The Half Sister by Sandie Jones

The blurb…

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’ 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 …

My review …


I think I judged this book by its cover and was expecting it to be an eerie thriller when it fact it reads more like a family drama until the last few chapters.  It took me until well over halfway through the book to be drawn into the characters and the plot and I must admit that I almost didn’t want to finish it at the halfway point.  I feel that the half-sister Jess was introduced too soon into the story before we’d had a chance to get to know and therefore empathise with the main characters.  However, the plot thickens at the midway point, it definitely got more interesting and changed pace into more of a page turner.  I found that the characters had grown on me and I did actually want to know what was going on.  Who was Jess and what did she want from the family? 

The story is told from the alternating view point of sisters Kate and Lauren.  Jess arrives at a time when the sisters are still grieving the loss of their father and a divide has grown between them.  They have very different lives and both sisters feel that the grass is greener on the other side, which leads to resentment and a crippling lack of communication.  When self assured and in my opinion, unlikeable, Jess arrives on the scene, her search for answers dredges up painful secrets that the sisters would have preferred to have stayed in the past.  I really did grow to like the sisters’ characters and found certain parts to be very emotional. I especially liked Lauren’s character, I found her very relatable particularly as I can sympathise with her as to the demands of three small children!

This story has themes of infertility, domestic abuse, infidelity and grief with some great twists and turns in the second half, that culminate in a very surprising ending.

Thank you to Netgalley and Pan Macmillan for the ARC.

About the author …

Sandie Jones is the author of the bestselling The Other Woman and The First Mistake. A freelance journalist, she has contributed to the Sunday Times, Daily Mail, Woman’s Weekly and Hello magazine, amongst others. If she wasn’t a writer, she’d be an interior designer as she has an unhealthy obsession with wallpaper and cushions. She lives in London with her husband and three children.

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