Cover Image: The Sanctuary

The Sanctuary

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Member Reviews

A fairly entertaining read, although maybe not quite as exciting as I'd hoped! 

There's a LOT going on: A lot of secrets, a lot of ulterior motives and a lot of lies. This does keep you reading because ultimately you do want to know what happened in the end but I found it lacked the thrilling element.

Thank you to NetGalley and Quercus Books for providing me with this ARC in exchange for an honest review 📖
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Charlotte Duckworth's books are always a quick read for me,  They have me hooked from the start and I can't stop reading - The Sanctuary was no different.  I was immediately intrigued by the story and where it was going to go.  Yes it was a bit out there and I had to suspend belief, especially at the end but it was fun.

A yoga retreat for pregnant women in the middle of nowhere - sounds perfect right?  Well, that is what these 4 women thought too.  It was exactly what they needed, a break from their lives and family to concentrate on themselves and their babies. But of course, things are never what they seem.  These women are all different ages and have their own unique stories.  But all are hiding secrets, including Selina, who runs the retreat with her partner.  And secrets always have a way coming to the surface.

Thanks to Quercus Books and Netgalley for my advanced copy of this book to read.
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I found the first half gray but I think it became too crazy and unbelievable sorry. I just could not finish
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Although this was an entertaining read it needed a bit more oomph for me to make it a thriller as it was to light for me to make it into this genre. 

I liked how the chapters were told from the perspectives of each of the characters but I felt there was something missing from the ending I think not hearing the outcome of all the main characters was missing.
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An original and unconventional thriller set on a luxury prenatal yoga retreat in the Devonshire countryside. Half of the intimate cast of characters are pregnant.

I especially liked Nicky and Bonnie's relationship, half sisters with a sizeable age gap, Nicky is expecting her third child, while Bonnie is expecting her first. I also warmed to Georgia the enthusiastic lifestyle journalist.

The cast of characters is good, we get to know them all really well, and the scene is set vividly, I know the area and could picture it very clearly.

Not everything goes to plan, is somebody sabotaging the retreat? Which of the guests and hosts are harbouring secrets?

I found it to be an entertaining, fairly light read, but unfortunately it didn't really grab me as a thriller.

Thanks to Netgalley and Quercus
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Out in ebook on December 16 – the paperback will be published in March 2022 – this creepy read centres on four pregnant women attending a luxury yoga retreat. Yes it’s in the middle of nowhere, yes, someone needed two Ubers to get there, but it’ll be worth it. A weekend to relax, unwind and focus on themselves, not the needs of their families, partners or the realities of bringing up a baby. And when they arrive, it’s not exactly Paradise but the owner means well and wants her visitors to feel welcomed and cared for Selina, an experienced midwife, is on hand to answer any question or provide guidance and support about pregnancy and motherhood. She has seen it all. But then again, she’s used to secrets – and as we find out, there’s plenty at the retreat who have something they’re not willing to share with anyone else. As events happen to scare the bejaysus out of the visitors and homeowner alike, suddenly everyone is on edge… and rightly so, because there’s one person who is willing to do whatever it takes to exact revenge.
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This yoga retreat is exactly the sort no woman, let alone a pregnant one, should set their foot in! A great sinister book with the sort of twists that truly leave your head spinning!
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I found this book very enjoyable. Four women on a prenatal yoga retreat all with something to hide. Nicky, Bonnie Georgia and Poppy all lead very different lives with the story being told by their different perspectives. Quite a few twists and turns to keep it interesting and me turning the pages, I enjoy Charlotte Duckworth's books and this was another that did not disappoint me. Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.
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Woweee… @charduck I need all of your books pronto!! This was SO good!?
I don’t think I’ve been this invested in a thriller for the longest time, the suspense? The one lot twists? The writing style? I honestly did not expect the ending to be as brilliant as it was!!! I cannot reccomend this enough and cannot wait to read more of her work :) 
Thank you so much to Netgalley for this one!
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I have loved all Charlotte Duckworths stories to date so had very high hopes for this new release. I wasn't disappointed!! Far from it. To me this is the perfect domestic noir. 5 pregnant ladies, away at a retreat. Something completely realistic and relatable and that makes it all the more sinister and makes it all the more beilvable. The characters all have such different powrsonalites and perspectives, they all have different circumstances and they're just all fleshed out into realistic individuals which makes the story so much more compelling. You will find your head spinning from all the twists and turns and you will not see the ending coming. The only warning id say before you start this, make sure you've nothing else planned for the next 4 hrs because you won't want to put this down once you start. Another amazing story from this very talented author
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Four pregnant women go to a retreat run by Selena. We have Nicky, her sister Bonnie, a journalist Georgie, and Poppy who seems to hold a grudge against Selina. The perfect retreat Selena has planned is sabotaged by someone as unexplainable events occur...Is Poppy behind it all or is there someone else involved?
This was a fun escapist read. I enjoyed the setting, the luxury tents and fresh food. Selena endorses a natural lifestyle and there’s lots of lovely descriptions about nature and herbal tea. I think Duckworth does a great job of tapping into the mindset of pregnant women and their differing experiences. The suspense element of the story is done well too. I genuinely had no idea what was going on, however maybe as a reviewer said there was one twist too many. I certainly think there far too many coincidences, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. I was compelled through and through, and didn’t want to stop reading. Things are tied up, that ending is surprising and definitely catches you off guard. Absolutely splendid! An absorbing, thrilling read 👌
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Charlotte Duckworth is an author whom I’ve recently discovered. I read The Perfect Father, which I loved. Since then I’ve been on a hunt and have read her backlog of books. They are exceptional. I’m happy to report that the good streak continues with The Sanctuary. Duckworth surely is creating an impressive list of titles. 
The plot of The Sanctuary is self-explanatory. A retreat for pregnant women. One weekend. Secrets. Lies. And murder.
I raced through this one. It did take awhile to get into it, as there’s five female characters, and we’re following each characters’ POV. It was a bit confusing at first. But once you get into the story and delve into the characters it was easy to see them individually and connect with them. Each character is fully fleshed out and has her own unique experience of pregnancy and motherhood. There’s lots of suspense too, as unusual things start to occur. There’s secrets and lies, characters forming alliances. A whole lot of tension and anxiety. I was hooked!
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Many thanks to Netgalley and the publishers for this arc. Charlotte Duckworth is an auto-buy of an author. I’ve read all of her books, which I highly recommend, and The Sanctuary doesn’t disappoint. Duckworth proves again what an absolute stellar author she is. I couldn’t put The Sanctuary down and read it in two breathless sittings. 
The Sanctuary follows five female narrators:
- Nicky - Pregnant at 42-years old, Nicky is exhausted. She already has two boys and was hoping to return back to work. But another baby on the way means putting a pause on what she wants.
- Bonnie - Nicky’s younger sister by two decades. Bonnie is 22-years old. This is her first baby. She’s the complete opposite of Nicky. Bonnie is confident and impulsive. 
- Georgie - In her late thirties getting pregnant is a blessing for Georgie, as this could be her last chance at being a mother. She’s a journalist living in Notting Hill, but she’s nervous about her new boyfriend of three months. 
- Poppy - Still dealing with the breakup of her marriage and her infant daughter’s death, Poppy is pregnant once again, but she’s nervous. And she’s going to the retreat with an agenda. To get back at Selina...
- Selina is the one running the retreat in her idyllic countryside home. But Selina has secrets of her own...And someone is out to get her...
I loved the dynamic between the characters, and the countryside setting. There were loads of twists and reveals I didn’t see coming. I was at the edge of my seat wondering how things would come together, and they certainly do. Exploring mother-and-children relationship is at the core of all of Duckworth’s book, and she does a great job here delving into the alternative, “natural” lifestyle that seems to be the rage on parts of the internet. We see a range of female characters experiencing pregnancy and motherhood differently, without any judgement. The writing is crisp, and the structure is tight, with excellent pace. A brilliant psychological suspense read exploring pregnancy, motherhood and creepy retreats.
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Sounds Idyllic? Think Again…
A pre-natal yoga luxury pampering retreat - The Sanctuary- nestled in the Devon countryside with spectacular views and every whim catered for. The host, Selina, hailed as an expert in all things pregnancy and yoga. Sounds idyllic? Think again. Secrets are about to blow this place apart. Slow, menacing and unexpected suspense slickly and successfully told in differing narratives. Pulls the reader in from the very first page and doesn’t let go until the very last with a, perhaps, unexpected finale. A superb, compulsive and thoroughly engaging read. Bravo!
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This is another fantastic read by Charlotte Duckworth. The writing is creepy, dark and filled with intrigue. The characters and unique and interesting. 
I loved the ending and it took me by surprise. I’ll be reading more from this author in future.
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secrets can be deadly . . .

Firstly a big thank you to the publishers for my copy to review on netgalley . I’m a big fan of her books so was thrilled to review.

Charlotte is a fantastic author who knows how to write not only a captivating active story but also characters you relate to or find compelling . The sanctuary is no exception to this with the focus being on friendship,family and parenthood .

All pregnant at a yoga retreat but that’s where the similarities end with these women .
Secrets , lies , revenge and betrayal are running trough these pages .

I raced through this eager to know what was really going on . Tense and addictive thid is another great psychological thriller.

Published 16th December and I highly recommend checking out not only the sanctuary but also her previous books.
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I don't leaving negative reviews however I have to say that, sadly, this book just didn't do it for me. It's such a shame as I thought the premise was really interesting and was really looking forward to reading it however I just couldn't get excited about it.

I think my main issue was that I didn't really care about any of the main characters. I found most of them to be unlikeable throughout the book and I wasn't really bothered how it was going to turn out.

Also the structure of the book bothered me too. The novel is told in parts and, initially the story was told from the perspective of Nicky, Bonnie, Georgia, Poppy and then Selina. Each part had five separate chapters and the story moved on as the perspective changed however about half way through the book this changed it just annoyed me. 

On a positive note, the ending to the book was good and it did come together well in the end but getting there was just a bit of a slog.

Thanks to Quercus Books and Netgalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review
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what an INCREDIBLE thriller! i will be highly recommending this to anyone and everyone, it was addictive & devourable and i loved every second of it. The characters were all super shady and had a secret they were hiding and i love how it included such a diverse range of characters. the plot was 10/10 as was everything else.
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This book had everything I want and more, it was chilling, creepy, complex and had really gothic undertones which i love in any book. It was tense, suspenseful and so twisty including a fantastic twist at the end which i didnt expect  i loved it
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Four pregnant women attend a yoga pregnancy retreat and they all harbour secrets.
Nicky is pregnant with her third child and upsure how she feels about it.
Bonnie is her younger sister and won't reveal who the father is of her unborn child.
Georgia is a journalist who is given a free stay for a hopefully positive review by the owner Selina.
Poppy has split from her boyfriend and definitely has an agenda for being there.
Each chapter is told from one of the main characters point of view.
All emotions are covered in this very good read recommended.
Thanks to Netgalley and Quercus Books for the ARC
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