Review: The House We Grew up In

cover31772-mediumThe House we Grew up in by Lisa Jewell

Meet the Bird Family

All four children have an idyllic childhood: a picture-book cottage in a country village, a warm, cosy kitchen filled with love and laughter, sun-drenched afternoons in a rambling garden.

But one Easter weekend a tragedy strikes the Bird family that is so devastating that, almost imperceptibly, it begins to tear them apart.

The years pass and the children become adults and begin to develop their own quite separate lives. Soon it’s almost as though they’ve never been a family at all.

Almost. But not quite.

Because something has happened that will call them home, back to the house they grew up in – and to what really happened that Easter weekend all those years ago.

I have one word for this book: wow.  I absolutely loved this book.  I’ve loved each Lisa Jewell book I have read and when I read that she had a new one out, I was excited.  Imagine my excitement when my request for an advanced copy was granted.  I couldn’t wait to get stuck in.  There is always the worry with highly anticipated or hyped books that they won’t live up to your expectations and I am happy to report that this is not the case here.  This book was perfect.

The characters, the setting, the story – everything was perfectly written, believable and relatable.  I couldn’t ask for more.  Jewell deals with highly sensitive subjects of hoarding, mental illness and suicide in a way that manages to be both delicate and real.  She shows incredible insight and sensitivity to each of the characters as she tells their stories and points of view.  Each of the characters is deeply flawed yet somehow likeable and I found it easy to sympathise with each one.

This is the perfect story of family secrets and how tragedy can threaten to tear it all apart.

I award a rare 5/5.  I would award more if I could and recommend this book to everyone.

I received an advanced reader copy from Random House, Cornerstone in exchange for an honest review.

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