WOOHOO! One By One publishes today. I was thrilled to receive an advance copy and having loved all of Ruth Ware’s books to date, this was a real treat! You are bound to devour this locked-door mystery setup in one sitting and it will keep you guessing through the very last page.
“The Agatha Christie of our generation.” —David Baldacci, #1 New York Times bestselling author
“Diabolically clever.” —Riley Sager, author of Final Girls
The #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Turn of the Key and In a Dark Dark Wood returns with another suspenseful thriller set on a snow-covered mountain.
Getting snowed in at a luxurious, rustic ski chalet high in the French Alps doesn’t sound like the worst problem in the world. Especially when there’s a breathtaking vista, a full-service chef and housekeeper, a cozy fire to keep you warm, and others to keep you company. Unless that company happens to be eight coworkers…each with something to gain, something to lose, and something to hide.
When the cofounder of Snoop, a trendy London-based tech startup, organizes a weeklong trip for the team in the French Alps, it starts out as a corporate retreat like any other: PowerPoint presentations and strategy sessions broken up by mandatory bonding on the slopes. But as soon as one shareholder upends the agenda by pushing a lucrative but contentious buyout offer, tensions simmer and loyalties are tested. The storm brewing inside the chalet is no match for the one outside, however, and a devastating avalanche leaves the group cut off from all access to the outside world. Even worse, one Snooper hadn’t made it back from the slopes when the avalanche hit.
As each hour passes without any sign of rescue, panic mounts, the chalet grows colder, and the group dwindles further…one by one.
WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING:
“Especially timely, given that the terror of isolation is at its heart… This is And Then There Were None rendered for the twenty-first century.”
—Booklist (starred review)
“Tempestuous . . . [a] claustrophobic, adrenaline-fueled cat-and-mouse game.” —Publishers Weekly
“Hilarious, well plotted, and vintage Ware, this one is not to be missed.”
“Ruth Ware’s Hitchcockian thrillers have yet to disappoint.”
“Ware does what she does best: Gives us a familiar locked-door mystery setup and lets the tension and suspicion marinate until they reach fever pitch. Another win for Ware… Simply masterful.”
“The Turn of the Key was not her first book, but its sweep of starred reviews and awards sets up One by One to be a most anticipated thriller of 2020.”
Anything by Ruth Ware is a huge treat and this book certainly lives up to its hype. Told from dual points of view — Erin, the chalet girl and Liz, socially anxious, fish-out-of-water misfit, enables you to get both an inside and an outside perspective to the story. Ware certainly lives with her imagined characters for a while, knows them inside and out before committing them to paper. These intricate layers for me are so necessary to fully enjoy a book.
The writing is fluid and hard to put down. The format in the opening chapters is very different to her past books and begins by introducing nine colleagues of a tech company called Snoop; an app described as ‘voyeurism for your ears.’
The guests are staying in the luxury French ski resort of St Antoine with views to die for. But when a snow forecast threatens to become a snowpocalypse (Snowmaggedon) this desirable setting has the potential to become — yes, you’ve guessed it, a little hamlet with no way out and a group of people trapped together. The only access is via funicular railway or a blue run to the centre of the village. It might well be a beautiful place with its peaks and pistes and great skiing, but not when inclement weather makes it inaccessible by helicopter. I’m already sensing tension and claustrophobia, especially in a low of minus 20.
After a meeting in the den where the employees have a difference of opinion over the future of Snoop, tempers begin to flare, giving us a reason to be on high alert. As the guests are picked off one by one you hope the characters you like survive and the ones you don’t get what’s coming to them. But it’s not quite as cut and dry as that. Each guest is either a have or a have not, sleek, witty, beautiful, born with a silver spoon in their mouths. Whereas one ‘unwraps secrets carried for three years,’ someone underestimated that you think might needs further examination. So much food for thought.
Ware has done a brilliant job of holding these guests hostage in freezing conditions, dwindling heating and food to add to the ever growing list of worries. A terrible sense of abandonment and being cut off from the outside world increases the threat, hostility and suspicion building tension. She always writes about ordinary people in frightening situations and has expert knowledge of the .com boom. Adding a character who allows toxic practices to take root within this company brings a clever variation to the archetype.
A fantabulous read! Highly recommended.
Thank you to Netgalley, the author Ruth Ware and the publisher Random House (Vintage Publishing) for the privilege of reading an advance copy.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Ruth Ware is an international number one bestseller. Her thrillers In a Dark, Dark Wood, The Woman in Cabin 10, The Lying Game and The Death of Mrs Westaway have appeared on bestseller lists around the world, including the Sunday Times and New York Times, and she is published in more than 40 languages. She lives on the south coast of England, with her family.
Visit http://www.ruthware.com to find out more, or find her on facebook or twitter as @RuthWareWriter
OTHER BOOKS BY RUTH WARE