Snow is falling in the exclusive alpine ski resort of Saint Antoine, as the shareholders and directors of Snoop, the hottest new music app, gather for a make or break corporate retreat to decide the future of the company. At stake is a billion-dollar dot com buyout that could make them all millionaires, or leave some of them out in the cold.
The clock is ticking on the offer, and with the group irrevocably split, tensions are running high. When an avalanche cuts the chalet off from help, and one board member goes missing in the snow, the group is forced to ask – would someone resort to murder, to get what they want?
First of all, I loved the high-tech idea introduced in the novel. Snoop’s founders developed an app where you can listen to the music someone else is listening to at the same moment they’re listening to it. It’s a bit invasive right and it felt perfect for this locked-in mystery type of novel where you don’t know who has eyes on who. Leading man Topher wants to sell his wonderful company in a buyout that’s on offer, his ex-wife Eva is opposed, ex-employee Liz and Snooper founder Rik are caught in the middle, having to choose sides. And then, suddenly, one of them goes missing and the cards are reshuffled…
I love the guessing game in this type of novel and I don’t mind a big cast at all, it makes it just a bit more challenging and who’s not up for this kind of challenge eh? Unfortunately, this time there wasn’t much guessing because at about 60% into the novel it was pretty obvious who the killer was and I felt it was too soon to be done with the joy of sleuthing. I had a marvelous time up until then and it all became clear going from one scene to the next. You’re not going to believe it, I know, because there are 11 people at the cabin at the start of the novel. Nine of them are guests and two act as cabin staff. Even so it’s nearly impossible to miss which one the killer is. The author also gave away how many are going to be killed quite early in the story and that didn’t go unnoticed so yep I was making check marks as we went along. Fear not, there’s still a very enjoyable time to be had because you might know who it is but you definitely don’t know why. The underlying reasons were far from obvious from the beginning and this is where I recognized the true brilliance of Ruth Ware in again.
I love the way she writes but aside from Topher (the alpha dog and main man), Erin and a few others, I didn’t find the other characters very interesting and I thought some of them could definitely have been developed more, like Ani and Tiger, because they remain rather vague figures without any real identifiers.
It was a good read but I simply didn’t love it the way I loved the first novel (The Lying Game, remember) and it was wayyyy too easy for a sleuth who loves a good challenge. I do look forward to her next novel though and in between I’ve already decided to pick up one of the backlist.
I received a free copy of this novel from the publisher via Netgalley. This is still my honest opinion.