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The Guilty Party

3.13  ·  Rating details ·  1,737 ratings  ·  273 reviews
On a night out, four friends witness a stranger in trouble. They decide to do nothing to help.

Later, a body washes up on the banks of the Thames – and the group realises that ignoring the woman has left blood on their hands.

But why did each of them refuse to step in? Why did none of them want to be noticed that night? Who is really responsible?

And is it possible that the
...more
Kindle Edition, 384 pages
Published March 7th 2019 by HQ
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Average rating 3.13  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,737 ratings  ·  273 reviews


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Maureen
Feb 03, 2020 rated it liked it
This is an elegantly written book, with a clever, intricate plot and well-drawn characters; so why did I give a sigh of relief when I came to the end? Because reading it made me feel utterly depressed.

Four thirtyish Londoners, three of them on very good incomes, attend the Wapping Festival. The fourth member of the Group (which is what they call themselves) is Cassie, the main storyteller. She is in a dead-end job and flat-shares in a tatty apartment overlooking the bus station. However, she is
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Ivana - Diary of Difference
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A mystery that left me curious until the very end. A psychological paradise of a thriller that captures people at their very worst, right when they realise their lives are at stake. These people did nothing. But that doesn’t mean they’re innocent…

Four friends are returning from a festival, and they see a woman being raped in the forest. They all decide to do nothing about it. A few days later, her body is found in the river. Are they guilty
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Amanda
Feb 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley
When friends Cassie, Anna, Bo and Rex are at a music festival they witness an assault on a woman and do nothing about it. What motivates them to keep silent?

All 4 friends go away for the weekend to celebrate Bo’s birthday. They are a strange group of friends who had dated one another but then became close friends over the years. Well I say friends but at times are more like frenemies?
Quote “Ties between us had always carried the seeds of rottenness and destruction”

I loved the way this was writt
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Ken
Jul 15, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A snap judgment by four friends who’d decided to ignore a sexual assault they had all witnessed after attending a summer music festival in Wapping, reuniting a month later the group learn that the women’s body has been found washed up on the banks of the Thames.
But why did they choose not to help?

The story jumps between the four friends POVs both in the lead up to the festival and the subsequent fallout a month later...

As much as I disliked all the characters in this book, it was quite fitting h
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Mark
Feb 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
An unsettling dark book that basically returns again and again to the main theme ‘what would YOU do’?
4 friends are on a night out when they witness a rape....instinctively they all ‘want’ to report it, for various reasons though one by one they dont....this decision then follows them forward and comes to a head when they go for a long weekend away to Portland (!)
The 4 have been friends from uni and the book cleverly uncovers things they are all aware about each other but as they are so close the
...more
Whispering Stories
Mar 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
Book Reviewed by Stacey on www.whisperingstories.com

Sunday 14th August – After leaving a music festival and getting split up from one another, long term friends Cassie, Anna, Bo and Dex all meet up again in the early hours in a church grounds. Not far away they see a woman being assaulted and what looks like being raped. Although Cassie wants to help the other friends all persuade her to do nothing and tell her that it is probably just two people having a ‘good time’. They walk away offering no
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Deborah
Feb 19, 2019 rated it it was ok
2.5*


This book sounded fabulous and I was positively giddy as I settled in to read it but...

It soon became apparent that this wouldn’t be the book I’d expected. The four main characters are selfish, self-centred and just plain unlikeable. This is obviously deliberately done but it made it a hard read for me. I struggle with any book where I don’t like at least one of the characters.

The writing style takes a bit of getting used to. You have to read the headers. On several occasions I had to skip b
...more
Sarah
May 02, 2019 rated it did not like it
This book was a big let down. I’m surprised I actually got to the end of it as it was that rubbish. I couldn’t stand any of the characters, the story didn’t make sense most of the time and it was just so badly written. I don’t recommend this book and I’m so glad I’ve finished it.
Richard
Jun 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: own
Thank you Mel; all your hard work paid off this is a wonderful book.
At a time when the latest trend in bookshops seems to be about lies, deceitful relationships and prompting questions about our family, neighbours, a book emerges, to eclipse them all.
Mel McGrath does not even have to introduce Lying into her title, yet her novel is riddled with falsehoods and half truths. She is a first class writer who takes her time crafting her storytelling. This latest book is rooted in her beloved London bu
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Lou
Mar 07, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm a real sucker for novels that are both thrilling but also explore loftier themes, and this is a perfect example of that. It follows a group of wealthy Oxford-educated, morally-dubious individuals who befriend a poorer gifted student and she joins their friendship group. The characters are stereotypically what you imagine affluent, upper-class girls to be like - self-absorbed, selfish and rather annoying; I would've really liked McGrath to have reversed this and at least made one of them mora ...more
Amber
Jul 05, 2019 rated it did not like it
DNF ! It’s so very rare that I don’t see a book through to the end BUT I’m on holidays and could not waste time when there are so many books that await . The concept had promise but this book had no flow, was jerkily written and it’s sequence messy . Unlikeable 2 dimensional characters added to my disappointment. It is good to see that others enjoyed this book but it wasn’t for me.
Deborah
Feb 19, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
2.5*


This book sounded fabulous and I was positively giddy as I settled in to read it but...

It soon became apparent that this wouldn’t be the book I’d expected. The four main characters are selfish, self-centred and just plain unlikeable. This is obviously deliberately done but it made it a hard read for me. I struggle with any book where I don’t like at least one of the characters.

The writing style takes a bit of getting used to. You have to read the headers. On several occasions I had to skip b
...more
Etienne
Oct 28, 2019 rated it it was ok
What would you do? That is a «topic» of the book. Well I would surely take a lot less stupid decision that is for sure! The characters are dumb, very superficial, jealous of each others and just not interesting. The story start with a situation where the characters decision just didn't make any sense at all an it continue on with that all the way in. Just in case you didn't notice yet, I didn't like it at all! Still give it a fair two stars because the writing is alright for this kind of book, n ...more
Megan Jones
Apr 13, 2019 rated it did not like it

On a night out, four friends witness a stranger in trouble. They decide to do nothing to help. Later, a body washes up on the banks of the Thames – and the group realises that ignoring the woman has left blood on their hands. But why did each of them refuse to step in? Why did none of them want to be noticed that night? Who is really responsible?

I cannot remember the last time I gave a book one star but there was absolutely nothing that I liked or enjoyed about this book. The premise sounded pro
...more
Liz Barnsley
Dec 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
The Guilty Party is a twisted psychological thriller and tense character driven drama focusing on a group of four friends, who one night witness a brutal attack yet choose to do nothing. But what motivates their silence?
This is a devilishly clever novel in it’s construction as the history and toxic friendship, reliance and turning a blind eye that haunts this seemingly tight knit group starts coming to light. Mel McGrath plays beautifully with hindsight, memory and the ties that bind as one by o
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Amanda - Mrs B's Book Reviews
*https://mrsbbookreviews.wordpress.com
3.5 stars
‘I read somewhere that a body turns up every week in the Thames and if every one of the drowned appeared in the news there would be stories all the time. All the same, it hardly seems possible that a young woman can exit this twenty-first century world without leaving any virtual ghost of her former self.’

Toxic friendships, chances are we have been touched by these at some point in our lives. Mel McGrath’s psychological thriller, The Guilty Party ta
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Julie Lacey
Mar 04, 2019 rated it really liked it
This was quite an addictive book as I just had to know what really happened.
Four friends witness a shocking crime one evening, but all decide to turn a blind eye.
You find out gradually through the book why each person did nothing, and so the story is told from different narratives.
None of the characters are particularly likeable but you still want to know why!
There are some real breath taking moments as the stories are told but you need to pay attention to the different time periods being ta
...more
Dee
Mar 27, 2019 rated it did not like it
There aren’t words strong enough to describe how much I loathed this story and its characters.
Laura
Feb 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely loved this cleverly plotted novel which kept me guessing throughout and featured some memorable – if not hugely likeable - characters! Bound tightly by ‘friendship’ (though author Mel McGrath definitely makes the reader start to wonder quite how much they really care about eachother.

I love the premise – that four friends witness a shocking crime one evening, but all – for reasons yet to be unearthed – unspeakingly decide to turn a blind eye. What follows is an excellently absorbing
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Joanne Robertson
Mar 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
I absolutely love books that are full of characters who fill you with emotions. It doesn’t matter if I love them or hate them as long as I find them utterly intriguing! The Guilty Party featured a group of friends that I’m glad were no friends of mine as they were the most awful bunch of people! This self obsessed and narcissistic group of friends are out at a festival when they all witness a deplorable act of violence but not one of them steps forward to help the victim. And as the answers to m ...more
Esther Lui
**** I received an Advanced Reader Copy by Harper Collins and in exchange I am writing my honest review. *****

Ok. Firstly, I was very excited to read an actual physical ARC. On top of that, it’s a thriller so I was stoked! I jumped right into it and I was so sure I would enjoy it. Unfortunately, that was not the case.

Here’s the plot:

Four friends each witness a stranger in trouble and decide not to help. Then, they find out that a body has been washed up and they know they habe blood on their ha
...more
Norrie
Feb 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
Do you enjoy hating on the characters you are reading about, secretly hoping they will fail? Well, look no further, because this book was written for you!

Reading this book was like watching those TV series that have every episode end with a nail biting cliffhanger. I could not stop reading! The more I read, the more questions I had.

Cassie, Bo, Anna and Dex have known each other since uni, and always considered themselves close friends, even though frenemies would be a way better term to describe
...more
Rachel Gilbey
Mar 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
The question you will be asking yourself throughout this book from the moment the key occurrence happened is - what would I do in the same situation?

Cassandra and her 3 three friends all witnessed something horrible, but none of them stepped in and tried to help, or even rung the police. They all stood back and were party to it.

The book is told from the four viewpoints, with Cassie's voice being the main one. We see the happenings of that fateful night, play back in reverse, from all the friend
...more
Chris C
Apr 08, 2019 rated it did not like it
I really wanted to like this book. The premise was interesting and suspense/thriller books are probably my Number 1 genre. Unfortunately, The Guilty Party has become one of a very few books in that genre to leave me absolutely cold.

I can't really speak too much on the plot as it all intertwines as the story progresses. Cassie, who I suppose is our main character, and her 3 friends witness a violent rape and do nothing to stop it.

That happens at the very beginning of the book and sets up what I c
...more
Abantika(hiltonjenkin)
Mar 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc, thriller, suspence, crime
Follow my blog for more posts: hjbookblog
The Guilty Party is a character driven novel, that revolves around four friends Cassie, Anna, Bo and Dex. They were inseparable but the ties between them had always carried “the seeds of rottenness and destruction”.

When the four friends go away for the weekend to celebrate Bo’s birthday, they witness an assault on a woman, but do nothing about it. But why do they refuse to step in?


The story starts with Cassie’s pov and then alters with third person povs f
...more
Miriam Smith (A Mother’s Musings)
“The Guilty Party” is written by Mel McGrath, bestselling author of the popular psychological thriller “Give Me the Child”.
“On a night out, four friends each witness a stranger in trouble. One by one, they each decide to do nothing to help. Later, a body washes up on the banks of the Thames – and each member of the group knows that ignoring the victim has left blood on their hands. But why did each of them refuse to step in? Why did none of them want to be noticed that night? Who is really respo
...more
Catherine Bassett
Jul 15, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This is easily one of the worst plots I've ever read. It's downright silly. I finished it because it was making me laugh and I wanted to see what insanity would close it out. ...more
Zoé-lee O'farrell
Dec 12, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-2020
I am not quite sure what I feel about this book. I found it intriguing how the death of one person affected four people and you knew it hit at least one of them hard because the death was completely at the forefront of the book. At some points I found it was a bit much, we know someone had died but we don’t need it mentioned on nearly every page. However, I guess when you have seen that person on the night they have died, maybe it would play on your mind, maybe you would become obsessed with it ...more
Rachel Hall
Jul 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Adroitly plotted psycho thriller with a moral quagmire at its core.. riveting exploration of morals.

The Guilty Party is an utterly riveting psychological thriller with depth and substance and unlike a large proportion of the genre the question at issue is something which should unite readers as it explores the very essence of morality. When four thirty-something university friends whose bonds go back fifteen years to the time they shared together at Oxford attend a music festival and bear witnes
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Karen
Jun 12, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2019
I was so excited to read this book, but it did not match my expectations from reading the summary. I did not like any of the characters and none had any redeeming qualities. I think we were supposed to like Cassie, but I didn't even like her character. In my opinion, all were selfish, unlikable people. I really had to push myself to finish this book. ...more
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Mel McGrath is an award-winning writer of non-fiction and crime novels. She is an experienced journalist, broadcaster, teacher, event organizer and speaker, with particular interests in London, literature, crime, feminism and psychology.
As M.J. McGrath she writes the acclaimed Edie Kiglatuk series of Arctic mysteries, White Heat, The Boy in the Snow and The Boneseeker. As Melanie McGrath she wro
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