The Mother-in-Law by Sally Hepworth
A twisty, compelling novel about one woman’s complicated relationship with her mother-in-law that ends in murder…
From the moment Lucy met her husband’s mother, Diana, she was kept at arm’s length. Diana was exquisitely polite, and properly friendly, but Lucy knew that she was not what Diana envisioned. But who could fault Diana? She was a pillar of the community, an advocate for social justice who helped female refugees assimilate to their new country. Diana was happily married to Tom, and lived in wedded bliss for decades. Lucy wanted so much to please her new mother-in-law.
That was five years ago.
Now, Diana has been found dead, a suicide note near her body. Diana claims that she no longer wanted to live because of a battle with cancer.
But the autopsy finds no cancer.
The autopsy does find traces of poison and suffocation.
Who could possibly want Diana dead?
Why was her will changed at the eleventh hour to disinherit both of her adult children and their spouses?
With Lucy’s secrets getting deeper and her relationship with her mother-in-law growing more complex as the pages turn, this new novel from Sally Hepworth is sure to add to her growing legion of fans.
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Audio Book Review by Maggie
This is my first Sally Hepworth book, I had no idea what to anticipate. I’m really happy I read this book. While it’s not an edge of your seat thriller, Hepworth writes a solid family thriller. The characters are deep and interesting. The relationships are complex and believable. While I didn’t get any shocks from the book, I enjoyed every moment and was riveted til the ending.
Lucy has a less than great relationship with her mother in law, but she tries her best to manage. Her own mother passed away, but she has a good relationship with her dad. Lucy just wants to get along with Diana, but she’s got more of a rough personality. The book goes between the pasts of both women, showing before Diana was murdered and how their lives intersected.
Usually I don’t like split narratives, but Hepworth wrote this pair really well. I started out not liking Diana, but I loved learning more about her history and why she was sometimes harsh. Lucy is always a sweet woman, but I feel for her yearning to be closer to Diana. Eventually they do have a sweet moment, and I adore it.
The other characters are interesting, too. Lucy’s husband, Ollie, her sister in law,Nettie, and her brother in law , Patrick are suspects in the death. Their stories are shared throughout the book so you never know what to think or decide who do it. There’s constant surprises and more layers being added to the story. Diana’s husband, Tom, died of ALS, and it’s so sweet to see how much she loved him, but also how sad it was to know someone had lost their soulmate. Truly, this book will affect you on multiple levels. I was shocked, laughing at times, sad, and angry at others. I don’t remember the last time a book had this impact, and I’m so glad I was able to enjoy the audio.
I did figure out who the killer was, but it didn’t detract from my enjoyment. I highly recommend picking this up immediately. Especially the audio books because the narrator does both POVs so well, and there’s even a small interview with the author. I will be picking up more from Hepworth soon. I love being able to add another author to the thriller favorites.