Cover Image: The Retreat

The Retreat

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Member Reviews

Thank you to NetGalley & Bookouture for the e-ARC of this novel!

The Retreat is a whodunit in a beautiful retreat setting. I loved the retreat concept and the description of the guests attending. I would say the first half of the book was a tad slow for me, mostly focusing on the outings of the retreat and less on the thriller concept but the second half of the book really picked up and then I couldn’t put it down.

3.75 stars ✨
#theretreat #netgalley

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The Retreat is a gripping, suspenseful, fast paced thriller! It kept me hanging on with every page. This book left me mind blown!

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A great read, I loved the mystery in this story and finding out the end result once the mystery was solved. It was very entertaining and I couldn't put the book down, till I had finished reading the book.

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A bit drawn out and slow but omg the ending doesn't half make up for it! So many twists, red herrings and turns I didn't see coming. The characters weren't my favorite but they were all original and unique and equally suspect. A really sold who dun it!

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The retreat - wow what can I say! Had my attention from start to finish… I couldn't put it down and finished it in a day. Can't wait for more from this amazing author What an absolute cracker of a book!!!… sucked me straight in… absolutely addictive page turner… absolutely absorbed me… compelling, page-turning… will keep you up late at night

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I loved this book. It follows the story of Eva and Jose who open a wellness retreat in Spain. They offer six places at half price to have a ‘soft’ opening and see how things go, and use their guests feedback to see what they can improve etc. The guests comprise of two couples, Eva’s old friend Saskia and Jose’s cousin, Carlos. They’re hoping the retreat goes well but let’s just say not everything goes according to plan. It’s a tale of sabotage and revenge and I couldn’t put it down. Thank you to NetGalley, Bookouture and the author for the chance to review.

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Really like this author but this was too slow for me! Still enjoyed the story and won’t put me off reading more from this author!

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Thank you to Netgalley, the author and the publisher for the advance copy to read.

The story follows Eva and Jose as they open their new wellness retreat in a beautiful setting of Spain. But the guests aren't all there for wellness and one is definitely out for revenge.

The book is a slow, who dunnit. The main characters are both lacking in personality and weren't very likeable. I think the story was some what repetitive going over the characters concerns on who was out to get them.

The setting for the story was described beautifully.

There were a few twists towards the end. Sadly, I guessed them all. The first half of the book the most notable thing that happens is the goats getting in to the vegetable patch.

This was an average read for me but I imagine some readers would love this as a mystery in a lush setting.

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This was an unfortunate DNF for me. It was very slow moving and, by the time I gave up, nothing had really happened. Just not for me.

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Thank you, NetGalley and Bookouture for the copy of The Retreat by Karen King. This was a fun, quick read that’s set in a beautiful location so this might be the perfect book for you. If you’re looking for a fast-paced thriller, though, this might not be what you’re looking for. The book starts slowly as we get to know the characters, and how they might be connected to Jose and Eva who own the retreat. Then the trouble starts. Is someone sabotaging them or are they plagued with simple accidents? The story was good and had many facets. The real action doesn’t happen until late in the book and everything finally starts to come together. The only thing I really disliked was when a few characters narrated what they had done, instead of their actions being woven into the narrative. Other than that, this is a solid read. 3.5 stars rounded up to 4.

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Eva and her partner José have spent their savings to renovate the family home he had inherited from his grandparents and turn it into a vacation destination. The story begins as they welcome their first guest for a trial-run before they officially open for the summer season. Unbeknownst to them, several of these guests hold grudges against them.

The setting is beautiful and the main characters are likeable. The premise for this story had me hooked, and I typically love revenge stories. However, I don’t think it completely lives up to its promise. The only reason we know that this is a thriller is because the first chapter starts out with a body in the swimming pool. However, we do not get back to those events until the last fifty pages of the book. Although there were lots of things going wrong during this retreat, there wasn’t as much danger as you would expect from a thriller. For the majority of the book, it had the feel of a soap opera with the secrets and lies that are common in those dramas, and the stuff going wrong seemed more like pranks than anything dangerous. Although I believed someone might want to destroy their business, I didn't feel that they were in danger.

The ending of the book does deliver with the suspense and plot twists that had been promised, but for me it was too little too late. This book is best read by readers that love character drama. This should be read as a soap opera and not as a thriller. I rated it three stars, but I think if you are looking for a good character-driven drama with some twists and surprises at the end, you would rate it four stars.

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“Relax. Reconnect. Renew in the peaceful setting of the Andalucian countryside. We’re offering six of our followers a 50% discount on a five-day stay at our Relaxation Retreat in April. Don’t delay, book today!”
This was part of the ad Eva and her partner, Jose, used to entice people to come to a week-long retreat in his grandparents’ rundown house that they had turned into a beautiful villa. It was even called El Sueno – the dream.
But….the dream soon turned into a nightmare when she found out her college friend, Saskia, was one of the ones who had registered for the retreat.
The other guests were the seemingly snooty mid thirties couple, Adrienne and Sean; mid-twenties Bianca, a librarian, and Nathan, a policeman; and Carlos, Jose’s estranged cousin.
Were they all there to have a good time, relax, and enjoy themselves, or did they all have ulterior motives for being there? It was clear someone was trying to sabotage the retreat, but who was it?
I love the way authors can cause you to jump back and forth and try to figure out who the person is that causes all the problems in the story. Karen King just did that – I devoured the book in two days – bravo!

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Synopsis (From Netgalley, the provider of the book to review)
*******************************************************
Relaxation. Recovery. Revenge…

The sunlight sparkles on the bright turquoise of the pool, next to the freshly painted house with its trailing pink flowers and terracotta roof. I feel a jolt of pride. My partner José and I have dreamed of this moment, opening our perfect home nestled in the mountains of southern Spain to its first guests for a few days of total relaxation.

We’ve worked so hard for this, pouring all our energy and our savings into renovating the old farmhouse. I’ve started over, begun a new life. This place is my escape from everything that happened before.

But a stab of fear pierces my happiness as our guests arrive and I recognise Saskia. She was my best friend many years ago… before she betrayed me. She says she’s truly sorry and wants us to start again. Maybe she’s telling the truth – but can I really forgive her?

Then things started to go wrong when I discovered our beautiful water fountain stained a deep red. It feels like a warning. And my worst fears are confirmed when I find a note in my bedroom. My heart pounds as the black capitals scream at me, revealing my terrible secret.

Saskia swears she has nothing to do with it. Which means that someone else here knows the truth about me. And they’ll stop at nothing to get their revenge…

Oooooh, what a thriller of a read – utterly unputdownable (is that actually a word?) it will suck you in and keep you thrilled until the very last page. It is wonderfully crafted and has an unforgettable ending! I am finding that all the thrillers that I like lately are from the publisher #Bookouture - here's a shout-out for you to check them out!
#shortbutsweetreviews

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I really enjoy Karen King’s the retreat it had a bit of myster, intrigue and lots of secrets there was lots of red herrings. The setting of the book was lovely. It is told from the alternating perspectives of Eva and Jose, as well as the ominous musings of the unknown perpetrator, this one definitely had me guessing until the very end. Highly recommend this to everyone fantastic fast paced thriller with plenty of twists and turns.

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I couldn’t put this book down, some good plot twists and loved the characters. Brilliantly written and kept me hooked, did not guess the ending!! I loved the setting too, one of my favourite places in the world, it took me to sunny days!

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Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for the ARC.
I enjoyed this book a lot. I felt it was slightly drawn out but at the same time I still enjoyed it. I definitely was wondering about each guest and if any of them were the guilty party. I found that Eva and Jose were likable characters but both hiding a lot. A lot of the guests were not as likable.
I did like the setting of the retreat.

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Eva and Jose have renovated and turned the property Jose inherited into a retreat. Their first six guests are treated to a massive discount, in case there are any teething problems.
One thing after the other goes wrong, and Eva suspects one of the guests of trying to sabotage the Retreat.
There are links from the past between Eva, Jose and some of the guests, and Eva is stumped as to which guest is taking revenge for past transgressions.

This novel is gripping and twisty and has the reader itching to know who is behind the increasingly terrible acts that take place.
I certainly did not expect the ending, despite suspecting every guest at the Retreat.

Definitely a good read!!

Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.

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Lovely location.
Mystery and intrigue galore with enough twists to keep you on your toe's.
Overall a really enjoyable read.
Karen King does it again.
My thanks to netgalley and the publisher for my copy.

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The Retreat by Karen King has all of the elements of a closed room mystery. A Spanish retreat, run by couple Jose and Eva, hosts six guests at a reduced rate for a soft opening of sorts. What Jose and Eva do not anticipate, however, are the identities of the six guests, most of whom are in some way connected to the individual pasts of the host couple. When things begin to go amiss, escalating to dangerous, it becomes clear that at least one of the guests has come to the retreat with more than relaxation on their mind. They want revenge.

Told from the alternating perspectives of Eva and Jose, as well as the ominous musings of the unknown perpetrator, this one will keep you guessing until the very end.

Many thanks to NetGalley and Bookouture for an ARC.

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I really enjoy Karen's book. I like how the chapters were told by different people, and how I had to constantly guess how everyone was connected. At the end of each chapter, I thought I had the culprit figured out...until the next one! It flowed nicely. It could have had a little more suspense in my opinion, but there were a lot of shocking moments and it ended nicely.

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