Cover Image: A Nearly Normal Family

A Nearly Normal Family

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Member Reviews

Although it took me about a third of the way through the book before I really got invested in it, I have to say that this is one of the best mystery/suspense books that I have read in a long time.   The pacing was slow at first but picked up very quickly once there was a murder and the “nearly normal family” was involved.  I really liked the characters, particularly the 18 year-old daughter Stella.  She was portrayed as a girl who was hard to trust and who had acted badly in the past.  Nevertheless, I really liked her and her steadfastness and unselfishness.  I enjoyed the themes of family loyalty and love that ran through the book.  Having the book divided into sections in which the father, Stella and the mother were the narrators was illuminating and a unique way to present the murder case and the evidence.  I would highly recommend this book to those who enjoy mystery, suspense and police procedurals.  I actually felt bad for the police in this story because they just could not get to the truth, no matter how hard they tried.  You will have to read it for yourself to find out if you can figure out who the real murderer will probably surprise you!
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Well-written. I enjoyed the POV's and the structure of the book. It made the story enticing to read and I appreciated the character development.
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What would you do to save the people you love... how much would you risk? That’s the question at the core of this legal thriller. I loved that the story was told from three different perspectives - father, daughter, and mother. There was mystery and family drama, but for me the family drama was more interesting... is any family “normal”? What is “normal”?

Thanks to Celadon Books and NetGalley for an advanced copy in exchange for an honest review.
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How far would you go for those you love regardless of the truth?  What is you don't even know what is true? 
When Stella, an 18 year old girl is arrested for murder it challenges everything her parents thought to be true. Who was Chris and what did Stella have to do with a 32 year old man? As her father (the pastor) and her mother (a defense attorney) struggle to uncover the truth and go to all ends to find out what happened they forced to choose between what could be true and what could save their daughter from life in prison. . . but what if she is guilty??
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This was a compulsive page turner!

I loved the way this book was organized with three parts from three different perspectives. It made you second guess what was going on with each new perspective. I couldn’t put this down and really loved the courtroom drama aspect as well. I definitely recommend this for psychological thriller and courtroom drama lovers.
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Stella, the daughter of a Pastor and a lawyer, seems to live an idyllic life. Stella’s father, Adam, coaches her handball, she bikes everywhere and the family visits with other friends in their quaint Swedish town. All this changes when Stella is charged with the murder of a rich man from a prominent family. 

This legal thriller told from each of the family member’s perspectives is one sure to keep you glued to the pages.  It asks the question ‘how far would you go for someone you love?’ This book might make you wonder if anyone actually tells the truth. 

Edvardsson writes with a deep sense of place and his characters are strong, particularly Adam, the father. Prepare to be spinning theories for the whole read!

Thank you to @netgalley and @celadonbooks for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
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A Nearly Normal Family by M. T. Edvardsson takes place in Sweden, but it's easy to understand the legal system and court scenes the way they are presented. Mr Edvardsson tells us the story from three different points of view, keeping the reader on the edge of their seat trying to figure out exactly what had happened. I'm looking forward to reading more by this author. I was given an early copy to review.
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Well, I seen this book in multiple giveaways and tried to win every single time! There’s something about domestic thrillers and suspense that really intrigue me. This book started off a little weird. I wasn’t sure if the kid was imagining who he met in the woods. However, this really picked up and hit me with a pretty solid punch. I really enjoyed it. I will definitely recommend and read more books by this author!
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Stella came home with blood on her clothes last night.  The police want to talk to her.  As her parent, what do you do?  

Huge thank you to Celadon Books for the NetGalley copy to read and review!

Wow.  What a great premise in M.T. Edvardsson's first work translated for the US market!  The story follows the Sandell family--Adam a pastor, Ulrika a lawyer, and their 18 year old daughter Stella.  They each have a portion of the narrative devoted to their perspective, but Adam's intrigued me most.  As a father and a clergyman, where does his responsibility lie when the police are asking about his daughter?  

Each member of the family chooses to lie to the authorities about some or all of the murder case.  But what truths will they share with each other? 

I loved this book!  It wasn't perfect, but themes of truth, family and justice were well played in this plot.  It left me asking a lot of myself about what I might be compelled to do in each character's position. I can't wait to read more of Edvardsson's work.  4.5 stars! (Rounding up to 5)
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When 18-year-old Stella is accused of a brutal murder of an older man, a seemingly ordinary family is forced to make choices and ask questions of themselves they never would have thought possible. Each member of the family has to grapple with ethical and moral decisions, in particular the father (a pastor) and the mother (a criminal defense lawyer). In particular, what would they do to protect their child?

This book is told in three parts - Father, Daughter, Mother - which offered a unique POV throughout the story as we move through the investigation and trial. I liked that this book flipped the narrative on some traditional gender stereotypes with each of the family members. While I was constantly guessing what actually happened and how it would all shape up, I found the pace a little slow making it hard to really get into.

3.5/5 stars
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M.T. Edvardsson's A Nearly Normal Family is a gripping psychological thriller that forces the reader to consider: how far would you go to protect the ones you love? In this twisted narrative of love and murder, a horrific crime makes a seemingly normal family question everything they thought they knew about their life--and each other.’
The family in this book consists of Adam and Ulrika, and their daughter Stella.  Told from each of their perspectives, the story is cleverly written to round out the events as they unfold.  Adam is a pastor for the Church of Sweden and comes off as heavy handed, Ulrika is a defense attorney and eighteen year old Stella is a wild child.
When Stella is accused of a crime, the family drama and their backstories come to light and it’s (for lack of a better word) a page turner up until the last page.
I recently finished Beartown and it was interesting to read another Swedish family drama with a tragic incident in the family.  I thoroughly enjoyed both.
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How far would you go for your child? This book will ask the characters that question. 
Stella is arrested for "murdering" an older man, now he father is a pastor and her mother is a criminal defense attorney. So they need to figure out if Stella really did it and what they will to keep her safe and out of trouble.
I was glued to my kindle through out this amazing book. My stomach was in knots as I read and the secrets, twist and turns happened. This book was amazing and I look forward to reading more from M.T. Edvardsson!!!!
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Thanks to Net Galley and Celadon books for providing me with an ARC
A Nearly Normal Family is my kind of book--usually.
 M.T. Edvarvardsson creates a family that is not nearly normal. Of course, this depends on one’s definition of normal. Also, Edvardsson, perhaps, intends the title to be ironic. The father states in Chapter one:” We were a perfectly normal family.” Through the narrators, 18-year-old Stella, her mother Ulrika, and her father Adam, we see evidence to the contrary. Stella is accused of murdering a well-known business man in her hometown. The citizens are shocked, especially since Adam is a popular minister and Ulrika an honorable attorney. As the novel progresses, each narrator gives his/her own reflections on Stella from her toddler years until the present-day calamity occurs. These accounts vary depending on the narrator, but Stella’s view seems the most realistic. Hindsight is always better, but Stella’s parents are absolutely clueless about actions they could have taken early in Stella’s life to prevent events in the present day. Both parents involve themselves in her legal case in illegal ways; however, Adam’s maneuverings are more overt while Ulrika’s actions are covert as she flaunts the legal system she knows and understands so adeptly. The action moves s-l-o-w-l-y until the details of the murder commence and after that point the reader is involved in a page turner. There are several surprising outcomes, especially in part 3 when Ulrika reveals to the reader her plotting. Stella’s eventual verdict pleases some and astounds some, but be sure to continue reading past the verdict; the ending is dynamite.
This is a greatly plotted story and well written, but I admit I care nothing about the main characters, not a single one. They truly are not deserving of sympathy.
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4.5 stars - A Nearly Normal Family is a fast-paced, who-done-it, legal thriller with a Girl with the Dragon Tattoo meets Miracle Creek vibe.  Maybe that’s just where my mind went because it’s a courtroom drama based in Lund, Sweden??  Anyway, I literally could not put this book down!  It was filled with lies, dysfunction, and loads of family drama, and will leaving you questioning how far you’d really go to protect your family.  If that’s your thing, this book will be right up your alley!

Thank you @netgalley and @celadonbooks for the advanced e-galley of this book in exchange for an honest review.
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Thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for an e-ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.

How far would you go to protect your child? Stella is arrested and is being accused of the murder of a man that is quite a bit older than her. Her father is a pastor and her mother is a criminal defense attorney.

They face moral issues as things come to light and they try to figure out if their daughter is guilty...or innocent.

I wanted to like this book more, but is was just ok to me. It was a quick read.
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This is an entertaining and thought provoking thriller that I found difficult to put down.  (I actually did not put it down and ended up staying up way too late reading it.)  It examines the question of how far would you go to protect your child.  This a great read and I will be recommending it to my customers.
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How far would you go to protect your family?  That is the main question in 'A Nearly Normal Family".  There are three points of view and they all jump back and forth from past to present.   Stella, the 18 year old daughter is accused of murder.   Adam, the father is a pastor and always thinks he knows what is best.  Ulrika, the mother is a successful attorney whose success may have come at the cost of her family.  The secondary characters (including the murdered businessman) were not fleshed out enough in the writing to make them any more than eh okay.  

This is a Swedish book so one must remember we are not talking about American laws when reading some parts.  Other countries' legals systems fascinate me.  How Sweden runs their trials is very interesting and a few times I thought that would never happen and reminded myself SWEDISH.  Stella is accused of killing a businessman at least 15 years her senior (his age could be one of his lies) and her parents must figure out what to do.  The back and forth between characters I liked as it gave me insight to part of the characters they would never admit to themselves.  Having to figure out WHAT period of time they were talking about was frustrating as the way it was written was not clear at first in many chapters.  I feel like it was overloaded with things and at the same time MISSING things.  The ending was NOT a surprise to me so 'thriller' seems a bit off.

This book just did not gel with me (and I am among the minority in that).  Thank you Netgalley for the ARC.
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Thank you to Netgalley, the author & publisher for allowing me the opportunity to review this book!

Legal thrillers are not my normal genre of choice, but I’m so glad I stepped outside my comfort zone and requested this book.  I was not disappointed!!  This novel tackles several heard hitting scenarios that all parents fear, and knowing just how far you’ll go to protect family.  This experience was intense and utterly gripping.  

4 solid stars!!
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We have our Nearly Normal Family, and the story is told from each of their perspectives-Adam (a pastor-kinda), Ulrika (a lawyer), and their daughter Stella.  It’s Stella’s 18th Birthday and shortly after her parents get the call that she has been arrested for murder of a man they have never heard of.

1. I love stories told from various points of view.  This one did not disappoint.  These were 3 very specific, very different voices.  We got to really know each of these main characters.  I would have loved if Stella’s best friend, Amina, also had a voice in this.
2. The ending for me wasn’t some great reveal. Maybe I’m just crazy and was expecting something that I didn’t see coming.  It seemed predictable, but that was ok.  Knowing that the ending wasn’t going to be some crazy reveal, may have lessened that disappointment.

-Similar Recommended Reads-
The Testament of Harold’s Wife
The Silent Patient
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I really enjoyed this book---Celadon keeps putting out these awesome thrillers that I can not put down!  Seemingly a normal family here, husband wife and daughter going about their daily lives when all the sudden, the 18 year old daughter is arrested for murder.  And then, all is not as it had seemed.  And how far will the mother and father got to protect their daughter?  To what lengths will they bend their ethics and violate the morals which they have lived by their entire lives in which to help heir daughter?  This story is told in three parts, by each member of the family with each point of view more facts are learned. Is Stella guilty of murder?  The truths, lies and twists in this book are wonderful and kept me turning the pages until the very end.  Definitely worth reading!  Thanks so much for the ARC!!!!
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