It Takes One

It Takes One

4.8 5
by Kate Kessler

View All Available Formats & Editions

"Deliciously twisted and genre-bending, Kate Kessler's positively riveting It Takes One boasts a knockout concept and a thoroughly unique and exciting protagonist, a savvy criminal psychologist with murderous skeletons in her own closet." -- Sara Blaedel

Criminal psychologist Audrey Harte is returning home after seven years.



"Deliciously twisted and genre-bending, Kate Kessler's positively riveting It Takes One boasts a knockout concept and a thoroughly unique and exciting protagonist, a savvy criminal psychologist with murderous skeletons in her own closet." -- Sara Blaedel

Criminal psychologist Audrey Harte is returning home after seven years.

Less than 24 hours later, her best friend is murdered.

Audrey is both the prime suspect and the only person who can solve the case. . .

It Takes One is the first in a brand new thriller series where a criminal psychologist uses her own dark past to help law enforcement catch dangerous killers.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Criminal psychologist Audrey Harte, the feisty heroine of Kessler’s tense, fast-paced debut, sometimes appears as an expert on When Kids Kill, a TV show based in Los Angeles. Years ago in her hometown of Edgeport, Maine, Audrey helped her best friend, 12-year-old Maggie Jones McGann, murder Maggie’s father, who had been molesting Maggie. After spending time in a juvenile correction facility, Audrey went on to earn a Ph.D. When Audrey returns to Edgeport, where she hasn’t been in seven years, for her mother’s birthday, she faces an angry sister, a mother who blames her for being involved in a murder, and a town where everyone views her as a danger. Her first night, she inadvertently meets Maggie, and they have a fight in public. When Maggie is found dead on the beach the next morning, Audrey is the obvious suspect. In her effort to prove her innocence, Audrey reconnects with Jake Tripp, her teenage love, who brings back all the confusing and ambivalent feelings from their past. The action builds to compelling and unexpected conclusion. (Apr.)
From the Publisher
"Deliciously twisted and genre-bending, Kate Kessler's positively riveting It Takes One boasts a knockout concept and a thoroughly unique and exciting protagonist, a savvy criminal psychologist with murderous skeletons in her own closet."—Sara Blaedel on It Takes One

"Tense, fast-paced....The action builds to compelling and unexpected conclusion."—Publishers Weekly on It Takes One

"[Audrey's] a likable heroine, and between her moxie and sense of humor, she'll soon become a favorite of those who like their suspense less dark and bleak....Audrey is definitely a keeper."—Kirkus on It Takes One

"Carve out some time to read this series starter - it's that hard to put down."—RT Book Reviews on It Takes One

"This first in a series combines an intriguing mystery with a terrific cast of characters. Fans of Nancy Pickard or Lisa Unger will find much to like in Kessler. Expect her to become very popular very quickly."—Booklist (starred review) on It Takes One

"A book that kept calling to me when I should have been doing something else. Hard to put down, compulsive reading."—Rachel Abbott on It Takes One

"It Takes One is a gripping roller-coaster ride of shock and suspense. ...Kate Kessler excels at creating an atmosphere of fear and suspense."—Kate Rhodes on It Takes One

"Kessler has created a kick-ass, heartfelt character in this lively, twisty thriller. Believe me - you'll enjoy the ride."—Sandra Block on It Takes One

Kirkus Reviews
A feisty protagonist with a dark past that's not exactly a secret goes back to her roots in Kessler's new series. Audrey Harte has her dream job: she's a criminal psychologist who landed a gig on a popular LA-based television show about homicides involving child perpetrators. But her mother's birthday is coming up, and Audrey has been summoned back to her hometown of Edgeport, Maine—the place she's been running from all of her adult life. Things start out as they typically do: Mom asks Audrey to pick up her drunk of a father on her way home. Dad is passed out in the local hot spot, which conveniently belongs to her ex-crush and resident town bad boy, Jake Tripp. But it's not just Jake and her dad that Audrey finds there. She also finds Maggie Jones, the girl whose father she helped kill when she was a teenager. Maggie's dad was sexually abusing his daughter when the two young teens murdered him to stop him from raping her. While Maggie went into psychiatric rehabilitation, Audrey was sent to a home for delinquent girls. Now, she finds herself confronting a drunk and out-of-control Maggie in the parking lot, and, after Maggie starts a fight, Audrey pushes her to the ground and drives off. Problem is, the next morning Maggie's body is found on the beach, and the No. 1 suspect is none other than her old friend Audrey. Kessler's style is breezy and compelling, but some of her reveals are less than startling. And for someone who is supposed to have a lot of insight into the way people think and act, Audrey is often very slow on the uptake. However, she's a likable heroine, and between her moxie and sense of humor, she'll soon become a favorite of those who like their suspense less dark and bleak. Readers will have some of the major plot points figured out well in advance of the book's climax, but Audrey is definitely a keeper.

Product Details

Publication date:
Audrey Harte novel Series , #1
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
5.40(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.20(d)

Meet the Author

As a child Kate Kessler seemed to have a knack for finding trouble, and for it finding her. A former delinquent, Kate now prefers to write about trouble rather than cause it, and spends her day writing about why people do the things they do. She lives in New England with her husband.

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network


Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >

It Takes One 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
silencenomore 5 months ago
IT TAKES ONE is the title, but which one? There is psychosis, murder, love, and hate. Add addiction, violence, rivalry, and revenge. All elements wrapped up, to make an amazing read. Audrey moved far from her hometown of Edgeport to escape a troubled past. Edgeport is along the lovely beachfront, made for holidays and bonfires. A perfect spot to hide a journal of intimate secrets, and magical place for murder!! Audrey returns for her mother’s birthday party, but is having reservations. Upon arrival she stops at the local pub Gracie’s, running into old rivals. A fight escalates with Maggie, her old friend. Maggie, a skinny attractive blonde everyone loved and hated. Imagine the shock when locals found her brutally murdered. Revenge would be the obvious motive, based on brutal wounds. The conspicuous suspect would be Audrey. Audrey beat up Maggie long ago, after finding out she slept with Jake. Not so! Audrey never met a bully or a challenge she didn’t stand up for. This woman has unbelievable physical and mental strength. There is no need murder for Audrey to get even. Yet, this would be convenient and the story would end. The author enables us to play detective, deciphering which local patron wanted Maggie dead the most. She involves an array of characters, suspicious stories and probable motives. The kind of book my heart enthusiastically anticipates reading. Perfect! Did Maggie’s husband want her dead for cheating? Or perhaps her brother Matt, he blamed Maggie for ending up in foster care. Isaac was another possibility; he didn’t like the bruises Maggie gave his girlfriend. So many suspects, where should the investigation begin? Throughout all the drama Jake and Audrey get cozy again, striking up old sparks. The author keeps the storyline intriguing, and moving at a good pace. A detective and others from Audrey’s troubled past become involved. Her current job as a criminal psychologist involved a patient at her old stomping ground. Everything twists and turns and the ending is shocking! Nice one! No spoilers here! Who was the killer? Right under your nose and not who’d expect. The harmful patterns were repeated and generations of revolting secrets revealed. I was wrong predicting the suspect. I gave this book 5 out of 5 stars. I am customarily reserved at giving this rating; the book must incorporate many aspects. I especially like anticipating more books from the author. I had adored this book immensely, and think you will also. Happy reading! I received this book in exchange for an honest and unbiased review. Kris
BuckeyeAngel 7 months ago
Dr. Audrey Harte was a criminal psychologist and was the resident criminal psychologist for a t v program called When Kids Kill. Audrey doesn’t like the spotlight but her best friend- only friend actually- Carrie is the producer’s sister. Audrey feels she owes Carrie several favors so she is doing the show for her. Audrey had studied criminal psychology so she could try to help kids. Audrey was going home for a couple of days for her mother’s birthday. Audrey hadn’t been back home in seven years. As she neared town Audrey got a call from her mother asking her to pick up her dad at the local bar. While at the bar Maggie comes up to Audrey but Jake steps in between them . Jake helped Audrey get her dad out of the bar and thought about her as she went to get her car. Jake had been five when he first met Audrey and then a year later his mother toke her kids and left the only person Jake missed was Audrey. When Jake’s mother brought Jake back to dump him off on his grandma Audrey was the first friend to welcome him back. Jake wants Audrey's friendship back. Jake runs the bar now. Maggie and Audrey had been best friends at thirteen and Maggie told Audrey how her father has been raping her for awhile and maybe touching her brother. The girls tried to get help but noone would listen. So Audrey helped Maggie kill her father -Clint- by bashing his head in with a rock. Maggie was sent to a psychiatric hospital because of the trauma and Audrey was sent to a juvenile detention center for three years and a good education.Maggie and Audrey were no longer friends as Maggie had slept with Jake knowing how Audrey felt felt about him. The next morning Maggie was found dead on the beach Jake owned with her head bashed in by a rock just like her father’s had been. The town people of course blame Audrey. This was an excellent story with a great plot. I really enjoyed it. I couldn’t stop reading it was as if I had to find out who actually killed Maggie even though I had an idea. This story really pulled you in and kept you there. I enjoyed how in depth the characters were and how they were portrayed. I loved all the twists and turns . I highly recommend. I received an ARC of this story for an honest review.
sandrabrazier More than 1 year ago
Audrey Harte is a psychologist with a successful TV show about teens who are in trouble. She is about to return home in honor of her mother's birthday. It has been seven years since she's been back to Edgeport, and she is not eager to face the people who remember her as the teen who killed her best friend's father. On the last leg of her trip to her parents' Maine home, her mom calls to ask her to pick up her drunken father at the local bar. Once there, Audrey encounters her former best friend, Maggie, with whom she has an argument. As she stuffs her unconscious father into the car, she thinks that things are already off to a bad start. When Maggie is found dead the following day, everyone assumes it is Audrey who killed her. After all, Audrey had been arguing with Maggie the night before. In addition, she has killed before. Audrey has to prove her own innocence, because even the police detective seems suspicious of her. This is an exciting story with many surprises along the way. Little by little, we learn more about Audrey's past with her friend, Maggie, and her old crush, Jake, just as Audrey discovers, little-by-little the identity of Maggie's murderer. This is a true psychological thriller filled with surprises.
Deb-Krenzer More than 1 year ago
thought this was an excellent book. There were so many plot twists and it dealt with so many issues. The suspects were numerous, although because of past experience they only dealt with one for the most part. I just can't say enough about how good this book was. Childhood memories, small town secrets, bad reputations that never go away, childhood frustrations that come roaring back and showing their ugly face, nosy neighbor that can't let things alone and just history that should be forgotten that small minds can't forget. I sped through this book, each time I had it figured out, up until the VERY END, it would change and it was someone else. It was crazy and I LOVED every minute of it. I have never read this author before, but I can tell you that will not be the case in the future! Huge thanks to Redhook Books and Net Galley for approving me and providing me with an e-galley in exchange for an honest review. I will be talking about this book for a long time! When's the movie?
JennMcLean More than 1 year ago
"It Takes One" by Kate Kessler comes out April 26, 2016 and I wholeheartedly recommend it to all fans of psychological thrillers. When I put in to review this book I had high hopes, the synopsis made it sound like a delicious read. I'm so darn glad I was right! I haven't read something so psychological for at least a year so this was a real treat. Audrey Harte is now a successful criminal psychologist working in L.A., one would never guess that she was once just like the youths she now studies. When Audrey was thirteen she and Maggie murdered Maggie's father. The question that has haunted Audrey ever since is "what would you do for someone you loved?". When her best friend confesses that her father is molesting her all Audrey wants to do is rescue her best friend, to stop the abuse, and when no one in town believes that Maggie's father could rape his own daughter it becomes Audrey's job to come to the rescue. That one decision changes the lives of many people around both girls. Seven years after Audrey left the little town of Edgeport, Maine she flying back for her mother's birthday. Audrey's dreading all the home town gossip that has followed her since that fateful night so many years ago. She is unsurprised to find that nothing seems to have changed in the intervening years. Audrey is in a fight with a drunken Maggie within hours of arriving home. Her father is still an alcoholic, her mother is still enabling and her sister still blames Audrey for everything. Her only solace is seeing Jake, the one that got away. Audrey is full of regrets and can't see how this trip could ever get worse until Maggie turns up murdered on the beach. Someone has bashed her head in just like Audrey and Maggie did to Maggies father so many years ago. So starts a winding mystery that is more psychological drama, intrigue and angst than whodunnit. I loved how this book was so character centered. In a little over four hundred pages I came to care about the people Ms. Kessler introduced me to. The writing is so strong and so emotionally engaging that it only takes one book to fall in love with her complex cast of characters. Only a few times in my reading life have I come across such a strong literary writer. My last love affair with a writer was Robert A. Heinlein. He's well known as the father of Sci-fi but what I found most compelling was that the science fiction he wrote about always played second fiddle to his character development. He too, with one book, could make you memorize characters. He made the reader feel like these people existed in real life somewhere. They had to be because you cared so much and knew so much about their lives, their thoughts and their heart. This rare gift is what makes me love this author, Kate Kessler. I will endeavor to read every book she's written and I hope this book, "It Takes One", is the first in a series because I don't want to let Audrey Harte go. I want to know how her life continues. I know you'll love her too, she's complex, straightforward and real. She'll grow and change, leaving the reader wanting more each time they step into one of the mysteries that features her. What an exciting find that author is, you have to try this book!
TheGenreMinxBookReviews More than 1 year ago
“Would you kill for someone you love?” My Synopsis: Small towns have their own set of problems. Audrey Harte would know, having lived in one until she put it in her rear view mirror. Problem was, it just would not stay there. After seven years away, Audrey is taking a flight back to Edgeport, her hometown in Maine and to say that she is dreading it would be an understatement. Having been living in L.A. with a growing career as a criminal psychologist and a popular TV series, going back home to an alcoholic father, enabling mother and a sister who hates her is no thrill. It also brings her back to the fact that when she was thirteen, her and her best friend Maggie killed Clint, Maggie’s father. Now, back to the small town with whispers and suspicions that has plagued her family since the murder occurred, Audrey is regretting saying “yes” to her Mothers request that she come home. Her first night in town puts her at Gracie’s bar to collect her drunken father. There she runs into Jake Tripp, her first crush and estranged friend, now owner of the bar and Maggie, her childhood best friend. After an altercation with Maggie, she feels things cannot get worse. Then Maggie turns up dead. Being the law’s prime suspect Audrey needs to do what she can to clear her name, even if that means re-connecting with Jake, who’s betrayal still stings her to the core. Will she be able to prove her innocence before the murderer turns their sights on her? My Review: Wow, this book was mesmerizing and comes with a warning….*readers with a history of sexual abuse, violence or a sensitivity to it may find this book difficult.* Our heroine, Audrey Harte, was placed in an unbelievable position as a young child. After trying to get help for her young friend, they decided to take matters into their young hands. Kill the man who was forcing his twelve-year-old daughter into sexual relations with him. I know what you are thinking, “ummm yes, he deserved to die!” Rightly so, but the beauty of this story is that the murder of Clint is a backdrop to the overall story. The author has really outdone herself on the portrayal of the different kinds of people you would expect in a small town. She makes the story feel very realistic and would resonate with those who grew up in a small town. In her search to find the murderer, we get experience the beautiful mess that is Audrey. We get to feel the story through her flashbacks, insights, and personal journey. We come to understand Maggie in a way that is frightening and so very tragic. Jake is a sublime element to the story. A real good guy that is a “bad boy”. The plot is full of many twists, turns and even romance. The psychological observations are quite detailed and truthful. The “who done it” of it all will keep you engaged and emotionally involved. I will say that for anyone who enjoys reading a good mystery, you may figure out the murderer before you want to know BUT you will not guess the explanation behind the motive. Worth the read! Prepare yourself to be completely drawn it to this story because it is a page-turner. *Thank you to Redhook Books & NetGalley for this ARC of It Takes One*