Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Book Review: Eight Days to Live by Iris Johansen

Eight Days to Live
Author: Iris Johansen
Publication: St. Martin's Press; First Edition edition (April 20, 2010)

Description: Number-one New York Times bestselling author Iris Johansen delivers a thriller that will chill you to the core: Eve Duncan’s adopted daughter Jane has been targeted by a mysterious cult who has decided that she has only eight days to live

Eve Duncan and her adopted daughter, Jane Macguire, are pitted against the members of a secretive cult who have targeted Jane and have decided that she will be their ultimate sacrifice. In eight days they will come for her. In eight days, what Jane fears the most will become a reality. In eight days, she will die. It all begins with a painting that Jane, an artist, displays in her Parisian gallery. The painting is called “Guilt” and Jane has no idea how or why she painted the portrait of the chilling face. But the members of a cult that dates back to the time of Christ believe that Jane’s blasphemy means she must die. But first, she will lead them to an ancient treasure whose value is beyond price. This elusive treasure, and Jane’s death, are all that they need for their power to come to ultimate fruition. With Eve’s help, can Jane escape before the clock stops ticking?

My Thoughts: It starts with an art show. Jane is exhibiting her paintings at her friend Celine's Paris gallery and having great success. However, one of her paintings - Guilt - has attracted the attention of a cult based on worship of Judas. Though the image of the man in the painting came to Jane in a dream, the cultists recognize it as Judas and feel that she is blaspheming him. The only thing that will satisfy them is Jane's death as the annual sacrifice. They give her eight days to live and the deaths start piling up around her.

But Jane isn't alone. She is being protected by her old friend Jock and the formidable MacDuff. She also calls in the enigmatic Seth Caleb who has unusual talents and a need for Jane. Jane isn't at all sure about him and their relationship is a prickly one. But Jane will do anything that she has to do to protect the people she loves - especially Eve and Joe. 

There are two main villains in this one who are equally evil but who express it in different ways. Millet is the loony who is the head of the cult and who gets off on torturing women. Roland is the behind the scenes puppetmaster who pointed Millet at Jane.

While Millet wants Jane as a fitting sacrifice in the annual Offering, Roland is more interested in getting hold of Judas' 30 pieces of silver. He believes that Jane can guide him to them.

The story was filled with action, danger, and excitement. The characters were well-drawn and the scenes suspenseful. I had the unique opportunity to listen to the MP3 audio of the first half of the book when I was traveling and then finishing the book by reading it from my TBR mountain. I enjoyed having a voice in my head for the characters based on the audio portion I heard.

I recommend this suspense title. Johansen writes compelling thrillers about interesting characters.

Favorite Quote:
The rays of the setting sun were burnishing the waves far below them, and Jane could feel the cool breeze touch her cheeks. Peace was flowing over her, and she was aware that all the tension and desperation of the last days was beginning to ebb away. How many times had she sat on the porch at the lake with Eve, enveloped in this same sense of peace and contentment?

And love. Whenever she was with Eve, there was always love and teh belief that as long as they were together, everything would be all right.
I bought this one a while ago. You can buy your copy here.


  1. Ooh, I like the sound of this, I love a good thriller.


  2. Glad to hear you really enjoyed reading this Eve Duncan/Macguire as much as I did!

    Loved that we got to see Jock and MacDuff again!

    Seth Caleb is such a mystery and I'm always happy to see him show up!

  3. I do like Johansen's work - for some reason, I think of it as "thriller lite" - interesting and fast-paced but not so deep that you can't simply read for enjoyment. Thanks for the review!


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