Book Review: One Last Question by Mike Pattenden

What’s it like to age gracefully? And how does friendship stand the test of time? Find out in this latest review.

Goodreads Blurb

Every year the Boys plan a weekend away. A weekend of drinking, laughter and mickey-taking by the sea – it’s been a tradition of the six of them for as more years than they can remember. Now, suddenly, the six has become five. Will – clever, funny, dependable Will – has died.

In the months leading up to his death, Will plans the next Boys’ weekend, knowing he will be unable to be there with them. As always he researches the place, books the accommodation, and prepares his brainmelter quiz – the quiz that slots neatly into the drinking, laughing and mickey-taking and which is the centrepiece to the annual weekend away.

Now, the remaining Boys assemble in the house by the sea in Dungeness that Will has booked for them. Already grappling with the grief of losing their friend, the Boys are dreading pressing play on the video, and when they do, their grief turns to horror as Will slowly reveals secrets about each of them in a series of increasingly provocative questions.

During their stay the group has become entangled with a volatile local steroid dealer and his abused sister and when he challenges the group once more, just as they face the fallout from the quiz, there are dramatic and disastrous consequences.

One Last Question Book Cover

Review

I liked One Last Question on one level but was disappointed on another. What really stood out for me was the friendship dynamic between the group. The loss of Will was, of course, a big chunk of the story and the author did a great job of showing the individual loss plus the loss as a group as a key member. They also brought together wonderfully five very different personalities, in a way that makes the reader believe in this friendship. Saying that, these differing personalities also add to the tension of the story, leaving the reader on edge, turning though the pages at speed.

Speaking of tension, we also have the sub-story of Damon, a slightly unhinged and dangerous man living next to the Boys’ holiday home. I don’t want to provide any spoilers as to Damon’s role in One Last Question. But what I will say is that he was the most interesting character and the one that brings the most action to this book.

While One Last Question was an easy read, and an interesting one at that, I feel it didn’t live up to the blurb. For me, the blurb promises secrets revealed and a building tension throughout the book. Sadly, you don’t get that until too near the end of the book. I felt it would have been a much better read if things unravelled slowly through the chapters instead of happening almost all at once at the end.

Saying that, I did enjoy One Last Question. If you would like to form your own opinion on it, you can pick up a copy of the book here.

I was sent a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

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