Blog Tours book reviews

The Holdout by Graham Moore ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐


Published: February 20th, 2020
Publisher: Orion
Format: Hardcover, Kindle
Genre: Mystery, Psychological Thriller, Legal Thriller.

Welcome to my spot on the blog tour for this sensational thriller. Thank you to Tracy at Compulsive Readers Tours for the invitation to take part and to Orion for the gifted copy of the book.


One juror changed the verdict. What if she was wrong?

‘Ten years ago we made a decision together…’

Fifteen-year-old Jessica Silver, heiress to a billion-dollar fortune, vanishes on her way home from school. Her teacher, Bobby Nock, is the prime suspect. It’s an open and shut case for the prosecution, and a quick conviction seems all but guaranteed.

Until Maya Seale, a young woman on the jury, persuades the rest of the jurors to vote not guilty: a controversial decision that will change all of their lives forever.

Ten years later, one of the jurors is found dead, and Maya is the prime suspect.

The real killer could be any of the other ten jurors. Is Maya being forced to pay the price for her decision all those years ago?


A decade ago Maya Searle was the lone holdout on a jury that was deciding the fate of Bobby Nock, who was on trial for the murder of fifteen-year-old Jessica Silver. The others slowly changed their votes until they unanimously voted not guilty. Afterwards, the group were shocked to find themselves vilified by the press and public, 84 percent of whom believed he was guilty. Their lives were irrevocably changed and Maya has done her best to shake off her notoriety in the years since. Now a defence lawyer she is pulled back into that time she’d rather forget when she’s approached by one of the other jurors who claims to have new evidence of Bobby’s guilt and plans to reveal it in a docuseries about the case. But on the night all the jurors are back together for the first time in ten years, and before the new evidence is revealed, one of them is found murdered. And Maya is the prime suspect. Is someone exacting revenge for what happened ten years ago? And did Maya really allow a guilty man to go free?

As soon as I read the synopsis for this book I knew I had to read it. My anticipation was sky high when I started reading and, thankfully, it was even more spectacular than I was hoping. The writing was of such a high caliber that I wasn’t surprised to read the author is an award winner. Sizzling with tension, Moore knows how to hold his reader captive. Each time I was sure I had things figured out he’d pull the rug from under me. 

Told in dual timelines, the flashbacks are particularly fascinating as we get a glimpse of each of the juror’s backstories, their thoughts during the trial and deliberations, and watch how they went from one holdout voting not guilty, to changing their verdicts; each falling one at a time like dominoes as Maya argued her case. The characters were all deftly written, their transgressions slowly revealed as Maya tries to discover who would want one of them dead. I could wax lyrical about the details of this book but I hate giving away spoilers, especially when the surprises in the book are part of what makes it so brilliant. 

The Holdout is an astounding, unexpected and mind-blowing thriller. I tore through this twisty whodunit with an energy almost as fervent as the pace of the book itself. I was left not knowing which way was up after the magnificent conclusion and am still thinking about it weeks later. I have no doubt that this will be one of the most talked about thrillers of 2020. This is an absolute must-read.  



Graham Moore is a New York Times bestselling novelist and Academy Award-winning screenwriter. His screenplay for The  Imitation Game won the Academy Award and WGA Award for Best Adapted Screenplay in 2015 and was nominated for a BAFTA and a Golden Globe.




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