Monday 8 April 2024

Not A Happy Family by Shari Lapena

Not a Happy FamilyNot a Happy Family by Shari Lapena
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Time taken to read - as able over 4 days

Pages - 433

Publisher - Penguin

Source - Bought

Blurb from Goodreads

In this family, everyone is keeping secrets--especially the dead. Brecken Hill in upstate New York is an expensive place to live. You have to be rich to have a house there. And they don't come much richer than Fred and Sheila Merton. But even all their money can't protect them when a killer comes to call. The Mertons are brutally murdered the night after an Easter Dinner with their three adult kids. Who, of course, are devastated.

Or are they? They each stand to inherit millions. They were never a happy family, thanks to their capricious father and neglectful mother, but perhaps one of them is more disturbed than anyone knew. Did one of them snap after that dreadful evening? Or was it someone else that night who crept in with the worst of intentions? It must be. After all, if one of your siblings was a psychopath, you'd know.

Wouldn't you?

My Review

Oh you guys, you know we are big Lapena fans in this house anyway. Well this one we meet the Mertons, Fred and Sheila start the story being horrifically killed. As the book goes on we go back to the evening of their death and the big family dinner/reunion. Ooft the family are dysfunctional and that isn't the half of it. As the investigation into their deaths proceeds we learn more about them and the family, dudes we have a lot of not very nice people!

I think sometimes a book hits harder depending on how your life experiences are. My dad bought me this book and isn't it ironic how the book imitates life. People being more interested in what they can get when a loved one dies, this has ALWAYS been a huge bug bear of mine, such a disrespect to the person who has passed. The Mertons are RICH and we all know how many can make people.

So whilst you have the who done it/investigation aspect of the book the behaviours of the family really got their nails into me. I think sometimes we see the absolute ugliness of people when someone dies, greed, ugly sides of their personality and whilst it is a part of the book it isn't the heart of it but it packed a punch for me. Purely from the aspect that time and time again we have seen this when someone has passed. The Merton children are very different from each other and have turned out very different so hearing of their characters and reactions to their parents demise was interesting in itself, not including all that comes after. The book kept me guessing as Lapena always done, 4.5/5 for me this time. Prepare for some shady behaviours and not very nice people!

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