The Woman Next Door by Cass Green

About this book…

Two suburban women. Two dark secrets. The almost perfect murder.

Everybody needs good neighbours…

Melissa and Hester have lived next door to each other for years. When Melissa’s daughter was younger, Hester was almost like a grandmother to her. But recently they haven’t been so close.

Hester has plans to change all that. It’s obvious to her that despite Melissa’s outwardly glamorous and successful life, she needs Hester’s help.

But taking help from Hester might not be such a good idea for a woman with as many secrets as Melissa…

My review…

There’s always a worry when you move house due to the fact that your neighbours can really make or break how well you settle into your new home! The term “neighbours from hell” is now a now a well-known phrase, an awful predicament to find yourself in and usually an expensive one to extricate yourself from. But sometimes, the dangers you face can be slightly less obvious!

Told from the points of view of two neighbours, Hester and Melissa, this is a slow burner of a psychological suspense that gradually becomes so gripping that by the end, you’re pretty much a nervous wreck. Hester is a lonely older woman, on her own and its obvious that she has become quite bitter about the fact she hasn’t been able to have children and therefore grandchildren. Having lost her job in a nursery, she trys to become a permanent fixture in Melissa’s family by looking after her daughter but that has stopped now that Tilly is a teenager. She’s such a strange and standoffish woman that I did actually feel very sorry for her. She only has her much adored Cavalier king Charles spaniel Bertie (I know!!! I hate it when there are animals involved in these types of books!) for company, but her attitude towards others drives them away and she is a bit of a laughing stock amongst her neighbours. Melissa on the other hand seems to have it all! A gorgeous and famous husband, beautiful home but all is not rosy in The Garden of Eden and her husband’s affair and her daughter growing up have sent her spiralling into a depression and to question her role in life.

My feelings about these two women chopped and changed throughout the course of reading this book. I started by disliking Melissa but gradually things from her past start to come to light and I understood a little more about why she acted the way she did. And the same with Hester, my personal favourite type of narrator-an unreliable one!! Half way through I realised that the relationship between Hester and Melissa reminded me of Notes on a Scandal by Zoe Heller, a favourite book of mine, but things aren’t always quite what they seem.

I was drawn to the blurb for this one but after I had started it I wasn’t sure I was going to enjoy it! All the characters were unlikable and seemed self obsessed and positively vile! But about a third of the way through, I found myself being gradually drawn into the Thelma and Louise style journey that they find themselves on and from that point I couldn’t put it down. There are a few shocking twists along the way and the ending was a little unbelievable but perfectly handled.

The Woman Next Door is a compelling and gripping piece of contemporary psychological suspense and if this is a debut then I am pretty excited about what is still to come from this author.

I received a copy of this book via netgalley in return for an unbiased review.

The Woman Next Door: A dark and twisty psychological thriller is out on 22nd July and is available to buy from Amazon UK

About Cass Green…

Cass Green is the pseudonym of Caroline Green, an award-winning author of fiction for young people. Her first novel, Dark Ride won the Rona Young Adult Book of the Year and the Waverton Good Read Award. Cracks and Hold Your Breath garnered rave reviews and were shortlisted for eleven awards between them. She is the Writer in Residence at East Barnet School and teaches Writing for Children at City University. Caroline has been a journalist for over twenty years and has written for many broadsheet newspapers and glossy magazines. The Woman Next Door is her first novel for adults.

 

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Published by

jorobertson2015

I am a Norfolk girl living in leafy Cheshire with my grumpy Scotsman. A mum and nana who lives for my family but who is also addicted to reading (and Marmite!) I will read almost anything but my preferred genres to review are psychological thrillers, crime procedural novels or women's fiction. My kindle is my life but I also have a substantial bookshelf in my cosy reading room where I can go to escape the stresses of family life with plenty of tea and chocolate. I am a member of netgalley and bookbridg. I review on Amazon, where I'm a Top 500 reviewer, and Goodreads. You can always find me over on Twitter @jocatrobertson for any review requests.

6 thoughts on “The Woman Next Door by Cass Green”

  1. I got a copy too and I’ll read it as soon as I finish my current one. Sometimes I like unlikeable characters jaja

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  2. I saw and heard Cass Green (or Caroline) during the BritCrime online festival and thought both her career path and this book sounded interesting. So I got it too and will be reading it… well, soonish, I hope!

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  3. Neighbors from hell… Well, I’m in the middle of a battle with some neighbors with a bad reputation and a tendency to threaten those who disagree with their idiotic behavior. It’s pretty ugly! Anyway, I know I’m always a little curious about neighbors. When I was younger, I kept wondering what was happening on the other side of the door. This book sounds like it combines my favorite genre with my nosy side, haha.

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    1. It is awful as it can turn the place where you should feel at your safest into a place you don’t want to be. I do feel for you. I liked this because it had an intriguing relationship between the two women

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