The Cliff House by Chris BrookmyreThe Cliff House by Chris Brookmyre
Narrator: Sarah Barron
Published by HighBridge Audio on November 7, 2023
Source: NetGalley
Genres: Mystery, Thriller
Length: 9 hrs 32 mins
Pages: 360
Format: Audiobook
Purchase at or Audible
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Seven women. Seven sins. One night of judgment. Jen Dunne is forty-two and getting married for the second time, but that doesn’t mean she can’t go all out for her bachelorette weekend. She’s taking her closest friends to the kind of place that has a years-long waiting list for a three days of super-exclusive luxury accommodation on a remote Scottish island. So excited by the complicated means of transport required to get to the island, no one gives much thought to the implications for getting off again, especially if the weather should turn. But why would they? They’re in for a time they will never forget. Just not for the reasons they imagine.

When one of the party mysteriously goes missing on the first night, Jen realizes she has made a terrible she has trapped this disparate group of women together until the helicopter returns at then end of the weekend, and each woman has a secret...

Get ready for a closed circle mystery like no other. One that how well do you really know anybody, even your oldest acquaintance? And what if your best friend is really your worst enemy?

Six women travel to Clachan Geal, a remote Scottish island, for a bachelorette party. The women, some old friends, some new acquaintances, are renting out the luxurious mansion on the private island, where it will be just them, a personal chef, and the property manager. The whole thing goes awry quickly. Before dinner but after drinking several cocktails, the chef is discovered dead in the kitchen, clearly murdered, and one of the women is taken, threatened with death by The Reaper. The Reaper claims one of the woman is not who she appears to be, and if she doesn’t tell her secret and unless she tells her secret, the hostage will die.

The beginning is a bit slow as we get to know all the women and see the situation from each perspective. I’m not sure if listening to the audio helped keep everything straight or hindered it. It took me a while to really figure out who was who and how they were all interconnected. The narrator did a good job, but there are a lot of characters and a lot of information.

The relationships and dynamics between the women were well-done. Each of course has her own secrets and her own reason for not confessing, and the reader is privy to all of them. Well, almost. I’m not sure I actually liked any of the women though, which is maybe I wasn’t as concerned about what was going on as I could have been. That being said, there were some good twists and surprises. And an ending that made me smile.

About Chris Brookmyre

Chris Brookmyre was a journalist before becoming a full-time novelist with the publication of his award-winning debut Quite Ugly One Morning, which established him as one of Britain’s leading crime writers. His 2006 novel All Fun And Games Until Somebody Loses An Eye won the Everyman Bollinger Wodehouse Prize, and his 2016 novel Black Widow won both the McIlvanney Prize and the Theakston Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year award. Brookmyre’s novels have sold more than two million copies in the UK alone. His work has been adapted for stage, television, radio and, in the case of Bedlam, a video game.

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