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The Mother-in-Law

4.19  ·  Rating details ·  1,895 ratings  ·  878 reviews
Someone once told me that you have two families in your life - the one you are born into and the one you choose. Yes, you may get to choose your partner, but you don't choose your mother-in-law. The cackling mercenaries of fate determine it all.

From the moment Lucy met Diana, she was kept at arm's length. Diana is exquisitely polite, but Lucy knows, even after marrying Oli
Hardcover, 352 pages
Expected publication: April 23rd 2019 by St. Martin's Press
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4.19  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,895 ratings  ·  878 reviews

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All I can say is, Magnificent!! This book is headed straight to my favorites’ shelf!!

Oh that poor mother-in-law! Boy, she’s been getting a bad rap lately. This is the third book I’ve read recently regarding a so called “evil mother in law.” This’s just a bit different.

There are two sides to every story. Maybe it’s time we all heard the mother in law’s side of the story....

Told from 2 points of view of Lucy the daughter-in-law and Diana. Yup, you guessed it...Diana “the mother in law.”
Susanne  Strong
5 Simply Irresistible Stars.

Sally Hepworth is the Master of Domestic Suspense! This is a heart pounding mystery that I was racing to finish! It’s complexities and craziness had me wild-eyed right up until its shocking end. A favorite read for this the year!

Mother-in-Laws, as well all know, are not to be trifled with.
Sometimes they’re scarier than others and sometimes you hit the jackpot. Perhaps it’s because of the competition factor, mothers not being able to let go of their sons, or wives
Jan 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
My reviews can also be seen at: https://deesradreadsandreviews.wordpr...

I am a huge fan of this author. “The Mother’s Promise” was my first Sally Hepworth novel and is one of my favorite books.

The first line in the description of this novel grabbed my attention…

A twisty, compelling novel about one woman’s complicated relationship with her mother-in-law that ends in murder…

I couldn’t wait to start reading!

The story begins with a police car pulling up to the home of Lucy and her husband, Ollie.
Mar 24, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: netgalley
Mixed Feelings: One fascinating character coupled with one who was lacking turned this into just an ok read for me.

The Mother-in-Law is a family drama that tracks the tumultuous relationship between a mother-in-law and her daughter-in-law.

The book begins with the reader learning of the death of Diana, mother to Ollie and mother-in-law to Lucy. The narrative is divided into both Lucy and Diana's perspectives over the course of ten years.

Diana has been described as some as a hateful character.
Apr 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
Families - there is the one you are born into, the one you marry into and the one you choose.

When Lucy marries Ollie, she desperately wants to be accepted into his family, especially by his Mother Diana, as Lucy lost her mother at an early age. But from day one, Diana appears reserved and distant. The rest of Ollie's family embraces Lucy but Lucy feels that she just can't do anything right in Diana's eyes. Lucy is a lively woman who chooses to stay home with her children and is doing the best sh
Dec 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Intensely Readable and Immensely Dishy!

What is it about in-laws that makes them so abhorred? Is it their constant meddling? Perhaps their subtle, but persistent disapproval of every little thing. For Lucy, she just wants her Mother-in-law, Diana, to love her. Accept her. But that is never going to happen. At least not as long as Diana walks the earth . . .

For originality, this one deserves five stars. In addition, this was Hepworth's first attempt at the thriller genre, and I think she nailed
Katie B
I try not to give out 5 stars too often but this one was special and deserving in terms of how much I enjoyed it and took away from it. I went into this thinking it would just be a typical mother in law story but there was so much more to it than that. It explored not just the mother and daughter in law relationship but also the dynamics between child/parent, husband/wife, and siblings. It was one of those reading experiences in which you seriously start reflecting on your own life and how you d ...more
1.5 stars

Let me be clear that I think an author can choose to write her characters any way she wants, and I can choose to read it or not. But this was an issue book with characters vs a book with characters who have issues. I prefer the latter. If the author is going to write an issue(s) book then I’m going to comment on what I disliked about her stance on those issues. It is not the characters so much as the fact the author seems to be pushing an agenda.

We are told from the start that Diana, th
Elyse Walters
Oct 26, 2018 rated it liked it
When Jordan at St. Martin’s Publishing presented this book to me to read and review- I definitely ‘paused’’, thinking this could be an interesting topic, yet I definitely had reservations of concern. I didn’t want to create problems - add more to my already - sometimes challenging relationship with my mother in-law.
However - this book is so far off from anything in my life - I didn’t relate to any of it.

NOTES OF INTEREST.....about in-laws’ ......It’s a hot topic in the news today. Review of t
Oct 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
Nothing makes us so lonely as our secrets.

Standing at the door of those secrets is the sentinel of our choosing who presents the face of the moment. We don the mask we find appropriate and carry it forward while protecting the truism of self.

Sally Hepworth presents an absolutely dynamic story that weaves its way into a family unit that has locked down their deceptions with bolt and key. She is a wizard at revealing just enough backstory on her varied characters to more than wet your whistle. Cha
Mar 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley

This book has perfect timing. With the whole college scandal going on, the whole concept of what parents owe their children or how much help they should provide is especially apt.

Losing her mother to cancer when she’s a teenager, Lucy envisions becoming bosom buddies with her mother-in-law. That’s before she meets Diana, who has a frosty nature and is not the buddy sort.

I know many will see Diana as the cold, uncaring MIL, but I actually sympathized with her. Yes, some of the things she did we
Holly  B
Nov 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
Relationships can be complicated, especially when it involves the "Mother-in-law". 

A  twisted family situation and a hidden motive lead to murder. The MIL is Diana and my opinion of  her changed so many times throughout the book and she certainly surprised me in the end.

The first chapter was intense and sets the stage for a compelling read. We get the POV of Diana and Lucy (the daughter in law).  Their relationship is complicated and Lucy has many insecurities when it comes to Diana. The autho
Dec 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I read one of Sally Hepworth's earlier novels last year and immediately connected with her writing style and storytelling approach. I marked the rest of her books as TBR, then saw The Mother-in-Law available via NetGalley. I was lucky enough to be approved for an ARC earlier this week and began reading it right away. What an emotional and angst-ridden tale about the relationship between several family members who can feel all too real and all too fake at the exact same time. I truly enjoyed this ...more
Mackenzie - PhDiva Books
Dec 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Gripping and haunting — there’s a poetry to the story told in The Mother-in Law that is so captivating and suspenseful, you will think about it for days after reading it.

Over 24-hours after finishing Sally Hepworth’s The Mother-In-Law, there are still so many nuances I’m left turning over in my mind and unpacking. This is a thought-provoking novel of domestic suspense. I hate to compare it to other authors, though there are a few I see, because Hepworth to me has a truly unique voice and a story
Dorie  - Traveling Sister :)
Once again I find myself in the minority regarding reviews for this book, it is well loved by many.

Truthfully I was hoping for a really good mystery but this is really more contemporary women’s fiction. Knowing that the main character is dead at the beginning definitely takes away some of the suspense in the novel.

Here’s what we know:
Lucy is the new daughter in law who has married Ollie, son of Diane and Tom Goodwin. Lucy had no idea that the family was wealthy until she entered their mansion of
Jennifer ~ TarHeelReader
5 stars! ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐

I deliberated on this one for a couple days, and as much as I thought about it when I wasn’t reading it, I knew it had to be a five-r! This book explores the complex mother-in-law/daughter-in-law (and mother/daughter) relationship in a way I’ve not seen before. It was also explosively dramatic and well-written. Full review to come much closer to pub date in April! I continue to love Sally Hepworth!

Thanks to St. Martin’s Press for the copy. All opinions are my own.
Apr 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: kindle, netgalley
3.5 stars

Thanks to NetGalley and St. Martin's Press for a digital galley in exchange for an honest review.
Although I am a single lady, it doesn't mean that I haven't heard my share of "mother in law" stories. Some women just cannot cut the cord even after their precious sons get married. For the heck of it I decided to do an internet search on mother in laws. My sweet baby Jesus! There are tons of mother in law stories not to mention a definitive list of the worst mother in laws in HISTORY. Br
With two Mother-in-Laws under my belt, which honestly was two too many, and being one myself, I felt I was ready to tackle Sally Hepworth's latest novel, The Mother-in-Law. I was, after all, an experienced pro. I was not, however, at all prepared for the multi-layered, character driven drama that unfolded before me - not even close!

When Lucy first met her Mother-in-Law, Diana, she immediately knew she was not going to be the wife that Diana had hoped for her son. Diana was one of those mothers/
Dec 24, 2018 rated it did not like it
Shelves: net-galley, jan-mar
I have asked myself this question a few times in the past. What is it that makes me dislike a book while so many others have voiced their acclaim and praise for this book? Was it the setting, the writing, or the characters, or could it be a combination of all three?

In the book, The Mother In Law, I am going to say it was most definitely the characters, particularly that of Diana, the erstwhile mother in law of the story. She was to me a vile woman so intent on making sure her children were not s
Oct 11, 2018 rated it really liked it
Everybody in Diane's life has reason to want her dead, including Diane herself.

There seems to be an influx of cliché evil mother-in-law stories right now but this one really stands out from the crowd.

Diana, mother-in-law to Lucy, is found dead in her home of what initially appears to be a suicide. What ensues is a clever whodunnit with an array of characters, each one fleshed out perfectly, all so relatable that at times I could imagine myself sitting down to dinner with them.

With the number o
Having lost her mother at a tender age, Lucy Goodwin was looking forward to finding a surrogate in her mother-in-law but realized at their first encounter that wasn’t going to be a reality. Diana Goodwin was a complicated woman with strong convictions about life and service. Though her husband, Tom, provided balance to her somewhat aloof nature, Diana still was the driving force in the family, expecting her two children to stand on their own and not look to their affluent parents as a safety net ...more
Norma * Traveling Sister
Clever, impactful & irresistible!

This book was nothing like I imagined it to be… was so much more than your typical “evil” mother-in-law tale!! Loved it!!

THE MOTHER-IN-LAW by SALLY HEPWORTH is a gripping, captivating, thought-provoking, and fabulous mystery/thriller that I was immediately drawn into and devoured quickly. The story was so darn entertaining and absolutely un-put-down-able!!!!

SALLY HEPWORTH delivers quite the unexpected, clever, engaging, complex and well-written story he
Dec 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Sally Hepworth completely sucked me in with this compulsive engaging addictive story that took a hold of me and did not let go until the last page was turned!

An intense twisty story about the complicated relationship of mother-in-law and daughter-in-law. A tale that will resonate with many!

Full review on publication date April 23, 2019

Mar 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2019
My friends gave this book such mixed reviews, that I approached it with a bit of apprehension. What I worried the most was that I won't be able to engage with the story, that it won't provoke any strong emotions. Well, it did. For the first half of the book I just hated Diana for her inability or apparent unwillingness to give her children the support they needed. Then, gradually, I began to see the other side of the story and started thinking about my own parents and parents-in-law, our numerou ...more
An audio read where I did not enjoy the narrator ruined my experience of this book, although I still do rate it three stars, only just.

Mother in laws seem to be the butt of all jokes, and this one really does take the cake. She is very hard on everyone in the family, but easily soft on outsiders, and those in the charity run by this hard woman. She supports pregnant refugees and is willing to go to any lengths to help these women. An extremely wealthy family, this mother will not help her daught
Kelly (and the Book Boar)
Find all of my reviews at:

3.5 Stars

“How many people does it take to kill a rich old lady? I only wish I knew.”

When the police show up at Ollie and Lucy’s house to inform them Ollie’s mother Diana has been found dead of an apparent suicide, everyone appears to be shocked. But that’s nothing compared to their reactions when it’s discovered there were no traces of the poison which was found next to her in her bloodstream and, in fact, it appears she may have be
Nilufer Ozmekik
Apr 17, 2019 rated it liked it
Three a little disappointed, when I was expecting thriller I found regular fiction stars.
I think I designated my place in the minority team because so far too many readers enjoyed this book a lot.
It’s really good written and never gets you bored but as soon as I read the blurb, I visualized an evil mother-in-law and a big mystery about her death but when I start to read it, I realized there is no twist, mystery and any gripping, riveting story to captivate your mind. You may guess the killer s
j e w e l s
Jan 31, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: books-bejeweled

There are two ways of looking at this book. If you go in hungry for a light family drama, you will be satisfied with this quick, easy read.

I'm not that type.

I wanted it to be more. I think I'm jaded after reading so many gripping psychological thrillers. Yes, there is a dead body, but I found the story to be very Meh. It kept my interest until the end, but just barely.

Lucy has a cool and aloof mother-in-law, Diana. Diana is known for her charitable work with refugees, but is a distant
Jan 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Wow! What a fantastic read! Thank you NetGalley for my arc copy of The Mother-In-Law by Sally Hepworth.

Lucy has a complicated relationship with her mother in law, Diana. Lucy is a very sweet and lovable person. She she was thirteen years old, her mother passed away. More than anything, she wants a close and loving relationship with her mother-in-law. Diana, however isn't interested and doesn't care (very cold). Diana even struggles being close with her own children. The story is told through tw
The Mother-in-Law by Sally Hepworth is a mystery/thriller novel about one woman's complicated relationship with her mother-in-law that ends in murder...

From the moment Lucy met her husband's mother, Diana, she was kept at arm's length. Lucy wanted so much to please her new mother-in-law.

Chapters alternate between past and present from the POV of Lucy, the daughter-in-law to Diana, the mother-in-law.

The story is set in Melbourne, Australia. Lucy is married to Ollie with three young children. Ol
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Sally Hepworth is the bestselling author of The Secrets of Midwives (2015), The Things We Keep (2016) and The Mother's Promise (2017), and The Family Next Door (Feb 2018). Sally's books have been labelled “enchanting” by The Herald Sun, “smart and engaging” by Publisher’s Weekly, and New York Times bestselling authors Liane Moriarty and Emily Giffin have praised Sally’s novels as “women’s fiction ...more