A family vacation turns into a nightmare in this series debut.
When British accountant George Hall was a young man, he worked for the Garden of Eden Hotel in a small beachside town in the Seychelles during a political coup. Now he and his wife, Angela, have brought their 22-year-old daughter, Lucy, with them on their vacation to the islands so that George can revisit old haunts and Lucy can recover from a painful breakup. George finds the island much changed; it's cleaner and more touristy, but it’s still a paradise of tropical fish, frangipani flowers, and beautiful sunsets. And Lucy is a little less inclined to mope once she meets the hotel’s new accountant, a handsome young Seychellois named Adrian. A barmy old man who keeps staring at her makes her uneasy, but no one takes her anxieties seriously. Then Lucy nearly drowns while she’s swimming with Adrian on a quiet beach, and she suspects him of pulling her down. Once convinced of his innocence, however, she decides not to tell her parents, who are already worried about her broken heart. Nor does she mention the trifling matter of a boulder that nearly crushes her when it falls—or is pushed. Not until Angela disappears can the family acknowledge that someone really is targeting them. As the days go by with no trace of his wife, George confesses a secret from his past and his connection to a woman known as the dark angel. Torn between pity for her father and anger about his lies, Lucy decides to look for her mother herself. What she finds forces her to make a terrible choice, but it’s not nearly as terrible as the one her father is soon to face.
The picturesque setting can’t make up for a plot that depends on the characters’ keeping too much to themselves, living in denial, and generally behaving stupidly. Pray that the heroine’s a little more sensible next time out.