Paradise Prison by Faith Mortimer

Synopsis: During a huge row, Gillian stands up to her abusive boyfriend. The consequences are horrendous and far-reaching. Terrified, she flees her home, seeking anonymity abroad while coming to terms with the outcome of her actions.

In Portugal, Gillian meets Harry, a yachtsman, needing crew for his Atlantic Ocean-crossing. She applies for the job. Half-way into the journey, after confessing to her crime, Harry offers her refuge on an uninhabited island in the Caribbean which he says he owns.

Confused and depressed, Gillian imagines this is the answer to her problems. She needs time to lie low and consider her options; confront the authorities or live in obscurity? Harry is offering the perfect hiding place…or is he? When things start going horribly wrong, she asks herself if she is alone on the island. But maybe the biggest question of all is why she gets the gut feeling Harry wants to keep her there at all costs? What happens when she says … no.

Kat’s Rating: 5/5

Kat’s Review: I read a lot of books and the majority of the time you get a real feel for the way a book is going. I also find that sometimes if I read too much of the same type of story, you attention wanders so having finished a decidedly fluffy and romantic book I decided to get stuck into this book which is the first of Faith Mortimer’s I have read. When I started reading I thought I knew where the book would go, however not only was I hugely incorrect in my assumption I was kind of blown away with where it did go. I won’t say too much as I don’t want to spoil it for anybody reading it for the first time as I was.

Gillian is our lead character and in the opening of the book we see how terrified Gillian is whilst in an extremely abusive relationship. When Gillian stands up to her boyfriend, she has no clue just how much she has changed the course of her life and she then decides to do the only thing she can…run! While in Portugal she meets Harry, who is a Yachtsman needing crew hands. Gillian manages to bag herself the ideal job and once aboard her and Harry get along famously. He then offers her the opportunity to spend time at an island in the Caribbean and it seems to be the answer to her prayers.

The book held my interest from the very beginning and the most striking thing was how original it was reading it. Partly down to great timing and having not read anything of this type for a while, as well as excellent writing skills and characters that were certainly memorable. Gillian was such an interesting character to read about and I think that was part of my real intrigue with this book as she was written in such a way that she was so readable. She has had some seriously damaging incidents in her past and I was rooting for her, with that added edge of wondering what sort of life she will end up leading.

There is a VERY dark edge to this book and I think although that edge was there from the beginning it crept up on me and as the book progressed I was pretty gripped. I felt like I was watching a film where you know the main character shouldn’t be going into a dark basement, especially when they start playing the music to accompany something terrifying happen. However, even though you have that sinking feeling you just HAVE to carry on watching, and this book manages to capture that feeling to a tee! This book really took me by surprise and I really loved it, and I would definitely recommend it for people wanting something a little bit different. I wouldn’t say its for the faint-hearted mind you, but it’s a cracking read!

I only have one minor criticism about this book and it’s the cover. The cover is not good enough to convey how great the book is. Even though we are in an age where everything is digital I still think covers are a huge part in books, and think that with a different cover it may well appeal to more readers.

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