This thriller is about a couple who leave their baby at home alone while they go to a dinner party next door (yeah, I know). They justify this by bringing the baby monitor with them, and they take turns going home to check on the baby every 30 minutes. When they finally go home at around 1 a.m., they discover that their baby is missing, and everyone quickly becomes a suspect.
This story is told with a present third-person narration, which is a unique perspective and was a bit awkward to read at times. This story changes perspectives frequently between Anne, Marco, the detective, and a few others. Each narrator is very unreliable, which helps to ramp up the tension.
This book was fairly short, fast-paced, and divided into short chapters — all aspects that I enjoy in a book. I liked how the action started in the first chapter, and the tension only built from there. I find it difficult to get into thrillers that take forever to ramp up, and I often won’t even finish them. That really wasn’t the case with this book.
Now let me pause here to tell you something about myself: I’m pretty dense when it comes to figuring out plots ahead of time. I’m nearly always surprised with reveals in books and movies. However with The Couple Next Door, even though I didn’t quite have it all figured out for a good while, I could see the reveal coming before the end.
The characters were not completely flat but weren’t as fleshed out as they could have been. Granted, a lot of times thrillers aren’t very character-driven, but I still felt like some of the characters’ motivations and dialogues were a bit unrealistic and stiff.
Overall, this was a twisty thriller with an ending that wasn’t completely predictable. It’s worth giving a shot if you’re in the mood for a quick read. While it’s not the best, it’s definitely not the worst.