The Lion’s Den by Katherine St. John
Published by Grand Central Publishing on June 30, 2020 (expected)
Genre(s): fiction, contemporary, mystery
Format & Length: e-book, 368
A dream vacation on a luxurious yacht turns deadly in this pulse-pounding beach read and perfect book club pick about glamour, friendship, romance, and betrayal on the Riviera.
Belle likes to think herself immune to the dizzying effects of fabulous wealth. But when her best friend, Summer, invites her on a glamorous girls’ getaway to the Mediterranean aboard her billionaire boyfriend’s yacht, the only sensible answer is yes. Belle hopes the trip will be a much-needed break from her stalled acting career and uniquely humiliating waitressing job, but once aboard the luxurious Lion’s Den, it becomes clear that all is not as it seems.
The dream vacation quickly devolves into a nightmare as Belle and the handful of other girlfriends Summer has invited are treated more like prisoners than guests by their controlling host, and Belle comes to see Summer for what she truly is: a vicious gold digger who will stop at nothing to get what she wants. Belle soon realizes she’s going to have to keep her wits about her — and her own big secret close to her chest — if she wants to make it off the yacht alive.
The Lion’s Den was a wild ride of a story and my idea of a perfect beach read!
This book follows Belle, who is invited by her best friend, Summer, on a glamorous girls’ getaway to the Mediterranean aboard her billionaire boyfriend’s yacht. It begins on day one of the vacation, and then in alternating chapters follows the trip as it devolves into something of a nightmare and also the evolution of Belle and Summer’s friendship since it began when they were sixteen. This structure worked well here, adding context, backstory, and tension while allowing the plot to edge forward at a perfect pace.
Plot and characters come together in The Lion’s Den to make it a wonderfully absorbing read. I typically like to pause to make note of quotes or guess at where the plot may lead, but this sucked me in so completely I didn’t stop once while reading to write anything down. Belle was a main character I could really get behind; although not perfect, she is likable and tries to do the right thing. Much of the remaining cast is full of rich people behaving badly, which is just always a fun trope. And the lush setting of a yacht sailing the Riviera is the perfect backdrop for twisting events that begin to unfold.
In the end, The Lion’s Den was highly entertaining and excellent escapist reading. If that sounds like your kind of book, definitely give this a shot!
*Thanks to the publisher for providing an arc of this edition via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.