Her Last Holiday
By C. L. Taylor
Published by Avon
What’s it about?
Two years ago, Fran’s sister Jenna disappeared on a wellness retreat in Gozo that went terribly wrong.
Tom Wade, the now infamous man behind Soul Shrink Retreats, has just been released from prison after serving his sentence for the deaths of two people. But he has never let on what happened to the third victim: Jenna.
Determined to find out the truth, Fran books herself onto his upcoming retreat – the first since his release – and finds herself face to face with the man who might hold the key to her sister’s disappearance. The only question is, will she escape the retreat alive? Or does someone out there want Jenna’s secrets to stay hidden?
What I think:
Her Last Holiday is a twisty thriller. The narrative is told from the point of view of three different women who are all connected to the story in someway.
Fran is searching for the truth about her sister’s disappearance. Wracked with guilt that she could have done something to prevent her sister’s disappearance and presumed death, she is determined to find some answers and sign up for an upcoming retreat under an assumed identity.
Other chapters are told from the point of view of Kate, the wife of Tom Wade. She is the driving force behind Soul Shrink retreats and has stood by him during his trail and prison sentence. She is desperate to rebuild their reputation and finances. Intelligent and manipulative, the relationship between Kate and Tom is clearly essential to their success, but also seems to be leading to their downfall.
The final point of view is Jenna herself. What exactly happened on the retreat years earlier. Jenna’s chapters slowly reveal the truth and the relationships between the characters and the links between the past and the present untangle. How did she disappear and what role did Tom and Kate Wade play in her disappearance?
This is a compelling thriller that will send readers along the wrong path and keep them guessing. You are never quite certain who you can trust and which characters are telling the truth. Lots of lies and manipulation.
Fran is a really likeable character and I really hoped that she would be able to uncover the answers that she was looking for. She makes lots of errors and nearly reveals her true identity or multiple occasions. Fran begins the book completely down-trodden and in some ways really finds herself at the retreat – although no thanks to the techniques and the workshops. At points she struggles to maintain her composure and is herself not sure who amongst the retreat guests she can trust. This story wasn’t quite tied up in a neat bow at the end and there were still some questions and motives that are left unresolved
I’ve read a few thriller by C. L. Taylor in the last year or so and they are always twisty and always good so I definitely recommend this one. It’s 400 pages so not a short read – but it is fast paced and gripping throughout.
Thank you to Netgalley for gifting me an advanced copy of the Her Last Holiday