Gwen Bishop, wife, mother, and struggling real estate agent, has two big fears: claustrophobia and being buried in suburban obscurity. When she signs her dream listing, a multi-million dollar beachfront property in Laguna Beach, California, she’s sure her problems are behind her. And they would be, if it wasn’t for the secret in the basement and the body in an upstairs bedroom.
When the crime scene tape comes down, Gwen enlists the aid of a handsome co-worker with a background in construction to help her ready the house for sale and bolster her flagging courage. But every time they’re ready to put it back on the market, something goes horribly wrong. Gwen must face old fears and new ones, temptations and buried truths, if she’s going to survive.
This is the definition of a throwaway thriller. It’s fast paced and exciting, but it’s not clever and it’s not particularly unique.
I liked the premise being about an estate agent trying to sell a million-dollar home, while someone else, our killer, wanted to keep the house off the market for himself. It was unique enough and what initially drew me into requesting this. Another big part of this story was marriage under stress, between our two main characters, Gwen & Art. I found this part of the story a little bit annoying and the way things happened between them at times, felt unrealistic. I understand that this book was supposed to represent the pressures of work life, marriage life and lusting after what you think you deserve, but it wasn’t necessary. It could have made a more unique book without the domestic part to it.
In terms of characters, there are quite a few to keep up with, but it doesn’t ever become confusing as to who is who. Gwen, our main character was a little hysterical, which definitely got on my nerves on more than one occasion, and I think she treated her husband unfairly, but it was fun to see her playing detective. Art’s character was OK, nothing special. Honestly the story could have been just as good without his character. Side characters like Maricela and Lance were interesting and well developed, but all complete cliches.
For me, this is definitely one of the easiest to guess thrillers. At 44% there is a scene where Boris practically hands you the killer’s name on a plate. Usually, this annoys me, but I didn’t mind it so much with this one because I didn’t think it was going to be shockingly twisty and turny from the start.
This book is a perfect holiday read. It’s good but not great. You’ll find yourself whizzing through it, but it won’t take up too much headspace.
Thanks to Netgalley and Fawkes Press for giving me the opportunity to read this in exchange for an honest review.