The Resort by Sara Ochs
Published February 6, 2024 by Sourcebooks Landmark
Date read: February 8, 2024
The other residents of Koh Sang: Logan, Greta, Doug, Neil
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The Plot (from Goodreads):
A searing vacation thriller set on a remote island in Thailand following two mysterious women, a charismatic group of expats, and the one murder poised to bring their paradise crashing down.
Welcome to paradise. We hope you survive your stay…
There are three rules to follow during a vacation at the famous Koh Sang Resort
1 – Leave the past behind.
When Cass sets foot on the coast of Thailand’s world-famous party island, she’s searching for an escape. With dark secrets following her every move, Koh Sang becomes the perfect place to hide.
2 – Always be careful of who you trust.
Now, years later, Cass is a local dive instructor alongside the Permanents, a group of expats who have claimed the island as their own. The Permanents don’t linger on who they were before the island. Simply because, like Cass, they all have something to outrun.
3 – If someone discovers who you really are, run.
But suddenly, a dive student is found dead and paradise comes crashing down. Because this isn’t the first mysterious death on the island, and it won’t be the last. Someone knows who Cass is and they’re ready to make sure justice is finally served.
How did The Resort end?
I picked this book up on Netgalley at the coolest time–just went I was about to head off on a trip to a Thai island! Unfortunately the Netgalley Shelf app doesn’t work in Thailand, so I couldn’t listen to it while I was there, but it was fun to reminisce as soon as I got back. The island we stayed on didn’t have nearly as much murder as Koh Sang (well, that I knew about).
I always love a book that’s set somewhere I know well or have been recently, so the location of the book was perfect. The Resort starts off with a lot of suspense, and I was eager to find out what was really happening with these dead girls.
The author lost me a bit in the middle. I like when characters have a strong backstory, but in this case the backstory detracted from the main plot. She took way too long to get to Cassie’s history, and when she did it made no sense. Same for explaining Brooke’s vendetta against Cassie.
At the end, I was lukewarm on the reveal–until the epilogue. I loved the premise of the epilogue!! It was somewhat out of place though–to my knowledge, there were no hints at the truth throughout the book.
Overall, this thriller was just okay, and I was mostly in it for the location. I won’t count this author out, though. This is her debut, so I feel with a little honing she has a lot of potential.
I love a full-cast narration, but I feel like there was a huge missed opportunity to really make this book shine with all the different accents of this melting-pot island. Not even an attempt at Lucy or Alani’s New Zealand accent, which is an easy one? I was disappointed that no accents were attempted, and thought it made the narration feel somewhat flat.
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