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All booksThrillerNot a Happy Family
Not a Happy Family by Shari Lapena
Thriller

Not a Happy Family

Repeat author
Shari Lapena is back at Book of the Month – other BOTMs include The Couple Next Door.

by Shari Lapena

Quick take

We can't get enough of this twisted domestic suspense of a wealthy family unraveling after their parents are murdered.

Good to know

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_FastRead

    Fast read

  • Illustrated icon, Icons_Buzzy

    Buzzy

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_Murder

    Murder

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_SuburbanDrama

    Suburban drama

Why I love it

Ashley Audrain
Author, The Push

Few things are as satisfying as cracking open the spine of a book you just know you’re going to devour—and that’s what Shari Lapena delivers again and again. Her novels are expertly paced and deliciously twisty, reigning her one of the true queens of domestic suspense. Her latest, Not a Happy Family, does not disappoint. If, like me, you love dysfunctional sibling drama with high-stakes money in the mix, this is your next one-sitting read.

Fred and Sheila Merton are rich-rich and live a very nice life in upstate New York—until they’re gruesomely murdered in their home, after a disastrous Easter dinner with their three grown children. Now, each of the siblings has millions coming their way in inheritance, and an unspeakable sense of relief—Fred Merton was an emotionally abusive father and Sheila a neglectful mother. The problem is, the three siblings have never gotten along, and the police need someone to charge. Layer by layer, as we get the rotating perspectives of all three children, their increasingly suspicious spouses, the devoted housekeeper, and a meddling aunt, you’ll question who is framing whom, and what each person might be capable of.

Lapena gives us a razor-sharp who-dunnit thick with greed and deceit that will keep you guessing the ending with every page-turning chapter. If you’re a fan of the television show Succession, your itch for more Roy family drama will most certainly be scratched with the Merton’s. Prepare to binge this one!

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Synopsis

In this family, everyone is keeping secrets—especially the dead. Brecken Hill in upstate New York is an expensive place to live. You have to be rich to have a house there. And they don't come much richer than Fred and Sheila Merton. But even all their money can't protect them when a killer comes to call. The Mertons are brutally murdered the night after an Easter Dinner with their three adult kids. Who, of course, are devastated.

Or are they? They each stand to inherit millions. They were never a happy family, thanks to their capricious father and neglectful mother, but perhaps one of them is more disturbed than anyone knew. Did one of them snap after that dreadful evening? Or was it someone else that night who crept in with the worst of intentions? It must be. After all, if one of your siblings was a psychopath, you'd know.

Wouldn't you?

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Preview

Get an early look from the first pages of Not a Happy Family.

Read a sample →

Member thoughts

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36914 ratings
  • 45% Love
  • 49% Like
  • 5% Dislike
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