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The Perfect Guests

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3.55  ·  Rating details ·  2,197 ratings  ·  603 reviews
The USA Today bestselling author of The Au Pair returns with another delicious, twisty novel--about a grand estate with many secrets, an orphan caught in a web of lies, and a young woman playing a sinister game.

1988. Beth Soames is fourteen years old when her aunt takes her to stay at Raven Hall, a rambling manor in the isolated East Anglian fens. The Averells, the family
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Hardcover, 284 pages
Published January 12th 2021 by Berkley Books (first published January 7th 2021)
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Lisa I don't think the reader is given enough information on that. She lived in it previously, and formed some kind of unhealthy attachment, but it wasn't …moreI don't think the reader is given enough information on that. She lived in it previously, and formed some kind of unhealthy attachment, but it wasn't brought out why to my satisfaction. (less)
Jaclyn Brande Not sure what the previous person read since there were no drugs and only very oblique references to sexual assault in this novel...

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Average rating 3.55  · 
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 ·  2,197 ratings  ·  603 reviews


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Julie
Jan 13, 2021 rated it really liked it
The Perfect Guests by Emma Rous is a 2021 Berkley publication.

Just go with it!

I loved the Au Pair, so naturally, I was very curious to see what Emma Rous would present us with next.

1988- Raven Hall

Fourteen-year-old Beth, an orphan, is brought, by her aunt, to live with the Averell’s and their daughter, Nina, who is the same age, but is never allowed to leave home. Beth desperately wants to please her new foster parents, which means getting along with Nina, which is easier said than done, somet
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Michael David
Raven Hall...a grand manor with history.

In 1988, Beth is an orphaned teenager whose aunt takes her to stay at Raven Hall with the Averells family. The parents are looking for someone who can befriend their daughter, Nina. Beth and Nina instantly hit it off and are more like sisters. Things change when Beth is asked to do a favor...a very odd favor.

In 2019, Sadie is a struggling actress who doesn’t even have enough money for this month’s rent. She finally lands a gig that offers a very nice pay
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Nilufer Ozmekik
Sep 03, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is one sit, captivating, twisty reading. You may see some twists beforehand and but some of them were still surprising that you won’t see them coming. Especially when I try to solve the complex relationships between characters I got a little lost. Several times I asked myself who was related with whom.

I have to say especially first half of the book was delightful. We’re going back and forth between the past: Beth’s arrival to Raven Hall as a companion of Averell family’s daughter Nina
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Holly  B
Jan 19, 2021 rated it liked it

This is the second book from the author of The Au Pair which I loved, but this one was a bit of a struggle for me to finish.

After reading the description of two timelines, a grand estate and a sinister game with guests, I couldn't wait to dive in. While I did enjoy the concept of the book, it just didn't grab me like I was hoping it would.

I was interested enough in the game that was playing out in the two timelines, that I wanted to see how it would wrap up.

She is an author that I will definite
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Elyse  Walters
Jack be nimble,
Jack be quick,
Jack jump over the
candlestick.

Similar as in the book *Heidi*, a young orphan girl (1980’s), is sent to be a companion for another little girl at the Raven Hall mansion.
And that’s where the similarities stop.

Years later, (2019), similar as in the book *Sarah Plain and Tall*, a young woman, answers and add.... and goes to work at Raven Hall.
And that’s where those similarities stop.

The two timeline stories connect together in this mysterious gothic twisty ‘fun &
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ScrappyMags
Shortest Summary Ever: Sadie is a wanna-be professional actress struggling to pay rent when a plum job lands in her mailbox - a murder mystery at a secluded home called Raven Hall. What could go wrong? Flashback to Beth who lived in Raven Hall as a foster child of the Averells. Beth reveals strange incidents...Sadie encounters peculiarities... are they somehow linked? What darkness lurks in the dark of Raven Hall?

Thoughts: Well... it’s twisty. It turns. But it also meanders. I loved that it was
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NZLisaM
4.5

‘Just think of it as – a little game.'

Raven Hall – A beautiful stately, yet gloomy, isolated mansion, complete with turrets, situated deep in the marshlands and fields of eastern England.

1988 – Recently orphaned 14-year-old Beth is thrilled to escape the children's home and spend the summer at Raven Hall as a companion for the owners teenage daughter. But carefree days of swimming, picnics, exploring, and fun and games soon turn into a game of a different sort. One Beth's not sure she wan
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Bridgett
Nov 24, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc
I stayed up until nearly five o'clock this morning finishing this book.

This is my first foray into Emma Rous' work, but I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised. The Perfect Guests flawlessly weaves three separate timelines, and three separate points of view...all without muddying the story. The characters were well-developed and the setting, Raven Hall, was an interesting character in its own right.

Admittedly, I think most readers will intuit the twists easily and early on, although there
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Berit☀️✨
Delectably deceiving. deeply disturbing. Deliciously dark. Emma Rous once again stretched my mind with her mesmerizing storytelling, an atmospheric story with a Gothic vibe. 1988 Beth arrives at Raven Hall hopeful that this will be her new home. The family has a daughter Nina about the same age as her and Beth is eagerly cautious to befriend the girl. not long after arriving at the manor Beth begins to get some strange vibes, like why is it that Nina is not allowed to leave the property? 2019 st ...more
Larry H
Jan 25, 2021 rated it liked it
3.5 stars.

Raven Hall has seen tragedy and its share of secrets and lies through the years. What are the mysteries it holds? This question is at the crux of Emma Rous' latest book, The Perfect Guests .

In 1988, Beth, an orphaned teenager, is invited to live with a family at Raven Hall, a sprawling English estate. For a girl who has longed for a family this is an opportunity she doesn’t want to squander, and she quickly becomes friends with their teenage daughter, Nina.

The family has secrets and
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Diana | Book of Secrets
4.5 Stars → Delightfully twisted! THE PERFECT GUESTS is an entertaining combination of Gothic mystery and family drama that kept me glued to the pages. The timeline flips back and forth between Beth in 1988 and Sadie in 2019, with an unknown narrator woven in between.

It's the mysterious country estate of Raven Hall at the center of this book. Both main characters end up there as a pawn in a dangerous game, 31 years apart. I found the story cleverly plotted with several twisty surprises. There's
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Carole
Feb 24, 2021 rated it really liked it
The Perfect Guests by Emma Rous is a fascinating novel that is set in the vicinity of the English fens. The story alternates between 1988 and 2019. In the eighties Beth, an orphan living in a children’s home, is selected to live at Raven Hall, an elaborate estate. She is to be a companion to the daughter of the house, Nina. The two girls soon become fast friends and all is well until it isn’t! In 2019, an eager actress, Sadie, is invited to Raven Hall, to participate in what she believes is a mu ...more
Lindsay - Traveling Sisters Book Reviews
3.5 stars for this captivating tale of deeply buried family secrets rising to the surface.

Told through two timelines, this novel unravels the mystery surrounding the family legacy of Raven Hall, an old crumbling mansion in the isolated English countryside. Raven Hall was like a character in itself, dark and powerfully atmospheric in setting - I loved it!

I was engrossed with this story from start to finish. I surprised myself with how connected I felt to the book even though I found several aspec
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Holly  B
Jul 11, 2020 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition

Look who has a new novel!!! Loved the Au Pair
Denise
Jan 20, 2021 rated it liked it
This book is one of those reads that lands squarely in the middle of 3 and 4 stars. I enjoyed parts of it very much and other parts were almost a drag to get through.

The story is told in dual timelines - Beth, as she arrives at Raven Hall as a teenager in the 1980s, and Sadie in 2019, who is randomly hired to play a role in a murder mystery party at Raven Hall. There is also a third, anonymous POV that randomly appears every few chapters, which I found annoying. I don't know if it was the spide
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Virginie
Mar 02, 2021 rated it really liked it
Emma Rous knows how to grab my attention from the start : family secrets, weird games, an old manor... I was a fan of The Au Pair and, in The Perfect Guests, the writing and the setting were similar, so I assumed early on that I would love it.

In the end, did I love it or not? Honestly, I don't know what to say, what to think and how to rate this book. I'm still processing the convoluted, messy ending. It took about 50 pages to put every puzzle pieces together and I wasn't thinking "wow!", but "w
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Theresa Alan
As a mystery, this novel works, but toward the end it got so soap-opera like that it felt really insubstantial. Which is fine—we all need light things to take our minds off the challenges of the actual world, but the first part of the novel didn’t have that frothiness to it.

This is told from two different points of view: Beth in 1988, when she is thirteen and carted off to Raven Hall to be raised essentially by foster parents, and Sadie in 2019, who is offered a job at a murder mystery at Raven
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Holly
Sep 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley, 2020
Absolutely loved this! Dual timelines—you have Beth in 1988 & Sadie in 2019. Both are invited to the mysterious Raven Hall, where games can have deadly consequences. There were so many secrets, twists & turns! I loved how they were all slowly revealed, the author did a great job. I also felt she did a great job with the description of Raven Hall, it was practically a character itself. Was this a perfect 5 star read? No, but I read this in one sitting because I was very entertained.

*Thank you to
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ABookwormWithWine
4.5/5

I absolutely loved The Au Pair by Emma Rous, so I was extremely excited to see she had The Perfect Guests coming out. It is everything I hoped it would be PLUS more, and I loved this one too! It reminded me a lot of a game of Clue, and switches between timelines and viewpoints which were all aspects I loved. It hooked me immediately from the very first page and I didn't want to put it down, so I read it in just two sittings. I started being especially intrigued by the 2019 timeline, but I q
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Anissa
I picked this up and it wouldn't let me put it down very long so I wound up finishing this in about a day. I very much enjoyed this and I want to talk about ALL THE THINGS but that wouldn't be cool because spoilers.

I love "group invited to a sequestered location under the guise of good time only to have sinister deeds start to go down" stories. Blame Agatha Christie. I am a complete sucker for the set up so between that and really having enjoyed Rous' debut The Au Pair , I was thrilled when
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Chelsey (a_novel_idea11)
Dec 04, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: giveaways-arcs
If you enjoy a novel with multiple narrators and timelines, a strong sense of foreboding, and lots of twists, this one is definitely for you!!

1988: Beth, a young orphan, is surprised when her aunt brings her to stay with the Averells at their sprawling estate, Raven Hall. The Averells have a daughter, Nina, who is in need of a companion and it is decided Beth would be a perfect fit. At first, staying with the Averells is a dream come true. Beth and Nina get along great and have a lake and endles
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Jayme
Dec 10, 2020 rated it it was ok
Thank you to NetGalley and Berkley Publishing for the ARC of The Perfect Guests by Emma Rous. I loved The Au Pair and was eager to read her latest thriller.

Sadie acquires an acting job that is too good to be true. She is paid to attend a big fancy party in a mansion called Raven Hall, with hired actors playing roles similar to those in the move Clue (which happens to be my all-time favorite movie)! The attendees must act their part and one will receive a prize by solving the murder mystery by
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Max Birner
Nov 06, 2020 rated it liked it
The Perfect Guest is a pretty good leisure read, which was sophisticated and stylish with its setting while also being thrilling.

Readers of the Au Pair will definitely enjoy this book because they give off a very similar vibe. It's always refreshing to read a book that isn't just set in the same suburban dull house, so the atmosphere really gets you pulled in.

The strongest part of this book is definitely the plot, because I was thoroughly interested in what was going to happen. But, while I want
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DJ Sakata
Favorite Quote:

Her thoughts are like darting fish, sparking across her mind and slipping out of reach.

My Review:

My first Emma Rous read and it was quite a complicated and twisty tale with lots of moving parts, secrets, and hidden agendas. The storylines were slowly constructed and cleverly nuanced over two timelines with a large cast of characters. The story threads were taut with tension and wound around themselves to weave what seemed like tangled knots, which ultimately became a complex tapes
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Jeanette (Again)

It's amusing nowadays to see authors writing about the 1980s as if it were back in the covered wagon days. "Once upon a time, a little blonde orphan girl who played the violin was taken in by a nice family who wanted a companion for their daughter..." 😃

This is a convoluted story all about a fucked up family who will do pert near anything to keep from losing Raven Hall, their beloved house in the Fens. It's cheesy as hell, but it was a pleasant enough way to while away a gloomy Sunday.

I highly r
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Shannon Rochester
Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for my digital copy in exchange for an honest review.

I am pretty sure I chose this book because of the cover originally...then when I read the synopsis, it sounded like it would be an interesting read. And it really was...The story is told by two narrators(although there is briefly a third)...Beth back in 1988 and Sadie in 2019 and what happens in 1988 is directly connected to what is currently happening in 2019. When we meet Beth, she is a 14 year old g
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Carlene Inspired
Find this review and others at Carlene Inspired.

The Perfect Guests is classic Agatha Christie mystery meets modern suburban thriller. A dual timeline mystery full of twists and surprises. I felt like I was playing a game of Clue myself as Emma Rous takes readers from 1988 with young Beth to 2019 with actress Sadie. Raven's Hall was the best part of young Beth's life, until it wasn't. Ravel's Hall could be the big break Sadie needs to finally land a well-paying acting gig. Too bad there's somethi
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Alexa
Oct 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thrillers
A solid 4.5 rounded up! This one is a lovely, Gothic-tinged domestic(ish) British thriller with YA crossover appeal with some compelling character study and fun guesswork.

You get three POVs that ping-pong across time, and half the fun is trying to connect the dots of who everyone is and how they are related. In 1988, Beth, an orphan with a shitty would-be caretaker aunt (who can't be arsed to halt her career/single life and leaves her niece in foster care), is dropped off to spend the summer wi
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Mackenzie - PhDiva Books
Feb 24, 2021 rated it it was amazing
This absolutely stunning follow up to Emma Rous’s debut book The Au Pair proves that she was certainly no one-hit wonder!

I love a well-executed dual timeline mystery, and Emma Rous’s The Perfect Guests knocked it out of the park. Following two different stories linked by an opulent manor named Raven Hall, this book is captivating, twisty, and brilliant!

Before I read this, my friend Berit had said it was a read-in-a-day book because it is that hard to put down. She wasn’t kidding! I did have to b
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Juli
Dec 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing
What a fun, twisty story! It ended up being a binge read for me.....I couldn't put it down. Wickedly fun read!

1988: A young girl comes to stay at Raven Hall as a companion to the Averell's daughter, Nina. She loves it there and wants to stay. She's willing to do just about anything they ask...but it gets out of hand.

2019: An out of work actress is invited to Raven Hall. A murder mystery weekend. Eight guests. Isolated at the out of the way estate. Turns out there is more going on than a simple
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Emma grew up in England, Indonesia, Kuwait, Portugal and Fiji, and from a young age she had two ambitions: to write stories, and to look after animals. She studied veterinary medicine and zoology at the University of Cambridge, then worked as a small animal veterinary surgeon for eighteen years before starting to write fiction. Emma lives near Cambridge in England with her husband and three sons, ...more

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