Cover Image: The Weekend Escape

The Weekend Escape

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Member Reviews

This intense, atmospheric thriller opens with one of the main characters being questioned by the police whilst she is led in a hospital bed. Then the story slips back in time to the previous Friday morning and we are introduced to the six main characters whose weekend on a isolated island had descended into a terrifying fight for survival. Lyndsey, Amanda, Juliet, Bobbie, Val and Sonia had been friends since their school days but hadn't all been together as a group due to life commitments. The weekend was supposed to be a fun packed adventure, a chance to reconnect, get drunk, catch up on each others lives and reminisce about their shared memories. But things started going wrong almost from the moment that the group arrived on the island, one of the women was injured in a incident whilst they were absailing. Their accommodation wasn't what they had expected, they couldn't get any signal on their phones and as time passed, the weather just kept getting steadily worse.

It was quite obvious from quite early in the story there was toxic undercurrents churning away below the surface of the relationships between the women. Problems in their personal lives, hidden secrets, resentments and animosities that caused the atmosphere between them to be so thick at times, you could cut it with a knife. As time passed and it became obvious that they were the pawns in someone's, mistrust spread throughout the group and accusations started flying around their damp, cold bunkhouse. Apart from Marnie, the bird warden, they were supposed to be the only people in the island, surely they could trust each other....or could they? What about Marnie, could she be the person who was terrorising them? Or was there a unknown enemy hiding amongst the trees and rocks that covered the island?

Each of the women was a vivid, relatable individual with their own unique personality and character traits. My feelings for each of them ebbed and flowed like the waves that crashed onto the rocks of the island. There was times when I liked each of them and times when I didn't and one who I admit I passed judgement on too quickly and changed my opinion on by the end of the story. I felt a lot of sympathy for Marnie due to the way that she was treated by the group, she appeared to be a very likeable individual but was she really or had the author cleverly manipulated me into believing that Marnie could be trusted when she was actually hiding her true nature behind a mask?

Wow....just wow, I loved this fast paced, intense, atmospheric thrill ride that hooks the reader in from the first page, keeps you captivated and hardly gives you a opportunity to draw in a breath as the story rockets along towards its mind blowing, unexpected conclusion. I love books that are based in isolated locations especially where the characters are cut off from civilisation and have no way of summoning help. I loved the author's descriptions of the island with its numerous hiding places, deadly cliffs the waves crashing on the rocks and the old lighthouse that stood guard over the island. I would love to watch a film or tv adaptation of this, addictive suspense packed story, worth far more than five stars, very very highly recommended and definitely going to be one of my favourite reads of this year.
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Six young women arrive at a small, rocky island with treacherous cliffs for a weekend of adventure, which turns into a frightening misadventure. As things start going wrong, these once close-knit friends begin turning on each other, suspicious that someone among them is sabotaging their trip. The setting was atmospheric, but for me the characters fell flat.
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Despite the fact that I did guess where this was going very early on, I found myself enjoying it anyway. Totally run of the mill but good if you want a decent page turner, read it in a couple of sittings.
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From the onset of this book, mystery abounds. It isn’t clear initially if there is someone from the group or an outsider out to get these girls. It felt all very intense, which is what you look for in a suspense! My qualms were with the slow evolution of the plot and how at the end you aren’t even sure if Lyndsey’s recount of the situation is accurate. The whole thing left me feeling askew.
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Six friends reunite for a weekend away on a deserted island off the north west English coast.  They've kept in touch but it's been ten years since some of them met up in person, and the trip dregs up old memories and suspicions.  What could possibly go wrong?  Well, an accident followed by a murder with a terrific storm brewing. The island's only inhabitant is the bird warden / keeper of the primitive bunkhouse for occasional visitors during the summer months, and she is decidedly odd, but perhaps isolation has dulled her social skills.

The book was very well written, mostly from Lindsey's point of view, and quite visual in that it was easy to picture the characters, events and places described.

However, the identity of the culprit was easy to spot and I felt disappointed with the ending which was somewhat inconclusive, leaving certain events and outcomes up to the reader's interpretation, and with some loose ends not adequately tied up.  I'm sure this was deliberate as it left me thinking about the ending for some time, and changing my mind more than once.  But a book is supposed to make you think, isn't it.
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Six high school friends plan a reunion weekend getaway to a remote island.  A weekend of roughing it and hours filled with physical activities was the plan until those  plans were upended.  When an accident occurs on their first day, they quickly find out just how isolated they really are. Catastrophes continue to plague the group and there’s no guarantee any of them will escape this weekend with their lives. Is there someone else on the island with them or worse yet, does someone in their group want them dead.  Six friends, but it should have been seven!
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A friends reunion on a remote island is the setting for this thriller. The eight friends take a while to distinguish themselves in the plot. A tale of action packed survival. As secrets unfold, they have to question how well they know each other. Nail biting till the end.
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A good book to keep with you while you lounge on the beach—even if your holiday isn't great, it's better than this friend group's island trip,

An easy enough read. Decent pacing and a well-rounded group of characters. Don't expect to be shocked by the twists, however.
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A locked room thriller taking place on a deserted island that will keep you guessing right until the end. Six friends are meant to have an enjoyable weekend away on an island but things quickly turn very wrong. 

It was quite fast paced at the beginning but I felt it drop in the middle to pick up again by the end. I did struggle to like any of the six women on the island but that probably was the author's point.

Would recommend for fans of thrillers and who did its. Thank you NetGalley and the publishers for an ARC of this book.
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Possibly the most atmospheric book I've read this year, I was almost glad I was tucked up on the sofa in a blanket or I would have felt the cold and rain coming off the pages.
Beautifully written, this is one of those novels that you look forward to coming back to.
However, about 3/4 of the way through. just when I was hoping it would escalate into a great ending, it seemed to slow down. Although the culprit is revealed, seeing the words 'The End' made me think 'Eh? how did this finish?' 
Enjoyable read for a wet, rainy afternoon.
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2.5 Stars

“They came for adventure…They found something else…”

The Weekend Escape is a solid read but unfortunately this one was not for me. I was hoping for this to really standout above others I have read in a similar vain, but it didn’t quite get there. The story was promising and had all the ingredients of being a great thriller, but I just could not connect with it and its characters. I found it to be too predictable and in my view has too many characters to really get a good amount of insight into their personalities, which made them feel under developed.

Now its not all doom and gloom with this review and I do want to add that I did enjoy the authors style and based on that I would read more from her, hoping that this one is just a one off. This book has also received some very favourable reviews, so if this appeals to you, still give it a go as it could be your next great read!

Thank you to Rakie Bennett, One More Chapter and NetGalley for allowing me to read an advanced copy of The Weekend Escape, which I have reviewed honestly and voluntarily.

*This review won’t be added to any retail sites and just my social media accounts*
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The weekend escape is an excellent thriller that will keep you guessing. I loved the characters and there was a point where  I kept going back and forth and suspecting multiple people... it was crazy.. Rackie Bennett is definitely an author I want to read more books from. 

Thanks a lot to NetGalley, the author and publisher for the opportunity to review this great novel.
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The Weekend Escape is a locked room thriller about six women who were friends at school and now reunite for a girls weekend of climbing on a remote Island. Unfortunately, one climber gets injured on Day 1, a storm rolls in, the bunkhouse loses power, and then things really take a turn for the worse when someone ends up dead. What starts out as an adventure turns into a fight for survival.

The women don't know who is sabotaging their trip. Is it an unknown stranger, or someone in their own group? Do they band together for safety, or turn on each other because no one can be trusted?

I was drawn to this book because I love a locked room thriller, and I was pleased with how well-written the characters are. The main character, Lyndsey, is remarkably strong in her own way, despite the struggles she faces in her daily life. She is smart and fierce and knows right from wrong. I really enjoyed her character. The other characters, if not as likeable as Lyndsey, are relatable and nicely fleshed out.

My one wish is that the ending had been more certain. Otherwise, the story is well-paced and captivating. The setting is perfectly atmospheric; the descriptions allowed me to picture the scenery and almost feel the chill of the storm.

Thank you to NetGalley and Harper Collins for an opportunity to read this book in exchange for my honest review.
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A thriller about 6 friends who reunite after 10 years for a weekend of climbing and rappelling on a deserted island.  What could go wrong?  Well, add in a brewing storm, an immediate injury, and a murder and it sounds like you have the makings for a weekend of doubt and fear.  How well do these friends really know each other?  Especially after all these years?

Lyndsey, Bobbie, Val, Sonia, Amanda and Juliet met and became friends in high school.  They bonded through their shared love of outdoor activities.  They frequently took camping trips and were joined by Amanda's older sister Cherry, who taught the girls the ins and outs of climbing.  Devastatingly, Cherry passed away one night when thy were out drinking together.  After that incident, the girls seemed to drift apart.  Juliet (maximum Type A personality) tried unsuccessfully to plan several reunions prior to this one - but due to everyone's differing schedules, it never worked out.  She was keen on them all visiting the deserted island that her family had camped at when she was younger.  The only way on the island is by boat, and even that has to be planned just right.  Several of the girls are only on this trip now because they feel guilty about not staying close with the group.  To say that they are less than thrilled to be attempting the same activities they did when they were much younger and more agile would be accurate.  Once they get to the island and see their rustic lodging, they are even more dismayed to be on this trip.

Each of the women has her own challenges to deal with; one is in the middle of a breakup, one suspects she is pregnant with a man she was having an affair with, one is in a dire financial situation, one struggles with mounting health issues and one is still dealing with the devastating loss of her sister.  They are each hoping to have a weekend away from thinking about their troubles.  Some of these hardships are known, and others have been hidden among the friends.  What the friends expect to be a weekend of girl time away from their normal lives, quickly turns into a nightmare that they are unable to escape from.  

I pretty quickly was able to assess who was to blame, but wasn't 100% sure I was right.  The author kept the story intriguing with her ability to paint the scenes vividly.  I could feel the pelting rain, the extreme cold, and the fear of the darkness.  I enjoyed the story and the shifting blame.  It was difficult at first to keep the women straight in my mind, but soon enough their personalities were recognizable and it was much easier to picture each one.  It was a quick read as the circumstances kept me captivated and turning pages.  

Thank you to NetGalley and HarperCollins UK, One More Chapter for the advance copy to read and review.
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Rating 3

This book was okay. I really wanted to use this book to escape for the weekend but I just struggled to get into it. While the synopsis sounded promising this book just felt dull to me. This type of story has been done so many times before and I was hoping for the author to put their own twist or uniqueness into it. Sadly, that didn’t happen. None of the characters were particularly likable and this added to the struggle. I found myself not caring who died or how they died. To be fair, I don’t think it helped that I read a great stranded whodunnit earlier this month. I found myself comparing the two books and that is never a good thing! Even though I didn’t enjoy it, I do recommend people give it a try for themselves. 
*Received a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review. In no way does this affect my opinion.*
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The Weekend Escape is a classic "locked room" mystery. Six friends who used to have an adventure club meet up again for a weekend on deserted Shell Island. It is within sight of the mainland. What could go wrong?

Well things do go wrong pretty quickly. Their first adventure event is abseiling down an old lighthouse, and this is where the trouble starts when one of their party is injured. The atmosphere becomes even more dark and brooding as a storm moves in, their basic cabin accommodation looses electricity, and then the first death happens.

What will ensue is a terrifying 48 hours where no one's survival is certain. Lindsay is our narrator, and out of all the group of friends, her life seems stalled. She has never found a career and may be about to lose her home. In contrast, her friend's lives seem more together. 

What I liked about this book was the non stop menacing aura and action. It was relentless. I love "locked room" mysteries, and this one was great. The various friend's personalities were well drawn, and as the story proceeds we begin to learn about an event in their past which still hangs over them today. There was a "you're there" type of action to the story, and the hardships they faced were well described and easy to imagine. I was eager to get back and read more, each time I put the book down.

What I didn't like -- the ending, like the last page, was very ambiguous and left me wondering if I knew what had happened. I am sure that was the writer's intent, but I like a solid ending myself.

Thank you to NetGalley, Harper Collins UK, and author Rakie Bennett for allowing me to ready this ARC in exchange for an honest review. I am giving it 4 stars because throughout almost the whole book, I liked it. But in reality the confusion at the ending makes me lower it to 3.5.
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Action packed thriller. Can you trust your friends and any secrets they may hold?
This will keep you on your toes until the end. Thank you NetGalley!
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Fast paced thriller that I tore through in a few hours. The characters were very intriguing, I wasn't overly enamoured by the women characters on the island but likes the way they featured in the story.

I did predict the who and the why but it didn't detract from the enjoyment of the story for me.
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What’s your idea of the perfect weekend getaway? Mine certainly wouldn’t be going climbing and rappelling on a desolate island with a bad storm rolling in!

The Weekend Escape by Rakie Bennett was an eerie, atmospheric, pulse pounding read!

Six friends reunited for a weekend island adventure, but they weren’t expecting freezing cold weather in August, a tumultuous storm, or a murderer among them. 

Things started going very wrong right away, but the friends had no way to communicate with the mainland. There was no cell service and the only other way to call for help was through a radio, which conveniently broke. The harder they tried to find a way off the island, the more they realized that none of them could be trusted.

Even though I figured out the who and the why early on (or did I?), I kept wondering which characters would make it out unscathed, and the ending left me questioning everything I had read! I even reread the final chapter to make sure I didn’t miss anything because it definitely threw me for a loop. This was a very enjoyable locked room type of mystery full of secrets and lies!

If you’re looking for a fast-paced, atmospheric, nail biting thriller, then read The Weekend Escape! 

*Thank you so much HarperCollins UK and OneMoreChapter for gifting me with an eARC
through NetGalley!
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The Weekend Escape by Rakie Bennett

Time to renew friendships on an isolated island should sound like fun but all six in the group have misgivings that prove valid as the weekend progresses. There is definitely one person on the island motivated to kill but which one is it and why are they moved by deadly intent? 

What I liked:
* The location
* Building of atmosphere through weather and unfolding events
* Back story hints about the characters and their past together
* Considering who the murderer might be
* Feeling this was a book best geared to YA//NA readers
* The building of tension as the story progressed
* The ending…I think?

What I didn’t like: 
* All six of the women on the island – hard to relate to any of them
* The rather enigmatic ending that left me wondering what was and was not true

Did I enjoy this book? It was okay – I tend to avoid YA/NA books and this story had that feel
Would I read more by this author? Maybe

Thank you to NetGalley and Harper Collins for the ARC – This is my honest review. 

3-4 Stars
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