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  • The House Party

  • By: Mary Grand
  • Narrated by: Karen Cass
  • Length: 9 hrs and 51 mins
  • 3.9 out of 5 stars (1,398 ratings)

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Summary

Someone is about to die....

Someone is about to lie....

At the intimate house-warming party for her glorious ‘grand design’, Kathleen confides in her best friend, Beth, that she is terrified of one of their close friends but daren’t reveal which one. The guests are a tight-knit group, but Kathleen is convinced one of them is dangerous.

The next day Kathleen’s body is found at the foot of a cliff, and Beth must face the sickening truth that she may have been killed by one of their trusted friends. With little help from the police, Beth’s decides to seek answers.

All the friends have secrets they are desperate to hide, but only one of them is ready to kill to keep theirs safe....

The House Party is set on the Isle of Wight - insular, claustrophobic and with nowhere to run. Mary Grand has written a heart-stopping novel of secrets, betrayal and desire, perfect for fans of Louise Candlish and Lucy Foley.

©2020 Mary Grand (P)2020 Boldwood Books

What listeners say about The House Party

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Really gripping - murder with a human heart!

I really enjoyed this and was gripped from start to finish - the surprises and twists kept on coming right until the very, very end. It's a cleverly plotted murder mystery: at a house party of close friends, Beth's friend Kathleen confides in her that she's being threatened by someone at the party and she's frightened. Before Beth has had time to process this, Kathleen is found dead at the bottom of the cliff having apparently fallen trying to catch her beloved hens which had somehow broken loose.

Beth knows that something is wrong and so begins her complex investigation of all the friends at the party whose lives are intertwined through work and friendships, all of whom it emerges have secrets and possible motives. Even Beth herself has her secrets.... I can't give anything more away, but the whole plot is very cleverly worked out - I really couldn't guess who the murderer could be!

But it's more than just a murder mystery - Mary Grand has a skill for creating an immediately warm-hearted group of real families with all their stresses and strains which engage the listener from the very start, and the dialogue is lively and completely realistic. Then there's the delightful Isle of Wight setting with the unique island close-knit relationships and the lovely background of sea, woods, cliff-tops, 'Castleford' Castle - and fords and wind-swept walks for Olly, Beth's best-friend-spaniel.

The narration is first class - the narrator captures all the warm humanity of all these characters, all the nuances of emotion - and (which is hard) all the accents!

8 people found this helpful

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Just awful

Boring, predictable, poor characterisation and dialogue. I didn’t particularly like the narration but she didn’t have much to work with!

6 people found this helpful

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Awful

Just couldn’t get into this book. Confusing and badly structured. Felt like you were reading the second book in a series. No idea who any of the characters were and just couldn’t face finding out. Just hated it so much I only managed to listen to a few chapters.

6 people found this helpful

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jesus what a load of poo

Its so terrible. I hoped the end would consist of a mass brawl in which they all killed each other. Boring characters, boring story, terrible narration. It also could have been half the length, some of the dialogue is just pointless. ugh. I'm annoyed at such a waste of time.

5 people found this helpful

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I tried. I really did…

The most longwinded, tedious book.
I often felt the narrator was bored as well.

I didn’t stay to find out who did it as I didn’t care

3 people found this helpful

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Scooby Don’t

This story was about 50% longer than it should have been. The writing was so clumsy at times and went off on bizarre tangents that didn’t really relate to the story and the way characters spoke to each other was really unnatural. The narrator was good at the accents but had a tendency to talk in strange intonations and to talk in a raspy way at the back of her throat. It was really irritating. I only finished this because I had invested so much time in trying to get to some kind of point of the story. The big reveal of “who dunnit” was akin to Scooby Doo when they solve a mystery - it just seemed totally unbelievable.

3 people found this helpful

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Don’t waste your time!

Well read but a terrible childish story, over explained plots, just all round daft, thank goodness I didn’t pay for this, only wasted my time!

3 people found this helpful

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More promising than the start suggests

Whilst Beth the main narrator is completely irritating and the beginning seems corny it’s definitely worth persevering with this book which builds to something wholly satisfying

3 people found this helpful

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This was chosen to be published and performed ??

Boring, clumsy, shallow, predictable writing. An undistinguished but fairly competent performance (understandably didn't attempt the Iraqi accent with hints of Welsh that must have brought a worried sigh to the performer)
Avoid unless desperate. At least it's free

2 people found this helpful

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Wasn't for me

Wasn't for me. The way the characters conversed was just not believable. Hope the ending was good..... I didn't get that far

2 people found this helpful

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  • Karenique
  • 07-10-21

Noooo. I should have known better.

Thankfully, this was a free book from Audible Plus catalogue. For two days, I tried to get into “The House Party,” but the “party” was dull and slowly dragged along. Narration by Karen Cass is once again horrendous. I had another book narrated by Cass and found her presentation annoying. Since it was free, I thought I’d give Cass another chance; a bad idea. Not recommended. I never made it through.

13 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • ASCH16
  • 16-12-20

Meh

This book was ok. None of the characters were particularly compelling and the story line was uninspiring. I listened until the end. The narrators voice was pleasant but I wonder if it added to the fragility of each character. Maybe sentences performed in a different tone would have made this cast of characters more dynamic. I don't know. Not trying to assign blame, just hoping to be objective towards the writing.

8 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • lisa
  • 29-09-20

very entertaining but drug out

I really enjoyed all the characters and the personalities of each one shown through. The story had an interesting premise and I did enjoy it, it could have just been told in half the time.

8 people found this helpful

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  • p
  • 11-10-21

I was a bit skeptical in the beginning

The beginning of the book had me very skeptical on whether or not I was going to even want to continue. I usually will try to get past the 1st chapter because II don't mind letting a book warm up. But I wasn't sure this one was gonna do it hahaha. I was pleasantly surprised. There were a few areas that is that I felt were a little scattered or 3rd or uncertain uncertain of where it was leading but in the end it all came together. I tend to listen to thrillers and mysteries is the mysteries because I like that it makes my brain think and this one had me bouncing back-and-forth between suspects the whole time. It was definitely a great lesson for my commute

5 people found this helpful

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  • Jessica
  • 05-10-21

Excellent mystery story!

Kept me on the edge of my seat and trying to figure things out with her all throughout the story! Very well written and performed!

4 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Patricia Feinberg
  • 10-10-21

Unusual

I've never read a book taking place on the Isle of White. The characters had me going. I wasn't trusting ANYONE near the end (which in my opinion, makes it an outstanding mystery)!

3 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Bobbi M.
  • 14-10-21

Nice reading!

The story had so many characters and SO much detail it was easy to get lost. thank goodness Audible has the rewind a bit button!

The end was satisfying but not that was also where the details stopped.

Overall, nice book, great read, meh finish.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 09-10-21

wonderful

First I tried this book because I liked the narrator and have been surprised by the story that twisted and twisted.. Love it!

2 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • c.
  • 03-10-21

Nice listen

A little too long - but kept me guessing until the end. Performance is soothing to listen to and the story isn’t grisly. Lots of twists and turns.

2 people found this helpful

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  • John
  • 28-09-21

I Wish The Author Would Write More

The book was very enjoyable,.. if one thing could be changed it would be the choice of narrator,.. while I adore Karen Cass , she is better equipped to narrate cozy Christmas romance novels.

2 people found this helpful