Fierce Kingdom

by Gin Phillips

Quick take

The air crackles with malevolence and unbearable tension, as even the zoo animals, locked in their cages, sense the approaching violence.

Why I love it

Fight or flight. Rage or relief. A good suspense novel evokes our most primitive emotions. The adrenaline spikes as we desperately need to know what happens next. And if the book is really good, time spent in the grip of mounting fear pays off with an explosive and cathartic ending.

Fierce Kingdom delivers a level of pure fear that I hadn’t felt in ages. It’s the story of Joan, a mother who spend...


An electrifying novel about the primal and unyielding bond between a mother and her son, and the lengths she’ll go to protect him.

The zoo is nearly empty as Joan and her four-year-old son soak up the last few moments of playtime. They are happy, and the day has been close to perfect. But what Joan sees as she hustles her son toward the exit gate minutes before closing time sends her sprinting...

Member thoughts

42% Love
46% Like
10% Dislike
  • Sylvia M.

    Miami, FL

    "A thriller, yes, but beautifully written and observed, and brilliantly paced."

  • Susan D.

    New City, NY

    "Good read! "

  • Anna K.

    Brooklyn, NY

    "A gripping story, too close to home in today's reality. A really intense and moving story that makes us all think about how far we go to protect the ones we love."

  • Bailey J.

    Staten Island, NY

    "A bit of a thrill ride! The whole book takes place over the course of a few hours and I was on the edge of my seat reading it"

  • Meagan M.

    Hot Springs, AR

    "I. NEED. MORE. I really need to know more about the ending!! Ahhh!! "

  • Amelia P.

    Brighton , MA

    "I loved this book. The anticipation builds really well and Phillips writes in a very digestible manner. Best thriller I've read in a little while! I'm trying to figure out the end still!"

  • Ashley S.

    Indianapolis, IN

    "Couldn't put it down!"

  • Myndi K.

    Fort Smith, AR

    "I read this in one setting! The story of a mom and her four year old and three hours in the zoo after disaster happens is one you just can't put down."

  • Aubrey M.

    Washington, DC

    "Great for a book club! Complex moral decisions make for excellent discussion. "

  • Cammy T.

    Lebanon, TN

    "Riveting - a slow burn - held my breath the whole time "

  • Suzanne D.

    Mount Laurel, NJ

    "This book showed the true love between a mother and her child that I didn't think could be put into words!"