Title: Go to My Grave by Catriona McPherson
Publisher: Minotaur Books
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery, Suspense
Length: 304 pages
Book Rating: B
Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley
From Catriona McPherson, the Agatha-Award winning author of Quiet Neighbors, comes a clever, spine-tingling standalone Gothic thriller.
Donna Weaver has put everything she has into restoring The Breakers, an old bed and breakfast on a remote stretch of beach in Galloway. Now it sits waiting—freshly painted, richly furnished, filled with flowers—for the first guests to arrive.
But Donna’s guests, a contentious group of estranged cousins, soon realize that they’ve been here before, years ago. Decades have passed, but that night still haunts them: a sixteenth birthday party that started with peach schnapps and ended with a girl walking into the sea.
Each of them had made a vow of silence: “lock it in a box, stitch my lips, and go to my grave.”
But now someone has broken the pact. Amid the home-baked scones and lavish rooms, someone is playing games, locking boxes, stitching lips. And before the weekend is over, at least one of them will go to their grave.
Go to My Grave by Catriona McPherson is an eerie, suspenseful mystery.
Donna Weavers and her mum have just opened their bed and breakfast, The Breakers, and they are awaiting their first guests, a group of eight cousins celebrating a wedding anniversary. Unfortunately, Donna will be working alone since her mum is off to an event where she hopes to garner bookings for their B&B. The guests begin arriving and Donna is a little taken aback by some their unexpected reactions to the house. The weekend is off to a rocky beginning due to some inner fighting, tension and an unexpected departure. As the weekend progresses, sinister occurrences rattle Donna and her guests. A shocking discovery stuns Donna but is this just another one of the odd happenings that have plagued them over the weekend? Or is there a more much ominous reason what has just happened?
Donna has been in the hospitality business since she started working and after a relationship falls apart, she moves back in with her mum. Together, they have renovated the bed and breakfast and they are eager to begin welcoming guests to The Breakers. Donna is a bit concerned about working alone due to the workload, but she and her mum have devised a clever plan to help stay on schedule.
The first guests to arrive are Peach Plummer and her brother Buck. Soon joining them are their cousins Rosalie and Paul Buchanan, Paul’s brother, Ramsay, Jennifer and finally, the guests of honor Sasha and Kim Mowbray. Kim planned the weekend as a surprise for Sasha for their tenth wedding anniversary celebration. Much to everyone’s surprise, Sasha is hostile to Kim as he interrogates her about why she booked their stay there. He remains on edge during their stay and his sarcasm and caustic comments rub everyone the wrong way.
Nevertheless, Donna carries on her duties and maintains a cheerful attitude despite the tense atmosphere. The cousins are determined to make the best of the situation but Jennifer flees almost immediately. When strange things begin occurring, everyone is shaken and uncertain who is behind them. Donna remains hopelessly in the dark since no one is willing to explain why they are so upset or the significance of what is happening around them.
The chapters alternate between the events in the present and a momentous event twenty-five years prior. The answer to what is occurring at the current day gathering is gradually revealed through these passages. However, no one fully understands who is responsible for the current day events or the reason behind them until the novel’s conclusion.
With an isolated setting and menacing overtones, Go to My Grave is an atmospheric, gripping mystery. The cast of characters are interesting and multi-faceted. The plot is quite clever and Catriona McPherson brilliantly keeps readers guessing the truth about who is targeting the guests and more importantly, why, until the novel’s jaw-dropping denouement. I greatly enjoyed and highly recommend this twisty-turny mystery to fans of the genre.