book review

Daisy Darker by Alice Feeney

Thank you to the publisher for providing me with an ARC in exchange for my honest review.

Publication Date: August 30, 2022

Publisher: Flatiron Books

Pages: 352

Genre: Thriller

Rating: 5/5

Daisy Darker is Feeney’s take on the classic Agatha Christie And Then There Were None. The Darker family is meeting at Nana’s island house to celebrate her 80th birthday. When the tide is in the house is completely cut off from the rest of the world which is no good when midnight comes and Nana is found murdered. And the rest of the family is picked off one by one as they await the freedom dawn brings. Family secrets combined with the isolated setting and the Christie-esque poem on the wall all lead to an captivating thriller.

Unsurprisingly, Daisy is our protagonist and she tells the story in two different timelines. Not only do we have the suspense of the present day storyline we also get glimpses of the past that reveal the secrets and intricacies of the family dynamic. Both story lines were engaging and perfectly placed to build on both sides of the story. Feeney is so brilliant with dual timeline stories and she really understands her characters. Daisy was born with a heart condition that defined the family and how they interacted and related to each other. The family is broken in the present day storyline so we know that they fall apart at some point but even then I wasn’t expecting how insidious the events of the past would be.

The claustrophobic element of this locked room style mystery keeps the reader constantly on edge trying to figure out not only who the killer is but also who the next victim will be. And, like And Then There Were None, the deaths were all different and unique which is a testament to Feeney’s writing. Daisy Darker is easily my favorite homage to Christie and that is of course aided by the fantastic ending. I knew going into this book that it would have the classic Feeney twist and I still was completely blindsided by it.

Daisy Darker is the perfect thriller to pick up on a cold rainy weekend or day since the story is so engaging that it is almost impossible to put down. The gothic atmosphere of an isolated island house during a storm combined with family drama and murder after murder leads to an impeccable story. Feeney is the queen of thrillers and she consistently delivers one incredibly unique story after another.

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