A Quiet Retreat by Kiersten Modglin

Published: October 31, 2022

Kiersten Modglin

Genre: Psychological Thriller

KKECReads Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

I received a copy of this book for free, and I leave my review voluntarily.

Kiersten Modglin is an Amazon Top 10 bestselling author of psychological thrillers and a member of International Thriller Writers, Novelists, Inc., and the Alliance of Independent Authors. Kiersten is a KDP Select All-Star and a recipient of ThrillerFix’s Best Psychological Thriller Award, Suspense Magazine’s Best Book of 2021 Award, a 2022 Silver Falchion for Best Suspense, and a 2022 Silver Falchion for Best Overall Book of 2021. She grew up in rural western Kentucky and later relocated to Nashville, Tennessee, where she now lives with her husband, daughter, and their two Boston terriers: Cedric and Georgie. Kiersten’s work is currently being translated into multiple languages, and readers across the world refer to her as ‘The Queen of Twists.’ A Netflix addict, Shonda Rhimes superfan, psychology fanatic, and indoor enthusiast, Kiersten enjoys rainy days spent with her nose in a book.

You are cordially invited to visit the new Black Hills Manor Writing Retreat.

That’s how it all begins—with a simple invitation.

For five authors, it’s meant to be the start of a restful week, filled with free food, drinks, and likeminded company.
But shortly after their arrival, things take an unsettling turn.

Broken property, missing items, and strange noises are just some of the odd occurrences that have each member questioning their companions. As suspicions mount, the authors are pitted against each other.

Whom can they trust in a house full of strangers?

With tensions rising, the writers find themselves in the middle of their own mystery. Death, terror, and despair are common elements in their books, but at Black Hills Manor, the murders being plotted are their own.

“The monster’s inside the house.”

Five authors receive an invitation that seems too good to be true but impossible to pass up. An inclusive week at a beautiful home in the woods, where they will have everything they need to work on their novels. Peace, serenity, companionship of like-minded fellows, and nothing else to focus on. Things are going well until this dream retreat quickly becomes a nightmare.

OKAY, KIERSTEN SPOOKY MODGLIN. I really think our Queen of twists has a hidden talent for writing horror plots because this book was scary! Very reminiscent of Just Married (IYKYK).

The characters are an interesting mix of genres, close enough to be colleagues but not quite competition. Blakely is our main narrator, and she is a writer on a mission. She has baggage we don’t get to know and a secretive darkness that keeps her interesting. Tennessee Rivers is another character we meet right away, and he definitely puts you on alarm. Then we have Daniel, the most successful and well-known of the group. He reminded me of Stephen King in a lot of ways. Wise, experienced, and ready to work. Lyra is another big name that is kind but not overly so. Then we have sweet Aidy, who really seems happy to be in the presence of such accomplishment with the other four authors.

I loved the insight into writing we get; KMod pulled a very Wizard of Oz peeks behind the curtain with this one. We are immediately drawn into the storyline, which is told with alternating timelines and perspectives.

Things start to happen pretty quickly, and as you would imagine, it’s not as easy to spook Thriller Writers when things begin to go missing and tensions in the house rise.

The delicately laid twist is being laid from the beginning, and again in proper KMod form, we don’t realize the little details that are significant until we are smacked in the face with relevance.

I loved how emotionally driven this book was. It is a very different mood for a KMod book. Dark and twisty, great characters and a plot you’ll never detangle is a given. But the characters each have something they would prefer to keep to themselves.

This was dark and had years of anger and emotion to deal with. And the delivery was flawless. I was on the edge of my seat the entire time.

Something we love about KMod is her talent for dropping Easter eggs in her writing. Sometimes it’s very obvious, and other times it’s not. She delivers the most incredible Easter egg in this novel, which had me immediately screaming into her DMs because I had so many feelings.

This book felt like KMod embracing the darkness and the edginess a lot more, and I really enjoyed that. She was able to create some terrifying situations and present some scary moments in the rawest and most vulnerable way.

I devoured this book in hours, and as soon as it hit my inbox, I was diving in. This is peak Kiersten. The passion, the talent, and the incredible storytelling leap from the pages and hold you hostage.

You will definitely think twice about accepting a beautiful stay in the woods after reading this book.

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