My rating: 5 of 5 stars
What is it about classic Agatha Christie type of novels that tends to excite many of us readers? The Hunting Party by Lucy Foley is a 5* book for me not so much coz it is out of the world(well in a way it is 🤪) but more so coz it is reminiscent of Christie’s golden age crime dramas. A group of people stuck in a remote location with a murderer in their midst… I read the blurb and danced a jig 💃💃💃 keeping fingers crossed that the author doesn’t disappoint me. And thankfully The Hunting Party is an absorbing and engrossing thriller that kept me reading late into the night.
The story begins with a set of friends Miranda, Katie, Samira, Julien, Mark, Giles and Nick who have been together in Oxford following the age-old tradition of celebrating new year’s eve jointly. Miranda and Julien are the golden couple, Samira and Giles are the new parents, Nick is gay and in relationship with Bo, while Emma as Mark’s girlfriend is the organizer for the whole meet up at the picturesque Scottish private hunting lodge as a way to truly belong to this exclusive friend’s club. As always long-time friendship also holds seething resentments and secrets and deep grudges that threatens even the best of relationships and thus everything implodes from within as lies and secrets emerge and one of them is murdered.
The author has used multiple narratives and dual-line story telling even showing us POV’s of Heather who is the manager of the lodge and Doug who is the gamekeeper both of them with hidden and traumatic pasts. There is a sinister feel to this atmospheric thriller but everything unravels fairly quickly amidst the drinking and drugs lose your senses partying.
None of the characters are very likable which is sort of the norm for most thrillers now but that was the only factor that marred my joy else this one works wonders as simliar to Unexpected Guest by Shari Lapena.
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Everyone’s invited…everyone’s a suspect…
For fans of Ruth Ware and Tana French, a shivery, atmospheric, page-turning novel of psychological suspense in the tradition of Agatha Christie, in which a group of old college friends are snowed in at a hunting lodge . . . and murder and mayhem ensue.
All of them are friends. One of them is a killer.
During the languid days of the Christmas break, a group of thirtysomething friends from Oxford meet to welcome in the New Year together, a tradition they began as students ten years ago. For this vacation, they’ve chosen an idyllic and isolated estate in the Scottish Highlands—the perfect place to get away and unwind by themselves.
They arrive on December 30th, just before a historic blizzard seals the lodge off from the outside world.
Two days later, on New Year’s Day, one of them is dead.
The trip began innocently enough: admiring the stunning if foreboding scenery, champagne in front of a crackling fire, and reminiscences about the past. But after a decade, the weight of secret resentments has grown too heavy for the group’s tenuous nostalgia to bear. Amid the boisterous revelry of New Year’s Eve, the cord holding them together snaps.
Now one of them is dead . . . and another of them did it.
Keep your friends close, the old adage goes. But just how close is too close?