The Hunting Party by Lucy Foley

in , by Kane, June 27, 2020

Title: The Hunting Party
Author:Lucy Foley
Genre: Mystery Thriller

My Rating: 3.5/5

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After a string of YA and romance novels throughout summer, this winter/fall book The Hunting Party was a much-needed break from the American high school backdrop. I approached the book expecting a mystery with an extensive investigation of a murder with a detective/some smart person and clues and stuff, it was quite different from what I thought it would be. While it keeps the reader in the guessing game, the book is not much about solving a case. It's more psychological than your average mystery. Even if it wasn't what I signed up for, it was a satisfying read.


Nine friends, who were friends since their Oxford University days, plan to celebrate their New Year's Eve in an estate in the Scottish Highlands. But things between the friends go wrong and one of the friends gets killed. So the question is who killed her. With the weather conditions restricting any person to come in or come out of the landscape, the killer must be surely among them...

The strength of this book is its flawed characters. Except for Heather and Samira, I kept suspecting the morality of every character. I kept wondering who to sympathize with and who to trust. Almost every character had multiple layers. Just while I thought a character can be trusted, a POV or anecdote from one of the narrators made me think, "Can I really...?" 
I couldn't call the characters good or bad. They had their faults, they had bad habits and problematic qualities and at the same time were plagued by their conscience. They had desires and societal expectations controlled them.
Bottom line: they were just frickin' humans making mistakes, not exactly relatable but understandable. Yes, they were bitches but they were perfect for this novel.
All in all, the characters were my favorite part of The Hunting Party. 

The setting was the second-best thing. The book is set in the Scottish Highlands. 
It had highlands, a loch, and pristine wilderness, the entire landscape largely untouched by human civilization.Nature had a wild, raw, and sinister quality to it. The atmosphere created by the writer was perfect.
The writing was a treat to the senses.
Coming to pacing, it wasn't perfect but ...close.
The book is narrated by five different characters and had three different timelines and on top of that, the characters went back and forth between the past and present in their thoughts.
It got a bit confusing with the three different timelines and the mental time travel sometimes. 

Like mentioned before, this wasn't a typical whodunnit. It was less about the process of solving the mystery. The book wanted the reader to speculate, ponder about the characters, and make calculations about them. In the end, the book just places the answer in your hand.
The ending was good, but just don't expect anything mind-blowing. 

I thought the book was a good read and I will recommend it if you are looking for a story with flawed, morally ambiguous characters. If you want mildly strong, chilly read, it's good. But if you want murder and solid investigation plots like Agatha Christie or The Files of Young Kindaichi type story, then this might not be what you are looking for.

My Favourite Book Therapy Quotes - Bijal A Shah - Medium


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