A review by alexampersand
The Dinner Guest by B.P. Walter

dark mysterious


Mystery thriller with an engaging plot, but fell a little flat with the characters. It felt like a bit of a change to read a book of this genre that features flashbacks/flashforwards in such a way that it seems to give away a big "reveal" in the opening chapters - but of course everything is not fully as it seems. 

The characterisation, particularly in the opening, felt very stilted and like the author was relying quite a lot on tropes, and the dialogue also felt very forced at times. It seemed to improve as the book went on, but I'm unsure if that was due to an actual improvement, or if I just adjusted to it, or if the plot superceded actual characterisation. But all throughout none of the characters felt remotely likeable. 

I felt like the pacing of the book was a little off - the opening set up was very engaging, but then towards the middle it seemed to lag, and neither the pre- or post-murder chapters really seemed to add too much detail or plot to the story. Conversely, it felt like when we got to the final 100 pages or so there were suddenly several revelations that came about - and quite a lot simply through expository dialogue, when it might have been nice to have seen a flashback chapter to these events instead.

But still, it was a good read that kept me engaged until the end!