The Cliff House by Chris Brookmyre #BookReview

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One hen weekend, seven secrets… but only one worth killing for

Jen’s hen party is going to be out of control…

She’s rented a luxury getaway on its own private island. The helicopter won’t be back for seventy-two hours. They are alone. They think.

As well as Jen, there’s the pop diva and the estranged ex-bandmate, the tennis pro and the fashion guru, the embittered ex-sister-in-law and the mouthy future sister-in-law.

It’s a combustible cocktail, one that takes little time to ignite, and in the midst of the drunken chaos, one of them disappears. Then a message tells them that unless someone confesses her terrible secret to the others, their missing friend will be killed.

Problem is, everybody has a secret. And nobody wants to tell.

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An isolated Scottish island and secrets, secrets and more secrets! How could I not get excited about that? I have read quite a few of books with a remote setting but The Cliff House definitely sticks out among the others. I knew I simply couldn’t pass up the chance to see how Chris Brookmyre (author of previously reviewed novels Black Widow and The Cut) would handle one of my favourite settings and if I would be able to suss the biggest secret of all.

Jen is soon to be married to Zaki and she has booked a very luxurious retreat for her hen weekend. She is joined at this remote Scottish island by a few friends from the tennis club (Nicolette and Kennedy), two of her oldest friends (Helena and Michelle), her soon to be sister-in-law Samira and Beattie, the sister-in-law of her first marriage to Jason.

There is instant tension from the get go between some of the characters and a whole lot more tension is added when they start to wonder who has the biggest secret. The plot switches smoothly between all the characters and the twists and turns follow each other up rapidly. In order to find their missing party member they have to work together in pairs and while they are trying to survive until they can alert someone or escape the island old grudges are brought into the open and there are quite a few. The truth flips opinions and there were some great secrets that I had not expected.

This story made me quite paranoid and I was suspicious of everyone, like a good old merry-go-round it made my head spin. I thought I knew where the story was going to take us in the end from the very beginning but I was completely off the mark, the page-turning plot is completely unpredictable!

The Cliff House (apparently also published as She Knows) was deliciously addictive and I can recommend this novel and this author in general to everyone who thinks they’re smart enough to figure things out with ease. Consider yourselves challenged!

I received a free copy of this novel from the publisher Little Brown, Book Group via Netgalley. This is my honest opinion.


10 thoughts on “The Cliff House by Chris Brookmyre #BookReview

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