The Housewarming – SE Lynes

Everyone is going to the housewarming party.
All the same people who lived on the street the day Abi vanished…
Will her mother finally learn the truth?

Ava only left her daughter in the pushchair for five minutes. The buckle was fastened, and she was sure it was safe. But when she came downstairs, the door was open and Abi was gone – she walked down the road, past the Lovegoods’ house, and was never seen again.

A year later, the Lovegoods are planning their long-anticipated housewarming party. Ava doesn’t want to go. She can’t bear to look down that end of the road, to see the place where Abi vanished, and she doesn’t want to spend time with people who don’t share her grief. Her husband Matt persuades her: he’s worried about her. A night out might do her good.

But as her friends and neighbours chat, and the drink and gossip flows, Ava learns something new about the day she has re-lived a thousand times. A throwaway comment which could change everything.

Ava thought she knew every last detail of that day.

She’s about to find out she was wrong…

Brilliantly dark and moving suspense fiction for fans of Gillian Flynn, Claire McGowan and Lisa Jewell, The Housewarming will have your pulse racing and your heart in your mouth from start to finish.

Former BBC Producer, S.E. Lynes is the Amazon top #20 best selling author of ‘intelligent and haunting’, ‘beautifully written’ psychological thrillers, VALENTINA, MOTHER, THE PACT, THE PROPOSAL, THE WOMEN, THE LIES WE HIDE, CAN YOU SEE HER? and her latest novel, THE HOUSEWARMING.

After completing her MA, Lynes taught creative writing at Richmond Adult Community College for over ten years. She now combines writing, mentoring and lecturing.

My Review:

Having read all of SE Lynes previous books I knew that this book would be original, clever, thought-provoking and gripping and it is.

The Housewarming is about every parent’s worst nightmare coming true – a 2 year old little girl has disappeared from home and the story is told through her distraught parents voices and believe me, it’s not an easy read.

Ava is the grieving mother, full of guilt at having left her daughter alone for 10 minutes whilst she did some housework upstairs and one year later is still unable to come to terms with Abi’s disappearance and spends each day reliving her nightmare in minute detail.

When the next door neighbours host a house warming party almost a year to the date of Abi’s disappearance, Ava and her husband Matt reluctantly attend and with the flow of alcohol some secrets are being shared which will cause ripples through the community and soon everyone becomes a suspect or guilty of something.

If like me, you read lots of books then you might try to work out “who did it” before the actual reveal and I was very smug when at 50% through the book I worked it out. I knew my keen eye for detail and in-depth knowledge of murder, mayham and missing children would come in handy one day and I was actually a little disappointed that I had it all figured out so quickly. However, that cunning SE Lynes tricked me good and proper.. and I was so far off base I should have been charged with wasting police time. So hat’s off to the author for creating this twisty story and keeping me thoroughly gripped.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

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