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Methods of Madness

3.79  ·  Rating Details  ·  598 Ratings  ·  119 Reviews
It's been three years since the terrible night Emily Ramsey suffered a double tragedy-the death of her sister and the disappearance of her fiance. She deserves another chance at happiness and gentle, adorable Zach Sullivan is the perfect man to mend her shattered heart. But from the moment Emily opens the hand-carved box holding a glittering diamond solitaire, she's seized ...more
Paperback, 248 pages
Published August 2009 by Covenant Communications (first published 2009)
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Jun 16, 2016 Teresa rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Amber Lund
Feb 05, 2015 Amber Lund rated it it was ok
Creepy, creepy, creepy! Well-written, but just creepy! I was really thinking the main character was going nuts when I was surprised at the end. Normally, I would put down the book if it's too creepy, but I wanted to know whodunit! I tried to cheat by reading the last page, but it still didn't give it away. So I had to read the whole thing.

And it was just so annoying how Emily wouldn't communicate with people, and how she was so adamant about not going to a psychologist.

Stephanie Black is a goo
Oct 07, 2011 Anna rated it it was amazing
Like many mothers, I spend a lot of time waiting around. Waiting for ballet or riding lessons to end, waiting to see teachers, or waiting for the middle daughter to make up her mind what she wants for breakfast. It’s often helpful to have a book handy to while away those dull minutes but, I have learned recently, it’s very important to have the right book handy. Not this one. Because you won't be able to stop reading and you'll be late meeting the children after those ballet or riding lessons as ...more
Dec 29, 2009 Darla rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Heather Kinsey
(Genre:LDS fiction/mystery/suspense) This is the story of a young single adult named Emily who lost her sister in a hit and run accident on the same day that her fiance disappeared without a trace. It is now 3 years later and Emily is engaged to someone else and hopes to move on with her life. As soon as the engagement is announced, however, she receives a creepy note with a picture of her former fiance questioning if she has forgotten him already. Her life takes a nose dive from there as more s ...more
Oct 23, 2009 Kathryn rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 05, 2009 Teri rated it it was amazing
Methods of Madness by Stephanie Black

In Stephanie's new thriller, this novel takes so many twists and turns, it's very hard to tell who the murderer is. Emily Ramsey is filled with guilt over the death of her older sister Tricia that took place three years ago and on top of that, her fiance Ryan Tanner turns up missing at the same time. Aftere three years have gone by, Emily is newly engaged to Zach Sullivan, a new man in town who teaches math. Someone is attempting to frighten her and Zach's fo
Kathi-Ann Busha
Feb 07, 2013 Kathi-Ann Busha rated it really liked it
This story starts with a tragedy, Emily’s sister is killed and her fiance dispersers on the same night, which sadly happens to be her birthday. Fast forward several years and she’s moved on, newly engaged to a lovely young man named Zach, who is just about the sweetest guy you can find. But things don’t stay happy for long, there are threats and fake blood and a murder that make Emily think she’s crazy. And I’ll be honest, I didn’t see the ending coming. That’s unusual for me. Usually I can peg ...more
Marcia Mickelson
Oct 17, 2009 Marcia Mickelson rated it really liked it
Methods of Madness by Stephanie Black is very suspenseful and keeps the reader guessing until the last few pages. It has been three years since Emily Ramsey's sister was killed and her fiance disappeared. She is now engaged and trying to move on, but still suffers from sadness due to the loss of those 2 important people. She keeps having the feeling that she will lose her new fiance, Zach. Then Zach's ex-girlfriend, Monica, begins to show interest in him again.

Emily gets a troubling note, a bloo
A.L. Sowards
Somewhere between 4.5 and 5 stars. I was suspicious of the right people early on in this book, but I don’t think I get any points for figuring it out early, since I was also suspicious of pretty much everyone else in the book (really, I think the only people I never suspected were Emily’s parents, the first-graders, and Rochelle). I didn’t love the book at first, because the whole single’s ward dating drama thing isn’t my favorite (didn’t like it when I was living it, still don’t like reading ab ...more
Sep 04, 2009 Anne rated it it was amazing
Whitney Award-winning author Stephanie Black has excelled herself with Methods of Madness. What a heart-thudding story! And I never did guess who was guilty. When all was finally revealed, I had to retrace several scenes and enjoy the smart plotting all over again.

An old quotation by Sir Walter Scott kept running through my mind as I read this book – “Oh what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive.” I felt the main character’s bewilderment and frustration increase chapter by ch
Sep 05, 2009 Taffy rated it really liked it
Shelves: lds-authors
I have been humbled in my claims to pick out the bad guy(s) in books. I sorta guessed in Stephanie's book but she always threw in some reasonable doubt and I couldn't quite place the murderer. I was getting annoyed with a few characters which shows Stephanie's ability to craft her characters; each had a unique voice (and something that annoyed me). And she weaves them through each other, which twists and turns the plot until I was unsure of myself solving the mystery. The mystery is intriguing a ...more
Oct 05, 2009 Dlora rated it really liked it
Emily Ramsey doesn't think she'll ever be happy again after her sister dies in a hit-and-run and her fiance disappears on the same night, but three years later she finds herself engaged again to Zach. His old flame decides that she wants Zach back and tries to sabotage their relationship. Mean-spirited things start happening--including a murder. I wish Emily were a stronger, more confident character but I think it was necessary for the plot development. Along with Emily, we don't know who to tru ...more
Sep 26, 2009 Hillary rated it really liked it
Shelves: whitneys
wow. Stephanie nailed this one. I was really disappointed with "Fool me twice", mainly because of the romance, but this one was amazing. The romance worked for me, but not only that, the suspense and mystery was just great! I thought at first that I had the killer pegged and just as I was about to put it down in frustration, BAMM she shocks me with something I didn't see coming. Then, just when I think I have it figured it out again- BAMM from another direction! I was starting to think I was as ...more
Jun 17, 2010 Abby rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this book. It was recommended to me by my mother-in-law. It was thrilling, mysterious, and suspenseful! It's also a very quick read (I read it in about 3 days). I recommend this book to anyone that is looking for an intriguing mystery. The ending is totally not what I expected, but it does leave you guessing up until that point.

The only down side is that there is a lot of internal thinking by the main characters (this is primarily during the middle of the book) and it does seem
Apr 24, 2015 Debbie rated it liked it
3.5 stars

A suspenseful, at times creepy, whodunit that is a clean, quick read, tying everything up neatly in the end - with a bit of a twist.
May 12, 2011 Wendy rated it it was amazing
Ooh! Twisty, twisty. Her fiancé disappeared the same day that her sister was killed by a hit and run, and for three years she's pined for her lost love. Finally, she finds a man to love again--and that's when everything goes wrong. Threatening notes written in her own handwriting, fake blood and pictures of infidelity, evidence popping up in places that only she had access to....

Is she crazy? Or is someone just making it seem that way? Just when you think you've got this figured out, the story
Oct 13, 2009 Casey rated it really liked it
What a thriller! There are tons of plot-twisting and suspense to keep you guessing and on the edge of your seat until the very end. And once the killer is finally revealed, you can go back and re-read this book a second time to find clues or odd discoveries you might have missed the first time around.
If you like books that get your heart pumping then you'll love Methods of Madness. The romance is very low-key as well, putting more of the focus on the murder/mystery.

There's only one thing I did
Oct 27, 2009 Dianna rated it liked it
Shelves: lds-fiction, mystery
A bit of a nail-biter. Kept me guessing and changing my mind as to who the bad guy was that's tormenting Emily and trying to make her mad-in the crazy sense of the word. Emily is haunted by her past, the night her sister was killed by a hit and run driver and her fiancee disappeared; now she's engaged to Zach her world is falling apart again... I would give this book 4 stars but the non-communication is annoying. Emily created so much of her own fear by not communicating. However by the end, you ...more
Jan 26, 2015 Felicia rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2015
I really enjoyed this book, fun characters and a sad but interesting twist in the end.
Mar 11, 2015 Mekayla rated it really liked it
Kept me on my toes. It was well written and had me asking questions about her sanity the whole time. I enjoyed it.
Dec 19, 2012 Linnae rated it really liked it
Emily's finally getting over the tragic night her sister was killed and her fiance disappeared. She's met a super nice guy who wants to marry her! Unfortunately, there's going to be some competition for his attentions, via ex-girlfriend Monica.

Then things get ugly. Strange messages start showing up and it's not long before murder comes into the picture. And someone wants to make sure Emily gets blamed for it.

Black is one of my favorite LDS writers. I thought I had it figured out (at least narrow
Jul 17, 2013 Melissa rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery
This is a great LDS mystery from Stephanie Black. I really like her mysteries because she has lots of twists and turns that you don't see until the end. This is considered LDS fiction, but there are very few references to religion (though if you aren't familiar with LDS culture, you might not get some of the references like high counselor) and it is not at all preachy. I think anyone would enjoy this. I especially liked it because you doubt all the characters at one point or another including th ...more
May 29, 2012 Jenn rated it it was amazing
Stephanie Black is fast becoming one of my favorite authors. She gives just enough information for you to suspect basically everyone so you spend a ton of time questioning your assumptions. In this book the question at hand is whether the main character is insane or not. I held firmly to the assumption that she was sane for most of the book. But as I neared the end I had to start questioning the assumption that main characters are always the good guys.

I stay up late reading Black's books, they'r
Nov 12, 2013 Patricia rated it liked it
At some point in the book, I suspected everyone, every single character. So to say I did see the end coming is true and not true. Because I suspected everyone, I would be right about anyone, right?!

One thing that subtracted a star for me was what I would call the creepy factor. Things were creepy from the first page and I just forced myself to keep reading. Normally, that "forcing myself to keep reading" would merit 2 stars but this book was carefully and intelligently crafted and for that I gi
Jun 02, 2013 Verona rated it liked it
Stephanie Black writes good stories. I have enjoyed all of her books. We listen to them on audio tape as we drive around our state. This book had a lot of interesting twists, and suspects in the plot as Emily is made to feel that maybe she is losing her sanity. The ending was surprising and satisfying. I particularly enjoyed this narrator; she has a soothing, captivating voice and made each character sound different. I look forward to our next listening adventure with this author.
Melanie Jacobson
Oct 18, 2009 Melanie Jacobson rated it really liked it
Man, this was good! I'm not a huge fan of thriller/suspense novels because too often the authors make their characters do really dumb things just so they're in danger, but not here. The author did a great job, keeping it tense (without being too scary for me) and I stayed totally interested the whole time. Also, I almost always figure these out way before the end, but this kept me guessing (without throwing in any dumb twists). AND, it's LDS fiction. Who'd of thunk?
Jan 05, 2012 Kari rated it it was ok
Not enough character development for me to sincerely care much about what happens. Also, it's not a very happy book, especially since Emily is upset and unhappy the entire book. However, I wanted to keep reading to solve the mystery. I enjoyed how I couldn't immediately predict the ending, but was annoyed that I had to drag through most of the book to find out what happens. Decent for a mystery, but fails as an engaging novel with strong interesting characters.
Jun 25, 2011 Marci rated it liked it
Not sure if I really understand how the title works with this book. It is an LDS Murder Mystery --is that an oxymoron? Anyway, the book leads the reader to suspect just about everyone in the book including the main character.. I stayed up most of the night last night because I wanted to know "whodunnit". I did feel that the story got dragged out a little in places and so I may want to give this book a 2 1/2 star.
Jul 31, 2014 Sarah rated it really liked it
An excellent suspense novel by an LDS author. I love suspense and mystery novels, but sometimes they're full of sex & language. Not this one! I could hardly put it down, since I wanted to find out what happened. It'll definitely keep you reading!
Aug 15, 2009 Alex rated it really liked it
Shelves: the-gull
i would have to say that this is one of very few books where i haven't been able to figure out who it was (the murderer) until the end. it was really good.
emily has just gotten engaged when threatening pictures and notes start showing up that make her question just about everything. there's murder and action and twists that i wasn't expecting. i accused just about every person in this book.
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