M.T. Edvardsson’s A Nearly Normal Family is a gripping legal thriller that forces the reader to consider: How far would you go to protect the ones you love? In this twisted narrative of love and murder, a horrific crime makes a seemingly normal family question everything they thought they knew about their life—and one another.
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?
Stella’s father, a pastor, and mother, a criminal defense attorney, find their moral compasses tested as they defend their daughter, while struggling to understand why she is a suspect. Told in an unusual three-part structure, A Nearly Normal Family asks the questions: How well do you know your own children? How far would you go to protect them?
I enjoyed this legal thriller about a daughter accused of murder and the fallout for the family — how the charges effect them, how they react, what the parents are willing to do to protect their daughter and their “happy family” appearance.
The story is told from 3 points of view, the pastor father, the lawyer mother, and the rebellious daughter accused of murder. As the novel evolves, the family history comes out and how outward appearances are not always accurate, how “normal” is not what it always appears to be once the surface is cracked, and what families, even troubled ones, are willing to do to protect each other.
The differing points of view were a good way to explore this family and their reasons for how they acted. I liked the tension and the uncertainty around who actually committed the crime. This is not an “action packed” thriller, more of a study and I did find some parts slow, especially during the father’s point of view section. Overall, though, I liked this book and the playing with the idea of what normal is and that behind closed doors we are different from the persona we present.
Thank you to the publisher and Netgalley for a review copy of this book.
Today I am happy to have author D.R. Shoultz on my blog.
Hello D.R. Can you describe yourself in a few sentences.
I grew up in a small, Midwestern town, the son of a self-employed home builder. I was a better than average student and an athlete in high school, but quickly became a small fish in a big pond at college. After graduating with degrees in education and mathematics, I spent 32 years in corporate America where I traveled the world and uprooted my wife, son and daughter eight times. Shortly after retirement, I lost my beautiful wife of 33 years in a traffic accident. I spent the next several years finding myself. After a long-distance relationship, I married Claudia in 2012, who not only became my wife, she became my writing partner and editor. We live in the Blue Ridge Mountains with our rescue dog, Milo. Our interests include reading, writing, hiking with Milo, golfing, drinking wine at sunset, and spending time with friends and family. Read more
The untouched – Psychopathic personality types banned from professions where they could do harm.
Agent Mullen is a man tasked with rooting out these dangerous social contaminants. Assigned to the newsroom of Dublin’s most popular media service, he has to be careful when he meets Ava O’Dwyer, a woman who’s prepared to begin a game where seduction, deceit and murder are all fair play…
Winner of the Irish Writers Centre Novel Fair, People in Season by Simon Fay is a darkly compelling tale that you won’t be able to put down.
Hello, I’m happy to welcome ecclectic author Justin Bienvenue on my blog today.
What genre(s) do you write in? Tell us about your books.
I write in many different genres. I’ve written a dozen short stories or so each in different genres such as horror, science fiction, crime, romance, mystery, etc. I’ve written in three different genres when it comes to my books. I’ve written poetry, western horror and a crime thriller.
My first book is called The Macabre Masterpiece: Poems of Horror and Gore. True to its title it is a book of 50 horror poems within 5 chapters each a different level or type of horror.
A Bloody Bloody Mess in the Wild Wild West is a post Civil War Western about the small fictional town of Toomswood. The town are trying is trying to recover from the war when a slick Mexican outlaw comes into town with a deal but is really out to cause trouble. It’s up to a young man by the name of Emerson Shaw to stop the outlaw with help from the town.
Like A Box of Chocolates is a book of poetry within several different genres. The book not only has many poems in different genres but also has many different rhyme schemes.
Opium Warfare is a Crime Thriller set in 1920’s Shanghai. It is about the rise of opium from underground obscurity to public prominence.