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The Hike by Lucy Clarke

The perfect day for a hike. Seeking the escape of a lifetime, four friends hike out into the beautiful Norwegian wild – nothing between them and the mountain peak but forest, sea and sharp, blue sky. But there’s a darker side to the mountain. A women went missing here one year ago. Now the friends are hiking into the the heart of the mystery – and waiting on the trail is someone who would do anything to keep their secrets buried…

Our first BookBubble review of 2024 provoked a range of responses and a lively discussion! Fair to say we were pretty split. For half of us it was a great escapist Xmas holiday read and, personally it was one that I read in a day. I love Norway and could really relate to the descriptions of the scenery, the setting and the changeable weather conditions. I’m not often a fan of thrillers, but found this quite the page-turner, and it kept me guessing which is always good. On the other hand, the planners, organisers and Scout leaders in our group couldn’t get past the main premise of the plot, which centres around a group of friends who undertake an adventurous trek and who are ill-prepared for what’s in store, completely underestimating the physical demands and the risks of the weather and challenging terrain. And, although they may well always be prepared, I thought that was all fairly credible – most of us can think of times, I’m sure, when we had good intentions but, when it came to it, didn’t do the full preparation we had planned. And if you have never experienced hiking, challenging terrain etc, I think it’s entirely plausible that you might underestimate quite how difficult it was going to be. Factor in a bit of bravado, friends egging each other on to do something outside their comfort zone, a desire to get away and do something different, and you can imagine a group getting into a tricky situation pretty quickly. Short chapters help with the sense of pace, and the story of a girl that went missing a year previously creates a sense of suspense and unease before they even set off.

Overall Score: 6.6

Range: 4 – 8

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