Book Reviews

The Other Family by Wendy Corsi Staub

To start, a tremendous thanks to NetGalley and William Morrow for my ARC of The Other Family. This book was expected to publish on January 18, 2022, but may now be expected on February 8, 2022. Regardless, The Other Family is coming soon!

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The Story

New York Times bestselling author Wendy Corsi Staub makes her trade paperback debut with a fast-paced thriller in the vein of Lisa Jewell’s The Family Upstairs and Megan Collins’ The Winter Sister. Here, a family making a fresh start moves into a house which was the site of an unsolved triple homicide–and are watched by an unknown person…

The watcher sees who you are…and knows what you did.

It’s the perfect home for the perfect family: pretty Nora Howell, her handsome husband, their two teenage daughters, and lovable dog. As California transplants making a fresh start in Brooklyn, they expected to live in a shoebox, but the brownstone has a huge kitchen, lots of light, and a backyard. The catch: its previous residents were victims of a grisly triple homicide that remains unsolved.

Soon, peculiar things begin happening. The pug is nosing around like a bloodhound. Nora unearths a long-hidden rusty box in the flowerbed. Oldest daughter Stacey, obsessed with the family murdered in their house, pokes into the bloody past and becomes convinced that a stranger is watching the house. Watching them.

She’s right. But one of the Howells will recognize his face. Because one of them has a secret that will blindside the others with a truth that lies shockingly close to home–and to this one’s terrifying history.

My Thoughts

As my dad likes to say: BLUF (Bottom Line Up Front). I did not enjoy The Other Family.

The storyline had such promise! It had all the makings of a good psychological thriller. However, it just did not come together. There were too many characters all competing to tell the same story. Things were predictable, and it left me super frustrated having spent time reading it.

There was an entire family of characters in the book that was unnecessary to the progression of the storyline. These characters got backstories and their home was described… It just felt unnecessary once you got to the end of the novel. If the author had tied that family back in, it would have been genius.

The twist was also predictable. Not only was it predictable, but it was dropped in the last chapter or so, almost as an afterthought. Wendy Corsi Staub tried to build a family drama and a psychological thriller and also kind of a romance and also kind of cheaters…all in one book. It just didn’t work.

While I did not love The Other Family, it is still important to support authors! Especially female authors!

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