The Writing Retreat, a review by Shelley

posted in: Shelley | 0

Julia Bartz

Atria Books | Emily Bestler Books
Publication Date: February 21st, 2023
320 Pages
Goodreads | Amazon

Horror writer Roza Vallo invites a group of women to her home for a writing retreat and a storm strands them without phone service and access to the police. I am sorry to say but this book wasn’t for me. I was expecting a locked room mystery or a gothic suspense and the book is kind of both BUT it relied too much on over-the-top exploits that frankly I found unbelievable and boring. I also couldn’t get past the sex scenes, now I am no prude and I can enjoy the sexy time in stories but I really didn’t like the WAY they happened (it really irked me) and I didn’t see the point of them at all.

The reader is expected to overlook too many things that seemed impossible to me, and I hate books that expect me to suspend my belief too much. I was really bored at points during the story and started to not care about what was happening to the ladies on this retreat. I kept waiting for something exciting, scary or interesting to happen and when it finally did I shook my head and rolled my eyes. The subplot of Daphine’s story was useless and distracted from the main story. It’s really unfortunate that I didn’t enjoy this more as the premise was intriguing but the execution fell flat. This book has many good reviews and lots of four and five-star ratings so I guess I am just not the right type of person to read it.

Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for the Advance Readers Copy.

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