Friday, April 8, 2016

The Monster Underneath by Matthew Franks [4 stars]

 From the Description


Reality can be the difference between a dream and a nightmare. . .

Max Crawford isn't a typical prison therapist. He uses his unusual psychic ability to walk with convicts through their dreams, reliving their unspeakable crimes alongside them to show them the error of their ways.

Max always has to be on his toes to keep himself grounded, but the FBI agent waiting for him in his private office immediately puts him on edge. The bureau wants Max to go way outside his comfort zone to enter the dreams of suspected serial killer William Knox.

To get a confession and secure the future of his prison program, Max must gain Knox's trust by any means necessary--and survive the minefield of secrets waiting inside a murderer's mind. Secrets that could turn Max's reality into a living nightmare.


Publication Date: April 5, 2016

Publisher: Samhain Publishing

Publication Length: 219 pages


I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. This is in no way reflected in my opinion of this novel. For more information about this book or to join in the fun follow along with the blog tour hosted by Erin over at Oh, for the Hook of a Book. If you would like to join the tour you can reach Erin at

The Monster Underneath is a fast paced psychological horror story with a twist. I liked Max, who tries to help even though it leads him into some very dark places. I thought that Linden, the FBI agent Max is trying to help, was an ass, although I couldn't fault his motives. I really hoped that Max would tell him to get bent nearly every time they spoke. The story itself is engaging and I finished it in one sitting. Horrifying and disturbingly realistic while still having supernatural elements. I loved the way the hero at the end wasn't who I expected it to be. Matthew Franks has created an intense world peopled with interesting characters with his debut novel. I can't wait to see what he does next! A solid 4 star read.

Buy the Book




About the Author

Matthew Franks lives in Arlington, Texas with his beautiful wife and children. He studied
psychology and creative writing at Louisiana State University then obtained a Master’s Degree in counseling from Texas State University. When he’s not working on his next story, he’s counseling adolescents or trying to keep up with his three highly energetic daughters. You can connect with Matthew at:


Praise for The Monster Underneath

"An assured, gripping, totally engaging debut, Matthew Franks will have you burning through the pages of this taut supernatural thriller at breakneck speed. If Christopher Nolan and Stephen King ever teamed up to write a novel, this would be it. Highly recommended!"
Ronald Malfi, author of Little Girls


"What if you could see inside the dreams of anyone you came in contact with? Would you dare to look? Could you handle the things you’d find within? The Monster Underneath is a real nail-biter one of those ever-spiraling stories that you just can’t put down until you reach the surprising end!"
John Everson, Bram Stoker Award-winning author of Covenant and The Family Tree


"The Monster Underneath is an intense and clever debut in which reality is more terrifying than the nightmares and twisted dreamscapes of a madman. Author Matthew Franks is a name to remember, his stories you won’t soon forget."
Rena Mason, Bram Stoker Award-winning author of The Evolutionist and East End Girls


"Matthew Franks’ debut novel takes you through the darkest, twisted alleys of a killer’s mind and then drags you several steps further, beyond the status of observer and into the disturbing realm of accomplice. A harrowing tale of murder and delusion and moral ambiguity."
Hank Schwaeble, Bram Stoker Award-winning author of Damnable, Diabolical, and the dark thriller collection, American Nocturne