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Publisher's Summary

AN INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER!

Another thrilling domestic suspense novel from the New York Times bestselling author of The Couple Next Door

“Lapena is a master of manipulation. With her latest page-turning thriller… she is once again at the top of her game.” —USA Today

“In this fast-paced, twisted family saga, Shari Lapena keeps you guessing until the very last page...” Paula Hawkins

In this family, everyone is keeping secrets—even 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 Fred and Sheila Merton certainly are rich. But even all their money can't protect them when a killer comes to call. The Mertons are brutally murdered after a fraught 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 vindictive father and neglectful mother, but perhaps one of the siblings is more disturbed than anyone knew. Did someone snap after that dreadful evening? Or did another person appear later that night with the worst of intentions? That must be what happened. After all, if one of the family were capable of something as gruesome as this, you'd know.

Wouldn't you?

©2021 Shari Lapena (P)2021 Penguin Audio

What the critics say

“Who wouldn’t be drawn to a book called Not a Happy Family?,... Like [her] earlier best sellers.... Not a Happy Family splashes into a stew of nightmares.” (New York Times)

“Lapena is a master of manipulation. With her latest page-turning thriller.... She is once again at the top of her game.... Lapena does what she does best, so much so that trying to put the book down is futile. Once you start reading, you won't want to stop.” (USA Today)

“A quintessential ‘beach read,’ I half expected sand to fall out of it. This one brings lurid family mayhem to the Hudson Valley [and] plausible suspects. With her cascading short chapters and teasers by the dozen, you stick with Lapena eagerly.” (Washington Post)

What listeners say about Not a Happy Family

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Not as good as previous books.

I usually like Shari Lapena's stories and gobble them up pretty quickly, but this one was a bit of a disappointment, took me much longer to finish. The story dragged out too much, the chapters were too short and brisk to my taste, many characters and lots of jumping from one to another, so it didn't feel like a good flow to the story. Having said it, I was intrigued to know who was the murderer, and all in all it was a relatively fun ride to the end. The narrator's performance was ok.

1 person found this helpful

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First Time

First time reading Shari Lapena - it was a terrific ride, right up to the last seconds!!!

1 person found this helpful

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I Hate Them

Boy!! They are really not a happy family!! Didn't like any of them, but the story had lots of twist & turns. kept me interested

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Excellent book! It gave me chills listening to it!

It kept me riveted until the very end! I wanted it to go onanx on!

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No surprise twists unfortunately. But kept my attention.

So many complex characters, but it was my guess right from the beginning who was guilty. So that’s too bad.

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Just so very depressing

Just so very depressing... a is this while review process. Won't be repeating it again anytime soon. Just hit 15 words, I can submit my review now

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  • SB
  • 2021-07-29

Liked the story, didn't like narration

The story was good, but I did not care for the narration. The cadence was rushed, and the delivery was often in a clipped monotone, with little or no inflection or distinction among characters.

There were a few too many suspects in the story. After awhile, we were just going around in circles and it became a bit tedious.

17 people found this helpful

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  • PhoenixFoxx Momma
  • 2021-08-02

SO disappointed after such a long wait!

I fell in love with Shari Lapena after her first book and I've read everyone since and this one was so disappointing! Very much a knock off "Clue" story and not that engaging. Her first books left me guessing until the very end but not this one. Characters were entitled and not at all personable. I couldn't find one character to relate to. I pre-ordered this book months ago and I'm sad I wasted my credit!

13 people found this helpful

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  • SHVTampa
  • 2021-09-10

Kept Me Guessing

I loved this book. I read other reviews that weren’t favorable but I thought the writing was great, suspenseful and I thought narrator was easy to listen too.
I’d definitely recommend

7 people found this helpful

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  • Beck Selby
  • 2021-09-13

HOKEY

I finally just had to quit. I could not get through this. Super cheesy. The story line was a stretch.

6 people found this helpful

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  • ReeseARoo
  • 2021-08-14

A nail biter.

I could not stop listening to this book. It had me hooked in the first chapter and had me listening all hours of the day. I had to find out the end. I did think the book ended abruptly and would have liked for the story to go on a little more to a clean finish. I strongly recommend.

5 people found this helpful

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  • JOHANNA THOMPSON
  • 2021-08-05

Good Book!

This book kept me interested to the end. Never have I disliked so many characters. The whole family were a bunch of entitled snobs. The story was good and left me questioning who did til the end.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 2021-08-04

good listen

Honestly you didn't know who did it, but at the same time you knew who didn't. Definitely glad I used a credit.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Cottage Dweller
  • 2021-08-11

Money doesn’t mean happiness

A wealthy family proves money can’t make you happy. It can sometimes make you greedy, selfish and cruel. Exactly what the head of this family has proven. This family has treated his family and others in just this way which leads him to a gross death.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Debra Andrus
  • 2021-08-07

A head turner

I love how the story stretched out 4 both the murder mystery and the character development. Then, a cliff hanger. Perfect! And the narrator's voice was pleasing, non-intrusive, and became the voice of the person everyone in the family wished they were. Coming from a family of narcissists, it's amazing how just a slight twist births a murderer.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Sarah Howard
  • 2021-09-12

Yes I do love Shari Lapena

Another classic “who done it” by the amazing author Shari Lapena. I loved it. Kept me guessing.

3 people found this helpful