On the rare occasion I write a book review, I focus on the parts of the story I enjoyed and stay away from those I didn’t because I know that a lot of hard work goes into writing a book and I don’t need to dwell on the less enjoyable bits.
But that approach to writing reviews has meant that sometimes I can’t write anything at all if I can’t think of anything positive to say.
For some reason, I decided that today I would write a Totally Honest review about my latest read, and not sugarcoat my thoughts on it. So read on to see how that worked out…
Devastated by a recent pandemic brought in by outsiders, the villagers of Blackrig in the Scottish Highlands are outraged when they find that the nearby estate plans to reopen its luxury ‘party house’ to tourists.
As animosity sparks amongst the locals, part of the property is damaged and, in the ensuing chaos, the body of a young girl is found in the wreck. Seventeen-year-old Ailsa Cummings went missing five years ago, never to be seen again – until now.
The excavation of Ailsa’s remains ignites old suspicions cast on the men of this small community, including Greg, the estate’s gamekeeper. At the beginning of a burgeoning relationship with a new lover, Joanne, Greg is loath to discuss old wounds. Frightened by Greg’s reaction to the missing girl’s discovery, Joanne begins to doubt how well she knows this new man in her life. Then again, he’s not the only one with secrets in their volatile relationship . . .
I had been looking forward to reading The Party House, but unfortunately in the end I didn’t find it worth the wait.
There was very little going on for about 90% of the story, which consisted of the two main characters, Joanne and Greg, who had hardly any chemistry together, lying to each other, alluding to secrets which aren’t revealed until near the end of the book, and having a lot of sex (which gets referred to as “coupling” which is a word I never want to read again.)
Things picked up a little towards the end, but the action sequence was over and done with before it really got started.
Even the reveal of who was behind the murder felt skimmed over, as we only learn their identity while Greg is telling Joanne in a handful of sentences. Though it is worth mentioning that I thought the killer and their motive was a point in the book’s favour.
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