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Thanks to NetGalley and Delacorte Press for providing an eARC in exchange for an honest review.

Release Date: March 2nd, 2021

336 Pages

Synopsis: Esme and Kayla one were campers at Camp Pine Lake. They’re excited to be back this year as CITs (counselors in training). Esme loves the little girls in her cabin and thinks it’s funny how scared they are of everything—spiders, the surly head counselor, the dark, boys…even swimming in the lake! It reminds her of how she and Kayla used to be, once. Before…it happened.

Because Esme and Kayla did something bad when they were campers. Afterwards, the girls agreed to keep it secret. They’ve moved on—or so they say—and this summer is going to be great. Two months of sun, s’mores, and flirting with the cute boy counselors. But then they get a note. THE LAKE NEVER FORGETS. And the secret they kept buried for so many years is about to resurface. (Goodreads)


I have to be honest and say I haven’t had the best luck with Natasha Preston. I keep trying her books though because the premises always suck me in, which was exactly the case with The Lake. Unfortunately, the best I can say is it was marginally better than the previous books I tried. The “Killer at summer camp” has obviously been done before, but I’m always interested in seeing new takes on it, which brings me to my first issue. Preston really brings nothing original to the table. It’s the same exact trope that’s already been done in so many books, and movies, only the villain has a slightly different backstory. The characters are so wooden that they all blend into one another, and most of their actions made no sense to me. The majority of the action is saved for the last few chapters which may have been alright as a slow burn if I had cared about any of the characters, but I didn’t. I did like the twist at the end, but it was too little, too late. I reviewed Preston’s Awake (1 star) and The Cabin (1.5 stars), so The Lake is definitely an improvement. But for me, while it wasn’t a horrid read, it was an apathetic  “meh,” and again left me unimpressed.