The Guests by Nikki Smith – Book Review

The Guests by Nikki Smith – Book Review

The Guests by Nikki Smith

The Guests

I received a free copy of this book.
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Or so the staff say as they greet the Hamiltons on the pristine shores of the idyllic Maldives resort. And it starts off that way: snorkelling in the serene blue sea, champagne picnics on powder-white sand, and moonlit walks under the stars.

But lies lurk beneath the luxury, because each of the guests has a secret… and they’re not the only ones.

Months later, a grisly discovery is made. Whatever happened to the Hamiltons? And how did their once-in-a-lifetime trip turn into the holiday from hell?

Review by Stacey

The Guests by Nikki Smith is a slow-burn thriller set in the Maldives. The book opens with a child digging on the beach and finding part of a skull, the plot then moves back three months to when the Hamilton family is arriving at the exotic resort of Asana Fushi on vacation.

The story is written with a countdown at the beginning of each chapter starting with 4 days 3 hours. This unfortunately felt like it slowed the whole book down, especially when it was mainly normal family vacation things that were happening, plus some arguing for many, many chapters.

I did like that we knew from the prologue that something gruesome and that there were quite a few twists and turns to the plot, but I wanted more sinister happenings far earlier than they occurred. I wanted to feel on the edge, a little jumpy but The Guests didn’t make me feel this way, it felt more like a family saga for a long time. Yes, there were many guests at the resort who passionately hated Zach Hamilton, the father of the family. He’s rich and ruthless, and I got it from how he came across but a resort filled with people who all hate the same person is surely a little far-fetched.

Overall, The Guests was interesting and suspenseful but it lacked the fast pace and killer ending of a breath-taking thriller. For those who like their thrillers slower, set in a gorgeous location, and more character-focused, this book is one to pick up.

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Nikki Smith

Nikki Smith

Nikki Smith studied English Literature at Birmingham University, before pursuing a career in finance. Following a ‘now or never’ moment, she applied for a Curtis Brown Creative course on which she started writing her debut novel All In Her Head which was pre-empted by Orion in a two-book deal. It went on to be an Amazon bestseller, was nominated for the Guardian ‘Not The Booker Prize’ and has been optioned for TV.

Her second novel, Look What You Made Me Do was published on 1 April 2021 and was also optioned for TV. She followed her editor and moved to Viking who published her third novel, THE BEACH PARTY in July 2023, with THE GUESTS to follow in 2024. She is represented by Sophie Lambert at C&W and lives near Guildford with her husband and two teenage daughters.

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