The Hit List by Holly Seddon

gwenchen's review against another edition

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dark sad tense fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? No
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes


groulard's review

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Marianne's husband Greg died a year ago in a cycling accident. Or did he?
Holly Seddon's fourth novel is a twisting story of secrets and lies, set in a dark world that we know exists but can barely imagine.
A tale of naivety, desperation and blackmail, with some surprising twists and revelations. I found myself constantly questioning everyone's truth, saddened and horrified by the situations in which they found themselves.
I would have liked more detail about the background of some characters, and about the outcome of others, but all in all a gripping read.

girlwiththepinkskimask's review

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Writing: 5/5 | Plot: 5/5 | Ending: 4/5


Marianne is grieving the loss of her husband, Greg, a year prior when she stumbles upon his Dark Web activities and realizes she's on a hit list he put together. Cool cool cool. Now it's a race against time to discover who Greg really was, and what he was really up to.


OOOOHWWWEEEE!!!!! I LOVED this one. The synopsis sucked me right in—wife on a dead husband's hit list? Say tf LESS. A must read for me, even though I was on vacation. (Still read like 4 books though, normal stuff for us addicts.)

Anyways. WOW. The writing... *chefs kiss*. I am so TIREDT of closed caption ass writing, and thankfully Seddon didn't let me down with her beautiful prose. Now, if you're new to my reviews and wondering wtf is closed caption ass writing, let me explain. Here is an excerpt from The Hit List:

"Between those moments in the flesh, more words. Strings and strings of emails. Re. Re. Re. Re. Re. Re. Re. Re. Never ending. Until they did."

and here's the closed caption ass writing version:

"When we weren't kissing and hugging each other, we were texting on our brand new iPhone 13s or emailing via Gmail. We sent 63 emails and 450 texts each week. So many messages. But then it stopped when Greg died, because dead people can't message anymore. That made me sad."

You see what I mean??? Showing NOT telling.

This book is told in three parts from several POVs, but namely Sam (killer for hire), Marianne (wife to be killed), and Greg (charity worker who composed a hit list with his wife's name on it). It was a bit tricky to keep up with the secondary/third characters since I read this sporadically, tbh, but you get the gist in the end; bad people doing bad shit.

Seddon weaves and intricate web, masterfully bringing together several threads. This book isn't an in-your-face-thriller, which is the norm for authors who can actually write. It explores morality and that age old question: if you steal bread to feed the poor, should you go to jail? Greg, Paula, and Noah's stories exemplify this very question—it's up to the reader to decide how they feel. Since Greg's story is more explored than the others, you do feel for him; a man who wanted to do so good, he was vulnerable to corruption in the name of the greater good.

Yes, you have to suspend your disbelief for this novel. But I don't mind doing so when the writing is thought-provoking. Because yes, the plot itself is unrealistic (hopefully....) but the themes aren't. We deal with them everyday. How far are we will to wade into the grey area for the greater good?

This is a 4.5 rounded down—why you ask? I didn't like Marianne's inappropriate "relationship" with her former student (chill Brigitte Macron) and the vibe between Sam and their son Joe was uncomfy. What kind of son tells his mom how good her bod is looking thanks to the gym??

Anyways. Great job, Seddon. I'm definitely going to read her other books, and I look forward to her new novel later this year.


Pros: Beautiful writing, intricate and well-executed story, thought-provoking exploration of morality

Cons: Sam and her son's relationship was borderline creepy AF at some points, also the ending was a lil much

mandylovestoread's review

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I have read and enjoyed books by Holly Seddon before. But none were are dark and addictive as The Hit List. I read this in 3 parts over 3 weeks with thanks to TBC on Facebook.

I was completely hooked after party one. Part 2 was a bit slower but good bunt the reader the backs stories on the characters and how they got to the places in their lives that they had. The last part was exciting as it all came to a head.

It is a book that you really shouldn’t know too much about the plot before you read it. There are plenty of shocks and twists that will have you reeling. Marianne is grieving after her husband Greg was killed when he was knocked off his bike. She is devastated and wanting to feel close to him again she logs into his laptop. But she is shocked when she finds that he has been logging onto the dark web. And even more shocked when she finds her name on a hitlist!

That is it. You need to read this book to find out why and what happens next. You know you want to.

anawilson05's review against another edition

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I really liked this one and the reviews certainly warrant it. It's a book full of twists and turns and shocks.
Sensitive subject matters I wasn't expecting were explored but done quite well.
I was hooked on this and although I still have questions because the ending felt a touch rushed, it was still a fantastic read!

melaniesreads's review against another edition

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Thank you to Orion Books, Holly Seddon and TBC for gifting me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
I read this as part of a readalong for 100 readers.
Split into three parts I enjoyed Part One and the building of suspense around Marianne’s husbands death and subsequently going through his laptop and finding his use of the dark web and her name on a hit list. Part two where we meet Sam who will do the hit felt more of a slog although I did like Sam as a character. Part three was slightly better paced but I personally felt that it came across as rushed in places and the ending was disappointing and not very believable. Covering dark subjects such as immigration, human trafficking and organ harvesting this wasn’t really what I was expecting from the blurb and normally not what I would read but it was still a solid read and I give it 3 stars.

missrhinnan's review against another edition

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3.5 stars.

jadestar's review

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Enjoyed this. Loved the pace and the format of chapters and authors. Was easy enough to follow in addition to the three section split.

natalier3's review

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I have struggled with this audiobook because of major technical issues on the NetGalley Shelf app, but I have persevered and finished it so I can provide a review. Although the problems definitely detracted from my enjoyment of the book, it would be unfair on the author and narrators to provide negative feedback because of it.
I loved this book, the narrators were strong and gave me real understanding of their characters' personalities. I did feel it dragged a little in the middle and could have been a faster pace to engage me more.

emmanoon1404's review against another edition

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mysterious tense medium-paced