Skip to Main Content

“Immediate, intense, gripping, taut, terrifying, moving, and brilliant.” —Lisa Jewell, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Invisible Girl

“Brilliantly written...terrifying.”—Ruth Ware, #1 New York Times bestselling author of One by One

A woman being held captive is willing to risk everything to save herself, her unborn child, and her captor’s latest victim in this “intense, dark, and utterly chilling” (Jennifer Hillier, author of ​Jar of Hearts) thriller in the tradition of Misery and Room.

On an isolated farm in the United Kingdom, a woman is trapped by the monster who kidnapped her seven years ago. When she discovers she is pregnant, she resolves to protect her child, no matter the cost, and starts to meticulously plot her escape. But when another woman is brought into the fold on the farm, her plans go awry. Can she save herself, her child, and this innocent woman at the same time? Or is she doomed to spend the remainder of her life as a captive?

Intense, dark, and utterly gripping The Last Thing to Burn “explores the resilience of the human spirit, even in the face of unfathomable evil. This harrowing journey is one worth taking” (Publishers Weekly).

Photograph by Will Dean

Will Dean grew up in the East Midlands of the United Kingdom and lived in nine villages before the age of eighteen. After studying law at the London School of Economics and working in London, he settled in rural Sweden where he built a wooden house in a boggy clearing at the center of a vast elk forest, and it’s from this base that he compulsively reads and writes. His debut novel, Dark Pines, was selected for Zoe Ball’s book club on ITV, shortlisted for the National Book Awards (UK), The Guardian’s Not The Booker prize, and was named a Telegraph book of the year.

"I cannot remember the last time I read a book this immediate, intense, gripping, taut, terrifying, moving and brilliant. Only 243 pages long but I'm not sure I could have taken it being even a page longer, the tension was so agonizing . . . It deserves to be number one, it deserves to be a huge movie, it deserves to win awards. My book of the year, and it's only February. Bravo, Will Dean."

– Lisa Jewell, #1 New York Times bestselling author of INVISIBLE GIRL

"I could not stop reading this! Brilliantly done . . . I’m awestruck!"

– Denise Mina, internationally bestselling author of THE LESS DEAD

"This outstanding thriller by Will Dean might be the best book you read this year. THE LAST THING TO BURN is intense, dark, and utterly chilling — I felt this one in my bones."

– Jennifer Hillier, award-winning author of JAR OF HEARTS and LITTLE SECRETS

“I couldn't put it down. A visceral nightmare of a book with one of the most evil villains I've come across in a long time. Powerful writing.”

– Steve Cavanagh, award-winning author of THE DEFENSE

“Ratchets up the tension to the point where I had to check my pulse.”

– Liz Nugent, critically-acclaimed author of LITTLE CRUELTIES

“A heart-racing exploration about human survival. An addictive and insightful thriller.”

– Maxine Mei-Fung Chung, critically-acclaimed author of THE EIGHTH GIRL


– Elly Griffiths, internationally bestselling author of THE LANTERN MEN

"Compelling. A well-written domestic thriller."

– Mystery & Suspense Magazine

"A story of pain and survival that I almost guarantee will stay with you long after you close the book."

– Men Reading Books

"Outstanding and heart-wrenching . . . . Dean explores the resilience of the human spirit, even in the face of unfathomable evil. This harrowing journey is one worth taking."

– Publishers Weekly (starred review)

"This is the type of book that shakes readers to the core and becomes a touchstone reference in the years that follow."

– Bolo Books

You may also like: Thriller & Suspense Staff Picks