Author: Lin Anderson
Published by: Pan Macmillan on Jan. 10, 2023
Source: Publishers Group Canada
Book Rating: 7.5/10
The Party House by Lin Anderson is a deeply atmospheric psychological thriller set in the Scottish Highlands, for fans of Lucy Foley, Ruth Ware and Sarah Pearse’s The Sanatorium.
Devastated by a recent pandemic brought in by outsiders, the villagers of Blackrig in the Scottish Highlands are outraged when they find that the nearby estate plans to reopen its luxury ‘party house’ to tourists.
As animosity sparks amongst the locals, part of the property is damaged and, in the ensuing chaos, the body of a young girl is found in the wreck. Seventeen-year-old Ailsa Cummings went missing five years ago, never to be seen again – until now.
The excavation of Ailsa’s remains ignites old suspicions cast on the men of this small community, including Greg, the estate’s gamekeeper. At the beginning of a burgeoning relationship with a new lover, Joanne, Greg is loath to discuss old wounds. Frightened by Greg’s reaction to the missing girl’s discovery, Joanne begins to doubt how well she knows this new man in her life. Then again, he’s not the only one with secrets in their volatile relationship . . .
Dark, suspenseful, and unnerving!
The Party House is an engrossing, ominous tale that transports you to Scotland post-pandemic and into the lives of the Blackrig villagers, especially estate gamekeeper Greg, as they juggle with their feelings for the reopening of the posh, local estate where parties were always wild, rules were flounted, COVID was transmitted killing six of their own treasured souls, and where it now also seems to be the burial site for the body of a missing teen.
The prose is tight and intense. The characters are wary, secretive, and troubled. And the plot, told from alternating perspectives, unravels quickly into a gripping tale full of twists, turns, shocking revelations, lies, deception, indulgence, depravity, jealousy, violence, and murder.
Overall, The Party House is a sinister, entertaining, intense stand-alone thriller by Anderson that does a wonderful job of combining the isolating atmosphere of The Scottish Highlands with unsavoury characters, poor choices, and eerie motivations.
This book is available now.
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Thank you to PGC Books for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.