A Nearly Normal Family
by M.T. Edvardsson
Published by Pan Macmillan Australia
Publication Date: 25th of June, 2019
Australian RRP: $29.99
How far would you go to protect the ones you love?
Eighteen-year-old Stella Sandell stands accused of the brutal murder of a man almost fifteen years her senior. She is an ordinary teenager from an upstanding local family. What reason could she have to know a shady businessman, let alone to kill him?
A Nearly Normal Family is a thrilling legal mystery that had me absorbed until the very end with a fantastic conclusion that I truly didn’t expect but worked perfectly for the storyline. However, there was also another great layer to this book with the emphasis on the whole family affected by this crime and their disbelief in the situation but ultimately the clear evidence stacked against them as well. I read this book in one sitting despite it almost being 500 pages long because it was just such a great read.
I loved how this book was about a whole family, not just a victim or a suspect, and it was told in three parts – father, daughter and mother. Each perspective detailed their lives, fears, secrets and truths. Through each person the reader is able to learn about each character from their own eyes instead of only one perspective so we were able to get into the heads of each character to see how they viewed each other as well. I really enjoyed that because we saw multiple angles but also were able to see their inner workings between each other and see the truth the.
I’m not sure if I can pick a character I liked reading from the most because they all had a very different voice and each revealed another piece of the overall puzzle of this story. Although I feel the most complex voice was the father as he is ultimately a man trying to do his best and be his most honest self, as a pastor and a father, but he reveals the issues their family has had in the past and struggles with his internal desire to protect him family but do what is right and just. The mother being a lawyer herself as well was interesting in this legal case because she gave a more practical insight into what was best and how it would play out. While the daughter was the ultimate catalyst and revealed the actual events that lead up to the case. This book had it at all for me and I enjoyed every part of it as it was also easy to digest but still able to provide an ending that was unexpected but perfectly balanced.
(Thank you to Pan Macmillan Australia for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. A Nearly Normal Family is out now!)