Guilty Photographs


Fiction - Thriller - Psychological
432 Pages
Reviewed on 05/16/2020
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

S.I. Taylor was born in Caracas, Venezuela and moved when she was nine years old with her parents, brother, and sister to sunny South Florida. She has a biology and criminal justice degree which she combined in her new debut psychological thriller Guilty Photographs earning a Reader's Favorite book badge.

When she's not writing you can catch her on the Florida highways catching speeders, seatbelt violators, arresting criminals, or honoring those fallen officers in the honor guard.

She also can be found enjoying her new found love for candle making in her new side venture business Aroma and Roses Candle.

If not then she's probably spending time with her family and her Bichon Frisé named Romeo who's still looking for his Juliet.

If you want to keep tabs on her visit her website sitaylorwrites.com.

    Book Review

Reviewed by K.J. Simmill for Readers' Favorite

In S.I. Taylor's Guilty Photographs, Barbara knew she could only rely on herself. Her body was a canvas of the betrayals she had experienced. But this latest edition had her concerned, unable to recall the events of the night before she awoke bleeding, sore, and alone. She knew better than to call the cops; no one in her neighborhood trusted the cops, and her rap sheet didn't exactly scream model citizen. So she did what she always does; carry on, unaware of exactly how much trouble she will be in when the truth of that night surfaces. With the rent due, and no cash for her troubles, she is forced to accept another job, but this one has a payout worth the risk, enough money to drag herself from the life she has to lead. Little did she know the danger around the corner, that sometimes a job which seems too good to be true can be just that, especially when she already knew better than to trust the one who made the offer.

S.I. Taylor's Guilty Photographs is a gripping, gritty crime thriller. It is atmospheric with clear attention paid to the settings and plot development, not to mention the twists and turns found throughout. With a dark plot focusing on many adult issues and difficult topics, it isn't for the faint of heart. Barbara is forced to endure many levels of degradation from whoring herself out to doing whatever it takes to claw her way out of her current situation. I loved how Nixon was portrayed, the IT gadget fanatic with a soft heart, a bad boy streak, and unrequited love for Barbara that spanned years. McKinley and Coolidge make the perfect team, hot on the trail of their own case when McKinley's path crosses with Barbara, unearthing another can of worms. High-stakes action combines with strong, realistic characters to deliver a heart-pounding, emotionally-charged tale that will keep you guessing, worrying, and desperate to reach the final conclusion. Well-written, perfectly paced, and completely engaging from start to finish, this is a definite must for lovers of crime fiction.

Heather Osborne

Barbara Wolf has never had an easy life. Taking on “odd” jobs to survive, she longs to free herself from the grip of Huntersville, her hometown. However, when she stumbles, battered and bruised, away from a warehouse where several men lay dead, Barbara has no idea how her life is about to change—possibly for the worst. All she knows is she has to find a way out, hoping she can trust the one man who has never let her down, or so she thinks. When she falls unexpectedly into the grasp of Agent Carter McKinley, the San Diego Federal Crime Control agent investigating the warehouse murders, Barbara never expects that he’s the one who might be her salvation in Guilty Photographs by S.I. Taylor.

Guilty Photographs by S.I. Taylor is a fast-paced psychological thriller that will appeal to readers who love a good twist. I felt that Barbara’s character was believable; far from the usual female characters who seem to have everything going for them. She knows she is flawed and is working hard to overcome those flaws. I also appreciated the diversity portrayed in the novel in regard to characters and setting. I liked the supporting characters, especially Lori, Regan, and Coolidge—the last being a personal favorite, with her witty retorts and hard exterior. Some elements of the relationship between Barbara and McKinley were slightly unrealistic to me and there were times I felt he should have taken consequences—that never came—for his actions. However, I would recommend this book to other psychological thriller readers and will read more by Taylor in the future.

Shrabastee Chakraborty

Guilty Photographs by S.I. Taylor is a gripping mix of psychological and crime thriller. Barbara Wolf is no stranger to taking on odd and shady jobs. In the aftermath of one such venture, she wakes up in a warehouse, brutally raped and tortured. Undaunted, she takes on one more assignment, hoping the rewards will help her to finally begin a normal life. She enlists the help of Nixon Wright, her technical genius of a friend who harbors unreciprocated romantic feelings for her. When the job doesn’t go as planned, agent McKinley of FCCA arrests her as a prime suspect for a triple murder in a warehouse. Barbara barely manages to escape, but soon realizes that she is in grave trouble.

Although Guilty Photographs is primarily a plot-driven book, Taylor devotes much space to character development. The detailed backstories not only make the characters realistic but also control the direction of the plot. Elements of romance and thrills are inherently associated with the storyline, but so are lust, obsession, and abuse. Taylor elaborates on the destructive power of obsessive love. As the novel progressed, unexpected and shocking twists gradually emerged, taking me by surprise. I would whole-heartedly recommend this book to readers who enjoy thrillers. Since this is also a story of redemption, this novel can be appreciated by those who feel lost in the endless abyss of a criminal life. The contents are decidedly for mature readers, including descriptions of sexual abuse, rape, mutilation, and murder.

K.C. Finn

Guilty Photographs is a work of fiction in the thriller, psychological and suspenseful drama sub-genres and was penned by author S. I. Taylor. Written for adult audiences, the work does contain the use of explicit language, scenes of a sexual nature, and depictions of graphic violence appropriate to its criminal themes. Our central protagonist Barbara Wolf wakes up brutalized and covered in blood, and she believes that vengeance is the only way forward. Enlisting the help of a truly unscrupulous man, Barbara learns some sharp lessons about what’s really going on in the world around her, who to trust, and what the titular photographs have to do with leading her to the bitter truth.

Author S. I. Taylor has crafted a truly engaging thriller novel that does exactly what it’s supposed to, and will, therefore, satisfy fans of the genre. The work delivers superb suspense from cover to cover, with a sharply intelligent writing style that balances the macabre scene-play with emotional realism and close narration to its characters. One of the things I found really effective throughout the novel was its dialogue, which not only brings us close to the characters but moves the plot along swiftly without huge chunks of backstory or exposition. This makes for a really exciting read and one that feels natural to follow, even when it takes some quite shocking turns. Overall, I would definitely recommend Guilty Photographs to fans of high stakes thrillers, engaging and morally dubious central protagonists, and accomplished writing quality.

Rylanne Burdette

Guilty Photographs by S. I. Taylor is a fast-paced thriller about a woman named Barbara who continually finds herself in life-threatening situations. She works dangerous jobs trying to make enough money to start over and begin a new life; she is tired of living on the run. When one of her connections tells her about an opportunity that could bring in enough money for her to leave the awful town in which she lives, she takes it. However, someone is stalking Barbara, and they are willing to do anything get her in their clutches. FFCA agent Carter McKinley lands himself in the middle of a huge case that involves Barbara, and he begins to realize that Barbara has a terrible past that just might destroy her future.

My favorite book genre is thrillers, but recently I have been in a slump and haven't found many thrillers to be very exciting. Guilty Photographs was not one of them! I absolutely loved it. Although it took me a little while to get into it, once I did, I was hooked and couldn't stop reading. S. I. Taylor knows how to craft a gripping plot that is sure to keep readers on their toes. My favorite part about the book was watching Barbara transform into a strong woman who had a great head on her shoulders. Overall, this was just the thriller I needed, and Carter McKinley is my hero. I would recommend this book to all readers who enjoy plot twists and intense storylines! A note for readers, this book does address rape and violence.

Tammy Ruggles

Guilty Photographs by S. I. Taylor is a compelling crime drama you can't put down. The first main character, Barbara, regains consciousness to find that she's been sexually assaulted, and revenge is on her mind. Barbara isn't perfect. She has a past, suffered some hard knocks, makes mistakes, and hopes to turn her life around. But this is just the beginning of the twists and turns to follow. This story works between Barbara's personal story and a criminal investigation led by law enforcement agents. Their stories eventually overlap. If you like suspense, strong characters, and a gritty sense of the city and what goes on in criminal investigations, you'll love this book. Be warned, however. It is dark, explicit, and doesn't back away from reality.

It's clear that Taylor knows her material and knows her audience. She begins the book focused on Barbara, and steers the plot around a series of curves that will leave you guessing and reading at a rapid pace. The characters she created for this story seem real--with flaws, quirks, and both positive/negative qualities. She has a realistic way with descriptions, settings, and dialogue. Barbara is a perfect example of the author's skill at character-building. She's been victimized but has an inner strength that sustains and motivates her. She's made some bad choices but knows it's time to make a change, but will she? She's behind on rent, needs money, will do just about anything to find a way out of a mess, and lives by a personal code. When the big reveals happen, you'll be surprised, but in a good way and the ending is the perfect payoff. Guilty Photographs by S. I. Taylor is a roller coaster ride you have to read.