Sometimes you read a book that you can’t believe is so bad you just keep reading it. This was one of those books. The shifting narratives don’t work, you pretty much know who did what it’s just a wait for the cops to figure it out. The only reason why I didn’t zero star this thing was the ending which made me go, huh.
“The Couple Next Door” follows Anne and Marco Conti. A happily married couple (or it appears to be so) with a new baby girl at home, they are out of the house for the night. They are next door at their neighbor’s helping to celebrate the husband’s (Gregory) birthday. Anne is distressed though, she didn’t want to leave their daughter Cora at home, and their neighbor forbid them to bring the baby (who does that?) and when Anne and Marco return home, they find their daughter missing. The book follows the investigation of who could have taken Cora and why.
I think if Lapena had stayed with following Anne and including some narrative from detective Rasbach that it would have worked. Rasbach was investigating things and coming up with information on Anne and Marco. I rather it would have been delivered without readers knowing about it, or without us hearing about it from other characters first. The whole book read as lackluster as anything.
Lapena provides POVs from Anne, Marco, Detective Rashbach, and the Conti’s next door neighbor, Cynthia. And we get some narration from Anne’s father. I think he popped up twice. I only really liked Rasbach’s POV. Though in the end he didn’t solve much of anything since he is told what really went on in the end.
The writing was a disappointment. I just felt at times I was being spoonfed everything and it just got boring. The flow was pretty bad too. Probably because we kept jumping around to these four people with some additions from Anne’s father here and there. I think we even got Anne’s mother too. I just can’t even remember anymore since this book just had a bit too much going on.
The ending was a surprise. Probably the only thing that was while I was reading this.