Book review: The Family by Louise Jensen

I’m drawn to stories about cults and have hugely enjoyed Louise Jensen’s other books so was thrilled to get the chance to read this one. I love the creepy cover too!

ONCE YOU’RE IN, THEY’LL NEVER LET YOU LEAVE.

Laura is grieving after the sudden death of her husband. Struggling to cope emotionally and financially, she is grateful when a local community, Oak Leaf Organics, offer her and her 17-year-old daughter Tilly a home.
 
But as Laura and Tilly settle into life with their new ‘family’, sinister things begin to happen. When one of the community dies in suspicious circumstances Laura wants to leave but Tilly, enthralled by the charismatic leader, Alex, refuses to go.
 
Desperately searching for a way to save her daughter, Laura uncovers a horrifying secret but Alex and his family aren’t the only ones with something to hide. Just as Laura has been digging into their past, they’ve been digging into hers and she discovers the terrifying reason they invited her and Tilly in, and why they’ll never let them leave…

My review

I flew through this story, gripped by the complex characters and shadowy secrets. I felt for Laura who wants above anything to protect her daughter and hold onto her. Tilly also feels very real and it’s easy to understand her attraction to Alex and the Family given what she’s been through. Alex, the leader of the Family is a less distinct character which adds to his mystique and the sections in his viewpoint gradually get the reader wondering about his true intentions.

The story explores two types of family ties – blood relatives and community – and is about trust, secrets and revenge. It’s tense, creepy and frantic, bordering on horror in places. I found it an addictive read.

Thanks to publishers HQ and Netgalley for a review copy which has in no way influenced my opinion.


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