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Those People, by Louise Candlish

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Published by Simon & Schuster

REVIEWED BY CALLIE STEVEN

We all like to feel that we are not one of ‘those people’. That is: loud neighbours who cause trouble and disrupt everyone; or ‘those people’ who snobbishly think they are better than others. This entertaining novel is about both of those people.

When Darren and Jodie Booth move into idyllic Lowland Way, a suburb outside London on the real estate rise, they are immediately deemed unsuitable by the neighbours. They play loud music at all hours, renovate haphazardly, and load the street with additional cars as part of an unregistered business. And then a terrible tragedy strikes. Everyone blames the hated Booths. But nothing is as straight forward as it first seems.

Each chapter is told from a different character’s perspective, and this is an excellent way for the action to unfold, highlighting how different we all are as people. This is definitely the most successful part of this novel. It is delightful hearing from elderly Sissy, proper Naomi and the beleaguered new parents Amy and Ant.

The book examines the way people react under stress and what is revealed about a person and their relationships at these times. It details a kind of urban warfare; class warfare really. However, questions of what exactly constitutes justice become disconcerting, and the end is somehow not satisfying. Still, it’s an enjoyable read overall.