• NZ Booklovers

The River Home by Hannah Richell


As reviewed on The Cafe, TV3!


Hannah Richell worked in book and film marketing before starting her first novel in 2007, while pregnant with her first child. Her books have been translated into seventeen languages, and The River Home is her fourth novel.


The River Home centres on Margot, who has spent years running away from her past and her family – but then her beloved sister Lucy decides to get married, and Margot can’t ignore her text message: ‘I need you.’


So, reluctantly, Margot goes back to her childhood home in Somerset, where long-simmering resentments quickly surface. Her eldest sister Eve, always the bossy, organised one, is grumpily organising the wedding and annoyed that Lucy has only given everyone a week’s notice. But it soon becomes apparent that Eve is hiding a secret that will have a significant impact on her own marriage. We also discover that Lucy has important news to share with her family, and there is a genuine reason why there is only one week to organise this wedding.


The worst long-simmering conflict is between Margot and her mother, who is a famous author, from whom Margot has been estranged since she was a teenager. Everything came to a head the year her father left her mother for another woman, and Margot did something unforgivable – an act of destruction so brutal, that the whole family has forever asked the question: why? With the family gathered for the wedding, finally, the heart-breaking truth will be revealed.


The River Home is a beautifully written, emotionally charged novel that will have you grabbing the tissues. Hannah Richell is an extraordinary writer, and I think this is her best book yet!


Reviewer: Karen McMillan

Published by Hachette, RRP $34.99


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