"The man will be dead by the time i finish.
He isn't the first. And he won't be the last.

Alison Belsham

Who is the hunter? And who is the hunted? This thriller is a challenge also for the reader who finds himself in the middle of a perverse hunting season for people, where the roles between hunters and prey intersect.

Sometimes coincidences, sometimes strategies, sometimes it is pure luck and sometimes it is a damned misfortune, here are the factors that lead the game of the plot, a perverse game that transforms ignore prey into victims, unknown hunters into torturers, aware hunters in arrogant pretenders to the role of king of the hunt, but none of them is really certain about the role he is playing.

author Alison Belsham The thriller is not scary, to trigger shivers of fear I think it's not the primary purpose of the author; I have the impression that Alison Belsham focuses mainly on the atmosphere of insecurity to destabilize the certainties of the reader.
This sense of total lack of control over the events, of instability that the protagonists live in daily life - and in a very personal way -, the inadequacy expressed by all the characters we meet, pervades the novel.
There is no black and white and not even an area of gray but many nuances, expressed by the nature of the protagonists and their behavior.

The fact is that in the thriller The Tattoo Thief there is more realism than the reader can expect. Thus, we are faced with the evil that always finds new ways of expressing itself for ever more delirious purposes, and faced with the good represented by human beings with a conscience, but also fallible, maybe with good intentions but more often prey of their own arrogance, of ambition, of the attention-seeking, of the games of power, of stupidity, of personal situations that interfere with moral behavior. At this point the reader becomes a witness to the police obtuseness and to the determination of the killer and he reads impotent while the events degenerate.

What you need to know is that in the novel, as well as in reality, the good guys and the bad guys, policeman and serial-kiler, human predator and predestined victim, do not fix themselves in their trenches trying to hit each other, but they play in an open field where good and evil, morality and immorality, intelligence and stupidity, action and reaction mix in confused situations and difficult to manage and that insecurity becomes the undisputed master of the novel.

The Tattoo Thief has characters that live a linear plot that arouses curiosity, it is a reading that slips away smooth and fast; The Tattoo Thief will immerse you in a hunt for the serial-killer with very real protagonists who, precisely for this reason, will have behaviors that will disturb you and force you to criticize that behaviors and, therefore, to put your morality into play.


- Alison Belsham read this review, here is her comment -

"Thank you so much for this thoughtful review. Certainly, one of the things I always strive for when writing characters is to reflect what people are like in real life. This means they are neither all good or all bad - we all have our flaws and inconsistencies, so I try to allow my characters the space to express these things. My detective, Francis Sullivan, is driven not only by the need to right wrongs, but also by his own ambition and vanity. The tattoo artist Marni Mullins distrusts the police, but at the same time wants to see the killer caught. These paradoxes allow for more interesting conflicts to develop and for the story to take unexpected turns as the protagonists grapple with what they want to do and what they feel they should do. The question for the reader is: how would you behave in these situations?[Alison Belsham]


the tattoo thief english cover



Photo credits: 
> image 1: Alison Belsham, from her official site

> image 2: the novel's cover from Alison Belsham site