I’m delighted to be sharing my review of The Family by Louise Jensen on my blog today.
ONCE YOU’RE IN, THEY’LL NEVER LET YOU LEAVE.
Laura is grieving after the sudden death of her husband. Struggling to cope emotionally and financially, Laura is grateful when a local community, Oak Leaf Organics, offer her and her 17-year-old daughter Tilly a home.
But as Laura and Tilly settle into life with their new ‘family’, sinister things begin to happen. When one of the community dies in suspicious circumstances Laura wants to leave but Tilly, enthralled by the charismatic leader, Alex, refuses to go.
Desperately searching for a way to save her daughter, Laura uncovers a horrifying secret but Alex and his family aren’t the only ones with something to hide. Just as Laura has been digging into their past, they’ve been digging into hers and she discovers the terrifying reason they invited her and Tilly in, and why they’ll never let them leave…
The Family is a very tense thriller from Louise Jensen. Louise’s writing made this book so utterly gripping. I was intrigued by the residents of Oak Leaf Farm, especially the dark and mysterious Alex, who is their leader and holds everything together.
The darkness creeps into the pages of Louise’s book. It kept me turning the pages as I wondered what was going to happen next.
Laura and her daughter, Tilly, have already suffered unimaginable trauma. Laura’s husband and Tilly’s father, Gavan, has fallen to his death after a visit to one of his construction sites. But in the wake of Gavan’s passing, disturbing details about his business come to light, and people begin to turn on Laura and Tilly, including their own family. Desperate for help, Laura seeks refuge at Oak Leaf Farm and very soon Tilly is pulled into Alex’s orbit. Infatuated by Alex, Tilly is desperate to stay, but Laura is starting to see what is going on here and wants to get out. But someone is very keen to make sure that they never leave.
I found Louise Jensen’s latest thriller to be completely unpredictable. As Laura and Tilly became a part of the community at Oak Leaf, I initially thought this would be a good thing for them. It soon starts to become clear, however, that Alex was keen for them to stay for an altogether different reason. I never felt though that the community was completely shut off from the wider world. Although they use all their own home grown produce and don’t use technology, I didn’t get the sense they were prisoners there. It felt like a very welcoming community, and this is what made the characters who were a part of it all the more fascinating. I wanted to know just why they wanted to be a part of it and what made them stay.
The tension soon begins to build as the story progresses, and I started to fear for both Laura and Tilly. I couldn’t work out what was going on behind the scenes. Tilly, I felt especially sorry for, particularly for what she was going through at school, reminding us that school can be an incredibly tough time for teenagers. I could see why she was desperate to feel accepted at Oak Leaf and why she wanted to form new friendships there. I could also see why she was so drawn to Alex.
I’ve read Louise Jensen’s previous work, and I have to say that I think The Family is my favourite. I thought that the darkness was done really well, and it kept me thinking about the characters and what was going to happen to them.
There is a very creepy vibe to the story as it develops. I’m sure that many readers will be pulled into Louise and Tilly’s new home. Dark, very addictive and with some very sinister revelations, I’m sure this book will be a big hit among readers.
Publication date: 25th September 2019 (kindle) 3rd October 2019 (paperback)
Print length: 384 pages
If you would like to purchase The Family, you can do so by clicking on one of the following links below.