Wednesday, April 26, 2023

How Did "The Eden Test" by Adam Sternbergh End? What was the Twist? Spoilers!


How did "The Eden Test" by Adam Sternbergh end? Looking for an explanation for all those twists and turns because this thriller was super twisty! "The Eden Test" by Adam Sternbergh had more twists than most and if like me you have a hard time a week later remembering all of those twists and turns - or maybe you just want to skip straight to the twists, keep reading - but remember - - spoilers ahead!

The Eden Test
by Adam Sternbergh

Seven Days. Seven Questions. Forever Changed.

Daisy and Craig’s marriage is in serious trouble. That’s why Daisy has signed up for The Eden Test, a week-long getaway for couples in need of a fresh start. Yet even as she’s struggling to salvage her marriage, it seems Craig has plans to leave her for another woman. In fact, his bags are already packed―long before he arrives to meet Daisy in this remote cabin in the woods of upstate New York.

At first, their week away is marked by solitude, connection, and natural beauty―and only a few hostile locals. But what Craig doesn’t know is that Daisy, a slyly talented actress, has her own secrets, including a burner phone she’s been using for mysterious texts. Not to mention the Eden Test itself, which poses a searing new question to the couple every day, each more explosive than the last. Their marriage was never perfect, but now the lies and revelations are piling up, as the week becomes much more than they bargained for…How far are they willing to go?

Adam Sternbergh brings his wit, originality, and a Hitchcockian sense of dread to this chilling, surprising, and wholly entertaining portrait of a marriage on the brink. ( from

How Did "The Eden Test" by Adam Sternbergh End?

What Are the Twists and Spoilers?

First things, first - this whole thing is a setup!

All of the twists begin with Daisy setting up her husband, Craig, to kill her stalker. Through "The Eden Test" we get little pieces of a stalker storyline - Daisy has been in hiding since college when she dated a man, Frank, who has stalked her ever since. She has had to abandon her life several times to escape him. 

While she usually only takes small off-Broadway roles, Daisy purposefully goes on a widely broadcast television show when she finds out she is pregnant. Daisy wants her stalker to find her so that she can have him killed. She does not want to live in hiding, watching her back, with an innocent child to protect in addition to herself. Daisy hopes that once Frank is dead she will be free.

In order to make this happen, Daisy invites her husband, Craig, on a marriage retreat. The retreat is real, but Daisy has thrown in some extra players. Daisy invites other actors and special effects friends to test Craig's faithfulness and his ability to protect her. It's *messed up*

Daisy has more than one male, crazy-obsessed fan

Daisy seems to figure out that what she is doing to her husband is wrong, but it takes longer than it should! Craig believes he has really shot someone ( he didn't it was just the special effects of fake bullets etc). and he does it to defend Daisy and prove himself, but he is visibly upset about it - understandably. At that point, things shift for Daisy and she seems to feel guilty for manipulating Craig.

Things take a turn for the worse though when Frank appears and shoots one of Daisy's friends, Shep. Shep also goes by Christian and is a former classmate of Daisy's, whom she has called on to act as a fake security guard. 

Shep is threatening Daisy with a gun because he feels used and abandoned - he had hoped that Daisy's husband would not follow through and that Daisy would leave her husband for him. Apparently, Daisy attracts crazy men like a magnet.

Frank dies, but so does Christian aka Shep

Frank shoots Shep and he is killed. Then, Craig is attacked by Frank with a metal baton stick. Craig eventually stands back up and comes behind Frank to knock him hard with a rock. Stunned and injured, Frank swings at Craig again with the baton, knocking him down. Daisy has a knife and stabs Frank and then another rock is thrown by Craig at Frank, killing him. Now they have two dead bodies to deal with. 

Craig wants to call the police and explain what happened not realizing how that might implicate Daisy. They "destroy the evidence" by crushing her phone and Frank's - never mind the fact that the text messages would still exist. They decide instead to call the foundation owners who help them and contact the police themselves hoping to keep the situation undercover for the sake of the retreat's reputation.

Even the questions were fake!

In the last several pages we learn that the foundation founders have a close relationship with the police and will be able to cover up the murders. We also learn that the questions we thought were coming from the Eden Foundation were also a setup from Daisy. So many lies and so much manipulation!

This thriller is especially hard to believe

In my opinion, too much of this book relies on Daisy being able to predict with absolute accuracy how everyone will act, and it works perfectly for her all of the time until it doesn't as the perfect twist. Not one person was like, uh Daisy no I will not spend my weekend in your messed up dinner theatre production, this is an unforgivable betrayal of your husband? Also, they are struggling financially but you can pay a stipend, expenses, and hotel stay for multiple friends as well as pay for this retreat?

Also, the only way that Daisy gets in touch with her stalker is through an obscure message board for the show that she appeared on, that she knew he would find and post on? And for that matter, what kind of stalker agrees to meet at a nondescript cabin that their victim's husband will definitely be at, too? The whole thing sounds like a setup either to have him killed or for the cops to get him.

A private ambulance service, owned by the retreat foundation, comes to get the bodies. That's incredibly convenient.

Daisy hates guns, but loves setting people up to be attacked 

The thing that *really* got me though was Daisy's insistence that her husband not have a gun. In fact, when in a desperate attempt to defend himself, Craig does have a gun, she is shocked saying, " You thought we'd be safer with a gun!?" - UGH YEAH DAISY, I DID! You've set up an entire plot of different men for me to attack and all you've given me to defend myself, and you, are rocks!?

Daisy tells her husband, "Daisy Plus Craig", before the attacks begin because she has decorated a bunch of rocks with this phrase to remind him to grab a rock to hit her stalker with. The lady has literally asked her husband to bring a rock to a gunfight and it's just mind-blowing. 

At one point her husband Craig, is baton slapped to the floor by her stalker, Frank. Frank and Daisy have a long conversation and the entire time, apparently, Daisy is just faithfully waiting for Craig - who she has set up, emotionally abused, and repeatedly lied to - and he knows it - to pull himself together and grab a rock to kill Frank with knowing full well that this man has an actual gun, multiple in fact. I just don't buy it and am also mildly amused by Daisy's gun resistance amidst the violence.

And that's a wrap on "The Eden Test" by Adam Sternbergh! Let me know below if I missed any twists! Did you figure out this thriller early or did it take you by surprise? Thanks for reading, readers!

Looking for more plot twists? Check out the spoilers for another suspense or thriller novel below!


  1. thanks for posting this recap! reading the book was getting too stressful but i wanted to find out how it ended.

    1. I found it disappointing that the real questions weren't revealed.


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