Title: The Half Sister
Author: Sandie Jones
Published: May 26th 2020
Publisher: Pan Macmillan
Genres: Fiction, Crime, Mystery, Suspense, Thriller
Rating: 4 stars
The Half Sister is the compelling, twisty novel from Sandie Jones, the author of The Other Woman, perfect for fans of Sally Hepworth’s The Mother-in-Law and Michelle Frances’ The Daughter.
Her arrival will ruin everything
Kate and Lauren. Sisters who are always there for each other. But as they gather for their weekly Sunday lunch, a knock on the door changes everything.
The new arrival, Jess, claims to be their half-sister, but that would mean the unthinkable . . . That she’s the secret daughter of their beloved, recently deceased father Harry. Their mother Rose is devastated and Kate and Lauren refuse to believe Jess’s lies.
But as the fall-out starts it’s clear that each is hiding secrets and that perhaps this family isn’t as perfect as they appear.
Where there was truth, now there are lies and only one thing is certain, their half-sister’s arrival has ruined everything . . .
The Half Sister is the latest compulsive psychological thriller from the queen of fast paced domestic suspense, Sandie Jones. Matters of the heart, sisterhood, sibling relationships family dynamics and plenty of mystery circulates around this revealing domestic tale. The Half Sister is a propulsive and consuming thriller that I inhaled from start to finish.
The arrival of a previously unknown sibling completely shatters a family unit in The Half Sister by Sandie Jones. Lauren and Kate are sisters who share a close bond. When they gather for their regular family lunch one Sunday afternoon their lives are thrown into complete chaos by the arrival of a strange young woman who claims to be their half-sister. This young woman named Jess reveals that she is the secret daughter of Kate and Lauren’s father, who died only a short time ago. Still grieving over the loss of their much loved father, Kate and Lauren struggle to come to terms with a possible secret liaison that has resulted in the birth of Jess. While Kate is suspicious of Jess’ claims, Lauren is a little more accepting and their mother Rose is upset by the whole ordeal. In the aftermath of this life altering revelation, the sisters struggle to come to terms with this new member of their family, while also dealing with their own problems. Each must wade their way through the problems and lies at hand to get to the cold hard truth.
The Half Sister is the first novel I have read by UK based author Sandie Jones. I have the feeling that I have a least one book by this author on my crowded bookshelves. I must make the effort to catch up on Sandie Jones’ previous releases based on my enjoyment of The Half Sister. I really appreciated Sandie Jones’ writing style. This cleverly plotted novel managed to steal my attention for a couple of evenings.
The Half Sister delivers quite an explosive opener. We have a family unit still struggling to deal with the death of their patriarch, when a stranger arrives on their doorstep unannounced and drops a big bombshell that is the half sister of the two other sisters in this novel. I tried to picture my own response and I also put myself in the shoes of the two sisters of this tale. I have to tell you that I felt rather uncomfortable, what a shocking and life altering revelation. I also sympathised with Lauren and Kate’s reactions. I would definitely be suspicious of this sort of revelation. I would also be compelled to do some digging around the life and identity of the secret sister, just to put my mind at ease. I really think Jones nails the response side of things in her novel, it was realistic, emotional and understandable given the conditions.
The Half Sister is divided into two sets of narration. We view this earth shattering revelation from the perspective of the two sisters of this tale, Kate and Lauren. Kate is a career focused women who has a fairly intense position in the media and celebrity world. We learn that Kate is dealing with the heartbreaking possibly of remaining childless, if her latest round of IVF does not work. This is has resulted in a significant hole in Kate’s marriage and it also presents a big strain on her life in general. In Lauren, the other sister of this tale, we have a mother of three who is struggling with an abusive husband. This section of the narrative was hard to take at times, but Lauren’s struggles are common. In Jess, the lost sister who makes an unexpected appearance in the lives of Kate and Lauren, we have a slight enigma. I couldn’t put my finger on Jess, or her motivations. I had an awful gut feeling about her intentions. Sandie Jones ensures that the reader is kept in the dark for much of this novel, which I personally enjoyed.
The Half Sister is cleverly plotted and it is accompanied by plenty of revelations, twists, surprises and narrative flips. I found it very hard to trust any of the characters in this novel and my suspicions were warranted with one of the protagonists, for once I was able to jump to the right conclusion! I can’t say much in relation to this area of the story as I would definitely ruin it for potential readers.
The short, sharp and hooking chapter format in regards to the layout of The Half Sister works to this novel’s advantage. I couldn’t peel my eyes away from this one, despite my obvious tiredness from a heavy working week. I just had to stay with The Half Sister until I reached the bitter end, sacrificing some much needed rest in favour of this terrific read.
The Half Sister by Sandie Jones was published on 26th May 2020 by Pan Macmillan. Details on how to purchase the book can be found here.
To learn more about the author of The Half Sister, Sandie Jones, visit here.
*I wish to thank Pan Macmillan for providing me with a free copy of this book for review purposes.