Title: The Lion’s Den by Katherine St. John
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Genre: Contemporary, Women’s Fiction, Suspense
Length: 368 pages
Book Rating: B+
Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher
Belle likes to think herself immune to the dizzying effects of fabulous wealth. But when her best friend, Summer, invites her on a glamorous getaway to the Mediterranean aboard her billionaire boyfriend’s yacht, the only sensible answer is yes. Belle hopes the trip will be a much-needed break from her stalled acting career and uniquely humiliating waitressing job, but once she’s aboard the luxurious Lion’s Den, it soon becomes clear this jet-setting holiday is not as advertised.
Belle’s dream vacation quickly devolves into a nightmare as she and the handful of other girls Summer invited are treated more like prisoners than guests by their controlling host-and in one terrifying moment, Belle comes to see Summer for who she truly is: a vicious gold digger who will stop at nothing to get what she wants.
Belle realizes she’s going to have to keep her wits about her — and her own big secret closely hidden — if she wants to make it off the yacht alive.
With a dash of intrigue and a smidge of suspense, The Lion’s Den is a sparkling debut by Katherine St. John.
Actress Belle Carter harbors a few trepidations about her upcoming trip with her long time friend Summer Sanderson. But a free vacation on wealthy businessman John Lyons’ luxury yacht outweighs her concerns. She is soon off on a lavish adventure with Summer, their friend Wendy and Wendy’s roommate Claire, Summer’s mom, Rhonda, sister Brittani and Brittani’s friend Amythest. Belle overlooks her misgivings over Summer’s somewhat cool attitude towards her and vows just to enjoy herself. But John’s controlling behavior soon extends to Summer to her guests and Belle’s concerns continue to grow as she makes unsettling discoveries.
Belle has been trying to make it as an actress for several years. Although she has not had any breakout roles, she refuses to give up on her dream. She and Summer have been friends since they were teenagers but their friendship has hit a bit of a rough patch recently. Her attempts to placate Summer often fall short of the mark, but Belle tries to keep her annoyance at her friend’s behavior in check.
Instead of reconnecting with her friends, Belle is relegated to the “B” list throughout their trip. She and Amythest are roommates and they surprisingly hit it off. Belle is a little concerned that Amythest is walking a dangerous line with Summer and her entreaties to take care fall on deaf ears. Growing more anxious over Summer’s behavior and John’s manipulations, Belle is having a difficult time as everyone becomes increasingly tense.
The Lion’s Den is a riveting novel that has a fun yet surprisingly substantive storyline. Belle is a fantastic protagonist that is easy to like and root for. Summer is a devious gold digger with a possessive streak and she is loyal to no one but herself. Fast-paced and engrossing, Katherine St. John brings this marvelous novel to a twist-filled conclusion. An absolute gem of a read that I highly recommend!