Unknown Sender by Ryan Lanz
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
This short story – and it is a short story – is an enjoyable, quick escape thriller. The story starts off without a hitch and sucks us into the action. A girl at college, not really a partier, is chatting with her roommate and they decide to, of course, go out to a party. While this goes on, our protagonist begins to receive creepy texts from someone and soon it seems like she has a stalker.
It might at first seem like a typical college girl goes to a party story, but it’s not at all. It’s the voice of the protagonist that pulls the reader in the most. Her voice is unique and a little strange, and somewhat gritty. The protagonist feels developed through internal thoughts, dialogue, and action.
A writer who understands that any detail given focus in a story must play into the story later and does that well has won me over. If a writer throws in a detail, giving it focus, and then later that detail means nothing at all, then I’m a little unhappy. Well, Ryan was able to win me over. The subtle details filtered throughout the beginning of Unknown Sender story are sneaky, but by the end the reader sees the connection and why each detail was important. Everything in a story is there for a reason, it should move a story forward, and Ryan does that well.
I enjoyed the suspense and tension in this story, and just when you think you know how the end will turn out, Ryan completely turns the book on it’s head and impresses the reader. Well, I was impressed. I don’t read thrillers often, so in a way I think that made me an ideal reader because I was pleasantly surprised by the twist, and how the author pulled me into the story. I also believe an everyday thriller reader would enjoy this story as well.
Besides, it’s a quick read, and the investment of your time is super well worth it. If Ryan Lanz created a collection of short stories similar to this, or along a theme, I would be very interested.
RYAN LANZ was born and raised on the island of Oahu in Hawaii until he was a teenager and then lived in California for a time. He enjoyed a brief experience with film before becoming involved in the performing arts, touring with a music performance group as a vocalist to a dozen countries on three continents over the length of five years.
His first published work was Unknown Sender, and he looks forward to many more in a variety of genres.
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I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.