Thursday, June 21, 2018

Review: Our House

Title:  Our House
Author: Louise Candlish
Publisher: 1st June 2018 by Simon & Schuster (Australia)
Pages: 400 pages
How I Read It: ARC book
Genre: fiction, mystery, thriller
My Rating: 4 cups

Synopsis:

On a bright morning in the London suburbs, a family moves into the house they’ve just bought on Trinity Avenue. Nothing strange about that. Except it's your house. And you didn’t sell it.
FOR BETTER, FOR WORSE.
When Fi Lawson arrives home to find strangers moving into her house, she is plunged into terror and confusion. She and her husband Bram have owned their home on Trinity Avenue for years and have no intention of selling. How can this other family possibly think the house is theirs? And why has Bram disappeared when she needs him most?
FOR RICHER, FOR POORER.
Bram has made a catastrophic mistake and now he is paying. Unable to see his wife, his children or his home, he has nothing left but to settle scores. As the nightmare takes grip, both Bram and Fi try to make sense of the events that led to a devastating crime. What has he hidden from her – and what has she hidden from him? And will either survive the chilling truth – that there are far worse things you can lose than your house?
TILL DEATH US DO PART.


My Thoughts

‘The lights are out in all rooms except the kitchen; if you walked by the house now, you wouldn’t know it has changed hands. You wouldn’t know one family had been replaced by another.’

What an interesting book! Louise Candlish creates a story that will draw you in from beginning to end. You will find it hard not to pass judgement on the lives of Fi and Bram as you watch their lives slowly unravel. Separated after Bram’s infidelity, they work around the custody of their two young boys by adopting a ‘bird’s nest’ strategy - each parent takes turns alternating on a roster of either living in a shared apartment whilst the other maintains the family home. All in the name of stability!

‘The house sheltered us and protected us, but it also defined us. It kept us current long after our expiry date.’

Then you come home one day to find not only all your possession gone, but another family moving in and an estranged husband that cannot be located! The story then proceeds to go back and forth between past and present events to backfill leading up to this disastrous day. Clever - as puzzle pieces are slowly produced and the full picture becomes abundantly clear. For me, there are also two ‘WHOA’ plot twists that will most certainly take your breath away.

The story is told in a most unique way with both Fi and Bram presenting events from their alternating viewpoint. Fi’s is via a victim of crime podcast in the aftermath, where listeners can tweet their #theories and #opinions! Bram tells his via a typed Word Document, also after the event. I did enjoy this tale but, at times, was frustrated by both the lack of pace and frustrating events and characters. Still it was fascinating, even if the end left me speechless and perplexed.

So a big thumbs up for such an original concept, complex plot, crazy secrets, really unlikable characters and some incredible twists. This mystery is sure to please as an easy but engrossing page turner.  I mean, imagine coming home one day to find new people moving into your home and no one can tell you how it happened? This is a mystery involving relatable people who suffer from terrible lies and manipulation, where the loved ones you are trying to protect are the very people you may ultimately destroy.

‘..it is also quite fitting that it’s ended the way it has, because it has always been about the house. Our marriage, our family, our life: they only seemed to make proper sense at home.’




This review is based on a complimentary copy from the publisher and provided through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. The quoted material may have changed in the final release

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