The Housewarming - S.E. Lynes

Reading Challenge Category: Free ARC from NetGalley

Official Blurb:

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…

My Thoughts:

I don’t know what it was about this book, but I was gripped from the first page. The writing style is really different, and it draws you in. The repetitive short sentences really drive home the mental state of Ava. The timeline jumps all over the place without warning, but it is really easy to keep up.
I literally couldn’t put this book down. I’d think “I’ll just read for another 10 minutes” and I’d look up and an hour had passed by. Not a lot is happening, but it is enthralling enough to want to know what the outcome is going to be. What happened to Abi that day?
I didn’t see the twists coming, but they weren’t wham in your face. They were quite subtle, but you do need to concentrate when everything is being revealed to get it all straight in your head. You have to pay attention to the timeline and where everyone is and what is happening. I found it quite confusing, especially not knowing the full layout of the ‘set’; it was quite hard to get my head around. Great ending and conclusion, though.
I liked the lengthy ‘authors note’ after the book that goes into detail about how she came up with this story. Such a small detail and a whole book can be developed and conjured up. I thought her insight into the current situation while she was writing was enlightening, and I’m glad she did go back a year in time and didn’t incorporate the coronavirus into the story. I’m reading books to run away from the horrors in the current world and don’t want to read about characters in the same predicament we are in. I want to escape into an alternate universe, and this book certainly did that. So, thank you to the author for not putting current events into the book despite that being predominately surrounding her whilst writing this.
This was an enthralling book that I couldn’t put down, the writing style was unusual but worked, and the storyline was different and intriguing.

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The Housewarming
by S.E. Lynes
Date Started
6th October 2020
Date Finished
7th October 2020
Buy Now on Amazon