Book Review: The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena


A fast-paced, fun read.

From the inside cover:

You never know what’s happening on the other side of the wall.

Your neighbour told you that she didn’t want your six-month-old daughter at the dinner party. Nothing personal, she just couldn’t stand her crying.

Your husband said it would be fine. After all, you only live next door. You’ll have the baby monitor and you’ll take it in turns to go back every half hour.

Your daughter was sleeping when you checked on her last. But now, as you race up the stairs in your deathly quiet house, your worst fears are realized. She’s gone.

You’ve never had to call the police before. But now they’re in your home, and who knows what they’ll find there…

What would you be capable of, when pushed past your limit?

My Thoughts:

If you enjoy reading books with unreliable narrators and unlikable characters, then look no further than The Couple Next Door! With its fantastic opening chapter, you are thrown into the action right away; the excitement builds from the very first page and by the end of the first chapter you’ve already placed the characters in ‘like’ and ‘dislike’ categories.

“When she gets to the baby’s room and sees the empty crib, she screams.”

When Anne and Marco visit next door for a dinner party, agreeing to check on their daughter every half hour… Let’s pause right there, raise your hand if you would leave your six month old baby at home alone while you and your husband go next door to have dinner and drink wine. No, I didn’t think so, so I think it’s fair to say this book isn’t winning any awards for its ‘believability’. As the book progresses and revelations are made, the story becomes even more outlandish. Despite the absurdity of the accounts leading up to and following the baby’s disappearance, the plot flows, making this a nice, easy read.

I highly recommend this book to readers who don’t want anything too deep and chilling from a psychological thriller, instead are looking for enjoyment and amusement. Lapena has created a cast of unreliable characters, you never know whose account to trust, and this is what essentially keeps you turning pages, making this a fast-paced thriller. To get to the truth and know who to believable, you need to read on; you’re back and forth, one minute you think you know who and what to believe, only to get to the next chapter and everything’s been turned upside down and your back to not knowing who or what to believe. Although I must say, there’s one or two characters that you know from the very beginning that something’s off, not quite right; you’re just not sure if it’s directly related to the case of the missing child.

This book is a suspenseful roller-coaster of a ride that doesn’t let up for one minute, the amusement in the unreliable, unrealistic-ness of it all is thoroughly addictive. An overall entertaining read!

This book is available to buy now from: Amazon UK / Book Depository

20 thoughts on “Book Review: The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena

  1. I had already passed this one up and since I answered no to your first 2 questions about unreliable narrators and unlikeable characters I think I made the right decision:) I don’t think I could’ve gotten past what I felt was the unbelievably factor. Awesome review as usual!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, I’m finding this one didn’t work for a lot of people due to it’s unbelievability. I’m glad I confirmed that you made the right decision, with so many books out there, it’s getting harder to decide what’s worth your time and what isn’t.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Ah, if I’m not mistaken, it just won an award, UK’s best selling crime debut, that’s why the crazy promo. It’s a fun read, don’t take it too seriously and you’ll enjoy it.


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