The Couple Next Door Review | Shari Lapena

They were only going next door for the evening. They had the monitor with them and Marco said that it would be fine. Despite her misgivings, Anne trusts him. But when Anne and Marco return from a dinner party to find their six-month old daughter has vanished, it’s like falling into their own personal hell.

Anne struggles to hold it together, hiding a past her husband knows nothing about. Marco is full of secrets, ones that could cost his baby daughter her life. Anne’s parents seem to be there for their daughter and grandchild, nothing is what it seems.

Publisher: Transworld Books | Date: 2016 | Genre: Thriller

I received The Couple Next Door from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

The Couple Next Door Review

The Couple Next Door was a welcome surprise from Becky at Penguin when it arrived on my doorstop one day. I’ve been torn with these types of thrillers; I detested Gone Girl but thoroughly enjoyed The Widow, so kept an open mind when diving into these pages.

The plot is one you can imagine happening: having the monitor, checking on the child and then bam! Worst nightmare enters here. The child is gone.

I say can imagine happening… The twists and turns that take place throughout takes anyway predictability of how things will play out. Admittedly, I guessed a lot of it and once a twist was hinted towards, I worked it out. Such is the way with these sorts of books, hence my dilemma over whether I like them or not. Most are just too predictable and this was no exception.

Apart from a character twist that I didn’t see coming. This occurs right at the end of the book (no spoilers here!), but it stopped the book ending on a cliché ending. The avoidance of such an ending turned up my rating of this book because I didn’t see this one coming. I might have guessed most of it and worked out the rest, but it still caught me out at the last minute!

The characters were… to be honest, the characters were predictable, even with this final twist. But that didn’t mean they weren’t likeable or frustrated you when they refused to act in a way that seemed normal given the circumstances. The plot follows Anne and Marco for most of the time, with short breaks to show what is going on with the other characters such as Detective Rasbach or Anne’s mother. The division of the plot between the two characters was effective; I would have got bored if it was just one of them due to the predictability.

So although I guessed what would happen and worked out the majority of who was behind it, I still enjoyed this book. The characters were engaging enough to keep me interested, a trait that gets lost in thrillers sometimes. One of the better thriller books I’ve come across.

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