BOOKS ON TOUR – The Bridesmaids by Victoria Jenkins

When a story opens with a body in the pool and everyone clustered around in various degrees of hysteria, speculation, panic and anxiety, you know you’d better strap in for a wild ride! I was not disappointed.

Holly is getting married to lovely Aaron. Although she’s spent most of the past two decades mourning the tragic loss of her childhood sweetheart Joseph, who also happens to be the father of her teenage son Caleb, she’s found happiness again. Her close friends are all thrilled for her, and to show just how loved and supported she is, they’ve organised an overnight hen party at a gorgeous place, out in the middle of nowhere, where they can let their hair down and party the night away – just girls being girls, letting their hair down and having fun.

Holly’s friends Martha, Claire and Toni also knew Joseph and have been through these past awful years together, all sharing the loss of someone who was their friend too. They understand what it’s been like. Joining them for the party are Suzanne, who Holly met at a bereavement group and became close to, and Zoe, who Holly works with and who’s become a good friend.

But before they’ve even left home, things don’t go according to plan, and we can already see where lines start being drawn. It quickly becomes apparent that although these friends have arranged this party together, it’s Martha who has actually made most of the arrangements and done the bulk of the preparation (without letting the others know) due to her financial position. Don’t we all just LOVE people like this?! And from there, things don’t seem to improve. Regardless of how much they drink, how many fake smiles are produced and how many times they remind themselves that “we’re here for Holly” the bickering, back-biting and barbed comments keep coming thick and fast. And why is that, you may ask. Well, it wouldn’t be giving much away to let you in on a little secret: every single one of these ladies has so much to hide that it’s actually a miracle that they ever open their mouths for fear of somehow saying something they shouldn’t!

As heavy snow starts to fall and the group realizes that there’s probably no way they’ll be able to leave their remote luxury accommodation as per their original plans, panic starts to set in. Cracks are beginning to show and the last place they want to be is together (especially as the intermittent WiFi has now given up the ghost). But that’s exactly where they are, and they can’t leave – they’re snowed in! Holly is horrified as she begins to discover that these women, her dearest friends who have been by her side during her darkest times, are perhaps not quite the people she thought they were. Meanwhile Holly’s cupboard isn’t short of a few skeletons either! With this bunch it seems to be a case of keeping your friends close and your enemies closer.

This is an unputdownable, fast-paced 5-star thriller. Told from alternating points of view (Holly, Claire, Suzanne), one might wonder why we only hear from three of these women, but the author cleverly tells Martha, Toni and Zoe’s stories through them and avoids adding confusion by giving us 6 POV’s. Just a heads up though, none of the characters is particularly likeable! For me, this adds a bit of extra spice to the plot – I just need to know what heinous thing each horrible person will do next?!

You might just have whiplash by the time you’ve finished with this one, because the twists just keep coming and they don’t let up. But I promise you, it’s well worth a few painkillers, and possibly a couple of days in a neck-brace.

Thank you to Bookouture for this one! Take a look at what other bloggers are saying about The Bridesmaids

Author Bio:

Victoria Jenkins lives with her husband and daughters in South Wales, where her bestselling series of crime novels featuring Detectives King and Lane is based. The first in the series, The Girls in the Water is a top 5 US kindle bestseller. She has an MA in Creative and Media Writing from the University of Wales, Swansea.




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