Book Review: The Killing of Mummy’s Boy

How far would you let a stranger into your life? How far, if he was a convicted murderer? How far, if he would proclaim it in public? 

About the book

elgeewrites Book Review: The Killing of Mummy's Boy Killing mummy boy

Book Name: The Killing of Mummy’s Boy

Author:  Joan Ellis

Genre: Fiction – Thriller

Characters: Sandra, Carl, Ben, Lee Elliot, Debs

Setting: Isle of Wight, LondonThe UK

Disclaimer: I received this book from the Booklover Catlady Publicity Reviews free of cost in return for an honest review. 

The plot

Sandra has had always a careful life, watching her back and her son’s. Her son, Carl is under the Witness Protection Programme for helping convicting the local thug Lee Elliot on a murder. Carl is a reckless youngster, who doesn’t seem to understand the grave danger that hung over his neck and blames his mother for making him choose the Programme. She loves him terribly and only the concern over his safety that stops her from rushing to her son’s side.
Sandra inadvertently spells out her address to a stranger, who insists on calling her Rosie and proclaims to have been just released out from jail on her journey back home. She learns Ben was in for slitting someone’s throat, and she is filled with paranoia that she is being watched by Ben and her house being visited, her rest rooms used and her food tasted.

She realizes the cop were not taking her complaints seriously and won’t be around to help her unless there were any crimes committed. She is also a wine aficionado, which helps her get through her days and nights while she dread the unannounced visits.

Things get worse when Carl get back home with his pregnant girlfriend in tow. Read The Killing of Mummy’s Boy to find out more if Sandra gets through alive.

My initial thoughts

I have read and enjoyed Joan’s other novel, ‘I am Ella. Buy Me‘, yet I was surprised by the premise of ‘The Killing of Mummy’s Boy’. We don’t think twice much before spelling our addresses out in public these days, and the possibility that this could happen to anyone of us, made it all the more intriguing. 

I loved all the twists in the plot (maybe except the final one) and was genuinely pleased that the character I liked didn’t turn out to be the stalker. I had to stop myself tapping my head every time Sandra made a stupid decision, thanks to her being an alcoholic. I disliked Carl and his using his mom as a shield from his own responsibilities even before the plot fell open.

Things that worked for me

  • I found the dysfunctional mother-son relationship credible and intriguing, kudos to the Joan’s attention to detail and writing style.
  • I loved the writing of Joan Ellis especially as she did a commendable job on bringing out the pain and fear of Sandra and the vivid backdrop of the 80’s.

Things that didn’t work for me

  • It was a bit difficult to get into initially but the pace increased as it got past 30% of the book.
  • Some may feel that there were too many things happening at the same time, which may be overwhelming.


Joan explores the subject of moral righteousness and integrity against family values and loyalty without be judgmental, which worked well for me. I would love to see a movie on this story-line. Now, I should read Joan’s other novels for sure.

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Let us chat

Do you like books with such flawed characters? What about books that scare you by being too close to reality? Do let me know what you think of the book or my review in the comments. Let us talk.



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Gayathri has been reviewing books since 2010. When she is not reading books or creating online content, she works as a writer and a digital marketer. Head over to meet me!