Mark Edwards proves that he's in top form.
The Retreat is the latest thriller novel by Mark Edwards and the story is about an author of horror stories who decide to lodge in a writers' retreat accommodation in Northern Wales, a kind of getaway for writers who want to devote themselves to their work without much distraction. The protagonist, Lucas, who is haunted by the painful memoirs of his deceased girlfriend will find himself involved in a weird and creepy plot which centers around the tragic event of a little girl's disappearance two years before. The girl, Lily, was the daughter of the owner of the retreat, Julia, and Lucas, attracted by her looks and personality, will set off to reveal the truth about what really happened to Lily.
The Retreat is a highly entertaining thriller novel with some horror elements and it is a perfect paradigm of how to construct a clever and fast-paced plot, full of suspense and with a lot of twists and turns which leaves the reader dizzy and confused about the identity of the villain or the involvement or not of the supernatural element in the story. In my opinion, this book is an excellent choice for fans of Yrsa Sigurðardóttir, Johan Theorin and in some parts brought to my mind Stephen King's thrillers. The novel is narrated by the horror writer, Lucas, in the present time, and by Lily in the past (2 years before) and this kind of narrative technique pays off at the end when the two accounts are brought together and everything makes sense. This is a book you will enjoy even if you are not a hardcore thriller/horror fan as its descriptions are not particularly gory despite the main theme of the novel which is disturbing.