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The Guest List: A Reese’s Book Club Pick, the biggest crime thriller of 2020 from the number one best selling author of The Hunting Party Paperback – 24 February 2020
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A gripping, twisty murder mystery thriller from the No.1 bestselling author of The Hunting Party. ‘Lucy Foley is really very clever’ Anthony Horowitz
‘Thrilling’ The Times
‘A classic whodunnit’ Kate Mosse
‘Sharp and atmospheric and addictive’ Louise Candlish
‘A furiously twisty thriller’ Clare Mackintosh
‘Secrets and lies at every turn’ Sarah Pinborough
On an island off the windswept Irish coast, guests gather for the wedding of the year – the marriage of Jules Keegan and Will Slater.
The wedding cake has barely been cut when one of the guests is found dead. And as a storm unleashes its fury on the island, everyone is trapped.
All have a secret. All have a motive.
One guest won’t leave this wedding alive . . .
Frequently bought together
‘Both a classic whodunnit and a very contemporary psychological thriller that left me guessing right to the end – a wonderful read’ Kate Mosse
‘Great fun. Lucy Foley is really very clever’ Anthony Horowitz
‘A very modern Agatha Christie for the new roaring 20s . . . secrets and lies at every turn’ Sarah Pinborough
‘Evoking the great Agatha Christie classics “And Then There Were None” and “Murder on the Orient Express,” . . . Foley builds her suspense slowly and creepily’ New York Times
‘Whip smart page-turner with skilful characterisation . . . a compelling read’ Jane Shemilt
‘Foley’s second take on the “closed room” murder mystery confirms her status as this generation’s Agatha Christie’ Sunday Express
‘Sharp and atmospheric and addictive – I tore through it!’ Louise Candlish
‘Thoroughly addictive’ Sarah Hughes, I paper
‘I didn’t think Lucy Foley could top The Hunting Party, but she did! I loved this book. It gave me the same waves of happiness l get from curling up with a classic Christie’ Alex Michaelides
‘Nail-biting . . . A fabulous closed room thriller. Lucy Foley is the Agatha Christie for our times’ Kate Hamer
‘It grabs you from the off and keeps you guessing until the very end. A genuine treat of a read’ Heat
‘This is a stunningly brilliant book: writing to die for, compelling characters, and a plot driven by a deep-seated sense of unease. I savoured every secret, every twist and turn’ Dinah Jefferies
I loved The Guest List and gobbled it up in a few sittings . . . A cracking story brilliantly told’ Ryan Tubridy
‘Compelling, entertaining and highly enjoyable, Lucy knocks this one out of the park’ Liz Nugent
A Reese’s Book Club Pick, the biggest crime thriller of 2020 from the number one best selling author of The Hunting Party
- Publisher : HarperCollins GB (24 February 2020)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 384 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0008297177
- ISBN-13 : 978-0008297176
- Dimensions : 15.3 x 2.9 x 23.4 cm
- Best Sellers Rank: 42,510 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
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Top reviews from Australia
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Julia Keegan, magazine publisher and Will Slater, TV action star, have engaged Aoife, a wedding planner to organise this memorable event, AND very memorable it ends up being!
Set on an isolated island off the coast of Ireland, this is sure to be the wedding of the year. Aoife, and her caterer husband Freddie, will be hosting the first ever wedding at their newly established resort.
The story begins the day before the wedding, as the guests begin to arrive by boat, but with different points of view, going back over time.
It seems that everyone has a secret.
The reception is in full swing, a massive storm tears across the island, and the lights go out..
A body is found..
I found this book difficult to put down. The twists , turns and motives kept me guessing. It seems there was a good reason for so many to want the victim dead. A fantastic whodunnit!
My first book by Lucy Foley, but I am just about to begin my second!
I really wanted to enjoy this story, but I struggled to engage with any of the characters. The best character in the entire novel was the Island on which the Wedding/Murder takes place. It was haunting and isolated.
The withholding of the murder victims identity was a little too clever by half. If I read a whodunnit, I want to know who it was that was killed. It's very well written, but it's not for me. On the other hand, I'm sure many others will enjoy the cat and mouse game the author is playing.
Lucy Foley continues the grand tradition of island-bound mysteries pioneered by Agatha Christie (And Then There Were None, Evil Under the Sun) and carried forward by such luminaries as P.D. James (The Lighthouse, The Skull Beneath the Skin).
Having enjoyed Foley's first excursion into the crime/mystery genre, The Hunting Party (2018), I was keen to read The Guest List when it was released. My feeling is that this book shows the author's growing assuredness writing in this genre.
Close family and friends gather for a wedding at the exclusive Folly on Inis an Amplóra (which we're told translates to Cormorant Island), a fictional island off the coast from Connemara, south-western Eire. Bride Julia "Jules" Keegan and Groom Will Slater are an attractive and high-powered couple, but both have their fair share of family issues and skeletons from the past. The picturesque but windswept island, surrounded by crumbling cliffs, freezing waters and dangerous currents, provides an appropriately dramatic venue for simmering tensions and old grudges to come to the fore, as the bridal party gather for a dinner on the night before the wedding. Even the land itself isn't safe with perilous peat bogs ("turf") to trap the unwary and local stories of hauntings by past islanders who died gruesome deaths at the hand of invaders.
There are strong similarities between the books, in terms of structure and style, which is perhaps not entirely surprising. Like The Hunting Party, The Guest List also features a multi-perspective narrative, and a short-period split time device - every few chapters, we flash forward to read a tantalising glimpse from the period immediately after the discovery of the murder. The vast majority of the novel is focussed on the build-up to the crime, the relationships and interractions of the characters which form the basis for someone acting upon their murderous intent - but who? As with The Hunting Party, Foley withholds the identity of the victim from the reader until the latter stages, adding to the tension and mystery considerably. It was only at about the 3/4 point of the book that I formed a fairly clear idea of who was most likely to end up dead!
I felt the development of the characters was thorough and convincing, and the multi-layered plot and tangle of motives excellent. Foley uses misdirection and reveals very cleverly to maintain tension and mystery right to the last few pages. The short chapters and multiple view points made this a fast and stimulating book to read.
Highly recommended - I can't wait for Ms. Foley's next release!
Top reviews from other countries
Next, as horrible as this location sounded, it seemed that at least 2 of the guests actually preferred to sit in a partially subterranean cave subject to flooding, too dark to see the back, full of weird noises, damp, dank and with unknown inhabitants and AT NIGHT !! ... than any other comfortable indoor place.
THEN, there was this odd disconnection where the author apparently forgot that she had said that only a select few would be staying in the Folly overnight, but then had hundreds of guests arriving for the day, events merging into the evening and night and no way for them to leave the island! where were they all going? was there a secret submarine evacuation planned, or a bridge she forgot to mention? as it happened, suspense was created by a violent, unpredicted/totally predictable storm which would have made a sea evac by anything other than a Naval destroyer impossible anyway.
Forgetting the logistics, the characters were so awful, I hoped they would all murder each other. All the suspenseful storylines were childishly obvious, the awful secrets eked out a child could have guessed and the villain I guessed about 5 pages in. I really liked the character Severine, because she said nothing and did nothing and was apparently part of the scenery.