Book Reviews

19 Souls by J.D. Allen (Spoiler-free) Review

Private Investigator Jim Bean is a straightforward, to-the-point man. When his latest client, Sophie Evers, asks him to find her brother Daniel, Jim has no idea how complicated his life is about to become.

Daniel is not Sophie’s brother. He is her most coveted prey. Clinging to the belief that they belong together, Sophie kills Daniel’s real sister to manipulate Jim into flushing Daniel out of hiding. She will create the “perfect life” for the only man she’s ever loved, no matter how many people she must kill along the way.

When Jim discovers the truth about Sophie, he’s driven to set things right before her delusional plan claims even more souls. 


TW: rape

19 Souls is a true crime thriller following Private Investigator, Jim Bean. What starts off as a regular meeting with a client looking for a lost brother, turns into a nightmare. What Jim did not expect was a cat and mouse chase with a psychopath with a body count higher than the number of fingers on his two hands.

I will say that this book starts off right with a punch. There is really no dull moments. If you like a book that quickly starts off with action, then this is for you. I did not expect the violence and action to start off so quickly, but I liked it!

I didn’t much care for the protagonist, Jim Bean, all that much. He wasn’t an awful character by any means, he just was far less interesting than the antagonist, Sophie. Sophie in comparison was so interesting and intriguing. She had a lot of depth to her character. Sophie is a manipulative psychopath/sociopath. I am not really sure where she stands on that spectrum, but she has little to no remorse for the people that she kills. She is also delusional. She has her mind set on one guy and imagines them being a family. The delusional part? They never dated and she hasn’t seen this guy for 7 years. On top of all of this, she hears voices inside her head. The parts of the story that were in her point of view were most definitely my favorite parts of the book. We got to see how she interacted with the voice in her head.

“The voice was not her. Or it was separate from her. But it was her. It had started with talking to herself as a kid. Trying to make herself feel better. It never worked, and eventually internal conversations slowly changed, and one day she couldn’t shut it up. It was all very confusing. The kind of thing that could give a girl a headache.”

The one issue I had with the plot was that every time Sophie seemed to be ahead of the cops, they were able to track her quickly, without any obstacles. It all just seemed too easy. I wanted the cops to have to work to find her and it just didn’t happen that way. Also, the ending seemed to conclude really quickly with little action. I was hoping for a really good fight, but like the rest of the plot, the ending was lackluster. While there were a lot of killings, the ease the cops had just left me wanting more.

Overall, I think this is an entertaining crime thriller. I would recommend it to those who enjoy this genre. I am giving this book a rating of 3 out of 5 stars.

Thank you to NetGalley, the publisher, and J.D. Allen for providing an advanced copy in return for an honest review.

Note: Quotes were taken from an advanced copy and are subject to change upon publication.

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32 thoughts on “19 Souls by J.D. Allen (Spoiler-free) Review

  1. This cover immediately draws me in! It reminds me a lot of the Archie Sheridan series by Chelsea Cain. The antagonist Gretchen is very intriguing and while Archie is far from a flat character, Gretchen is much more interesting. I’m sorry that it wasn’t a great book. I may have to check this one out! Great review!

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      1. Its my absolute favorite series of all time!! There are six books in total, and they really hook you in. I’m not sure if the series will continue as the author switched publishers recently and has to do projects for them. Sorry for the rambling, I got a bit excited 😂

        Liked by 1 person

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