Publication Date: June 30, 2016
After Lo Blacklock experiences a break-in at her apartment, the last thing she wants is to cover a luxury cruise trip. But it's the assignment of a lifetime and could move her up the journalistic ladder.
The ship, the Aurora, is gorgeous and the service is excellent. Lo meets people who could push her career beyond her dreams. Until she witnesses a woman go overboard at night. No one believes her and all the women on board are accounted for. But Lo is convinced that they're wrong. After all, what happened to the woman she met in the cabin next to hers?
Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Date Read: Sept 31, 2018
I had heard a lot of good things about this. Many people have compared it to The Girl On The Train, which I haven't read yet. It was one of the many mysteries I decided to try out because I had Audible credits that I needed to use.
I wasn't expecting the book to begin the way that it did. Not knowing about the break-in left me with very different expectations of how Lo would be perceived when she witnesses the woman going overboard. Had I known about it, I think I would have been happier with how the book started out.
The direction that the story went in once Lo got on the ship was...interesting. It felt like the whole thing dragged out too much. I lost track of how much time was passing and how much longer Lo would be on the ship. It felt like the days were blending together too much because there was very little difference between the days. There were a couple things happening here and there to move the storyline forward, but it just didn't feel like enough was happening for me to really be invested in what was going on.
The way the book set Lo up to be an unreliable narrator felt very...cheap. We don't really get a lot of background as to how Lo can so easily be set up to be unreliable until the last quarter of the book, and that was when her character finally felt more rounded. We were expected to just watch Lo drink all the alcohol she can get her hands on and not question why she was drinking so much or how she had been doing that for so long. There was literally no explanation for this until the last quarter when she's forced to reveal some backstory through self-reflection.
The mystery itself wasn't particularly interesting or engaging. I felt like we spent less time trying to solve the mystery and more time trying to figure out new reasons and ways for Lo to get drunk. Sure, a woman went overboard and no one seems to realize that they're missing a person on board, but who cares? Lo needs to raid the minibar again.
By the time we got to the end, I just wanted to finish the audiobook. I think I felt asleep during the conclusion about 3 different times and had to keep replaying the last half hour because I fell asleep at the same point so many times. And when I got to the full resolution, I was so dissatisfied. I didn't feel like I actually got a conclusion, but just an easy explanation that worked. It felt like the author was too lazy to come up with an actual resolution and just plopped in the ending that we got.
Lo was incredibly frustrating to deal with throughout the book. I understand that she had a lot to deal with concerning her PTSD from the break-in at her apartment, but that combined with an unexplained past that somehow propelled her toward drinking into oblivion felt too much. It was too messy. And she didn't really have any character development by the end of the book.
Honestly, I can't remember any of the other characters. They didn't make much of an impression and I spent more time trying to remember who they were and what they did. They all blended together after being introduced into the storyline.
3 stars. I wouldn't recommend this to any of my friends. It's just not well-written, in my opinion, and I don't know anyone who would enjoy this.