Good Evening All,
Happy Monday and happy new week. I had such a good weekend and hoping all of you did too. As I mentioned in my last post, I was finally able to see a handful of my friends this past weekend and it was lovely. I did however get quite home sick and was glad to be back with my own comforts by yesterday. Lockdown seems to have turned me into a bit of a hermit, though I’m sure I can’t be the only one that feels this way.
I have read a number of C.L. Taylor’s books and have enjoyed them so I was happy to be given the opportunity to read and review her latest release. Thank you to @callytaylor and @HarperCollinsUK for this advanced audio copy of Her Last Holiday in return for an honest review. Her Last Holiday is due to be published on 29th April 2021 and you can get a copy here.
Fran’s sister Jenna went to a wellness retreat in Gozo two years ago and didn’t return. She lost her life trying to fix her life and her family have their suspicions about what really happened to Jenna.
Tom was the man who ran the retreat and ended up serving time in prison after three people died in Gozo. Upon his release, his wife is more than eager to throw him back into work and has organised another retreat. Fran seizes the opportunity to try and find out what really happened to Jenna and goes on the trip under a different name. Will she find out how Jenna’s life really ended or are there too many people that want to keep it secret?
General Thoughts 🤔
I was expecting drama and tension and twists and turns with this book. I got some of that but unfortunately not all of that. There are plenty of unknowns and different threads of the story to make the reader create their own endings in their mind but I think I was expecting a little more thriller. I thought that it was a little tame in that respect.
I can’t say that I saw the ending coming but I did find it a touch disappointing. I found it hard to believe and personally for me, the joy of a thriller is being able to think back and piece the clues together.
Unfortunately I didn’t feel a connection to any of the characters in the book. Some of them I was indifferent to and some of them annoyed me. Firstly, I couldn’t get my head around the relationship between Fran and her mother. I can’t imagine a mother sending her only remaining daughter into a potentially dangerous situation and I can’t imagine any grown woman just going along with it.
Kate was the most annoying character for me. There was a lot of Kate’s point of view in the book but I struggled to find the huge relevance in it. She really got under my skin and not in the way where you think oooooh, this character is supposed to make me feel this way.
Writing Style ✍️
The book is written from the points of view of three of the characters and flips between Jenna’s retreat and Fran’s retreat. I like that it flipped between the two and allowed the reader to draw parallels between them and also reveal what happened on the first retreat.
I’m not really sure what happened with this book. I didn’t feel like I was reading a C.L. Taylor book. Her other books that I’ve read have been great and I’ve really enjoyed the mystery and thriller aspects of them. This one kind of felt like it was reaching to achieve a huge shocking ending that was actually an ending that didn’t feel believable.
Conclusion & Scoring 🎖️
I can’t help but feeling disappointed with this story and it pains me to say it. It was quite an easy read and I got through it quite quickly but it didn’t rock my world. It won’t be the last C.L. Taylor book that I read however as I know she is capable of a great story. Unfortunately, for me, this one just missed the mark.