Review: TH1RT3EN by Steve Cavanagh

As a not-so-secret lover of psychological thrillers, I had my eye on this one for a long time. It’s safe to say I was not disappointed. I found myself drawn into this book from the opening page; as far as serial killer thrillers go, this one had everything. There were so many elements to this story that I thought made it a unique and original piece of thriller writing.

My rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

“The serial killer isn’t on trial. He’s on the jury”


With a tag-line like that to draw you in, it’s no wonder this book had me at the opening page.

Robert Solomon is on trial for the violent murders of his wife and body guard. It’s a high-profile case due to his Hollywood status and evidence against him is tight. Eddie Flynn, con-man turned defence lawyer, is hired to try and find a shred of evidence that will prove Solomon is not-guilty, as he persistently claims.

As the trial begins, a member of the jury is not who he appears to be. Blending into the background, Joshua Kane is tantalised by the trial, hooked on the buzz that he himself has caused. It is his job to convince the jury that Solomon is guilty. But the task is harder than he initially thought and he has to improvise to make the necessary adjustments to keep the jury in his favour.

With Flynn grappling to find evidence of a serial killer, time is running out for Kane to succeed with his most notorious murder yet.

“The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn’t exist.” 

A Different Perspective

The best part about this book is that we know who the killer is from day one and with that knowledge, wait in anticipation to see if the defence can find holes in the evidence that will ultimately lead them to the killer on the jury. This is a complete opposite perspective to many other psychological thrillers where you are left waiting to see who the killer is. The reader still has many unanswered questions though – how did the serial killer commit his crimes, how has he framed Solomon and what is his motive?

In my opinion, similar novels lack imagination, particularly when it comes to motive. What can really make a person so cold-hearted and emotionless that they murder people simply for their own satisfaction? There has to be a really good reason and I felt that Cavanagh came up with the perfect motive to fit the character he created.

The overall story was well-planned and executed, the final twist was a complete curve-ball and the chapter perspectives from both the lawyer and the serial killer gave the book a good pace.

You can purchase a copy of Th1rt3en here: Amazon

Disclosure: I am part of an affiliate program which means that I may earn a small commission if you purchase through my affiliate links at no additional cost to you.


What Next?

If you enjoyed Th1rt3en, check out these other books in the Eddie Flynn series:

The Defence (Book 1)
Flynn’s daughter Amy has been kidnapped by Olek Volchek, head of the Russian mafia. In return for her safety, Volchek blackmails Flynn by strapping a bomb to his back and forcing him to represent Volchek in a murder trial, convincing the jury he is an innocent man. What will it take to save his daughter?

Buy yours now from Amazon

The Plea (Book 2)
David Child, an important client of a major law firm is arrested for murder. The FBI task Flynn with proving Child innocent as well as getting him to testify against the law firm, which is operating a huge fraud. If he doesn’t, the FBI will expose files Flynn’s wife that would put her in serious danger.

Purchase from Amazon

The Liar (Book 3)
Caroline has been kidnapped and her father asks the only person he trusts to help find her. Flynn understands the pain of having a child stolen and goes back to his con-artist roots in the hopes of tracing Caroline. However, things in this world have changed and Flynn realises that all is not what it seems. Truth and lies intertwine as Flynn must work out who is behind the kidnapping before it’s too late.

Get it from Amazon


Genre: Thriller
Pages: 356 (paperback)
About the author: Steve Cavanagh is an Irish author who studied law (accidentally – find out why here) and worked as an investigator and solicitor before taking up writing again after a 15 year break. The Defence was his first published novel that received an incredible reaction and was the start of the Eddie Flynn series. In 2015, Cavanagh was named as one of Amazon’s Rising Stars.

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