Tuesday, September 15, 2020

Audio Book Review: The Guest List by Lucy Foley

Pub. Date: May 5, 2020
Publisher: HarperAudio
Source: Personal Copy
My Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars

Goodreads says, "A wedding celebration turns dark and deadly in this deliciously wicked and atmospheric thriller reminiscent of Agatha Christie from the New York Times bestselling author of The Hunting Party.  The bride – The plus one – The best man – The wedding planner – The bridesmaid – The body  On an island off the coast of Ireland, guests gather to celebrate two people joining their lives together as one. The groom: handsome and charming, a rising television star. The bride: smart and ambitious, a magazine publisher. It’s a wedding fit for a magazine, or for a celebrity: the designer dress, the remote location, the luxe party favors, the boutique whiskey. The cell phone service may be spotty and the waves may be rough, but every detail has been expertly planned and will be expertly executed.  But perfection is for plans, and people are all too human. As the champagne is popped and the festivities begin, resentments and petty jealousies begin to mingle with the reminiscences and well wishes. The groomsmen begin the drinking game from their school days. The bridesmaid not-so-accidentally ruins her dress. The bride’s oldest (male) friend gives an uncomfortably caring toast.  And then someone turns up dead. Who didn’t wish the happy couple well? And perhaps more important, why?"

Imagine a celebrity wedding on a remote island off of Ireland and you pretty much have the setting for The Guest List.  A reality star and a magazine publisher are getting married amidst family, friends, and some unexpected bumps in the road.  There are so many secrets lurking on this atmospheric island and slowly they come to a head.  Combine this with wedding festivities and alcohol--you've got yourself a stressful wedding. Plus, someone gives the bride, Julie, an anonymous note. It says to not marry Will, the groom and that he isn't a good guy.  Yikes!  Good thing they have a wedding planner to deal with all the other fiascos.  What else could go wrong? Well, lots. You've got the groomsmen partaking in an old college drinking game. Cue alcoholic shenanigans that are sure to piss people off.  You have a bridesmaid who pretty much doesn't care and then there's the horrible toasts. Oh, and did I mention that someone ends up dead? The Guest List by Lucy Foley is a thrilling audio book that kept me guessing.

I wasn't sure how I was going to handle so many narrators in The Guest List, especially since it's an audio book. Was I going to be able to really distinguish between each guest's point of view, because there's eight of them AND an omniscient narrator. However, I am happy to report that Foley handles this very well and it definitely kept the pace of the book brisk.  At first not too much was happening that would really raise your eyebrow except for the eerie location.  The remote island acted as a character in and of itself, which is very reminiscent of an Agatha Christie mystery.  I was starting to think the wedding location was haunted and maybe that was the source of their problems.  However, once we got more back stories on the various characters and flashbacks to previous events, I realized there's a lot of pent up resentment and past issues that are not sorted out.  Nothing like a wedding and an open bar to really bring that out in people.

If you love a thrilling tale that is slow to build up and includes many narrators who all harbor many secrets, give The Guest List a try. In fact, it's the perfect tale to curl up with this fall! 

Have you read or listened to this book?  Do you enjoy reading mysteries and thrillers in the fall? Let me know your thoughts below.


  1. I've been wanting to read this one for awhile! I'm glad to hear you enjoyed it!

    1. I look forward to your thoughts on it. I hope you like it as well! Thanks for visiting, Angela!

  2. Really looking forward to this one!

    1. I look forward to your thoughts on it! I hope it doesn't disappoint. Thanks for visiting, Michele!


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