Dead Air: a Serial Box production

Dead Air book review

What is this about?: This is actually the first chapter in a new serial from Serial Box. In this episode, we’re introduced to Mackenzie and her true crime case.

What else is this about?: From the first chapter, and yes, it’s only the first, but I think it’s about Mackenzie coming into her own, being a little fearless in the pursuit of what she wants, and really, can’t we all use something of that?


Mackenzie Walker wasn’t planning on using her college radio show to solve a decades-old murder, but when she receives an anonymous tip that the wrong man may have taken the fall, she can’t resist digging deeper. The victim, a glamorous heiress and founder of a Kentucky horse-racing dynasty, left behind plenty of enemies. And the cops don’t seem particularly interested in discussing any of it. But when the threats begin, Mackenzie knows she’s onto something. Thankfully, she’s getting help from a very unexpected source: the victim’s son, Ryan. The closer she gets to him, however, the more important it is for Mackenzie to uncover the truth before they both get buried alongside old secrets. Read or listen to weekly ebook and audio episodes of the serial novel Dead Air and then check out Mackenzie’s podcast for a uniquely immersive experience. Does the truth lie in the serial, the podcast … or somewhere in-between?

Stars: It’s only the first chapter, thanks to the lovely people at Serial Box, so can’t really say much, but as first chapters go, this definitely has me hooked.

Mackenzie works the midnight shift at a radio station, feeling safe behind the mike. Behind the mike, she’s Mackenzie, where she can talk about the decades-old death of a heiress, and talk herself into investigating the case. Yes, Serial is a big influence here — and that’s why you can listen to Mackenzie’s podcast too. 

Away from the mike, in her real life, she’s Macy, a girl in college who has lost her cousin, and is uber cautious about just …. everything really. Me, I think she’s perfectly normal, but Macy knows she lets her fear get the better of her some time.

But it’s the cold case of an heiress’ murder that grabs her and won’t let go — especially when someone calls the station and tells her that the wrong man was arrested. What she doesn’t expect is that the victim’s son Ryan tracks her down and offers to help her find the man who really killed his mother.

One of the authors that attracted me to this story was Rachael Caine, the author of Stillhouse Lake, one of the most impressive books I read last year. She, together with Gwenda Bond, and Carrie Ryan are the authors of this serial.

Something I enjoyed about Macy is that she is so utterly relatable straightaway. She’s nervous about putting herself out there in the world on the radio and investigating the case, and I can understand that. And I can admire her for doing it anyway.

There’s a romance brewing with Ryan, but I am hoping it’s a slow burn and we can enjoy Macy investigating the case more instead.

Overall, this is a fantastic beginning to the series that sets up Macy and her mystery she’s investigating but also… I realise I like Macy straightaway and I don’t think I can say that too often about characters. You need to get to know them, but Macy is earnest, and empathetic right off the bat… and that just makes this all the better.


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