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Publisher's Summary

An Amazon Charts bestseller.

A missing child. A desperate mother. And a house full of secrets.

Two years ago, Julia lost her family in a tragic accident. Her husband drowned trying to save their daughter, Lily, in the river near their rural home. But the little girl’s body was never found - and Julia believes Lily is somehow still alive.

Alone and broke, Julia opens her house as a writers’ retreat. One of the first guests is Lucas, a horror novelist, who becomes obsessed with finding out what happened to Lily. But within days of his arrival, the peace of the retreat is shattered by a series of eerie events.

When Lucas’s investigation leads him and Julia into the woods, they discover a dark secret - a secret that someone will do anything to protect...

What really happened that day by the river? Why was Lily never found? And who, or what, is haunting the retreat?

From the bestselling author of Follow You Home and The Magpies comes his most terrifying novel yet.

©2018 Mark Edwards (P)2018 Brilliance Publishing, Inc., all rights reserved.

What listeners say about The Retreat

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  • Overall
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Psychological mystery well done

Really enjoyed this one, enthralling writing, the mystery kept me on the edge with action packed twists. Not less important, it was a superb narration!

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Best narrator

This was by far the most enjoyable narration I’ve experienced so far. The story kept me intrigued and Simon’s voice and portrayal of the various accents, made listening for extended periods, delightful and exciting.
Lots of twists and turns to this one and didn’t see the ending coming.

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  • Jo
  • 2018-10-06

sum is greater than its parts.

I loved this story and it's perfect with Halloween approaching. It was fun/scary not scary/scary. There are some real gems in Mr Edward's writing, little snippets that grab me. My favorite was (and this is from my poor memory banks) 'the tension was thick between them, like 2 scissors fighting'

76 people found this helpful

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  • Jean Marie
  • 2018-05-29

Amazing book !!!

Best story and narration in a long while. If you like mystery with a bit of haunted house spookyness here it is!!! Simply fantastic!!!!!

48 people found this helpful

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  • Debra R. Bianchi
  • 2018-11-07

Entertaining, but predictable.

Very Agatha Christie, which is always a great story but I found it predictable. Similar settings, more modern of course, but a very traditional whodunnit.
The character descriptions and build up were well done.

31 people found this helpful

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 2018-05-23

couldn't stop listening finished this in 2 days !!

loved it couldn't stop listening, i was on the edge of my seat too know will happen next!!! 😁😁

30 people found this helpful

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  • CHERYL M Clarke
  • 2018-06-10

Mark Edwards does it again!

I try to make my audible books last, but when the suspense builds, I must keep reading. This was a most enjoyable listen. The idea of a retreat in the woods, an old urban legend and missing children are a recipe for great entertainment. I'm excited to note the next book will be out in October. I can't wait to order it.

29 people found this helpful

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  • Wayne
  • 2018-05-20

Better than I expected!

The protagonist, Lucas, is a writer who goes to a secluded new writer's retreat on the River Dee in the north of Wales. I'm not a fan of author Mark Edwards whose writing is horribly inconsistent except for the excellent suspense novels he has coauthored with Louise Voss. I usually skip his books of which he is the sole author, but my wife and I lived in Chester, England in a flat on the River Dee during the mid-1990's while my job took our plants England and the north of Wales . I have also visited the north of Wales for extended stays many times beginning in 1974 and ending when I retired 30 years later and have a strong fondness for the area and the people there. The border between England and Wales in the Chester area is defined by the River Dee before it cuts westward into Wales.

The quality of this psychological thriller, The Retreat, is unusually good compared to most of Mark Edwards novels. The narration is better than the novel.

25 people found this helpful

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  • Trish R.
  • 2018-10-23

Good read and not-so-good narration..



Overall, I thought this was a pretty good mystery, with an incredible ending. I never saw that coming.

It was about an urban legend and witch that took a kid every 35 years and did whatever with it. Parents told their children about the witch and then they grew up and they told their kids and some were just not sure that it was a made-up story.

Anyway, this was about Lily, who was thought to have fallen in the river and her father who jumped in trying to find her, and he drowned. Leaving wife and mother Julia to mourn both of them. Julia did mourn her husband but for she refused to mourn a daughter whose body they never found in the water.

I thought that opening her home two years later as a writers retreat was a good idea. That’s when Lucas turned up, as well as 3 other writers: Max Lake, Suzi Hastings and Karen Holden. Max could be a jerk sometimes but they were all pretty good secondary characters.

Lucas and Julia ended up falling in love and there was a short graphic sex scene involved.

And the F-bomb was used 15 times.

As to the narrator: Simon Mattacks was good when it came to men’s voices and his emotions were good but his female voices truly sucked. There’s nothing worse than a little girl who sounds like a man, I don’t care what the other reviewers say. Practice, Mr. Mattacks.

This was a free read and free listen. Well worth my time.

21 people found this helpful

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  • K. Bliss
  • 2018-05-15

Great mystery

Love how this book made you constantly wonder if the old town folklore was true and there was a horrible witch or if there could be a realistic and yet equally horrible explanation for tragedy in a small town. I loved the characters and the entire storyline. I have read all of Mark Edward books. Magpies is my favorite but this is a fantastic book as well.

20 people found this helpful

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  • Lizzystick
  • 2018-09-17

Even though its implausible , I liked it

Entertaining mystery set in Wales, the story is implausible but fairly satisfying. Was entertained till the end and the narration was really good.

17 people found this helpful

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  • CAP
  • 2018-09-18

fantastic classic mystery

This was my first Mark Edwards book, and it was fantastic. The narrator was top notch, and really brought so much depth to the characters. He also did a good job with the female voices, which can be tricky. The story was a wonderful mystery that kept me wondering until the end. I highly recommend this book!

14 people found this helpful