I spent the first 45% of this book really immersed in the storyline and the atmosphere that the Author created. I felt the remote feeling of the isolated Scottish Island, the tension between the group of friends having a reunion and the secrets that were clearly being kept between them. But this book is marketed as a Thriller and so the atmosphere alone wasn’t enough to hook me.
I struggled to feel a connection between the main characters and the underlying mystery. At times I found myself wanting more to happen, the creepy descriptions and the characters reactions to drama were over the top compared to the incidents happening. I wanted to know more about the main characters history and I wanted there to be more to the Islands secrets. A connection perhaps, between the Island and the visitors. Instead there was nothing.
The blurb for the book doesn’t fit with the contents. ‘No one expected them to go there…’ Well, they all expected to go there for the break, plus the owners expected them to be there… I don’t understand the tension that this tagline creates. The narration being told through a the view of a few of the main characters also felt strange. Why couldn’t we hear perspectives from all of them?
There’s no denying that the tension is there within this book, the Author is absolutely brilliant at creating an atmosphere. But content and storyline were lacking considering the build up surrounding the characters. As a contemporary book it would work well.
About the Book…
No one expected them to go there. The question is: will any of them leave?
Six friends travel to a remote island north of the Scottish Highlands for an old school reunion. They’ve rented The Lighthouse – a stunning, now abandoned building that was once notorious for deaths at sea.
On the first evening, someone goes missing. The group search all through the night to no avail. But when the five remaining friends return to the lighthouse early the next morning, they are shocked to find James inside. He’s looks terrified – but won’t say a word about where he’s been.
The party vow to put the strange night behind them and enjoy the rest of their stay, but when more unexplained things begin to occur, tensions escalate. It’s clear James knows something, but nothing will persuade him to give up the secrets of the island. Is he protecting his friends from a terrible truth, or leading them into more danger?
A chilling, gripping and powerfully atmospheric suspense novel with a gothic edge.
About the Author…
Francesca May grew up in the middle of England where she spent her childhood devouring fantasy books and brewing potions in her back garden. She currently lives in Derby with her family, three giant dogs and two black cats.
By day she works as a bookseller. By night she accidentally kills every house plant she touches and writes novels about gothic mansions, witchcraft, and queer love.
Francesca’s debut fantasy novel Wild and Wicked Things will be published by Orbit in early 2022.
Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher and author for a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. Check out my blog for more book related posts and to enquire about future reviews, blog tours and cover reveals.
Are you looking for a Bookish environment to talk all things books? Then look no further than The Fiction Cafe – don’t forget to answer the membership questions in order to join. We welcome Authors and Readers and there are lots of exciting happenings in the group! Our Book of the Month Read A Longs happen there too.