The Yacht by Sarah Goodwin

Writing.ie | Book Reviews | Crime/Thriller
The Yacht

By Mairéad Hearne (Swirl and Thread)

The Yacht by Sarah Goodwin

The Yacht by Sarah Goodwin is published with Avon and is described as ‘a shocking psychological thriller, with twists that will leave you breathless’. Sometimes you pick up a book and are surprised to find yourself racing through it, even though it features a truly nasty cast of characters. The Yacht is like watching a reality TV program go horribly wrong!

Hannah works in the UK in a call centre. Her life has stalled as a fashion designer, with all hopes of success shattered. But Hannah has kept up contact with her old friends and they meet annually at the lavish party that Libby throws to celebrate the New Year. This year it’s a much more intimate gathering on a private yacht moored at a small marina in the Italian town of Ventimiglia. In order to get there Hannah catches the cross-channel ferry and endures a long drive across France, down into Italy. Money is tight for Hannah, so the convenience of flying into Nice and catching a taxi to take her the rest of the way is out of the question. Hannah’s friends are all extraordinarily wealthy but she has never really been made to feel like the poor one, until now…

Hannah has been friends with Libby and Maggie since school. Hannah had been a student there on a scholarship but money and status didn’t even enter the minds of the three best friends. Harry was a later addition to the friend group during their college years and all four have stayed in contact since. Along with Olly, Libby’s husband, and Leon, Maggie’s fiancé, that completed the guest list for this party on the yacht.

Hannah is immediately struck by the display of wealth surrounding her, so ostentatious and vulgar but, very much in keeping with Olly and his standards. Hannah from the beginning is clearly out of her depth and as the party gets into full swing there is an undercurrent of something dark on the horizon.

As the evening progresses, the atmosphere changes on board and Hannah has huge regrets about coming on this trip. She makes a decision, but the following morning, her situation changes when she realises that the boat has become unmoored. She is initially horrified but then makes an automatic assumption that one of them knows how to sail and it’s just a matter of turning the yacht around and changing course. But what follows is a spiralling descent into chaos and terror as it is discovered that one of the party is missing. On a yacht there in nowhere to hide, so what really happened?

The YachtSarah Goodwin writes vile characters brilliantly. I raced through the pages, perfectly content to accept the outlandish and bizarre behaviour of this obnoxious and odious gang of upstarts, as the finale came around with speed and crazy behaviour. The Yacht is an unashamedly in-your-face, fast-paced murder mystery with a despicable bunch of narcissists. A highly entertaining novel, packed with drama, thrills and spills, The Yacht is pure escapism from start to finish. If it were summer, I would be saying it’s a perfect beach/poolside read!

(c) Mairéad Hearne (Swirl and Thread)

Order your copy online here.

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