The Guest List by Lucy Foley

1. First lines. 2. Published 2020 Harper Collins 3. Stormy weather. [Public Domain] Image by Hana Harencarova via Pixabay 4. Wedding cake [Public Domain] via Pxhere
Plot:

High-profile couple, Jules and Will, are getting married on an isolated island off the coast of Ireland. The wedding is in full swing, a wild storm is battering the island, and someone is found murdered. Told from the points of view of five different characters, it’s obvious that there are a few possible suspects.

Quotes:

“Here there’s the added danger of the whole island. The wildness of this place gets under your skin. These guests will feel themselves far from the normal moral codes of society, safe from the prying eyes of others. “

“If I didn’t pay attention, one of those currents could grow into a huge riptide, destroying all my careful planning. And here’s another thing I’ve learned – sometimes the smallest currents are the strongest.”

“When I step outside the sun is just beginning to go down, spilling fire upon water. It tinges pink the mist that has begun to gather over the bog, that shields its secrets. This is my favourite hour.”

My thoughts:

Recommended as a cleverly constructed mystery, with multiple points of view slowly revealing the characters’ secrets. However, the things that were being kept secret, how they were kept secret, and the fact that there were so many horrible secrets didn’t really ring true for me.

Book reviews:
  • Publishers Weekly: “The tension of the setup isn’t quite matched by the reveals, though the nicely creepy setting compensates somewhat. Readers seeking thrills will find plenty.”
  • Times of India: “The book isn’t a fast-paced thriller with constant shocks to keep you hooked but a slow burn reveal, where an overlooked word might have clued you in to the murderer. Even those who read a lot of mysteries will have a hard time guessing the murderer of this book, making it a great read for all mystery lovers.”
Awards:

CWA Gold Dagger Award Nominee for (longlist) (2020)

Other editions:

2 comments

  1. No spoiler, but after what the sister did at the reception, I found it unbelievable that the wedding just continued on as if nothing had happened. All the characters were horrible. However, I think the author did a good job of keeping the story flowing with multiple points of view, which can often interrupt the flow.

    Like

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