Monday, October 19, 2020

The Invitation - Rachel Abbott

The Invitation was my first read of Rachel Abbott - but it won't be my last!

Jemma and Matt head to Lucas's sprawling mansion for the weekend to celebrate his wedding to Nina. Matt, Andrew, Nick, Isobel, Alex and Lucas have been friends since they were teens. And...."That's the thing about old friends. They never let you forget..."

There are uncomfortable undercurrents and relationships amongst the five that Jemma doesn't understand. And her husband won't discuss it. Even when one of the group dies. Fast forward a year and the group is back together at Lucas's estate - minus one. He's got a game for them all to play - a murder mystery in fact - re-enacting everything is as it was a year ago.....

Oh, I loved this premise! It's not a locked room mystery, but we do have a small circle of suspects. All of them have secrets and most of them are liars. The whodunit changed many times for me. It's fun trying to solve the case along with the players as they recreate that fateful night. The reader follows along mostly through Jemma's point of view. But the narrative does flip back and forth from present to past. At a certain point I did guess half of the final answer, but I was (happily) caught offside by the other half. And it didn't detract from my enjoyment of the book.

I liked Jemma very much as well as Detective Inspector Stephanie King. It turns out this is second book King features in. The group of friends is very easy to dislike - and easy to suspect. 

The Invitation made for great escapist reading on a dreary, rainy day. See for yourself - here's an excerpt of The Invitation.

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