The Family Next Door: A Novel

The Family Next Door: A Novel

by Sally Hepworth

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The Family Next Door: A Novel 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 21 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A very quick read, quite a surprise within. I really enjoyed it!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Quick read and didn’t want to put down.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
You really never know what the neighbors lives are like
Alaina Martin 26 days ago
love her style of writing!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Highly recommend
bookaholique More than 1 year ago
3.5 Essie tries hard to look like she is living a normal life. Only a few people know that she has something from her past that she is trying to hide. When a new neighbor, Isabelle, moves in Essie finds herself strangely attracted to her. Little does she realize this attraction runs the risk of bringing her secret to life. Something strange is up with Isabelle and I couldn't wait to find out what it was. Was she there for good or evil? This story kept me engaged and moved quickly. I was surprised by the twist at the end when we discover Isabelle's real story. I thought this was a well thought out mystery. I received this from St. Martin's Press via Netgalley.
nhr3bookcrazyNR More than 1 year ago
Many different story lines all in one book. At first I wasn't sure I was going to like it, but then I got totally caught up and wanted to know how all of the stories were heading. I ended up enjoying this book. I'd like to read more by this author
Sandy5 More than 1 year ago
She kept the pram moving constantly otherwise her 8-week-old daughter, Mia cried. Essie wanted to cry too. Today would be the day when it just got to be too much, the day when Essie decided it wasn’t worth it. Essie strolled Mia to the park in her pram where she sat on a bench keeping the pram moving while taking in the scene around her. Essie decided that she wanted some tea, so she walked to the coffee shop, enjoyed two cups of tea and headed home. Essie’s mom was coming up the walk and inquired about Mia’s whereabouts. Yes, Essie had left her at the park. It was a simple statement, nothing extortionary about it, nothing seemed out-of-place until Essie’s mother took charge of the situation. Luckily Essie was diagnosed with post-partum depression and no harm was done to Mia the day her mother left her in the park. Years have passed, the family has grown and grandmother has now moved next door to the family in this quaint neighborhood. Everyone seems to know each other in this family-occupied neighborhood yet they are not close friends. Essie would love to have some close friends but nothing has materialized yet. When a single woman moves in across the street, her appearance sends a ripple through the area. Her life brings surprises to the neighborhood which was once calm and tranquil. It seems that many individuals on this street had something hidden in their closet that they wanted to keep locked up but since Isabelle’s appearance, the doors have been swung open and secrets are coming out. It’s funny how one person can affect so many. I really enjoyed this novel as I felt it was a story that kept building in intensity as the story continued. I loved how there were different stories occurring at different levels of intensity as I read. I had a feeling that something unique was going to transpire in this novel but I didn’t expect what the novel delivered. There were characters that I liked and some that I didn’t but in all, it was a fantastic mix. What a great novel and I’m glad that I read it. 4.5 stars I received a copy of this novel from NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press in exchange for an honest review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The-Geeky-Bibliophile More than 1 year ago
Pleasant Court is a nice suburb where everyone knows everyone else, but it would be a stretch to say close friendships were formed. Essie, Fran, and Ange are all mothers of young children who take an interest in their new neighbor, Isabelle Heatherington, a woman who has neither husband nor children in a neighborhood full of families. It seemed a strange choice of residence to the trio of women, and they tried to learn more about Isabelle even as they concealed secrets of their own from everyone. One of the moms feels particularly drawn to Isabelle before the truth of her arrival is revealed, shattering someone's entire world when their child is put in danger as a result of the revelation. What I Liked: The story is told through the perspectives of five women—Essie, Essie's mother Barbara, Ange, Fran, and Isabelle—and this is something I've become a fan of over the last couple of years. With this format, you get a deeper sense of each of their personalities, and a better understanding about why they react the way they do much quicker than you would otherwise. I really appreciated that motherhood was presented realistically, with all the sleep deprivation and frustrations that go along with it. I've read so many books where motherhood is presented as something that's constantly rosy and wonderful, so it's always nice to read something that mirrors reality, instead. The mystery surrounding Isabelle was very well done. I had so many theories about her, but none were anywhere close to being correct. When all was revealed, it shocked the heck out of me, and the events that took place afterward had me on the edge of my seat, worried about what was going to happen next. What I Didn't Like: I can't recall anything that annoyed me. Final Thoughts: The Family Next Door is a compulsive page-turner with finely crafted characters and scenarios that will keep you reading 'just one more chapter' for hours. Hepworth is fast becoming a go-to author for me when I'm in the mood to read some high quality women's fiction. I'm highly recommending this book, and I hope that everyone who reads it will enjoy it as much as I did.
KateUnger More than 1 year ago
I wanted to love The Family Next Door since I really enjoyed Sally Hepworth’s last novel, The Things We Keep. This book is about the secrets kept by four women neighbors in Australia. Fran, Ange, and Essie have never been close, but when Isabelle moves into the neighborhood – a single woman without a family – their paths begin to cross a bit more, and their secrets begin to unravel. This book is told in alternating chapters between all four characters. I love that writing style, and it worked well for this book, but for some reason I had a hard time keeping the characters straight at the beginning. I didn’t really find myself connecting too much with any of the characters, so while I enjoyed the story, I didn’t really love it. I’m writing this review about a month after reading this book, and sadly not many of the details have stuck with me.
Jolie More than 1 year ago
When I read the synopsis for The Family Next Door, I thought that this would be a quick read. Something that would be a light read. Yeah right. This book is anything but light. The Family Next Door has two major storylines and four sub-storylines. One of the major storylines was the mystery lady who is telling her daughter how thankful she was to have her. The other major storyline was about Isabelle and the reasons she moved to Pleasant Court. The sub-storylines center around Ange, Fran, and Essie. Each has a secret that no one knows about. Ange needs to control every aspect of her life. Fran will not let her husband come near their newborn daughter. Essie’s storyline is a bit more complex. It focuses on her leaving her then-newborn daughter to a park and leaving her. I loved how the author took each woman’s story and interwove it with Isabelle’s storyline. Each woman added depth to Isabelle’s storyline and they all interconnected. The mystery woman adds a bit of mystery that makes you want to know more about her and her situation. I am not going to get into each woman here. But I will say that I did enjoy each woman’s story. I also felt bad for each woman portrayed. Each woman had issues to overcome and each did it in their own way. I did predict what happened towards the end of the book. But I was not ready for the lengths that the person would go through. I actually felt bad for her. The trauma she endured was crippling. Doesn’t excuse what she did but still. The Family Next Door is a gripping drama that breaks your heart. The characters are fleshed out. The plot is great. This was a book that made me think at the end of it. **I chose to leave this review after reading an advance reader copy**
Reeceeangel More than 1 year ago
What do you get when you mix a little Desperate Housewives with Big Little Lies? You get The Family Next Door! This is a jaw-dropping, twisty tale that will have you gasping at every page. Ange, Fran, Essie, and Essie's mom, Barbara all live on Pleasant Court. The ladies are friendly but not too friendly so they know each other's business. That is until Isabelle moves in the house across the street from Essie. Isabelle is single and gorgeous. The ladies are skeptical at first that she may try to steal their husbands but then they are convinced she is gay. Why else would a single, beautiful lady move onto a street full of families? As Essie and Isabelle's friendship deepen the secrets start to unravel and come out much to everyone's surprise. Is the darkest secret of all the one most hidden or the one hidden in plain sight? Come for a visit to Pleasant Court and find out for yourself. I have this on my to-be-read shelf for months and am kicking myself for waiting so long. I found myself up way too late night and getting up extremely early just to finish this book. I've heard Sally Hepworth compared to Liane Moriaty and the critics are right. I can see this made into a mini-series for TV. The story starts out with Essie leaving her newborn baby, Mia, in her pram in the local park. Essie comes home after having coffee at the local coffee shop and her mother Barbara asks where is the baby. Thankfully Mia is ok but Essie is not and spends some time in the hospital healing from post-partum depression. Essie fears this will return when she has her second baby, Polly. The story picks up from here and goes in a direction I never expected. My jaw flopped open at one point of the book and I am not sure I closed it until after I closed the book. If you are looking for something to read until Big, Little Lies comes back on the air you need to pick up this book from you favorite bookseller or library. You will be happy you did. Thank you to NetGalley and St. Martin's Press for a copy in exchange for a review in my own honest words.
Rhonda-Runner1 More than 1 year ago
I received an ARC of this book from NetGalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review. It took a number of chapters to get me interested in this book. I kept thinking there was something very familiar about this book and then I realized it was just like watching episodes of Desperate Housewives including the author's mention of Wisteria Lane. There were some twists and turns in this book but to me it ended up being just an okay book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Probably wouldn’t read this author again
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Essie Walker is a new mum to baby Mia and after 8 weeks, is just not feeling maternal. One day, Mia’s crying just gets to Essie and she leaves her in her pram in the park. Thankfully, Essie’s mother, Barbara, who lives next door, realizes what’s happened and gets Mia back home safely. Three years later, Essie and her husband, Ben, have another daughter named Polly. After Essie’s postpartum depression with Mia, Ben had been reluctant to try for another child, however, Essie seems to be doing fairly well. With her mother close-by, she feels like she can call on her if she gets stressed. Essie and Ben live on Pleasant Court which has nice family homes. When a new neighbor, Isabelle Heatherington, a single woman, moves in, the neighbors are intrigued and their first thought is that she is gay. Fran and Ange are people who live on the street with their husbands and children. Although they see each other often, the neighbors aren’t all very close. However, they decide that it would be a good idea to put together a neighborhood watch and call a meeting. Instead of going to the meeting, Essie decides to drop in on Isabelle and get to know her better. They instantly click and Essie wants to be with her a lot. Knowing her daughter like she does, Barbara feels that Essie may be about to have a breakdown. Soon, all kinds of secrets are becoming known and the solid families realize that things in their lives aren’t as perfect as they may have thought. This is rather like a soap opera where the lives of each family is opened and examined. Some people are guilty of various things and others are the victims. However, the story is a good one and the ending is not what one thinks it will be. I’m sure readers will enjoy visiting Pleasant Court. Copy provided by NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.
lauriesophee More than 1 year ago
"She couldn't expect every puzzle piece of her life to click together just because she wanted it to. All her life she'd lived with a peice of her puzzle missing, and maybe that was just the way life was." I was quickly absorbed into this neighborhood, and anxious to learn each persons secrets. I was shocked at the twists and turns of this novel and it kept me wondering right up to the last few pages, just how things would end. Sally Hepworth does an amazing job of making you feel as if you are actually standing in the kitchens of these homes listening , to solve the dilemmas in this book.
teachlz More than 1 year ago
My Review of “The Family Next Door” by Sally Hepworth Kudos to Sally Hepworth, Author of “The Family Next Door” for writing such a descriptive and captivating story about several families in a small neighborhood. Are your neighbors who you really think they are? The genres for this story are Fiction, Woman’s Fiction, Suspense, Mystery with an essence of Romance. The author describes the characters who live on Pleasant Court as complex and complicated. There are deep dark secrets, lies and betrayals. Each family seems dysfunctional, and has its own problems. Newcomer Isabelle doesn’t seem like she belongs in this neighborhood. She is single, has no children and a hidden agenda. The other woman on the block Angie, Fran and Essie become obsessed with why Isabelle is here. Each of these women has their own family drama, which the reader gets a front row seat to. I felt like an intruder as I glimpsed into their personal lives. It reminded me a little bit of Peyton Place, with the drama. The author discusses the importance of family and a support system. The topic of postpartum depression and mental illness is brought up. There are twists and turns , suspense and mystery. I would highly recommend this novel for readers that enjoy Woman’s Fiction and Suspense. I received An Advanced Reading Copy for my honest review. Happy Reading !
TUDORQUEEN More than 1 year ago
This story takes place in Melbourne, Australia, in a quiet cul-de-sac of identical homes called Pleasant Court. It centers around the main character of Essie, who suffered from postpartum depression after having her first child, Mia. As the book begins, at the suggestion of her mother Barbara (who lives next door) Essie takes Mia out for a walk to the park "to get fresh air." However, as is the norm Mia starts wailing if the carriage isn't in constant motion. It starts to rain and Essie must take refuge under a tree. She's at the end of her tether tending to her daughter without benefit of much sleep. After waiting for a bit for the rain to let up, she abruptly decides to escape to a shop for a cup of tea. I must tell you I was flat out shocked when I realized pages later she had actually left the baby at the park. This is the lightening bolt event that kicks off the book. The other two ladies who live in the development are Fran and Ange. This sleepy suburban wholesome scene isn't all that it appears, for everyone is holding a secret behind their perfect facades. Fran is on maternity leave after having her second daughter. She goes out to run multiple times during the day as if she is literally running from something. Ange is a real estate agent married to Lucas, a photographer who owns his own studio just off the local park. He's several years younger than Ange and once had an affair earlier in their marriage. Ange frets that his studio is a hotbed for temptation... and she's also holding a secret that haunts her. Then a mysterious and attractive woman moves into one of the homes. She seems all too perfect; very friendly and so good with everyone's children. Does she work? Is her absent "partner" male or female? She's around forty...will she ever have kids? Then there's the character of Barbara, mother of Essie. She conveniently lives next door and is relied upon heavily to help Essie with her kids. She makes it all look so easy while Essie is constantly exhausted by them. Barbara/Gran hides the biggest secret of all! The story chugged along at a steady and even pace, holding my interest throughout, as the inhabitants of Pleasant Court's issues resolved neatly to their conclusions. This advance reader copy was provided by St. Martin's Press via NetGalley.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Easy read but I just thought it was ok. I did like how the story summed up all the characters at the end. I will check out other titles by this author.