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When Darkness Falls

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Follow the amazing journey of Tracy Bennett, an average middle of the road girl working on a make-up counter in a York department store with her close female friends. Or is Tracy quite what she seems...
Kathleen Harryman's When Darkness Falls is a gripping account of a psychopathic killer. Written from the killer's perspective, the intent and desire is perfectly compelling and holds the reader enthralled. Make assumptions, draw your own conclusions and then find your theories debunked as the story unfolds. When Darkness Falls is a book that you will not be able to put down until the last page is turned, testament to the human fascination with the criminal mind and the debate over whether serial killers are either evil or mad.

Kindle Edition

Published June 29, 2020

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About the author

Kathleen Harryman

8 books78 followers
Kathleen Harryman is a storyteller and poet living in the historically rich city of York, North Yorkshire, England, with her husband, children and pet dog and cat.

Kathleen first published a suspense thriller in 2015, The Other Side of the Looking Glass. Since then, she has developed a unique writing style which readers have enjoyed and is now a multi-published author of suspense, psychological thrillers, poetry and historical romance.

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5 stars
32 (72%)
4 stars
7 (15%)
3 stars
1 (2%)
2 stars
2 (4%)
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2 (4%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 32 reviews
Profile Image for Miriam Smith (A Mother’s Musings).
1,564 reviews173 followers
May 22, 2017
I love getting into the twisted mind of a psychopathic serial killer in a gripping thriller and the aptly named "When Darkness Falls" written by Kathleen Harryman is no exception. I defy anyone to start this suspenseful book and then be able to put it down, I couldn't - it was so compelling and intriguing. Unlike a lot of slasher style books this one had a fantastic storyline that I thoroughly enjoyed and had me hooked till the end.
Set in the city of York, we follow the psychopathic split personality of Tracy Bennet, a very normal girl until a horrible event changed everything mentally for her when she was very young. When the 'Yorkshire Slasher' starts killing people at random everyone believes they are looking for a man.....but are they??
'When darkness falls' over Tracy and her alter ego appears we are subjected to some very brutal no holes barred violence - which if you offend easily then this book may not be for you. Told 100% through the mind of the killer we hear and learn every thought and emotion that leads her desire to kill.
Although at times the murders are sickening there is a very entertaining and interesting storyline that backs it up, making you wonder whether serial killers are really mad or just plain evil.
There is a great relationship between 'normal' Tracy and her friends Abigail and Susie, which at times showed humour and endearment and I particularly liked Abigail - so down to earth and caring.
All in all, an enthralling and thought provoking read that I highly recommend - if you love this genre of book you'll without a doubt adore this story!!
A fabulous 5 stars!
Profile Image for Clemens Schoonderwoert.
1,116 reviews92 followers
April 19, 2019
This fascinating thrilling novel by this really fine author is for me for certain a very gripping tale.
Story-telling is of a superb quality by the author, the characters in this thriller are absolutely very believable, the murders are wonderfully described, and all these ingredients together make this book such a suspenseful read.
It's a fast-paced thriller in which our main character, on the one hand is the good and kind Tracy Bennett, and on the other is the evil and mad Lauren Michaels, but she's still one and the same person, and so she's living her life in a Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde personality.
It's also a wonderful story from the point of view of the killer, who is in my personal view, both evil and mad in body, mind and soul.
The story is situated mainly in and around York, England, and its there where our psychopathic killer, Lauren Michaels, is looking for victims with the intent and desire to kill them, and to expose them as a new creation.
All these horrors and killings in this story are brought to us by the author in a most compelling and enthralling way, so much so that they will keep you captivated from beginning till the end.
What follows is a tale from the murderer's point of view, Lauren Michaels, a tale in which our good and kind human being, Tracy Bennett, who has changed somewhat over the years mainly due to the abduction and rape by Uncle Kevin years ago, is now involuntary taken along the path of horror by the murderer in this story of evil, madness and killings.
Highly recommended, for this is an incredible chilling story about someone's dark side of body, mind and soul, and what damage and hurt that person can do towards other people, and that's why I want to call this book: "A Killer of a Thriller"!
Profile Image for Kira Simion.
827 reviews127 followers
Want to read
May 21, 2017
I like the fact that this is written in the killer's perspective. That sounds interesting! Hope to be able to read it soon!
Profile Image for JAnn Bowers.
Author 21 books33 followers
February 9, 2018
I love the fact that this book was written from within the mind of the killer instead of the victim, it gave a different twist and view. Kathleen’s physchopath killer was so gripping and captivating that I didn't want to stop reading. But, I did… I wanted to savior this amazing book. The twists and turns and how Kathleen display the gore will keep any reader wanting more… just a side note: Kathleen had to do a tremendous amount of research to play her main character the way she did and I give her huge kudos for it. This is a book I would hope highly recommend for any crime/thriller lover.
Profile Image for Melissa Espenschied.
175 reviews12 followers
March 13, 2020
When Darkness Falls by Kathleen Harryman is an extremely gripping thriller that will have readers up all night. This psychological murder mystery is uniquely written from the killer’s perspective and will have you making conclusions only to find out that you are oh so very wrong.

Tracy Bennett seems to be an average young woman. She has a typical and relatively boring job at a store and leads a typical life. Tracy has her own apartment which she shares with the mysterious Lauren. In her free time Tracy hangs out with her tow best friends Susie and Abigal. For as normal and mundane as Tracy’s life is there are things going on that are directly related to her, yet just like everyone else she remains oblivious.

There is someone terrorizing the city, though the police have prevented an all out panic. This person is suspected to be a large and rather muscular man, the press has named The Slasher. The real Slasher hates this name as they see their murders as artwork. This is the killer’s story and they take great pride in what they do. The killer is extremely aware of how forensic teams work and finds it funny playing mind games with them. The killers is also aware of how society labels them and often debates the characteristics of these traits and personality types. But just who is The Slasher? What makes them choose the seemingly random victims and how will all this affect Tracy?

I don’t know where to start when talking about what I liked best about this book. The perspective this book was written from was refreshing in how unique it was. Even once I figured out what was going on I did not want to accept it and the book always had me second guessing myself. While it may be a little confusing at times it is all explained in the end. What I liked least about this book is that there is not currently a sequel (thought I truly hope Kathleen Harryman writes one). This is one of those books that once you finish it you are left wanting more.

This book is ideal for adults and young adults who can handle reading graphic descriptions of blood and gore. Other than that there are mentions of a rape but nothing in detail. It could however, potentially give younger readers nightmares. I rate this book 4 out of 4. A word of warning, be careful when you start to read this book because you won't want to stop until its done. There was nothing in this book that I truly did not like and that alone is rare and impressive.

Profile Image for Lisette Brodey.
Author 16 books247 followers
April 2, 2017
A clever, twisty read!

This was an engaging thriller, narrated by a psychopathic killer who gets her thrills by creating art from the blood of her victims. The narrator’s voice is sarcastic and sadistic, keenly observant of every nuance in her midst as she plots her next murder, with the prowess of a hungry animal licking its lips in delightful anticipation.

Most of the victims work at a York department store, and as more of them are savagely killed, a tight-knit group of women fear for their own lives, scrambling to keep themselves safe. But are they unwittingly moving closer to danger?

I love books with great payoffs, and this is one of them! I don’t want to say any more. Just that it’s a really good read!
Profile Image for Kristy Volchko.
Author 11 books14 followers
March 14, 2017
Marvelously gruesome!

For you thriller aficionados, Harryman delivers an intense and gory tale that places you directly inside the mind of the Yorkshire Slasher. 'I did not slash!'

I could NOT put this book down. Out of an unspeakable childhood trauma, a new woman was born. This intelligent, (dare I say) likable, beautiful psychopath will have you feeling both shocked and amused. Without revealing too much, I will say that this character has lots of 'personality'.

Extremely well written, fast-paced, perfectly descriptive, Kathleen Harryman manages to intertwine gruesome murder and sophistication together brilliantly. A well deserved five stars!
1 review
April 23, 2017
Fantastic! What an excellent read......this book doesn't hold back any punches in relation to the work of both the mind and body of a psychotic serial killer within the City of York. Cleverly written to allow the reader to go on the journey with the serial killer and view her thoughts and actions from her perspective. Even when you put a piece of the jigsaw together, another twist pops up.
How the killer stages the scenes in order to lead the police along different paths is brilliant.
I just wanted the book to continue.
Profile Image for Colin Garrow.
Author 44 books126 followers
March 26, 2022
In the historic city of York, a dangerous and blood-thirsty serial killer is on the loose. Unfortunately for the police, evidence is thin on the ground, the killer’s modus operandi often varies, and the choice of victims refuses to conform to any logical pattern. However, it seems one person is central to the killings – Tracy Bennett and her shop-assistant friends have no idea the link to the murders is right on their doorstep. Who will the ferocious predator pick next, and will anyone realise the truth before it’s too late?

This is the first book I’ve read by Kathleen Harryman. Written from the point of view of the killer, it makes an interesting change from the usual police-versus-villain cat-and-mouse murder-mystery. As we learn more about the murderer, the author treats us to an exclusive view of the slayings, with lots of torturous and bloody detail – detail that might be a bit too much to take for some readers. Having said that, aside from eyewatering descriptions of the murders, the scenes in between - with Tracy and her friends - are less interesting and (I thought) slowed the pace of the story. Nevertheless, this is a great read that kept me wondering who would be next for the killer’s knife and if the carnage would ever end.

Blood and gore in large helpings.
Profile Image for Mellisa.
525 reviews126 followers
July 19, 2022
Tracy Bennett is a quiet, lovely woman who thrives helping others. She has had a traumatic childhood but now has good friends with her. Tracy is also hiding a secret - a dangerous one.

So, good parts! This was a fantastic book that went right into the mind of a serial killer. It was gruesome and incredible. I could have just continued reading it!

My only negative is that the copy sent from NetGalley had words in the wrong places. This was pretty annoying, but the book itself was brilliant!
Profile Image for Brenda Guiton.
Author 9 books12 followers
October 8, 2020
Much has been written about serial killers and the stories inevitably include the methods they use to murder their victims. Some authors prefer to play down the graphic details, leaving the reader to give rein to their imagination, but Kathleen Harryman is not one of them. Rather than fight shy of the gory details, she presents us with some disturbing scenes. Beware the faint-hearted. This writer knows how to shock and does it in spades!
Crime readers will be familiar with the profiling criteria that describes a psychopath; the patterns they follow and traits that are common to them all. This is all a continual source of intrigue. How does one traumatic event in a person’s life have such a damaging effect on their mental health that it destroys their sanity altogether? The author has researched this well and it’s interesting to observe the psychopathic mind in all its complexity – how the alter ego can dominate an individual without them even being aware of it.
The plot has been well covered in previous reviews, so I’ll stick to other aspects of the book. It is cleverly done; told from the killer’s POV, the writer gives us an insight into the twisted reasoning at play. The killer’s identity is unclear to begin with, although this soon becomes apparent, keeping our nerves on edge and the fascination growing with each bizarre turn. Who will be next?
The characters are well portrayed. I particularly liked Susie who appears rather shallow at first, caring more about her appearance and the impression she makes on the opposite sex. We soon see a compassionate side to her nature. Even when she discovers the horrifying truth about her friend, Tracy Bennett, the desire to protect the fragile remnants of her sanity never wavers. Abigail, too, is a likeable character and the dynamics are true to life.
Despite its horrors, the author has managed to inject some humour into the story by way of some convincing dialogue. This is a well written book that deserves recognition. I love Kathleen Harryman’s style and I can highly recommend this gripping novel.

Profile Image for Kevin Hatt.
Author 9 books27 followers
September 24, 2017
When I saw this book and read the blurb, I just had to read it, and add the fact that it’s set just a forty-five minute drive from where I live, it was a must.

The concept of a murder/psychopath story through the eyes of the perpetrator is an excellent one, and not something that one happens across every day. The narrator, the psychopath, introduces herself in such a calm and calculating way, all but vindicating what she does, the reader just knows they’re in for a treat.

The killer, known as “The Yorkshire Slasher”, introduces herself to her colleagues at the department store in which they work, and the chemistry between Tracy, Abigail and Susie is immediately apparent, only the reader doesn’t know who the slasher is, which is tantalising.

As the story progresses, the bodies mount up, and we almost understand the reasoning behind the murders, yet at the same time are wondering who on earth it is. When it’s finally revealed, it makes sense, and everything falls into place.

When Darkness Falls is compelling and addictive, and a book that’s hard to put down. seldom do I tell myself that I shall read it again soon, but this is one of those occasions, because this is the type of book that the reader will discover more intricacies during a second read. Outstanding!
Profile Image for MJ LaBeff.
102 reviews11 followers
May 20, 2018
Intelligently crafted tale of murder told by the killer

The fast paced, intriguing plot kept me turning pages as I wanted to know what made this fascinating character, Tracy Bennet, tick. The unassuming, even sweet woman is hiding a dark secret that has literally split her thoughts, actions and who she is- to the point she talks about killing Tracey Bennet. It’s When Darkness Falls she morphs into a sadistic killer, and she’s out for blood- a lot of it. She considers each murder a masterpiece and relishes in the grisly bloodbath. I must admit, at times I second guessed myself, wondering if Bennet was acting alone, or if she was even the killer. That’s a testament to the author’s deftly woven story line and intrigue supporting cast of characters.
Author 5 books2 followers
May 18, 2019
A romp through serial killing
I know that sounds wrong, but it's accurate for Ms. Harryman's book. Yes, it's about a serial killer, told through her eyes. And yes, there's a lot of gruesome killing being done. But it never gets so graphic that it turns your stomach, and the tone is consistently light. The characters, especially Tracy's side-kicks, are quite dizzy. Overall, there are more laughs than thrills, which is just fine. The book is not without its faults--it could use better editing, and the run-on sentences are distracting. You have to suspend belief at times. But I enjoyed this book much more than I thought I would.
Profile Image for John Dolan.
Author 15 books248 followers
June 19, 2019
*** Dark and Satisfyingly Visceral ***

Lauren Michaels is a woman bent on destruction: a woman who relishes torturing her victims, and who has earned herself the name 'The Yorkshire Slasher'.
Kathleen Harryman's portrayal of a mind warped horribly out of shape is a compelling plunge into the abyss. Well-paced, and with occasional flashes of gallows humour, this is a dark, sinister, and exciting piece of work. If you like your crime thrillers grotesque and visceral, then 'When Darkness Falls' is for you.
I will certainly be reading more of this author's work...
1 review
March 28, 2017
Wow, I started reading this book yesterday and I cannot put it down. The suspense keeps the reader guessing, from the start it is fast paced with twists and turns. I'm looking forward to the next chapter. This is one of the best books I have read, well written and descriptive, you really are inside the mind of the Yorkshire Slasher. This book truly deserves 5 stars.
Profile Image for Billie.
5,640 reviews62 followers
June 6, 2022
Are serial killers mad or evil?
Follow the amazing journey of Tracy Bennett, an average, middle of the road woman working in a make-up counter in a York department store.But Tracy is not who she wants you to believe....
Kathleen Harryman's portrayal of a mind warped horribly out of shape is a compelling plunge into the abyss."Kathleen Harryman's When Darkness Falls is a gripping account of a psychopathic killer. Written from the killer's perspective, the story's intent is perfectly compelling and holds the reader enthralled. Make assumptions, draw your own conclusions and then find your theories debunked as the story unfolds. When Darkness Falls is a book that you will not be able to put down until the last page is turned. A testament to the human fascination with the criminal mind.

This is a brilliant read.
Wonderful well written plot and story line that had me engaged from the start.
Love the well fleshed out characters and found them believable.
Great suspense and found myself second guessing every thought I had continuously.
Can't wait to read what the author brings out next.
Recommend reading.

I was provided an ARC from NetGalley and the publisher. This is my own honest voluntary review.
2,831 reviews14 followers
May 17, 2022
This is my first time reading something by this author so I didn't know what to expect. This is a breathtaking, suspenseful novel that is quite the page-turner and had me on the edge of my seat. It is fast paced and kept my interest till the end. I was pulled in from the very start, actually, right from the synopsis and couldn't wait to see how it ended. The storyline was well crafted and flowed smoothly and the twists and turns within the plot kept me guessing till the end. The unique plot made this a very suspenseful and interesting read. How chilling to see everything from a murderer's point of view! The author did a good job of crafting an entertaining and compelling psychological thriller. She did a nice job of describing the scenes and making them come to life, as if you are experiencing them yourself. The characters are so realistic and believable, I had chills going up and down my spine while reading. It's an utterly gripping tale you won't be able to put down. I would love to read more by this author in the future. A must read for anyone who loves psychological thrillers!
I received a complimentary copy from Netgalley and am voluntarily leaving my review.
Profile Image for Amanda.
526 reviews17 followers
July 29, 2022
Thanks to NetGalley for the free eARC! This is a review of the updated re-release.

I was wavering between one and two stars for most of the book, and the DID wrap up at the end is what made me go with a one star.

Let’s stop using mental Illnesses that are completely not well understood and actually super rare as cheap plot devices, ok? It sucks. I get that DID is all “trendy” to use right now but come on it’s a cheap device and we don’t know enough about the illness medically to respectfully portray it. I thought it was annoying as hell that the Lauren alter could experience everything Tracy did, but that Tracy had no clue about Lauren.

The book is a quick and easy read. Moderately entertaining at times. Mostly tedious. The best friends are vicious and cruel to each other which is played off as a sort of loving mockery? I don’t know but I hated it.

The details of the deaths and blood got tedious. We get it. Lauren likes the drip drip drip of blood and gets off on it. She likes having dogs or cats walk through blood. Got it. Understood.

The book read like the murder scenes were supposed to be titillating but there was no tension in the book.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Marta Moran Bishop.
Author 57 books70 followers
December 1, 2022

I love thrillers and have read many serial killer thrillers but have never before read one from the killer’s point of view, and being a woman it particularly hit me, as the killer turns out to be a woman. Ms. Harryman has a terrifying, heart wrenching, thrilling read in her book ‘When Darkness Falls’ (Book 1 in the Darkness Series)

It is the second book I have read of hers, the first was The Promise, which although a completely different genre, is equally enthralling. But ‘When Darkness Falls’ is a leap into a completely different genre that shows the level of brilliance this author has. I can hardly wait to open another book by her, you never know what to expect, as her writing and ability to cross across boundaries, go out of her comfort zone is astounding and puts her in the category of the greats.

Highly recommend anything by this author.
Profile Image for Colleen.
805 reviews14 followers
July 22, 2022
When Darkness Falls is the story of Lauren and Tracy. The story is told from a mystery person we later discover to be Lauren, who does not like Tracy and wants her gone. Lauren 's personality is dark, calculating and gruesome.

Tracy on the other hand appears to be quiet and unassuming. She works in the makeup department of a store in York. She has had a traumatic childhood but appears to have overcome it. But has she really. Tracy becomes a suspect of a horrific murder.

Inside the mind of a psychopathic killer was interesting but very dark. I found it hard to read in spite of the fact I like mysteries, it was just to much for me. I think I would have preferred for the story to be told from Tracy's point of view as she struggles with what is going on around her.

I received an ARC from NetGalley for an unbiased review.
Profile Image for Kate Victoria RescueandReading.
879 reviews16 followers
June 6, 2022
Firstly, I’m not sure if it’s just this ARC copy, but the formatting is messy with letters missing from words, and then popping up randomly further along the page.

Despite this, what an intriguing tale of murder & mayhem! A woman with a traumatizing past literally leads two lives: one, a psychopathic killer, the other, a woman who has no idea she’s a murderer.

My favourite part is the killer spouting true crime & serial killer facts throughout their narration. Comparing their own expertise to that of others, and how they try to evade being caught.

Thank you to NetGalley, Kathleen Harryman, & BooksGoSocial for a copy.
Profile Image for Ivy Logan.
Author 5 books69 followers
February 5, 2023
I've read a historical fiction read by this author- The Promise, curious as to how the same author could also be writing a thriller, that too from the perspective of a female serial killer, I picked up When Darkness Falls. Oh boy! The writing style totally blew me a away. Does this writer have multiple personalities? And for those of you who are squeamish about blood and brutality let me warn you this book isn't for you. Kathleen Harryman steps into the shoes of a psychopath with jaw dropping brilliance. The best thing- meet a killer who doesn't intend for you to fell sorry for her, she isn't apologetic about what she does, she loves it, to her its worship or akin to art. Thriller lovers this book is a must read because it's sharp, savage and ruthless, all the while maintaining a touch of vulnerability and pathos. The added bonus is the humor as sharp and cutting as a double edged sword.
Profile Image for Anna Palakiko.
69 reviews1 follower
March 13, 2023
When darkness falls was definitely a trippy book, told through the killers Point of view. It’s the story of Tracy Bennett and to not make assumptions until you know what is going on. It was intense for sure but definitely a page turner. This book had suspense, Thrill, haunting times, and of course murder and honestly it freaked me out a bit. I couldn’t put it down from the start. There were times I was sitting at the edge of my seat. It was my first read from Author Kathleen harryman. If Thriller is your genre this is definitely a book for you.
1,443 reviews42 followers
April 4, 2022
I could not stop reading this book, I was completely hooked. It really made me think while I was readuing it about the people who serve behind counters in shops and how they could be anybody with dark secrets but we just take them at face value without seeing a darker side. It was twisty and unpredictable as well as being dark and chilling. I loved it.
Profile Image for Susan.
109 reviews13 followers
June 20, 2022
Psychological thriller Imagine the person behind the counters in a department store being a sociopathic murderer? I never thought of that but this book tells about someone who fits that bill. I love this book. It’s an unusual topic for me and I couldn’t put it down thank you to the publisher and to Nead Galli for providing this book to me
July 10, 2022
The idea of serial killers being mad or evil really got me into this book.

This was an engaging thriller, narrated by a psychopathic killer who gets a rush by creating art from the blood of her victims. The narrator’s voice is both sarcastic and sadistic while their actions are pure savagery.

Thanks to NetGalley for the copy for my honest review.
1,955 reviews24 followers
December 31, 2022
A serial killer's trail of murders provide a unique look at the psychology of a murder but this one adds a whole extra level of mystery as the murderer is known only to the reader until very late in the story in this fascinating slasher novel.
Well worth a look if you have any interest in murder psychology and murder mystery.
Profile Image for JoAnne.
1,240 reviews71 followers
March 3, 2023
An intense, scary, and gripping tale told through the serial killer’s POV. Super WOW!! – definitely was a terrifying trip I was taken on. Very well woven so I felt so many emotions throughout as I became totally enthralled in this twisted and unique story. A thriller that I found intriguing from beginning to end.
Displaying 1 - 30 of 32 reviews

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