Review: One by One by Sarah Cain

Title: One by One by Sarah Cain
Danny Ryan Thriller Series Book Two
Publisher: Crooked Lane Books
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery
Length: 336 pages
Book Rating: B+

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley


Philadelphia journalist Danny Ryan is finally getting his life together. Two and a half years after losing his family, he’s moved to a new house, started working again, and even began getting close to fellow reporter Alex Burton. Then an old high school acquaintance, Greg Moss, shows up asking for help. He’s been getting threatening text messages, and he’s not the only one. Other members of Danny’s high school class have gotten the same messages, and now they’re dead. And then Greg becomes the next victim.

Between shady political connections and crooked land deals in his real estate business, Greg had plenty to hide, but it might have been an incident from his youth that led to his death. Now Danny finds himself drawn down the dark corridors of his own life as he tries to put together the lost memories from one fateful high school party all those years ago.

But when Danny receives a text of his own, it’s a race to find the truth before the killer, much like his own past, can catch up to him in One by One, the electrifying follow-up to Sarah Cain’s The 8th Circle.


In this second outing in Sarah Cain’s Danny Ryan Thriller series, One by One, journalist Danny Ryan is once again embroiled in a complex murder investigation.

The novel opens with old high school acquaintance, Greg Moss, asking Danny to look into some ominous text messages he has been receiving. The request is immediately complicated by Greg’s revelation that several of his old high buddies also received threatening texts before they were murdered.  When Greg is then murdered, Danny’s suspicions are raised by the lead detective on the case, Ted Eliot, and Danny, along with fellow journalist, Alex Burton, decide to do a little digging around. They quickly uncover Greg’s ties with a development firm, Cromoca Partners, which is linked to Danny’s ex-father-in-law Senator Robert Harlan and Congressman George Crossman. However, after Danny begins receiving mysterious texts, he cannot help but wonder if the murders in the present are somehow connected to the parties that Greg hosted back in high school.  With assistance from both Alex and his detective brother Kevin, Danny tries to fit the pieces of the puzzle together before he becomes the killer’s next victim.

There have been a few changes in Danny’s life since readers met him in The 8th Circle.  He is now a freelance journalist and he has moved into a new house.  Since he is now living in the same neighborhood as ex-coworker Alex, he has become close to her and her husband, Sam.  His relationship with Kevin is still a work in progress, but they are closer than they were in the past.  Danny is still struggling with the loss of his wife and son but he is not as depressed as he has been.

Danny begins his investigation working off the idea that Greg’s murder, along with the earlier deaths of his football buddies, are somehow linked to the past.  When an attempt is made on the life of one of the people he interviews who knew Greg in high school and is still in touch with him in the present, Danny remains unsure what a possible motive for the murders.  When another person from high school he interviews meets an untimely death, Danny knows he is on the right track but when his former classmates are less than forthcoming with him, his investigation hits a dead end.

Although he is not assigned to the case, Kevin does an little off the books digging around into Ted Eliot’s background.  While his relationship with Danny might be a little strained, he does take his brother seriously when he notices a few inconsistencies with the detective.  Uncovering some rather interesting information about Ted, Kevin is still struggling to figure out if there is more to his story than he is telling.

Alex learns some troubling information about the Cromoca Partners latest business ventures but she is stonewalled when she tries to dig a little deeper.  She is also a little curious about the long ago death of another classmate of Danny’s and at first, her request for an interview is turned down.  Alex is excited when the person reconsiders but is she making a mistake not talking to Danny before she sets out for the meeting?

One by One is another pulse-pounding installment in the Danny Ryan Thriller series.  The investigation is compelling and Sarah Cain brings it to a close with an adrenaline-filled, action packed denouement.  The novel ends on a very intriguing note and readers will be anxious to see what Danny decides to do with the curious information he has received. A riveting mystery that fans of the genre do not want to miss!

1 Comment

Filed under Contemporary, Crooked Lane Books, Danny Ryan Thriller Series, Mystery, One by One, Rated B+, Review, Sarah Cain

One Response to Review: One by One by Sarah Cain

  1. Timitra

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts Kathy