Review: The Couple Next Door: A Novel (by Shari Lapena)

29426188It all started at a dinner party. . .

A domestic suspense debut about a young couple and their apparently friendly neighbors–a twisty, rollercoaster ride of lies, betrayal, and the secrets between husbands and wives. . .

Anne and Marco Conti seem to have it all–a loving relationship, a wonderful home, and their beautiful baby, Cora. But one night when they are at a dinner party next door, a terrible crime is committed. Suspicion immediately focuses on the parents. But the truth is a much more complicated story.

Inside the curtained house, an unsettling account of what actually happened unfolds. Detective Rasbach knows that the panicked couple is hiding something. Both Anne and Marco soon discover that the other is keeping secrets, secrets they’ve kept for years.

What follows is the nerve-racking unraveling of a family–a chilling tale of deception, duplicity, and unfaithfulness that will keep you breathless until the final shocking twist.


The Couple Next Door is an “ok” book, I can give it a generous two stars.

I liked how the story began but as the plot thickened, I was at a loss because it got so complicated borderline impossible. The “discoveries” were easy to predict because you will be directed right into it with no suspense at all.  The story that the Author used to divert the readers from being able to guess what really happened that night wasn’t strong enough. I wished there was more of it. I wished she’s given Anne’s story more emphasis.

Who could have taken the baby? Could it be the ever flirtatious Cynthia? It can also be her husband Graham whose character by the way is so stupid. I do not understand him at all, totally non-essential. I mean there was a part of the story that I had actually thought he would matter but then after few pages, I realized that he doesn’t matter after all! Could it be the baby’s parents? Anne seemed tensed all night and Marco seemed overly drunk. The grandparent’s story wasn’t presented until the baby went missing. Is it possible that they kidnapped their own granddaughter? I couldn’t comment on the Detective because despite this book being released some time ago, I still do not want to spoil it for others. All I can say is I loved the dedication of Detective Rasbach.

I am kind of easy to please but this book didn’t make me happy at all. Despite my busy schedule, I was able to finish this book faster than my normal speed because I was anxious to see if there’d be something that will excite me. The speed is due to hoping that there’s something that would redeem the characters. There wasn’t any.

The thoughts and actions of the characters just did not seem coherent. I wish the characters acted with more sense. I was like, “could you guys be more obvious?”

This could pass as a TV movie though.

The Couple Next Door: A NovelThe Couple Next Door: A Novel by Shari Lapena

My rating: 2 of 5 stars


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