Thursday, May 30, 2024

NetGalley ARC | Look in the Mirror

I received a free digital ARC from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Rating ⭐⭐⭐⭐

The story is told from multiple points of view. This can be tricky, but I feel the author did a great job with this and the different voices were clear. Sometimes  this can be an issue and characters seem to sound the same. Not so in this case.

First there is Nina, a young woman grieving the death of her father. When she is left a property in his will, Nina begins to question how much she knew him. The vacation home is in the British Virgin Islands, a place she is certain that he never ventured. Nina has no idea how her father would have built this state-of-the-art home. She struggles with understanding how he could have ever afforded such a home, or why he kept it a secret. Nina then begins to wonder what else he could have been hiding.

Then there is Maria, who makes her living as a nanny to wealthy families. Her most recent gig is for a family in a tropical paradise. She arrives before the family and is shown around the property to get ready for their arrival and her coming duties. The only rule Maria is giving is that she must never go to the basement. Ominous, right? I'd would be peacing-out right away with a warning like that. But Maria brushes it off and makes herself comfortable until days pass and the family never showing up. You can guess where her boredom and curiosity lead her. An electrical malfunction in the home opens the locked door in said basement and from there, chaos ensues.

Despite parts being far-fetched, I throughly enjoyed this ride. Some things I saw coming from a mile away and some were unique surprises. It ends up being something of a locked-room mystery which I don't think is a spoler, and would be kind of obvious with the LOCKED DOOR IN THE BASEMENT thing, but just want to clarify. I enjoyed trying to figure out the connection between Nina and Maria, whether they were at the property at the same time or not, two different properties that were part of a bigger game, etc. It was a lot of fun to figure everything out.

Both women were brought into this under false pretenses, which should be obvious. Nina is told that the house is called Anderssen's Opening, which starts to convince her this is all real, as that is a chess move her father taught her at a young age. Nina begins to believe she did not know her father at all, that he must have had some secret life to have been able to afford building the home. Seeing Nina question everything she knew about him, while also seeing what Maria is  dealing with, it certainly makes sense to wonder who this man was, after all.

I feel like I have not said much about the story itself, and with a book of this kind I am not sure that there is any other way to do this. The basement and its locked door is key. What happens beyond that door is where the locked room feel comes into play. I have heard and seen others compare the book to Squid Games, which I can not confirm or deny because I have never seen it.

As a result of some of events being far-fetched as I mentioned above, I could not give this one five stars. It was hard to know who to trust, but it was fun to figure it out. Some events never really had plausible explanations, which was frustrating. I feel like some backstory is missing to fully explain why everything happened the way it did, or why it happened at all. Even so, this is a quick read and not a bad way to spend a summer afternoon.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thanks for visiting my little book nook. I love talking books so leave a comment and let's chat!