The Family Holiday Audible Audiobook – Unabridged
Two families. One house swap. A vacation to die for.
The white-washed Italian villa is perfect. I thought it might feel odd, living in a stranger’s house for the summer, but as my husband and children swim in the infinity pool, I start to relax. And then, in the back of a wardrobe, I find something that shatters everything....
Sparkling green eyes, square jaw, lopsided smile. A young man with his arm around a beautiful woman. The picture is old and faded, but I’d recognize him anywhere. The man is my husband.
But we’ve never met the family we’ve swapped homes with, and my husband swears it isn’t him in the photo. He’s lying. We argue on the balcony with the sun setting behind us, and I storm out.
When I finally calm down enough to go back to the villa to confront him, I find his dead body sprawled across the veranda.
Who killed my husband? Was our marriage a lie? And are my children now in terrible danger?
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|Listening Length||7 hours and 36 minutes|
|Whispersync for Voice||Ready|
|Audible.com Release Date||March 29, 2022|
|Publisher||Hachette UK - Bookouture|
|Best Sellers Rank|| #4,578 in Audible Books & Originals (See Top 100 in Audible Books & Originals) |
#182 in Psychological Thrillers (Audible Books & Originals)
#477 in Suspense (Audible Books & Originals)
#731 in Psychological Thrillers (Books)
Reviewed in the United States on March 29, 2022
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Top reviews from the United States
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I have to admit, though, the author did a good job with making me hate particular characters. In fact, I couldn't read certain scenes without seething, so points for that.
Also, I really didn't see that end scene coming at all. I was entirely surprised and flummoxed. But I think it made sense, which makes me wish the official end of the book was a little different and a bit more organic. More showing instead of telling would have been icing on the cake. 4/5
I highly recommend this book and fabulous author, who never disappoints.
I don't know if its because I was just in Italy and a large portion of the book took place their or if was because the story was super unique or if was just a fabulous read. I really recommend this book for a page turner and great story
Top reviews from other countries
The story is told predominantly by two points of view Beth and Amber.
Beth the put upon wife and mother of two children who gave up her career as a chef in order to look after her boys, she is so used to placating her husband that she loses herself as well as her self confidence. I found myself shouting at her.
Her Husband Niall is a successful writer and has controlling issues and his moods tend to affect the household and the fact after so many years of not wanting to take the family on holiday he says they will be doing a house swap. Beth is uncomfortable about it at first but when she sees the location and beautiful house with a pool she is sold on the idea.
In Italy Amber mainly wears the trousers in her relationship with her husband Renzo. She is also cold and calculating with a ulterior motive. Her husband adores her and they have two children.
As each family get on their flights and arrive in their respective countries, things start to get dark and sinister. Beth soon discovers a huge secret that will affect her marriage, whilst Amber is busy scheming until things take a devastating and drastic turn, when the secrets start unraveling one person pays a heavy irreversible price, whilst the other blows up their life.
The story starts with Beth, Niall and their two children, Connor and Liam, swapping their quaint Dorset home for a stunning modern villa in Italy, owned by Amber and Renzo and their children. Everything seems absolutely perfect, until Beth finds a picture of Amber with Niall, Beth's husband. Finding this is the start of a web of secrets and deceit and murder....
Once I picked this book up, I couldn't put it down and stayed up late into the night to finish. The characters were well rounded and, although not all likeable (Amber and Niall-I'm looking at you!) they were all hugely believable. Although the tension built quite slowly, the simmering uneasiness is always there below the surface which I loved. Although Beth exasperated me at times with the way she put up with Niall's behaviour, I did feel for her too.
This is a brilliantly written taut psychological thriller and I highly recommend it to anyone who likes these kind of books. I've read all the author's previous books, so I'm now impatiently awaiting her next one!
The tension builds slowly although you do know that something is bubbling and when it breaks it all comes together fast! Niall and Amber are not very likeable people but Beth and Renzo seem lovely, if a bit innocent. The descriptions of the Italian house and area are amazing, it really drew me in.
Beth and Niall Kildare are having marital issues, so when Niall suggests they go on a family holiday Beth believes this could be the chance to get their lives back on track, and they sign up to a holiday swap site, they spot a listing for a beautiful villa on the Amalfi Coast in Italy, belonging to Amber and Renzo Mason and agree to swap their beautiful rustic cottage in the South of England for two weeks with them. Beth can't believe how lucky they are when they arrive and she hopes the Masons are just as delighted with their cottage, but nothing is as it seems and very quickly things start to go wrong, Beth begins to question whether it was a good idea to do a swap, and how well does she really know her husband? It looks like she's just about to find out...
A holiday swap is an interesting concept for a book and with the author being Shalini Boland, you know you're going to have an eventful trip. This latest book, as all her others that I've read so far, is well crafted and flows seamlessly, the chapters alternate between Beth and Amber, with lots of twists along the way, which is what the reader has come to expect from this talented author. The characters are realistic and both couples are harbouring secrets that would blow their world's apart if they were revealed. Boland is one of a few authors that I will choose to read without looking at the blurb first, because I know I'm in for a rollercoaster ride of a read, and just when you think the story has finished, she hits you with that ending! Another cracking domestic thriller from this author that does NOT disappoint.