They were all there the day your sister went missing… Who is lying? Who is next? THEN – In charge of her little sister at the beach, Claire allowed Eleanor to walk to the shop alone to buy an ice cream. Placing a coin into her hand, Claire told her to be quick, knowing how much she wanted the freedom. Eleanor never came back. NOW – The time has finally come to sell the family farm and Claire is organising a reunion of her dearest friends, the same friends who were present the day her sister went missing. When another girl disappears, long-buried secrets begin to surface. One of the group hides the darkest secret of them all…
The Reunion is a creepy mystery and family drama with some good twists and turns and unnervingly realistic characters.
This book is not an action-packed, heart-pounding thriller but if you like an intense slow-burner, then it is for you. Personally, I found the first half to be a bit too drawn out, with a fair amount of repetition of who was and wasn’t speaking to whom, or who felt guilty about what and how people felt about particular things, as well as lots of the minutiae of cooking, eating, getting up, showering, going to bed etc. I also found the changes in the third-person view-point – sometimes part-way through a chapter – unusual; this was a bit confusing and difficult to get used to.
Nevertheless, the book is well-plotted and Samantha Hayes brings to life some very vivid scenery and tangible emotions. I could practically feel the hot seaside sun on my face and the warm, soft sand under my feet, as well as the tension and anxiety that builds throughout the book. I also found myself feeling sympathetic, irritated, scared, horrified, frustrated and furious with each one of the characters at any given time as the story progressed!
There are some creepy, tense moments in the book, with some red herrings and unexpected plot developments. I did eventually work out who-dunit, after suspecting the wrong culprit once or twice, but there were still even more shocks and surprises to come.
Overall this is an intriguing mystery drama, with a gripping final third that is guaranteed to put your emotions through the wringer. Thank you to NetGalley and Bookouture for the ARC of The Reunion.