Three British couples become friends after meeting on holiday in Florida. Disaster strikes, however, when, on their last night, the teenage daughter of a fellow holidaymaker goes missing and is eventually found dead. Keeping in touch on their return home and meeting up for a series of three dinner parties, it soon becomes apparent that looks can be deceiving – what exactly are each of these couples hiding? When a second girl goes missing, and connections begin to be made, could one of the six actually be involved?
As a fan of Mark Billingham’s ‘Thorne’ books, I’d wanted to read Rush of Blood (a non-Thorne standalone) for a while. Initially, I found the six characters confusing and it took me a while to fully comprehend who each person was and who their respective partners were. Once I’d overcome this problem, I did find the characters believable, if a tad unlikeable. At times, the couples seemed mismatched, although this helped to muddy the plot slightly, making it harder to fathom out who the killer was.
Despite the story revolving around the death of a teenager, this is very much a character-driven plot and very little detail is actually given about the murder. The only real police work we read about takes place after the couples return home and a young police constable is tasked with eliciting information from them.
This is not a fast-paced book but more of a slow burner that makes you question what goes on behind closed doors. Like in many books, a twist was anticipated although I did not guess the correct culprit! I did feel, however, that the motive was not fully explained and would have liked this to have been expanded further.
With thanks to Net Galley and Grove Atlantic for the electronic copy.