The Family Remains by Lisa Jewell
The Family Remains Book Cover The Family Remains
Lisa Jewell
Adult, Women's Contemporary Fiction, Thriller
Atria Books
August 9, 2022
Kindle, Hardback, Paperback, Audiobook, Audio CD

Early one morning on the shore of the Thames, DCI Samuel Owusu is called to the scene of a gruesome discovery. When Owusu sends the evidence for examination, he learns the bones are connected to a cold case that left three people dead on the kitchen floor in a Chelsea mansion thirty years ago.

Rachel Rimmer has also received a shock—news that her husband, Michael, has been found dead in the cellar of his house in France. All signs point to an intruder, and the French police need her to come urgently to answer questions about Michael and his past that she very much doesn’t want to answer.

After fleeing London thirty years ago in the wake of a horrific tragedy, Lucy Lamb is finally coming home. While she settles in with her children and is just about to purchase their first-ever house, her brother takes off to find the boy from their shared past whose memory haunts their present. As they all race to discover answers to these convoluted mysteries, they will come to find that they’re connected in ways they could have never imagined.

In this masterful standalone sequel to her haunting New York Times bestseller, The Family Upstairs, Lisa Jewell proves she is writing at the height of her powers with another jaw-dropping, intricate, and affecting novel about the lengths we will go to protect the ones we love and uncover the truth.

The audiobook of Lisa Jewell’s The Family Remains, narrated by the top notch ensemble of Dominic Thorburn, Bea Holland, Hugh Quarshie, Josh Dylan, Thomas Judd, and Eleanor Tomlinson, is an engrossing thriller that will keep on your toes and keep you hooked all the way to the stunning end. Set in modern day England, Lisa begins the book from the perspective of detective Samuel Owusu, a integral person in connecting the various characters, and his initiation of an investigation after the discovery of a bag of bones along the Thames. As the story unfolds Rachel Rimmer, Lucy Lamb and her brother Henry Lamb, who seem to have no connection with the murder, are introduced, perfectly creating the threads Lisa will use to weave this intricate and startling thriller.

The Family Remains is a standalone sequal to Lisa’s gripping, The Family Upstairs. It explores the tragic and sometimes brutal experiences that people keep hidden yet shape their very existence. It also delves into family relationships and the extent a person would go to protect the people they love. Intertwined in these over arching themes are pictures of resilience that exists in people who have experienced trauma and the strength that each individual has within them. I especially loved how the flaws of the characters kept you continually wondering if they were truly the victim or were they actually a perfectly disguised monster at heart. But, this is all just icing on the cake of a great contemprorary thriller that is packed full of fascinating characters, murder, deception, and payback. I wish I could be more specific but I don’t want to divulge any spoilers and ruin the great experience that comes from the revelation of the interconnected plots and a gut-wrenching ending. Trust me, this is a great thriller that you Do Not want to miss!

Not only is The Family Remains a great story but experiencing it as an audiobook takes it to the next level. Having an extensive cast of narrators allows each character to be clearly defined and helps you lose yourself in the story. The casting of the narrators was extremely well done as well. Their voices and the way they read the lines fit perfectly with the way I imagined the characters in my mind from the descriptions and actions. Henry was especially good and fit his eccentric and oddly twisted personality. The format of audio, when well done like this, really enhances the experience. For me, both the book and the audiobook are 5 stars that I highly recommend!!