The Family Remains; Lisa Jewell
Atria - August 9, 2022
(sequel to The Family Upstairs)
This is a story has a lot going on in it but, it's also a very good read. The story begins when human bones are found by a mudlarker in the River Thames. Detective Inspector Samuel Owusu is in charge of the investigation and, it appears that the bones may be tied to a nearly 30 year old cold case involving a ballerina and a suicide pact that left (3) adults cult members dead and several children wondering what happened in their Chelsea mansion. Lucy Lamb and brother Henry are adult children of the tragedy. Lucy is temporarily staying with Henry along with her (2) teenage children. Henry, however, has other things on his mind and is obsessed with finding Phin, another character tied to the the Chelsea mansion days. Henry is off on a mission, determined to find Phin. Henry is a seriously obsessed and creepy character with one thing on his mind which moves the story into high gear. Then yet another storyline about Rachel and husband Michael who also happens to also be the former husband of Lucy. Rachel and Michael meet and marry quickly and things go very wrong very quickly.
The description states that this is a standalone sequel but, I think that is a far stretch as so much of the story is tied to former characters from the first book. I would describe this novel as crime drama more than a mystery or thriller. It is a story that kept me quickly turning the pages. A character driven novel told from multiple POVs and timelines, I started this as an audio, which was expertly narrated by multiple performers. I switched to the print edition only because it was easier for me to keep the timelines and POV straight. I was quite happy I read the first book of the series before this sequel. I found the ending satisfying as well. I'll definitely be returning to read more books by this author that I may have missed.
Rating - 4/5 stars
(NOTE: (a print edition and audio download were sent to me by the publisher in exchange for my unbiased review.)