“AThe unmissable new thriller from the queen of the modern-day murder mystery.”
NO MAJOR SPOILERS
One by One by Ruth Ware is a modern take on the mystery genre, very much in the style of Agatha Christie, and a very successful one at that. The book is set in an Alpine ski resort that has been booked out by up and coming social media success ,Snoop , a music app that has taken the world by storm. Using the ski trip as an opportunity to discuss the pros and cons of a potentially very lucrative buy out offer are the company founders, Topher and Eva as well as their most trusted high level employees, including Eliot the tech wizard, Miranda the social media maven , Rik the money man and Carl the legal eagle, plus various assistants and the one person who doesn’t seem to quite belong, former employee Liz. It soon becomes clear that Eva and Topher are on opposing sides of the argument, and the decision lies in the unlikely hands of Liz, who only became a shareholder by chance. Also at the resort are staff members Danny and Erin, whose job it is is to keep the guests happy, fed and satisfied, something that may be easier said than done with this group. When Eva goes missing on the slopes with a storm rolling in , Danny and Eliza decide that the best thing to do is get help but before they put their plan into action disaster strikes and an avalanche hits the chalet, trapping them inside , with no phone signal to allow them call for help. Trapped in a chalet with plenty of food and firewood might not seem to be the worst thing in the world, but when first one and then another of the group dies in suspicious circumstances it seems like there may be a killer on the loose , and nobody knows who the next target might be.
The story is told from two perspectives, those of Liz and Erin , giving us a sort of upstairs/downstairs view of what is happening. Each of the women have an interesting story to tell , and as we learn more of their individual stories we gain a greater understanding of their place in the group as a whole. The alpine setting almost feels like another character in the book, so wonderfully has the author described the cold and isolation. The pacing is perfectly on point, fast paced enough to make you want to keep turning the pages but with enough time to get to know the characters and how they relate to one another. The plot is clever, and there are certainly enough twists and turns to satisfy any reader. Overall an excellent modern day mystery and one that I would recommend to any fan of the genre.
I read and reviewed an ARC courtesy of NetGalley and the publisher, all opinions are my own.
Added 20th November 2020