Book Review #9- “The Party”, by Robyn Harding

As always, a big thank you to NetGalley for providing me with an advance copy of this novel to read and review.

Why, hey strangers!  Sorry I have been incognito lately…..things have been a little crazy over here in Apex.  School ended two weeks ago, and then last week we were up in Bethany Beach, Delaware, for a vacation with friends.  (I was going to mention this as a reason for my absence…..not that anyone necessarily cared……but I realize that advertising on the World Wide Web that your house will be empty for a week is not the smartest idea).  Anyhow, I plan on posting all about our trip early on next week, so stay tuned!

Meanwhile this week I have been catching up on appointments and doing laundry.  I have also been meeting up for some play dates with my fellow mom friends.  Also, today is a special day, as Kenny and I are celebrating nine years of marriage.  Kenny works late this evening, so I will be cooking us a nice dinner tonight.  We have plans to head out to a proper dinner this weekend as well, which we are looking forward to.  Happy anniversary, babe!  I love you!

A big thank you to my sister for sending me this picture.  I don’t have any wedding pics easily accessible!  🙂

In the meantime, I have another book review for you.  I swear, 90% of the books I read involve some combination of husband killing wife/wife killing husband/illicit lover trying to kill everyone.  Combined with my 48 Hours/Dateline/Keith Morrison obsession, it’s no wonder I am always looking over my shoulder LOL.  Is there something wrong with me, that these are the books that I love to read??  While “The Party” does not involve any murderous plots, it does contain some dark elements, and it deals with some relevant issues involving teenagers.  It was an easy read that I blasted through in about a day, so I would definitely add to your summer reading list.

“The Party”, written by Robyn Harding, allows readers to become entranced in one family’s drama.  We can also see firsthand how one single choice can have such dire and far-reaching consequences.

Jeff and Kim Sanders are a successful San Francisco couple. On the outside, they seem to have it all. Great careers, a luxurious lifestyle, a dream home, and two teenage children. When they decide to throw their daughter, Hannah, a simple Sweet Sixteen slumber party, it seems that nothing could go wrong. Five innocent girls relaxing in the basement, sharing in Hannah’s joy and helping to celebrate her special milestone. With Jeff and Kim upstairs, surely the girls would not attempt to engage in anything that might be dangerous. Right?

What occurs in the basement that evening is not altogether clear. However, what is crystal clear is that one of the teenage guests suffers a tragic accident.  As a result, she endures both physical and emotional suffering.  To make matters worse, lives begin to become entangled all around. Who, if anyone, was at fault? Were Jeff and Kim ultimately responsible for the actions of the girls, or was there a more insidious culprit behind the events of the evening? After all, how well did all of these girls really even know each other?

After the shocking events of the evening, it becomes clear that nothing in the Sanders family will ever be the same again. Fingers are pointed left and right, and in the process of uncovering who was ultimately responsible, ugly truths, jealousies, and greed are unearthed. For don’t we all know that the most perfect of families are often putting on a show?  All that glitters is often not gold.

I really did like this book. It sucked me in pretty quickly, and I enjoyed the plot, no-brainer that it was. While I certainly would not say that this is a story that will resonate with you after reading it, it provided a great diversion.  I was sincerely interested to find out how it would all play out. If you enjoy suspense novels or thrillers, I think you would find this novel to be right up your alley.

Oh, and you may think twice about hosting any teen slumber parties in the future.

More Ideas…..

If you enjoy this genre, another dark novel along the same lines that I thought was terrific was “The Dinner”.  (Soon being made into a movie starring Richard Gere!)  And I do realize that I need to switch my book reviews up a bit.  Up next, recommended by my brother, is “Hillbilly Elegy”, a memoir that looks at the struggles of the white working class in America.  I hope to review that in the next couple of weeks, so if you are looking for something a little different, be sure to check out my review.

Gavin and I are headed to Myrtle Beach tomorrow for a few days to visit my mom.  I will be back to my regularly scheduled programming next week.

Have a wonderful weekend, friends!

Heather 🙂

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