The Guest List by Lucy Foley – A book review


It is not so common that a book that takes “a modern twist on Agatha Christie” gets rated so high and raved by bloggers I admire. So let’s review The Guest List by Lucy Foley, a book that has been on the Amazon best sellers for more than ten weeks now.

About the book

Guest List by Lucy Foley Book Cover

Book Name: The Guest List

Author: Lucy Foley

Genre: Fiction – Thriller

Characters: Will Slater, Julia Keegan, Hannah and Charlie, Olivia, Johnno, Aiofe and Freddy

Setting: Inis an Amplóra, or Cormorant Island, Ireland

Summary

In a secluded island in the coastal regions of Ireland, the modern day power couple Jules and Will Slater are tying their knots. A couple of close friends and the wedding party choose to stay in the island the night before the wedding. The weather is not helping and storm seems to be approaching as well.

But just as the celebrations begin, a distraught waitress stumbles in and announces that she saw a body. The ushers walk into the deadly night to check it and the cops from the mainland are called as well.

Will the ‘happily ever after’ and the ‘death do apart work’ for this couple? And who kills whom forms the rest of the story in The Guest List by Lucy Foley.

My initial thoughts

This closed room murder mystery follows the usual whodunnit pattern and it works well. Despite having multiple POVs (six of them), the narration is quite simple and doesn’t confuse much.

The Guest List by Lucy Foley has a number of suspects and motives, as any good murder mystery should.

In spite of all the numerous red herrings, I guessed the murder much earlier and I am sure so would other regular mystery lovers.

What worked for me

  • The closed space murder mystery stretched over a 48 hours is fast paced and entertaining.
  • The red herrings keep the reader focused on the wrong things and would work very well if you are not a regular mystery reader.
  • The reader is unaware of the murderer is as well as the victim until almost the end making it more fun.

What may have been better

  • Except for one or two, I found all the characters annoying and/or horrible. But I don’t think these characters slowed down the whodunnit part.
  • I would have loved a bit more loose/open ending. I guessed the murderer from miles away.

Bottom line

If you are an Agatha Christie fan, The Guest List by Lucy Foley is a good read for you. But be warned that this contemporary murder mystery might prove to be a bit easily solvable, if you read whodunnits regularly.

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Let’s chat

Have you read The Guest List by Lucy Foley? What other contemporary murder mysteries worked well for you? Is there any author who might come close to Agatha Christie? Let us talk.


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