Thursday, August 27, 2020

The Guest List by Lucy Foley

The Guest List
by Lucy Foley
Published June 2nd 2020 by William Morrow

The bride ‧ The plus one ‧ The best man ‧ The wedding planner ‧ The bridesmaid ‧ The body

On an island off the coast of Ireland, guests gather to celebrate two people joining their lives together as one. The groom: handsome and charming, a rising television star. The bride: smart and ambitious, a magazine publisher. It’s a wedding for a magazine, or for a celebrity: the designer dress, the remote location, the luxe party favors, the boutique whiskey. The cell phone service may be spotty and the waves may be rough, but every detail has been expertly planned and will be expertly executed.

But perfection is for plans, and people are all too human. As the champagne is popped and the festivities begin, resentments and petty jealousies begin to mingle with the reminiscences and well wishes. The groomsmen begin the drinking game from their school days. The bridesmaid not-so-accidentally ruins her dress. The bride’s oldest (male) friend gives an uncomfortably caring toast.

And then someone turns up dead. Who didn’t wish the happy couple well? And perhaps more important, why?

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5 Stars

Lucy Foley has gifted readers with a classic murder mystery novel, giving Agatha Christie a modern update with a flashy wedding off the coast of Ireland on the secluded Cormorant Island. Told in a whodunit style, The Guest List follows the bride, the plus one, the best man, the wedding planner, and the bridesmaid, along with a few extra added narrators, as the wedding festivities get underway prior to the discovery of a body. Jules expects perfection for her wedding, it has all been coordinated, but when the alcohol flows all plans go with it. 

I could not put this book down, I read it entirely in one sitting, captivated by the eerie, atmospheric setting of the island. I could not wait to find out just what had created the fear in the guests as the power goes out in the wedding tent. The characters had such unique voices, I loved reading their innermost thoughts about the wedding, the bride and groom, one another. Every character has secrets, desires, and motive. We don't know who is dead, we don't know how they died, we don't know who did it, but we know every single person on the island is holding onto something that could drive them to murder.  Taking place over two festive days, Cormorant Island's own haunting history brings out the worst in everyone. 

The Guest List lives up to the hype and then some. None of my predictions were correct and I spent the last 100 pages in shock. I loved that I never guessed the ending, coming up with ideas was half the fun of reading as Lucy Foley threw twist after twist in. This absorbing, edge-of-your-seat read is easily at the top of my list for excellent reads this year. Every character is compelling, the setting is a character in itself, and well, the mystery is just one you'll have to discover for yourself.

1 comment

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