Title: The Last Resort
Author: Susi Holliday
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer
Genre: Psychological Thriller, Mystery
First Publication: 2020
Book Summary: The Last Resort by Susi Holliday
When Amelia is invited to an all-expenses-paid retreat on a private island, the mysterious offer is too good to refuse. Along with six other strangers, she’s told they’re here to test a brand-new product for Timeo Technologies. But the guests’ excitement soon turns to terror when the real reason for their summons becomes clear.
Each guest has a guilty secret. And when they’re all forced to wear a memory-tracking device that reveals their dark and shameful deeds to their fellow guests, there’s no hiding from the past. This is no luxury retreat—it’s a trap they can’t get out of.
As the clock counts down to the lavish end-of-day party they’ve been promised, injuries and in-fighting split the group. But with no escape from the island—or the other guests’ most shocking secrets—Amelia begins to suspect that her only hope for survival is to be the last one standing. Can she confront her own dark past to uncover the truth—before it’s too late to get out?
Book Review: The Last Resort by Susi Holliday
Amelia and six other strangers are given the opportunity of a lifetime. They are all told that they can go to a private island all expenses paid. They’ve invited to help Timeo Technologies test a brand-new product. After their arrival on island, things start to get strange and mysterious. When the true reason for their summons becomes clear, the guests’ enthusiasm quickly turns to fear. They all have secrets they’d rather keep hidden, but the island’s creator has other plans. There’s no escaping from the past as they’re all forced to wear a memory-tracking device that exposes their dark and shameful deeds to their fellow guests. With no way off the island—and no way of knowing the other guests’ most disturbing secrets—Amelia starts to believe that her only chance of surviving is to be the last one standing.
The Last Resort is written in the way so many are these days, where the narrative switches from one character to another with each short chapter. But in this case, there are seven characters staying at the luxury resort, with seven different narratives, plus another 3 or 4 characters who run the resort, who are also weighing in with their thoughts for the reader. The plot dig further into their backgrounds and discover their backstories as the book progresses.
The fact that everyone in this story is a shady character adds to the intrigue. Halfway through, a genre-shifting twist occurs, and things get a bit more dramatic. While I had a hunch, I was just partly right, and the author managed to catch me entirely off guard. There are no spoilers here, but the plot abruptly changed. (I’m being intentionally vague because it’s necessary to go into this story blind.)
This story is made far more interesting by the fact that all the people are quite shady. Halfway through, there was a genre-changing twist and things get a little serious. Although I had a suspicion, I was only partially right and the author managed to take me completely by surprise. No spoilers here, but it suddenly became an entirely different story. (I’m being deliberately vague as it’s important to go into this story blind.)
I’m not gonna lie, for quite a large chunk of the book I was wondering if something was going to happen since the pacing is a bit slow, but it ended up picking up and getting downright mysterious. Nothing about this book completely blew my mind; the final twist, while intriguing, isn’t mind-blowing. What I liked about this story was how it messed with my mind. There are so many red herrings that it can be difficult to say which ones are real.
The characters are only decent, but the build-up of suspense and tension was fantastic. What’s great about this book is the feeling of uncertainty. And then we have the mystery. We know exactly what’s going to happen next and yet have no idea how it would come about. It is slick, it is crafty, it is interesting, and I totally didn’t see it coming.
I liked Susi Holliday’s writing style, full of richness and a perfectly paced rhythm. The book is addictive, not only for its disturbing plot, but also for the way author Susi Holliday moves you inside this world, changing your mind about who is good and who is not in almost every chapter. Every word is a puzzle, a puzzle that you twist and turn and try to work out the mystery.
The Last Resort by Susi Holliday was nicely spread out, and wrapped up perfectly at the end. The characters weren’t too in-depth, but the main focus was the plot. The combination of the guilt for the crimes they committed, plus the slow realization that no one is coming to their rescue, is a horrific yet fascinating scenario to read about. I also loved the psychological aspect of the story, as the island ‘guests’ began to break down mentally and show their true colors. I recommend it to all fans of psychological thriller and crime mystery novels and addicts of the unexpected endings.