#Ad- Proof Copy gifted for purposes of review- all opinions my own
Lisa Jewell’s latest novel, “The Family Remains” will be released in hardback on 21st July. Regular readers know that I’ve been a huge Lisa Jewell fan since my sister introduced me to Ralph’s Party, the debut hit of 1999, many moons ago. To celebrate the release of “The Family Remains” in hardback, we are giving away a copy to one of our readers (we’re also giving away a copy on our Instagram if you’d like another chance to enter):
Read on to find out what we thought of the book and for a chance to win a copy of your own:
About the book: The Family Remains by Lisa Jewell
LONDON. Early morning, June 2019: on the foreshore of the river Thames, a bag of bones is discovered. Human bones.
DCI Samuel Owusu is called to the scene and quickly sends the bag for forensic examination. The bones are those of a young woman, killed by a blow to the head many years ago.
Also inside the bag is a trail of clues, in particular the seeds of a rare tree which lead DCI Owusu back to a mansion in Chelsea where, nearly thirty years previously, three people lay dead in a kitchen, and a baby waited upstairs for someone to pick her up.
The clues point forward too to a brother and sister in Chicago searching for the only person who can make sense of their pasts.
Four deaths. An unsolved mystery. A family whose secrets can’t stay buried for ever …
About the Author: Lisa Jewell
Lisa Jewell was born in London in 1968. Her first novel, Ralph’s Party, was the best-selling debut novel of 1999. Since then she has written another eighteen novels, most recently a number of dark psychological thrillers, including The Girls, Then She Was Gone, and The Family Upstairs (all of which were Richard & Judy Book Club picks). Lisa is a New York Times and Sunday Times number one bestselling author who has been published worldwide in over twenty-five languages. She lives in north London with her husband, two teenage daughters, one cat, one guinea pig, and the best dog in the world.
Read more: Lisa Jewell Books
Follow: Lisa Jewell on Twitter
Lisa Jewell: The Family Remains Review – Our Thoughts
The Family Remains is the sequel of Lisa Jewell’s thriller, The Family Upstairs, which I really enjoyed. In fact, I wanted to reread The Family Upstairs before I went on to read this sequel. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find my copy. Luckily for me, at the front of the book there is a handy guide to “The Families of 16 Cheyne Walk” and I did find myself referring to this a few times, to familiarise myself with the characters while I immersed myself into the book.
Personally, I found it slow starting and a bit clunky for the first few chapters as new characters were introduced and each chapter jumped around back and for between different years. A gentler approach for the reader would have been to let us hear more about the familiar characters first, then once we’re gripped to introduce the new characters and storylines. But of course, it’s not meant to be a cosy novel and that’s not the way life works. We are all connected to people from the past and present in ways we’re not even aware of ourselves.
I persevered to get past this point and eventually these strangers, while not becoming friends, became known to me and I got into the book and it was worth it. Once, I hit the sweet spot where I needed to know the whole story, The Family Remains became a fast-paced, suspenseful page turner for me. There were also a lots of clever “Oh!” moments as mysteries were tied up from The Family Upstairs. I would have liked to have read more about original character, Libby and her mum, Lucy to see how their relationship progressed after we left them at the end of The Family Upstairs. However, it was time for us to hear Henry Lamb Jr, aka Phineas’ (and Rachel’s) side of the story… I enjoyed seeing the development of “Henry’s” complex character.
If you loved The Family Upstairs then you need to read this much anticipated follow-up. Would it thrive well as a stand alone novel? I think we’ve all picked up a sequel or a single book from a series in the past and read them before reading the prequel. That’s fine and it’s enjoyable. You could read this as a solo book, but I think you really need to read the prequel and sequel to whet your reading appetite and for the full experience.
Win a Copy of Lisa Jewell: The Family Remains
The Family Remains by Lisa Jewell will be available on hardback from 21st July (RRP: £16.99). For a chance to win a copy of Lisa Jewell: The Family Remains, please enter the Rafflecopter below. Remember to read the terms and conditions. Good luck!a Rafflecopter giveaway
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