Spotlight Review: SECLUDED CABIN SLEEPS SIX by Lisa Unger

From the publisher:

Three couples rent a luxury cabin in the woods for a weekend getaway to die for in this chilling locked-room thriller byNew York Times bestselling author Lisa Unger.

What could be more restful than a weekend getaway with family and friends? An isolated luxury cabin in the woods, spectacular views, a hot tub and a personal chef. Hannah’s generous brother found the listing online. The reviews are stellar. It’ll be three couples on this trip with good food, good company and lots of R & R.

But the dreamy weekend is about to turn into a nightmare. 

A deadly storm is brewing. The rental host seems just a little too present. The personal chef reveals that their beautiful house has a spine-tingling history. And the friends have their own complicated past, with secrets that run blood deep.

How well does Hannah know her brother, her own husband? Can she trust her best friend? Meanwhile, someone is determined to ruin the weekend, looking to exact a payback for deeds long buried. Who is the stranger among them?

“Hidden history and 21st-century technology collide in a breathtaking thriller.” —Kirkus, starred review

“Embedded in a riveting novel of suspense is a revealing examination of the dangers inherent in public DNA sharing…[Lisa Unger] is in good form here, in her twentieth outing, and her fans will be eager to dive right in.” —Booklist

“Genetics and nature-versus-nurture take the spotlight in Unger’s 20th novel…Readers will revel in the search for genealogical justice amid best-kept secrets, while wondering who will live and who will die.” —Library Journal, starred review

https://amzn.to/3fKCpEk

I have been reading Lisa Unger since she was Lisa Miscione (her maiden name; she wrote the terrific Lydia Strong mystery series!) When she switched to thrillers using her married name, I was along for the ride. Her books all have one thing in common; all are unputdownable! And this one caused me to stay up way too late into the night to finish it. I wouldn’t have been able to sleep worrying about these characters, and that says a lot about the author.

Someone bought everyone in the family a DNA test kit for Christmas, but no one is claiming responsibility for it. Some family members take the test, others trash it, but the results for those who took the test are confusing at best.

Hannah and Mako are brother and sister; Hannah is married to a tech wizard who is a consultant and does some work for Mako, who is married to a yogi. Mako books this amazing cabin deep in the Georgia woods (insert Deliverance music here – I did, in my head at any rate!) for all of them plus Hannah’s best friend, who also happens to be Mako’s ex, along with her current boyfriend. So six people in this gorgeous cabin with an owner who is spying on them. He has cameras secreted everywhere in the house, including the shower head! Then a massive storm comes rolling in, and even though the owner checked the generator, it’s not working. Mako’s wife leaves a note that she is leaving him and she takes off for parts unknown.

Meanwhile, the storm rages on. A tree has fallen, blocking the only road out. And everyone has their own agenda, it seems. Hannah is knocked unconscious while trying to fix the electrical problem, the men seem to have vanished, and everything is dark and mysterious and scary. This is not horror, however, but it is very suspenseful. At times it is hard to tell who the good guys are and who the bad guys are. DNA testing plays an important role here as well, and is most thought-provoking and interwoven into the plot.

This is a terrific locked room type mystery, but with enough suspense to really keep the pages turning. The characters are well-defined, even if we don’t know who to trust, adding to the complexity of the plot. This is another unputdownable book from one of my favorite authors. Don’t miss it!

SECLUDED CABIN SLEEPS SIX by Lisa Unger. Park Row; Original edition (November 8, 2022). ISBN: 978-0778333234. 400p.

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