Not for Reed Brennan. Holidaying in the islands with the Billings Girls should be fun, but it's hard to relax when somebody wants you dead.
And someone really wants Reed dead. If she doesn't find out who pretty quick, they might just get their wish...
Suspicion is glitzy, glamorous, and majorly addictive. More clique lit than chick lit, it follows scholarship girl Reed Brennan as she vacations in the Carribean with Easton Academy's elite.
Suspicion is the first Private novel I've read, and I found it surprisingly easy to get into despite the fact that this is the eleventh book in the series. The story opens with Reed struggling to stay afloat in the ocean after being pushed overboard by a masked assailant, and it's non-stop intrigue from there. Although we're (literally) thrown in at the deep end, we're given just the right amount of backstory as and when we need it, and newcomers to the series will have no problem at all following the action. We soon learn that Reed has had more than her share of bad luck, and that this isn't the first time that someone has tried to kill her. One thing's for certain: it won't be the last. Unlucky much?
Actually, I think it might have more to do with Reed's less-than-excellent taste in boys. In this instalment, she's heavily into a new squeeze named Upton Giles. He's the kind of suave young English guy you never actually meet in England... possibly because his kind are all in St Barths, dating unsuspecting American girls who've mistaken their smarm for charm. Small-town girl Reed can't quite decide whether she trusts him, but I'm willing to bet most readers will be more savvy. Poor Reed! Luckily, there's a ray of hope on the horizon in the form of boy-sweetie Sawyer, who saves her life in the opening pages. If you're anything like me, you'll spend most of the novel desperately hoping that Reed will realise the right boy is under her nose. Does she? I'm not telling.
Suspicion is highly entertaining, and exactly the kind of book you'd want to slip into your suitcase if you were jetting off to St Barths to sunbathe the winter blues away. If you haven't got a swanky vacation lined up, this one would also be perfect for shutting out rainy afternoons, curling up with when you've got the flu, and warding off the breakup blues. If you long to escape into a world distinctly more glamorous than the one most of us live in, Suspicion will take you there.
Out: February 4th 2010, UK / September 9th 2009, US
Many thanks to Simon and Schuster for kindly providing me with a review copy of this book.