BOOK CLUB: The Guilt Trip

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Sandie Jones has delivered a suspenseful novel with a strong appeal to fans of thrillers and romance.

The Guilt Trip is set in Portugal. Three couples are having a four-day getaway with extended family and friends to celebrate the wedding of Ali and Will.

Noah and Rachel were close college friends before Rachel met and married Jack, Jack introduced his brother Will to Ali, as Ali and Jack used to work together, Noah’s wife Paige, and Rachel are best friends.

Rachel, Jack, Noah, and Paige are still getting to know Ali and it is a perfect opportunity to do so. But from what they witness she seems to be a bit of a drama queen.

The three couples hold many individual and combined secrets amongst them but over the course of the weekend. Their secrets are revealed but over time, the group will come to learn first impressions aren’t always correct.

The first half of the novel is written in a third-person narrative. Rachel seems to be the leader of the group.

The wedding day is located at a picturesque remote cliffside restaurant overlooking the ocean. At the reception, the three couples confront one another with what they have learned over the course of the weekend. Skeletons in the closet come out, and the plot picks up pace. When an accident happens, a body is found and they are all under suspicion.

This light mystery novel ticks all the boxes. A magical Portugal setting and fantastic descriptions of the place, and a whodunit plot that unwinds like a country road. The death itself was interesting enough and gives enough to keep you changing your mind about the killer’s identity.

The nature of the tragedy adds to the spice. The characters are relatable and, I found myself invested in their story like I was a guest at the wedding. Living alongside them every step of the way to seek justice.

If anything, this book gives a good insight into why you shouldn’t have preconceived notions about people. It can cost us opportunities that sometimes we would never know existed. Once we allow ourselves to search for truth and open our minds to possibilities that exist outside our own reality, it’s only then that we can know for sure.

That type of existence is patience, willingness, loving, and kindness, and Sandie has done an exceptional job in portraying this through her characters.

Thank you, Beauty and Lace and Macmillan Australia, for the opportunity to read and review.

A selection of our Beauty and Lace Club Members are reading The Guilt Trip by Sandie Jones. You can read their comments below, or add your own review.

Copy courtesy of publisher: Macmillan Australia

8 thoughts on “BOOK CLUB: The Guilt Trip

  1. The Guilt Trip was definitely a winding journey with many a plot twist.

    The characters were well written, the location less so, in fact, it could really have happened anywhere as the location made no real impact on the story.

    The premise was simple enough, friends go away for a wedding but not all return, however there were so many twists and turns that I had to reread sections just to confirm where the story was going.

    It kept me guessing till the last page, and to be honest, while I think I’ve worked it out, I’m not 100% certain.

    I think a few less twists and turns would definitely have made the story easier to follow without losing the plot line (or the reader) on its journey.

  2. Your loved ones should be the ones you know best. This statement is very much called into question when friends Rachel and Jack, and Noah and Paige travel to Portugal for the wedding of Jack’s brother, Will to Ali. Rachel tries to enjoy the chance to get away despite her husband Jack despising Ali. Initially Rachel defends Ali as ‘being Ali’ until she finds out that she had had an affair with a married man. But could it really be her husband?

    Thank you to Beauty and Lace and Macmillan Australia for the opportunity to read and review this novel. I thoroughly enjoyed it!

  3. A fabulous page-turner that kept me intrigued through the twists of turns of the book. I read The Guilt Trip by Sandie Jones in a day. I found it easy to read, it engaged me and left me wanting to know who died, how they died, and how were the group of friends involved. It was my first time reading Sandie Jones and I will definitely check her others out now.

    A group of friends head away to Portugal for the Wedding of Ali and Will – Jack, Rachael, Noah and Paige join them, all happy couples, or are they?

    It is a time for them to get to know Ali better, she is set to marry Will who is Jack’s Brother. They seem to all tolerate Ali but she does get on all of their nerves, Jack especially who use to also work with Ali. Secrets swirl within the group but could one of them be a killer?

    Thank you to Beauty and Lace and Pan Macmillan for the Advanced Readers copy of this fabulous book.

  4. Thank you BeautyandLace and Pan MacMillan for the opportunity to read and review The Guilt Trip by Sandie Jones.
    Oh boy, this book was so captivating from the start, a real page turner that kept me guessing until the very end.
    The twists and turns left me giddy with anticipation on how this story was to end and it didn’t disappoint.
    The book is about five life long friends and Ali, the newcomer into their tight-nit group. They are about to go away together for Ali and Will’s impending nuptials. You would think it would be a special time to get to know each other, to relax and to soak in the beautiful surroundings. What could go wrong?

    I enjoyed how the plot developed, on first appearances all the married couples Jack and Rachel, Noah and Paige appear happy and content, but each one is harboring dark secrets and that ultimately ends in tragic circumstances.

    I have thoroughly enjoyed reading this book and I would highly recommend this for someone after a face paced physiological thriller with more twists and turns than a roller coaster!
    Five stars from me!

  5. OMG! Talk about un-put-downable! The Guilt Trip by Sandie Jones was absolutely amazing. If it was a movie, I’d definitely watch it. I read it so quickly because I just HAD to know what was going to happen next. There was always something new happening, some little twist that was so exciting. I don’t even know how to put into words how good this book was. You will not regret reading it, just make sure you’ve got the time to devour the whole lot at once! I’ve since gone on to read 4 more books by Sandie Jones and they are all amazing. Thank you Beauty and Lace for letting me read this.

  6. Thank you Beauty and Lace for the opportunity to review The Guilt Trip by Sandie Jones.
    The Guilt Trip is about Jack and Rachel, Noah and Paige, Will and Ali. Ali and Will are getting married and they are all going away for a weekend to a villa in Portugal. After years of not great choices Will seems happy even though Ali seems to be rubbing people the wrong way. Rachel discovers a secret about Ali and everything is not what it seems. Unfortunately the weekend does not go as planned and by the end of it there is one person dead and a killer amongst them.

    I really enjoyed this book there were so many twists I could not put it down. I highly recommend it to everyone.

  7. Thank you Beauty and Lace and Pan Macmillan for the book.

    From the first line of the blurb ‘Everyone’s guilty of something….’ you are hungry, wanting to find out more. Who’s guilty of what? What’s going to happen? Who did it?

    The Guilt Trip is a novel with so many plot twists that your head will spin. Then when you get to the end you will be questioning what you just read and reread that bit again. It’s definitely a ‘wait, what’ moment.

    Five friends who have known each other for years and one current partner all venture on a weekend away in Portugal. Will and Ali are getting married and it’s a time that all 6 people will be sharing a house together and spending time together as a group.
    No one really knows Ali and many things are said about her during the weekend. Ali is hiding secrets and who else is hiding secrets.
    There’s lots of he said, she said and thoughts and ideas that cleverly pull you into the moment.
    I must find out what happens next is your whole thought while reading this book.
    It’s one you can’t put down.

    So cleverly written. Full of intrigue and suspense.

  8. I read this when Sydney was first locked down and the idea of reading a book set in a warm and Mediterranean location sounded amazing. Straight up, I have to say I didn’t like any of the characters. None of them had any redeeming values and there was this weird dance happening between the friends who were really more frenemys than friends (and why would you all go and stay in the same place together when there is such a chequered past between a couple of them, is beyond me). I kept reading this book because I just want to know what was going to happen. And I guess that’s the rub. This book keeps you reading to see what happens despite the fact that there is hardly a likeable character in it. Needless to say, I read it to the end.

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