The Couple Next Door- Shari Lapena
Updated: Jan 6, 2019
So I was in the mood for a twisty plot thriller this time. I wanted something easy and exciting to read, I picked up this best seller from my local Waterstones a while ago on a whim hoping it would satisfy my craving.
Funny enough, this book really isn't about a 'couple next door'. That was the main point that I noticed soon after reading this book, what a random title for a book that's mainly to do with a kidnapped baby. Weird.
This book is about a couple who have a 6mo old baby, they go to a dinner party at the 'couple's next door's' house, and leave the baby at home (that's the only reference to the title). They take a baby monitor and every half hour the couple take turns to check on the baby while at the dinner party. Then the baby disappears at midnight and it now becomes a crime thriller. Basically, the book is a 'whodunit' on the kidnapping and it mainly focuses on who took the baby, than the story itself. It also mentions postpartum depression from the main character, but in an irrelevant way. It kind of dragged on more than I would have liked, and also the twist at the end isn't much of a twist because I was able to figure it out myself halfway through the book. I'm a total sucker for twists! I never see them coming and I'm super gullible. So when I did, I was pretty much bored for the rest of the book and just wanted to finish the story more than anything. To be honest it was sort of exciting from the beginning, then as the book went on it just got worse and unrealistic. The narrator gives too much away and completely takes away the element of surprise.
The book kind of reminded me of the TV show, CSI Miami, or any of the CSI shows, it's quite glamorously done in that glossy, filtered, extravagant kind of way, and isn't very realistic. In my opinion anyways. I wasn't drawn to the characters of the book and didn't care for them very much, therefore causing myself to detach from the book. It also had a weird ending.
It was a very easy read though, so if your looking for a somewhat okay thriller then do read it. You could literary read this with lots of distractions around you, it's that easy to read. Not the most challenging writing, I feel like a 13 year old could have written this. All in all, not the best thriller I've read, i'm shocked it was a best seller. I was disappointed because it did look promising...oh well, now I know. I still rate 'The Kind Worth Killing', 'The Girl Before' and 'I'm Travelling Alone' some of the best thrillers I've read in the past year...and are always on the lookout for my beloved plot twists!
The couple next door really had the potential to be a great thriller but GOOD GOD the author just killed the story. Such a good hook though...shame.
Click here for the Amazon book link.