“Rich, dark, and intricately twisted, this enthralling whodunit mixes family saga with domestic noir to brilliantly chilling effect.” —Ruth Ware, New York Times bestselling author
“A haunting, atmospheric, stay-up-way-too-late read.” —Megan Miranda, New York Times bestselling author
From the New York Times bestselling author of Then She Was Gone comes another page-turning look inside one family’s past as buried secrets threaten to come to light.
Be careful who you let in.
Soon after her twenty-fifth birthday, Libby Jones returns home from work to find the letter she’s been waiting for her entire life. She rips it open with one driving thought: I am finally going to know who I am.
She soon learns not only the identity of her birth parents, but also that she is the sole inheritor of their abandoned mansion on the banks of the Thames in London’s fashionable Chelsea neighborhood, worth millions. Everything in Libby’s life is about to change. But what she can’t possibly know is that others have been waiting for this day as well—and she is on a collision course to meet them.
Twenty-five years ago, police were called to 16 Cheyne Walk with reports of a baby crying. When they arrived, they found a healthy ten-month-old happily cooing in her crib in the bedroom. Downstairs in the kitchen lay three dead bodies, all dressed in black, next to a hastily scrawled note. And the four other children reported to live at Cheyne Walk were gone.
In The Family Upstairs, the master of “bone-chilling suspense” (People) brings us the can’t-look-away story of three entangled families living in a house with the darkest of secrets.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
The past is never far behind us. In Lisa Jewell’s tense psychological thriller, it’s right in front of us, too, ready to reveal some very alarming things. When Libby unexpectedly inherits her family’s London mansion, she’s pulled in by a history of family dysfunction, a mysterious stranger, and several deaths. The tension keeps building—and secrets keep being revealed—right up to the final page. If you feel like you’ve seen it all in contemporary thrillers, trust us, you won’t know what hit you.
Customer ReviewsSee All
The Family Upstairs
Outstanding book! I enjoyed every minute of reading this!! Love this author!!
This book was one of the best I had read in a long time!!! I read it in about 24 hours and just could not put it down!
A masterpiece among psychological thrillers
The Family Upstairs is a masterpiece among psychological thrillers that you will not be able to put down until you reach the last page. You will delight in its twist and turns, as it leaves you utterly and totally gobsmacked.
What I Like
The characters are divinely human and drive the plot. Libby is 25 and just learns about her birth parents and their home. She has inherited the home in a very wealthy district of London and now must decide what to do with it. Lucy is a homeless mother trying desperately to provide food and shelter for her son Marco, age 12, daughter Stella, age 5, and their pet dog. When a notification pops up on her phone, her focus shifts to getting her small family back to England, where she was born. And the last narrator is Henry. He provides the back story of the events that led to the birth of the baby that was found 25 years ago in the house that Libby inherited. All three characters are so complex and well-developed that you can easily imagine their choices outside of the immediate picture the story presents. Having three narrators can prove disorienting at first, but all 3 stories are integral to the conclusion and create an element of suspense that carries you through from the first to the last page.
The narrators are intriguingly unreliable as they tell their version of their story. Since the characters are so complex, so are their versions of their own stories. They tell us what they want us to know, which may or not be the truth as it really happened. This also builds suspense and leads the plot in directions we cannot possibly anticipate.
The plot is like your favorite amusement park ride, full of twists, turns, and sudden stops with a change in direction. And, just like with your favorite amusement park ride, you feel an exhilarated rush when it is over. You will not want to put it down once you start until you see it through to its conclusion.
The ending provides the necessary wrap-up but also is very haunting, as you can see outside the picture presented. Questions are answered, but you are left with an unsettling feeling that more questions have developed at the end of the novel. This psychological play makes the story stand out among other books in the genre and elevates it to the distinction of a masterpiece.
What I Wish
My only wish is that Lisa Jewell keeps writing amazing stories like this one.
To Read or Not to Read
It is an excellent book for a book club to delve into and debate the psychology, but all will love its complexities.
Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for providing me with an advanced copy in exchange for an honest review.