Forget My Name by J.S. Monroe @jsthrillers @HoZ_books #review

Forget My Name

On Thursday, J. S. Monroe releases his second novel Forget My Name and I’ve been lucky enough to get my hands on an early copy!

Many thanks to Suzanne Sangster of Head of Zeus for my copy of Forget My Name.

The Blurb

How do you know who to trust…
…when you don’t even know who you are?

You are outside your front door.
There are strangers in your house.
Then you realise. You can’t remember your name.

She arrived at the train station after a difficult week at work. Her bag had been stolen, and with it, her identity. Her whole life was in there – passport, wallet, house key. When she tried to report the theft, she couldn’t remember her own name. All she knew was her own address.

Now she’s outside Tony and Laura’s front door. She says she lives in their home. They say they have never met her before.

One of them is lying.


What Did I Think?

I didn’t read the author’s debut, Find Me when it came out but I heard a lot of praise for it. So when I started Forget My Name, I had high hopes that I was in for a treat.

I got 60 pages in and my attention was well and truly hooked. I really didn’t know who to believe. “Jemma” does seem genuine, a genuine amnesiac but was this the author just playing me?! I just didn’t know!

Each time I had to put the book down, I couldn’t wait to get back to it. My brain was mulling over what I’d previously read to try and fathom out what was going on.

The writing enveloped me pulling me into the world occupied by Jemma, Tony and Laura. I was in their community, going to Tony’s vegan cafe, walking their streets, doing their pub quiz.

This is a brilliant mysterious thriller that kept me guessing to the end. As the secrets (yes there are secrets) unfolded on the pages before me, I was stumped as to where the author was taking me!

Who Is J.S. Monroe?

J.S. Monroe’s new novel, Forget My Name, will be published by Head of Zeus in the UK on 4 October 2018, and by Park Row Books (HarperCollins) in America in 2019.

Monroe’s best-selling debut, Find Me, was published in the UK in February 2017 by Head of Zeus and by HarperCollins in the US. Translation rights have been sold to 14 countries.

J.S. Monroe is the pseudonym of author Jon Stock. After reading English at Magdalene College, Cambridge, Jon worked as a freelance journalist in London, writing features for most of Britain’s national newspapers, as well as contributing to BBC Radio 4. He was also chosen for Carlton TV’s acclaimed screenwriters course. In 1995 he lived in Kochi in Kerala, where he worked on the staff of India’s The Week magazine. Between 1998 and 2000, he was a foreign correspondent in Delhi, writing for the Daily Telegraph, South China Morning Post and the Singapore Straits Times. He also wrote the Last Word column in The Week magazine from 1995 to 2012.

On his return to Britain in 2000, Monroe worked on various Saturday sections of the Telegraph before taking up a staff job as editor of its flagship Weekend section in 2005, which he oversaw for five years. He left Weekend and the Telegraph in 2010 to finish writing his Daniel Marchant trilogy (under the name Jon Stock) and returned to the Telegraph in February 2013 to oversee the Telegraph‘s digital books channel. In May 2014 he was promoted to Executive Head of Weekend and Living, editing the paper’s Saturday and Sunday print supplements, as well as a range of digital lifestyle channels. He left the paper in October 2015 to resume his thriller-writing career.

His first novel, The Riot Act, published by Serpent’s Tail, was launched on the top floor of Canary Wharf tower in 1997. The book was shortlisted by the Crime Writers’ Association for its best first novel award and was subsequently published by Gallimard in France as part of its acclaimed Serie Noir. The Sunday Times called it a “darkly sparkling crime thriller”. The Cardamom Club was published in 2003 by Blackamber (now Arcadia Books) in Britain and by Penguin in India. It was hailed by the travel writer William Dalrymple as a “witty, fast-moving, cleverly plotted espionage romp”.

Dead Spy Running, his third novel and the first in the Daniel Marchant (or ‘Legoland’) trilogy, was published by HarperCollins (Blue Door) in 2009 and has been translated into five languages. It follows Daniel Marchant, a young MI6 officer, as he tries to clear the name of his disgraced father, the former Chief of MI6. The sequel, Games Traitors Play, was published in 2011, and the final part of the trilogy, Dirty Little Secret, was published in 2012.

Warner Brothers bought the film rights to the trilogy in 2009, hiring Oscar-winner Stephen Gaghan (Traffic, Syriana) to write the screenplay for Dead Spy Running, which went into development with McG (Terminator IV, Charlie’s Angels, This Means War) and Kevin McCormick (Gangster Squad) producing. Jamie Moss worked on Gaghan’s script, followed by Simon Barrett, with Adam Wingard attached to direct.

In 2014, the film rights to Dead Spy Running were bought by Wonderland Sound and Vision, McG’s own production company.

In 2017, Jon was commissioned by The Nare, a luxury hotel in Cornwall, to write a spy novella set in and around the hotel, which is located on the Roseland Peninsula. To Snare A Spy is available to buy from the hotel.

His new J.S.Monroe thriller, Forget My Name, is published by Head of Zeus on 4 October 2018 – ‘super Thursday’ – and will will be published in the US by Park Row Books (HarperCollins) in Summer 2019.

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