Brooke meets a man and his son lost on the beach, and offers them her holiday home. But as she returns to her own nearby house, she finds flames licking through her beloved possessions and destroying her artworks which threatens her livelihood. Could Brooke have been deliberately targeted and why?
The New Family is a psychological thriller with danger and secrets lurking beneath the surface.
The book is written in two timelines: Brooke in 2019 and Christina 18 months earlier. Brooke is struggling to cope with her grief after the death of her mother. Christina is risking her perfect family by having an affair. How are the two timelines connected?
Brooke has suspicions about who is responsible for the fire and questions whether she was intended to be inside the burning building. She has a mysterious past and the name Lewis crops up and seems to be haunting her. Meanwhile Oliver and Finley have appeared from nowhere and need somewhere to live. Where have they come from and are they alone? How do these strands connect with Christina and her former lover who won’t let go?
The writing of the book is engaging and I found myself equally immersed in both timelines. The chapters alternate between Brooke and Christina so we get to undertsand their situations and feel a connection with them. Both women are vulnerable and flawed but this makes them feel more authentically human. There were plenty of questions raised as the plot develops and the tension mounts especially as the book races towards a shocking conclusion (suspend disbelief and just enjoy!)
The New Family in an entertaining and intriguing psychological thriller. I have previously reviewed The Accusation and The Argument by Victoria Jenkins.
Brooke is delighted when Oliver decides to rent her old family home with his three-year-old son Finley. Finally someone to bring happiness to the rundown house across the street. They seem like the perfect tenants, but Brooke is a little unnerved when they move in with just a single bag between them. Where are their belongings?
When Brooke asks Oliver about his past, he quickly changes the subject. Her best friend tells her to leave it, after all Brooke has been through enough trauma in her life. But Brooke can’t shake off the feeling that something isn’t right. Why aren’t her new tenants’ names listed anywhere online?
Then Brooke arrives home to find orange flames dancing in the upstairs windows. As her whole life goes up in smoke, she is convinced it wasn’t an accident. And when she finds Finley drawing a picture of an angry burning house with terror in his eyes, her blood runs cold. What is Finley so frightened of? And why does Oliver snatch the drawing away the moment he sees it?
Brooke is convinced Finley is in serious danger, but given her past, she’s not sure anyone will believe her. Is Brooke ready to face up to her own demons to save the little boy? And when the truth is finally revealed, who is really the one in danger?
The New Family is an addictive psychological thriller with a twist you won’t see coming, perfect for fans of The Wife, The Silent Patient and Lisa Jewell.
Author Bio and Social Media
Victoria Jenkins is an English tutor and former secondary school teacher from South Wales who has been writing for years and day-dreaming about becoming a ‘proper’ writer for the past decade. She have an MA in Creative and Media Writing from the University of Wales, Swansea, where she wrote a lot of poetry while planning a lot of plots she hoped she would once day write. Victoria lives in South Wales with her husband.