I’ve loved Mark Edwards books for like ever, so was chuffed to bits to be invited to get my mitts on an early copy of The Retreat, his latest and to take part in his blog tour. Here’s the blurb for the book, then I’ll tell you what I thought.
About the book:
A missing child. A desperate mother. And a house full of secrets.
Two years ago, Julia lost her family in a tragic accident. Her husband drowned trying to save their daughter, Lily, in the river near their rural home. But the little girl’s body was never found—and Julia believes Lily is somehow still alive.
Alone and broke, Julia opens her house as a writers’ retreat. One of the first guests is Lucas, a horror novelist, who becomes obsessed with finding out what happened to Lily. But within days of his arrival, the peace of the retreat is shattered by a series of eerie events.
When Lucas’s investigation leads him and Julia into the woods, they discover a dark secret—a secret that someone will do anything to protect…
What really happened that day by the river? Why was Lily never found? And who, or what, is haunting the retreat?
From the bestselling author of Follow You Home and The Magpies comes his most terrifying novel yet.
So what did I think?
Edwards is a master at building tension and intrigue and this book is no exception and in fact, I think it’s the best he has written. This felt much darker than the rest. There were some parts I read at night, where I thought I’d have to put the book down and pick it back up in daylight (I’m such a wimp!) because it was definitely scarier than his others. There were lots of OMG! moments that scared the living daylights out of me!
There was a great story plot to follow which kept me gripped to the edge of my seat and wanting to discover more about The Widow and the folklore of this small Welsh village and in particular the house where the writing retreat was taking place, where bad things happened. Not sure, I’d ever go on a writing retreat now which is something that was always on my bucket list.
I loved how the relationship between Lucas and Julia developed and the dynamics of the people on the retreat. You didn’t know which ones to love or hate or who was telling the truth. And the people who lived in the village were just a whole mystery in themselves. What on earth was going on and who was doing what was happening?
Mark’s books are always thoroughly riveting and unputdownable. Books that you become totally engrossed in while the world passes you by. Books that you need to pick up at every opportunity you get. This one is a thoroughly entertaining, tense and brilliant read that I would highly recommend (although perhaps not if you are about to go on a writing retreat!).
About the author:
Mark Edwards writes psychological thrillers in which terrifying things happen to ordinary people. Mark’s first solo novel, The Magpies (2013), reached the No.1 spot on the Amazon UK Kindle bestseller list, as did his third novel Because She Loves Me (2014), and Follow Me Home (2015). His previous novels, The Devil’s Work (2016) and The Lucky Ones (2017) were also published to great critical acclaim and commercial success. He has also co-written various crime novels with Louise Voss such as Killing Cupid (2011) and The Blissfully Dead (2015). His titles with Amazon Publishing have reached over a million readers.
Mark grew up on the south coast of England and started writing in his twenties while working in a number of dead-end jobs. He lived in Tokyo for a year, and is a great admirer of Japanese writers and horror films. Mark lives near Wolverhamtpon, England, with his wife, their three children and a ginger cat. The Retreat was strongly inspired by local folklore and urban myths from Mark’s childhood and by his daughter Poppy. When walking their dog in the woods, Poppy told Mark a story about her friends arguing about whether a local legend was true or not. Poppy and Mark would brainstorm ideas for the book on their daily walks, and Mark now credits her as his co-writer and a budding author herself. www.markedwardsauthor.com
There are lots of other bloggers on Mark’s blog tour for The Retreat. You can check them all out and read their thoughts too.