Friday 5 February 2021

SHIVER by Allie Reynolds


In this propulsive locked-room thriller, a reunion weekend in the French Alps turns deadly when five friends discover someone has deliberately stranded them in a deserted mountaintop resort.

When Milla is invited to a reunion in the tiny resort that saw the peak of her snowboarding career, she drops everything to go. While she would rather forget the events of that winter, the invitation comes from Curtis, the one person she can't seem to let go. 

The five friends haven't seen each other for ten years, since the disappearance of the beautiful and enigmatic Saskia. But when an icebreaker game turns menacing, they realise they don't know who has really gathered them there and how far they will go to find the truth. In an isolated lodge high up a mountain, amid a looming snowstorm, the secrets of the past are about to come to light.

I love thrillers, especially ones written by women. So, when I spotted this book in Hachette's January catalogue, I was instantly intrigued by the concept.

When Milla gets an invitation from her old friend to attend an unexpected reunion in the resort she stayed in ten years ago at the peak of her snowboarding career, she accepts.  

These five friends haven't seen each other in a decade. Not since Saskia disappeared. As soon as they arrive, something doesn't feel right, and it doesn't take long for the suspicions to start...

Wow. This is one tense and addictive book! I started reading and found it really hard to put down, because it's so darn interesting. I wanted to find out where it was going to lead because everyone seems guilty.

Told in the intense POV of Milla and alternating through her experience in the Present and Ten Years Ago, the events move at the perfect pace. Everything starts out pretty simple: a woman in her 20s heads to the French Alps to enter a series of snowboarding competitions and befriends a group of fellow athletes. But it doesn't take long for a vicious rivalry to start, for attractions to flare up, the competition to heat up and tragedy to strike. 

Threaded through this exciting story, pumped full of energy and the high adrenaline of snowboarding, is the creepy deserted mountaintop these five friends currently find themselves in. Someone has clearly rounded them up and isolated them, but no one knows who, why, or what their intentions are.

Watching everything unravel is captivating.

Not to mention that Milla is an obsessive and unsteady narrator. In the past she was a competitive fiend who did anything--and I mean anything--to get ahead of her opponents. In the present she's full of doubt, suspects everyone, but is still hiding plenty.

Shiver is a startling and very claustrophobic thriller that chilled me to the bone. Not just because the cold atmosphere is so vivid it leaps off the page, but also because the mystery is so gripping, the secrets are many and so very dark. And these characters are all the perfect level of frustrating and flawed.

I loved this book!

Thank you Hachette Australia for sending me a copy! 

Shiver, January 2021, ISBN 9780733644900, Hachette Australia

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