book starts, it never ever stops. I shit you not. This book just keeps going and it's so utterly fucking fantastic. You want to talk about a book that's devourable and hard to put down? Here, have this one. When you're reading a book, do you ever picture the author writing it? (I do, but usually when I don't like a book and when I'm wondering what on earth the author was thinking.) I did that for The Masked Truth, but because this book seemed so damn effortlessly written. It was smooth as hell, and Kelley Armstrong just doesn't hold back, and I love that. She pushes boundaries and it's so, so good. This is what thrillers are supposed to be. They're supposed to hit that edge, and they're supposed to go over it. Armstrong did that, and thank gosh she did.

The Masked Truth deals with some seriously deep shit. I mean, the majority of the story takes place at a weekend-long therapy camp for teenagers. That's where Riley Vasquez goes to try to cope with the three murders haunting her life (two of which she was present for). It's also there that we meet Max Cross, who's there for his own reasons. Despite this mostly being Riley's story, I really enjoyed Max's POV. His voice is a little...jarring, but once you understand the reasoning for that, it makes total sense and it totally works. (Well done again, Kelley Armstrong.) He's incredibly witty, while Riley tries to be a fighter and save the day (like her police officer father) and get the hell out of their terrifying situation, and together they make an excellent team. (And oh my gosh I ship ship ship it so hard.)

I won't say anything else about The Masked Truth because again, spoilers. I mean, I don't know if I loved this book, but damn if it wasn't done well. I can't even think of any complaints. (Except that I want more.) This is a page-turner at the core: you can't not turn every page for a story like this. You have to know--and fear--how the hell it could possibly end, because you know it can't be well, at least not for everyone. The Masked Truth is exactly what a thriller should be. It reads light, yet it's dark. It refuses to hold back, is perfectly paced, is filled with all kinds of twists and turns, has characters worth rooting for (and shipping, of course), and it just kicks ass. Dear future thriller novels: Take note. This is how it's done.

Did I like it? Definitely.
Did I love it? Not quite.
Would I reread it? Ooh, I'd say yes.
Would I purchase it? Yes!
Who would I recommend it to? Fans of thrillers, books that never stop going, and stories that just go bang, bang, bang.

I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.


  1. wow i never read anything by her, but i love a good book thats hard to put down, gah now I will need to get ir.

  2. I seriously enjoyed this book. It hit all the spots. It was fast paced, intriguing, well rounded story. The characters were so well developed and so real.

    Ohio Hunting Lodge Whitetail Deer


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