The Family Remains is the gripping new sequel to The Family Upstairs, the popular thriller by author Lisa Jewell. Being an avid thriller reader I usually don’t find myself reading many sequels in this genre, but I was very much looking forward to this one after having recently read the first book.
The story picks up from where it left off, with the children who survived the harrowing experiences together in a large house in London’s smart Chelsea having recently been reunited as adults and now trying to build new lives. But the ghosts of their past threaten to haunt their newfound pursuit of happiness as the secrets they thought they had escaped from seem determined to not be forgotten.
Detectives work hard to uncover the truth behind the history of a bag of human bones discovered in the River Thames. As forensics reveal the bones are of a young woman and trace her place of death to the mansion where three bodies where once found in the house’s kitchen and a happy baby in her cot, the mystery of what happened that fateful day all those years ago threatens to tear apart a family desperately clinging to the hope of a better future.
I absolutely loved getting to know the characters more – from the suspicious Henry to the hardworking Lucy and Libby the daughter she recently was reunited with, the ever-elusive Finn and learning more about Justin too. Meeting Rachel and seeing her relationship with Michael unfold was truly satisfying, I enjoyed seeing how this dangerous character tied in with what we knew about him from the first book.
The character development was spot-on, and I found myself not knowing what to expect as I read further. The twisty story was fantastic, and despite the shocking plot I was once again left surprised at enjoying yet another satisfying ending.
The Family Remains gets a thumbs-up from me, but please do read The Family Upstairs first to make sure you get maximum enjoyment from the clever plot that Lisa Jewell has created.
Thanks to Penguin Random House for sending me this book in exchange for an honest review.