The Last Passenger – Will Dean

A luxury cruise liner, abandoned with no crew, steaming into the mid-Atlantic.
And you are the only passenger left on board.

Caz Ripley, a cafe owner from a small, ordinary town, boards the RMS Atlantica with her boyfriend Pete and a thousand fellow passengers destined for New York.
The next morning, she wakes to discover that everyone else on board has disappeared.
And that’s just the beginning. Caz must prepare for a crossing that will be anything but plain sailing …

With the drama of The Woman in Cabin 10 and the tension of And Then There Were None , The Last Passenger is a psychological thriller set aboard a cruise ship about a woman whose seemingly ordinary life is suddenly thrown dramatically off course. Will Dean is The Master of Intense Suspense and this novel is full of his trademark twists and turns.

Book Info: Print length: 444 pages. Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton. Publication Date: 11 May 2023

Biography: Will Dean grew up in the East Midlands, living in nine different villages before the age of eighteen. After studying law at the LSE, and working many varied jobs in London, he settled in rural Sweden with his wife. He built a wooden house in a boggy forest clearing and it’s from this base that he compulsively reads and writes.

DARK PINES, the first in the Tuva Moodyson series, was published to huge critical acclaim in 2018, was shortlisted for Not the Booker prize, selected for Zoe Ball’s TV Book Club and named as a Daily Telegraph Book of the Year. RED SNOW and BLACK RIVER were both longlisted for Crime Novel of the Year at the Theakston Old Peculier Awards in 2020 and 2021 respectively, and RED SNOW was also shortlisted for the Independent Voice Award at the Capital Crime Amazon Readers Awards 2020.

Will’s first standalone novel, THE LAST THING TO BURN, was a word-of-mouth sensation reviewed positively by readers and media alike. It was shortlisted for Thriller Book of the Year at the Fingerprint Awards 2022, Crime Novel of the Year at the Theakston Old Peculier Awards 2022 and the Goldsboro Books Glass Bell Award 2022, and was longlisted for the CWA Gold Dagger Award 2022.

My Review:

I’m a huge fan of Will Dean’s books, I adore his TUVA series and THE LAST THING TO BURN is one of my all-time favourite standalone thrillers, so I was very excited to be invited on to the blogtour to read and review his latest standalone thriller THE LAST PASSENGER, published by Hodder & Stoughton on 11 May 2023.

This book is NOTHING like anything I’ve read before by Will Dean and it’s quite a difficult book to review without giving away any spoilers.

I’ve been cruising for years, having been fortunate enough to enjoy the Caribbean and most of the Mediterranean on board some absolutely incredible cruise ships, so I was a little hesistant at first about reading a book set on a ship. However, as I haven’t tried a transatlantic cruise yet, I wasn’t overly concerned and luckily this hasn’t put me off future cruises!

The Last Passenger is narrated by Caz (Caroline) Ripley, a 49 year old woman, who is going on her first ever cruise with her boyfriend Pete from Southampton to New York. Hoping this could be a romantic getaway which may lead to an engagement, Caz is excited, yet nervous for her maiden voyage.

Having enjoyed her first night aboard the RMS Atlantica, she wakes up the next morning, Pete is missing, his luggage and watch are still there, but upon further investigation it appears that EVERYONE is missing, all cabins are abandoned, all passengers and crew have vanished into thin air, leaving her lost, alone and very, very frightened.

Ahhhh…. I really wish I could say more, but that would absolutely ruin the story for you, but suffice to say, this is a fast paced thriller which kept me glued to my kindle screen.

If you can suspend your belief for the duration of the book and literally just go with the flow, you should enjoy THE LAST PASSENGER which is full of twists, turns and action.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

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