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Poison Orchids

3.94  ·  Rating details ·  3,025 ratings  ·  303 reviews
A dark, compelling new thriller from bestselling authors Sarah A. Denzil and Anni Taylor

Young backpackers Gemma and Hayley arrive at a remote mango farm, out of money and desperate for work. The farm's owner, Tate Llewellyn, welcomes them in with open arms. An enigmatic, wealthy chemist, Tate spends his days running his hobby farm and cultivating rare orchids in his greenh
Kindle Edition, 428 pages
Published May 20th 2019 by Amazon Digital Services (first published May 13th 2019)
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Average rating 3.94  · 
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 ·  3,025 ratings  ·  303 reviews

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When Gemma met English girl, Hayley in Sydney, the enticing brochure of a mango farm in the Northern Territory, not far from Katherine, seemed exciting. But with little money, the girls decided to hitchhike. A long way, but eventually they arrived. The farm was a happy place – the backpackers who picked the fruit seemed to delight in their work, and soon Gemma and Hayley joined in. It was exhausting but satisfying work. The owner, Tate Llewellyn, made sure his staff had leisure time at the nearb ...more
Apr 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
Gemma and Hayley. Two very different girls. Hayley a backpacker from England, Gemma from Sydney. Both wanting to escape the sleazy boss of the Sydney bar where they work, they seize on a brochure offering fun and work in sunny northern Australia on a mango farm. It looks idyllic and so it seems at first but something is just a bit off key with the people working there and the owner, handsome, wealthy Tate Llewellyn seems too good to be true.

Some weeks later Gemma and Hayley are seen by a tanker
Mandy White
Wow, that was so good! Loved that it was set in outback Australia. I couldn't get enough of the story. Great characters and brilliant story 🤗
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
4.5 stars.

This book by British author Denzil was co-written with Australian author Anni Taylor. This was really, really good. Two young backpackers - Hayley and Gemma, are picked up on a highway late one night looking battered and bloody. They are taken to hospital. They appear to have escaped the clutches of a vicious man who kept them in squalid captivity. But, on being interviewed, their stories were quite inconsistent and the authorities - Senior Detective Bronwen McKay and psychologist Mega
Natalie M
Apr 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A dark and deep character driven psychological thriller!

Wow, what a twisted tale this co-authored novel weaves. The difficulty of telling a tale across time periods was very easy to follow and the story unfolded layer by layer.

The setting and plot are unique. Set in the Northern Territory of Australia, amidst magnificent scenery, is a mango farm, and as is so common, the prerequisite backpacker fruit pickers. Add in a dashing young tycoon with an interest in chemistry, and there the mind games b
Andreia ❤The Butterfly Lover❤
Good but not superb! If you like this, you may like The Doctor, although I think the second is darker and better. ...more
Jan 17, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
I’m a big fan of Sarah A. Denzil’s books so was just as eager to read Poison Orchids which she has co written with Anni Taylor. It didn’t disappoint and has introduced a new author to me, having not heard of Anni Taylor before.

The beginning of this story grabbed be right away. I was dying to know more about Gemma and Hayley and what had happened to them. I was cheering Megan on in being able to get to the bottom of just what had happened with their time at the farm.

The story starts off with both
Jun 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: kindle-read
Setting: Northern Territory, Australia; present day. This was a great collaboration between Derbyshire author Sarah Denzil and Australian author Anni Taylor - both of which are authors with whom I am familiar. What appears to be a straightforward case when two young women are found battered and bruised at an isolated roadside location becomes so much more when their stories about their captivity do not tally. The common denominator appears to be a mango farm, run by the son of a millionaire phar ...more
Jun 24, 2019 rated it did not like it
Life's too short for bad books.

Great premise, poor execution.
 Li'l Owl
Apr 21, 2020 rated it it was amazing

⁣The long-haul driver squints at the milky haze created by his headlights and spots two teenage girls. But the figures are swallowed up by the dark again.
His eyes are playing tricks—surely. He's been on the road too long tonight. No one would be out here in the middle of this lonely highway. Must have been an effect of the heat and rain. The bucketing showers of the past hour have subsided to a drizzle, and he can almost hear steam hissing from the hot road. January is in the wet season
May 28, 2019 rated it liked it
Good book but bad police work

The story was good, but I can’t help but feel like these were the dumbest police officers that were on the case. It never occurred to them that the head of the mango farm, who everyone calls The Chemist and is in big time pharma, may be experimenting on his workers???
Sharah McConville
Jul 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Such an exciting story! I will be looking for more books written by Anni and Sarah.
Heather *Undercover Goth Queen*
Interesting idea, but it got kind of messy at the end. 2.5 stars.
Aug 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
Twisty! Exciting! Addictive! Thrilling! Suspenseful! Keeps you guessing! Everything you could want in a psychological thriller with a HUGE, unexpected twist.
Heather B
The most I can say about this one is that it was... fine. It was a bit of a bait and switch, to be honest.

Haley and Gemma are found on the side of the road, bruised and bloody. The man they were running from, their captor, is dead. The truck driver who happened upon them and saved them is badly injured. When police begin investigating, they find a house of horror. There are corpses everywhere, all frozen in a fairly gruesome tableau. At this point I was pretty interested in the story.

The story w
Barbara Williams
Jun 30, 2019 rated it it was ok
Deadly cults: Not for me

I am sorry to say but this was not a book for me. It really was a story of a psychopathic cult leader and I actually I ended up skimming through more than half. Long, drawn out and confusing.
Aug 15, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really liked this. The plot was intense and really interesting, following the events that circled two female victims who have two completely different recollections of their experience with a psychopath in addition to evidence that don't match either stay.

I couldn't put it down and I finished listening to 12 hours worth of this book in just three days. However, while it was definitely a memorable and enjoyable read, I didn't really love the characters. Aside the psychologist, I did think that
Ben McBride
Feb 08, 2020 rated it really liked it
Readers beware this book is dark! You read the synopsis and think it’s gonna be dark, and it gets darker! If you can handle it, it’s a great story with a ton of suspense. Great A Ha moments and an ending you probably won’t see coming.
Dawn Lawrence (Australian_Crime_Junkie)
Firstly thanks to the authors for providing this ARC in exchange for my honest review, I appreciate it. I am a fan of both authors so was excited to read it. I was not disappointed!

I really enjoyed this book, there was so many levels to it. I thought this was going to be a backpacker type murder like Wolf Creek but oh my goodness there is so much more to it. It's full of mystery, darkness, evil and suspense.

This story was fascinating, it kept me engaged right the way through the book. I read it
May 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Backpackers Gemma and Hayley arrive for work as fruit pickers on a remote mango farm in Australia, everyone looks so happy and they think they have found heaven, but in reality they have found hell.
I've gone back and forth between 3 and 4 stars several times, and finally settled on 3... I loved the first half of the book... but once things started to be revealed, it seemed like just too much for me. I couldn't wrap my brain around it and I didn't really like any of the characters anymore at that point. I am ok with unrealistic writing... but I need the unrealistic to come across as believable and it just wasn't believable to me.

On the other hand, one thing I loved was the epilogue/ending..
Oct 22, 2019 rated it liked it
3.5 stars. interesting and strange psychological thriller with lots of unexpected twists and ureliable narrators. I enjoyed the first 3/4 of this a lot, then it went so crazy in the last 1/4 and dragged on a bit longer than it really needed to, so I had to knock off a half star.
Lady Delacour
The Poison Orchids
is a Horror Mystery.
Need to be shorter,
and not so far fetched.
2 Barely Ok Stars.
Listened with TTS.
Foul Language.
Jul 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I came across this book as I was browsing books. The cover caught my eye and I had to know what it was about. The synopsis sounded interesting so I went for it. This book is one wild ride! I gave up trying to figure out things and just enjoyed the rollercoaster ride. Gemma and Hayley are found on the side of the road at night. Each tell their side of the story but it’s obvious to detectives that there’s more to what happened to them. As the story unfolds with each chapter, you realize nothing is ...more
Jun 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
The book opens with a truck driver seeing two teenage girls running across a highway to get away from a man. He crashes the truck trying to avoid them, the girls are rescued and taken to a hospital. While Gemma and Hayley are recovering, they tell the detectives a bizarre and horrible story. But their stories don't quite match...

The book is three sections: the aftermath of the accident in the hospital, then three months prior when the girls arrived at the mango farm, then the present. It dragged
Jan 27, 2020 rated it really liked it
This book really took me by surprise. It's been a while since I read a thriller.
It was really gripping, after the first few chapters I didn't want to put it down, I just wanted to find out what was going on and how everything will end. I also didn't know what to expect for most of this book. There were a few things at the end, some small details that were a bit predictable, but for the most part I was really surprised by the twists in this.
Towards the end I did feel like some things were a bit
Dec 19, 2019 rated it it was ok
DNF so the 2 is on the generous side. But I hate to give 1, besides I managed to reach just over 10% so there is that.

The story starts with a great idea, and then that's it. The characters are flat, uninteresting, and I couldn't relate to them. Half the time I wasn't even sure who was who. For me, it was just one long tell without things/events/people/scenes fitting together.

I love thrillers/crime/etc but this one is not for me, sorry.
Aug 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
4.5 that-was-a-lot-of-plot stars. When I saw Sarah Denzil’s name on this book, I bought it and began reading it completely blind. I didn’t read the blurb, still haven’t, but what a ride. If I’m being picky, the one thing that bothered me is how long it took the cops to “get it”. Usually in a book that’s a big thing, but there is so much going on here (in the best way), it holds only a fraction of the weight it usually would.

I guess I’ll be going over to Anni Taylor’s page and add her books to my
Stacey (bookishpursuit)

The idea of an Australian farm that lures wanderers in to use as guinea pigs for a memory erasing, and brainwashing drug is an interesting one. It felt reminiscent of Charles Mansion but in the Australian outback with technology. It was engaging and thrilling enough that I wanted to keep listening. But the book was held back by issues like, some immature and not believable pieces, and a few elements that were prematurely released. It had some over the top good elements though too. It’s worth
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Sarah A. Denzil is a Wall Street Journal bestselling suspense writer. She is also known as young adult author Sarah Dalton.

Sarah lives in Yorkshire with her partner, enjoying the scenic countryside and rather unpredictable weather.

She is the author of international bestselling psychological thriller SILENT CHILD, which topped the bestseller lists on Amazon in the US, UK and Australia.

You can rea

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“She let the petals drop through her fingers. “People romanticise stars. They’re just hot-as-hell suns. Not centaurs. Not twinkling little jewels to wish upon. Just suns.” 1 likes
“For a moment, she thought she was crying too. But then she realised she was just humming.
Finally, she could hear the farm.
A snippet of a song played in her head. One of the songs she always heard blasting over the farm’s loudspeakers. A song about summer days under the sun. She could really hear it. She could feel the warm, sultry air on her skin, and she wasn’t cold anymore.
The air was always yellow at the farm.
Golden yellow.”
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