“The heat is intense.
The secrets are stifling.
She just needs to escape . . .
Nine guests arrive at a remote villa in the south of France.
They know each other well. Or think they do.
But at least one of them has plenty to hide – and nowhere to run.
Under the relentless sun, loyalties will be tested, secrets revealed, and tensions pushed to the point of no return.”
Ali is a woman hiding many secrets. This summer, in the heat of the south of France, they are all about to rise to the surface … SUN DAMAGE is the sensational new thriller from the universally acclaimed Sabine Durrant and is destined to be the thriller of summer.
Hello and welcome to damppebbles. Today I am delighted to share my review of Sun Damage by Sabine Durrant. Sun Damage was published by Hodder & Stoughton on 2nd June 2022 and is available in hardcover, audio and digital formats. I chose to read and review a free ARC of Sun Damage but that has in no way influenced my review. My grateful thanks to Jenny at Hodder & Stoughton for sending me a finished copy.
I’m a little obsessed with summer thrillers at the moment. I’ve also been wanting to read a Sabine Durrant thriller for a while now so when Sun Damage landed on my radar, I knew I had to read it! Everything about this book appealed to me. The sun drenched setting, the gorgeous cover and that intriguing blurb which only tells you a fraction of what the book is about. It was a no brainer for me and I enjoyed every single second.
Ali and Sean are experienced con artists who double team their unsuspecting marks, lull them into a web of lies and falsehoods, and then take what they want. When one of their scams goes horribly wrong, Ali makes a break from Sean and ends up hiding at a remote villa in the south of France pretending to be someone else, an experienced chef. As guests arrive, Ali is determined to remain under the radar and do whatever she can to forget the past. But she’s not the only one keeping secrets…
Sun Damage is a beautifully drawn, character-driven, slow burn thriller which I found very compelling. Ali is such an interesting character with her troubled upbringing, being passed from foster home to foster home and the breaking down of the relationship between her and her sister in the process, that falling into a life of deception and con artistry felt almost inevitable. It was the path she believes life chose for her and it’s all she knows. There’s something about a con artist, the way they read and manipulate people, that makes them incredibly intriguing in my eyes.
The other guests at the villa are all very well written and add to the story. I loved the way the author puts the reader on edge about the other characters. I felt suspicious of many of them and that only built as the novel progressed. The setting is absolutely stunning giving the story an atmospheric isolated feel with the summer heat pressing down on proceedings only adding to the claustrophobia. The plot moves at a steady but riveting pace keeping the reader turning the pages and invested in the story.
Would I recommend this book? I would, yes. Sun Damage is chock full of beautiful, well-crafted suspense, intriguing characters and I enjoyed every moment I spent with the book. I actually read Sun Damage by the pool in Gran Canaria so can confirm it makes a cracking beach/pool read for those jetting off to sunnier climes in the near future. All in all this is a superbly written story with a vivid sun soaked setting, featuring a cast of interesting and intriguing characters. I thoroughly enjoyed Sun Damage and now look forward to reading more from Durrant in the future. Recommended.
I chose to read and review a free ARC of Sun Damage. The above review is my own unbiased opinion.
Sun Damage by Sabine Durrant was published in the UK by Hodder & Stoughton on 2nd June 2022 and is available in hardcover, audio and digital formats with the paperback to follow (please note, the following links are affiliate links which means I receive a small percentage of the purchase price at no extra cost to you): | amazon.co.uk | Waterstones | Foyles | Book Depository | bookshop.org | Goodreads | damppebbles bookshop.org shop |
Sabine Durrant is a British author of mystery, YA, and women’s fiction novels. She is also a journalist, who is best known for writing “The Sabine Durrant Interview” for The Guardian. She has also been the deputy features editor for the publication, and has been deputy literary editor for The Sunday Times. Sabine lives in London, England with her three children.