If you look at the cover of Marissa Stapley’s THE LAST RESORT, what do you see? What genre would you peg the book as? Beach read? Maybe a little romantic angst and drama? Something to read and relax with while on a beach not unlike the one on the cover?
Oh, boy, would you be wrong!
In a good way, in a good way.
There is a resort, yes. People do spend time on a beach, yes. There is much romantic angst and drama, yes. But, no, this book will not relax you. It will creep you out.
In a good way.
“The Last Resort” is the title because the Mexican resort at the center of the story is where twelve couples go for two weeks to try and save their marriages (i.e. the last resort) with the help of celebrity marriage counselors/gurus Grace and Miles Markell. They even, in the course of the story, get TMZ coverage. This particular last resort is intense. The couples give up their phones and devices. The staff searches their luggage (read the details of what you sign, people, always read what you sign!). And Miles Markell occasionally forces a husband and wife to ‘separate’ for the course of their stay there.
These separations are because Miles Markell is essentially a cult leader, though the cult plays a supporting role and the resort is essentially a front, who manipulates the weak and preys on them for all they are worth. Literally.
It is a really good book that makes you think, makes you question things, and makes you keep reading. That being said, if psychological thrillers/mysteries/horrors are your thing, you should give this book a try and I don’t want to say too much and spoil it for you.
If you want to know more, ask me!
But I would give trigger warnings for cults, evangelical extremism, drug abuse, alcohol abuse, slightly questionable LGBT representation, spousal abuse, mind control, murder, violence, and stalking. And probably some other things. This book is… well, it’s a lot.
But in a good way, I swear!