Hi, friends!  Today we’re talking suspense again!  I’ve really been enjoying all the domestic suspense novels I’ve read this year… there have been so many great titles coming out.  I just finished another one that I wanted to share.


The Mother-in-Law is a new release from author Sally Hepworth.  This is the first book I’ve read by this author… it’s been getting a lot of Bookstagram buzz, and I was lucky enough to get an advance digital copy through Net Galley.  Here’s a description:

A twisty, compelling new novel about one woman’s complicated relationship with her mother-in-law that ends in death…

From the moment Lucy met her husband’s mother, she knew she wasn’t the wife Diana had envisioned for her perfect son. Exquisitely polite, friendly, and always generous, Diana nonetheless kept Lucy at arm’s length despite her desperate attempts to win her over. And as a pillar in the community, an advocate for female refugees, and a woman happily married for decades, no one had a bad word to say about Diana…except Lucy.

That was five years ago.

Now, Diana is dead, a suicide note found near her body claiming that she longer wanted to live because of the cancer wreaking havoc inside her body.

But the autopsy finds no cancer.

It does find traces of poison, and evidence of suffocation.

Who could possibly want Diana dead? Why was her will changed at the eleventh hour to disinherit both of her children, and their spouses? And what does it mean that Lucy isn’t exactly sad she’s gone?

Fractured relationships and deep family secrets grow more compelling with every page in this twisty, captivating new novel from Sally Hepworth.

Does it sound like there’s a lot going on here?  Oh, where to begin?!?  Let me just tell you:  I finished this in one sitting, wrapping up around 3am.  Worth. Every. Minute.

First of all, let’s all admit that mother-in-law/daughter-in-law relationships can be complicated.  In even the healthiest relationship, it can take some time to sort out boundaries, roles, and traditions.

Readers… this isn’t one of those relationships.  The best I can say is that Diana and Lucy got off to a rocky start and went downhill from there.

The story is told from both alternating points of view and alternating time frames.  We start in present day where police visit Lucy and her husband Ollie to deliver some sad news:  Ollie’s mother Diana has been found dead of an apparent suicide.

As the story unfolds, we discover secrets held by each of the characters, and we get glimpses of the family over time to see how relationships and dynamics have evolved.  There was some crazy in this family, and all the dysfunction you could hope for.

I don’t want to give too many details about the story, because you’ll enjoy this book more if you discover events and plot points as you read.  I will say that one of my favorite things was how many events were woven through the story, but not explained until later in the book… it’s somehow satisfying when pieces of the puzzle click together.  The ending wasn’t what I’d expected, but once it happened it made a lot of sense and it tied up the story well.

This was a great read, and I look forward to reading more of Hepworth’s books!  The publisher’s description says “twisty and captivating” and I couldn’t agree more!  I’d highly recommend it for lovers of domestic suspense and other mystery enthusiasts.

Find your copy of “The Mother-in-Law” here:

Bookshop.org      Amazon


If this sounds great and you’re looking for more domestic suspense, check out my recent reviews of two other books:

Book Notes: Review of “The Winter Sister” by Megan Collins

Book Notes: Review of “The Perfect Girlfriend” by Karen Hamilton

Are you a fan of this genre?  Leave me a comment with one of your favorite domestic suspense novels!  And add this one to your list… as always, happy reading!

This post contains affiliate links, which allow me the opportunity to earn a small commission, at no extra cost to you.  Please see my policies for further information.

My thanks to Net Galley and St. Martin’s Press for providing a complimentary digital review copy of this title.  All opinions are my own.


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