Friday, August 27, 2021

Review - The Vacation

:   The Vacation
Author:  M.M. Chouinard
Genre:   Psychological Thriller
Publisher:  Bookouture
Format:  Kindle ARC
No. of Pages:   326
Date of Publication:  May 27, 2021
My Rating:  4 Stars 


One of them is missing… One of them did it…

The Thanksgiving retreat was meant to be a time for them to get away from it all, miles from the secrets that threaten to tear their family apart. But they’re each hiding something:

Rose hopes the pretty house overlooking the sea is just the break her family needs. But as she gazes at the water and remembers her own childhood, she is utterly terrified.

Brandon knows his wife Rose has barely forgiven him for his affair. He’s started drinking again, a road that led him to disaster once before.

Brianna, Rose’s sister-in-law, is recovering from her fifth miscarriage, and when she looks at her adorable niece, she can’t help but see the daughter she deserves.

Then three-year-old Lily disappears from her bed in the villa. Isolated in what should have been paradise, it quickly becomes clear that one of them took her.

As one by one their secrets are uncovered, who will be destroyed next?

A completely addictive thriller about every parent’s worst nightmare that will keep you guessing into the early hours of the morning. Perfect for fans of The Guest List, One by One and The Sister-in-Law. 


How can an idyllic vacation result in the disappearance of a three-year-old girl named Lily? A four-day Thanksgiving retreat should recharge three families, Rose and Brandon Martin and their two children, trying to recover after Brandon's affair and the fact that he often drinks a bit too much. They are accompanied by Anabelle and Mateo and their two boys. Then there is Leo and Brianna, Rose's sister-in-law, who is suffering from devastating losses. It is their home that the other two couple will be visiting in Jamaica. 

Lies and secrets abound, but what possible connection could there be to Lily's disappearance? This dual timeline read is quite chilling, especially when the story shifts to the days prior to Lily's disappearance. As this is done, this presents a snapshot into each couple's lives. In any event, the suspect pool is quite small, so it should have been easy to discover who took the child? Or was it? 

Considering that Rose is still reeling from something that happened when she was a child, and now that her Lily is gone, will she be able to hold up?  What about Bree, considering the devastating losses she suffered? Do they play into what happened to Lily? A maelstrom of events is laid out in rapid succession as the search for Lily - and the truth - gets.

The Vacation is the perfect book if you want a fast-paced read that is rich with excellent writing and complex characters, 

Many thanks to Bookouture and to NetGalley for this ARC for review. This is my honest opinion.


M.M. Chouinard's first fiction story was published in her local paper when she was eight, and she fell in love with Agatha Christie novels not long after. While pursuing a Ph.D in psychology and helping to found the first U.S. research university of the new millenium, the stories kept rattling around inside her skull, demanding to come out. For sanity's sake, she released them. She's currently at work on her seventh novel.

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