Tuesday, October 19, 2021

Review: The Mother Next Door by Tara Laskowski (Blog Tour)

About the Book

The Mother Next Door : A Novel of Suspense 
Tara Laskowski
On Sale Date: October 12, 2021
Trade Paperback
Graydon House
$16.99 USD
352 pages

For fans of Lisa Jewell, Aimee Molloy, and Joshilyn Jackson, an upmarket suspense novel from a multi-award-winning author about a tightknit group of suburban mothers who invite a new neighborhood mom into their fold, and the fallout the night of the annual block party, when secrets from the past come back to haunt them…

The annual block party is the pinnacle of the year on idyllic suburban cul de sac Ivy Woods Drive. An influential group of neighborhood moms—known as the Ivy Five—plan the event for months.

Except the Ivy Five have been four for a long time.

When a new mother moves to town, eager to fit in, the moms see it as an opportunity to make the group whole again. This year’s block party should be the best yet... until the women start receiving anonymous messages threatening to expose the quiet neighborhood’s dark past—and the lengths they’ve gone to hide it.

As secrets seep out and the threats intensify, the Ivy Five must sort the loyal from the disloyal, the good from the bad. They'll do anything to protect their families. But when a twisted plot is revealed, with dangerous consequences, their steady foundation begins to crumble, leaving only one certainty: after this year’s block party, Ivy Woods Drive will never be the same.

From award-winning author Tara Laskowski, The Mother Next Door is an atmospheric novel of domestic suspense in which the strive for perfection ends in murder…

My Review

It’s October, which mean Halloween is almost here.  The people living on Ivy Woods Drive love this time of year.  They are in the midst of planning their annual Halloween block party.  Leading the plans is a group of neighborhood mothers who call themselves the Ivy Five.  However, they really are the Ivy Four since they’ve been down a member for a few years.  Nobody talks about that.

When new neighbor, Theresa Pressley, moves into the area, she tries to fit in with the group.  They are more than happy to welcome her in.   Theresa is willing to do whatever the Ivy moms need her to do.  Then, the group starts receiving anonymous threats to reveal their past.  Theresa gets a few threats herself.  Who could be out to destroy this group?

The story is told from two POVs - Theresa’s and Kendra (the head of the Ivy Five).  Each woman of the group has their own secrets and they will go to great lengths to protect them.  With each chapter, a new secret is revealed.  

This book kept me in suspense from beginning to end.  I love spooky books and what better time to read a Halloween-related book than October?  It fits the mood to perfection.  I had no idea who the good or bad guys were.  I didn’t know who to be rooting for and I loved every minute of it.  I do enjoy a book that keeps me guessing.

This would make a really good movie or TV series.

FTC Disclosure: I voluntarily reviewed a free Advance Reader Copy of this book from NetGalley and the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review.  All opinions expressed are my own.


TARA LASKOWSKI is the author of One Night Gone, which won an Agatha Award, Macavity Award, and Anthony Award, and was a finalist for the Mary Higgins Clark Award, Left Coast Crime Award, Strand Critics' Award, and Library of Virginia Literary Award. She is also the author of two short story collections, Modern Manners for Your Inner Demons and Bystanders, has published stories in Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine and Mid-American Review, among others, and is the former editor of SmokeLong Quarterly. Tara earned a BA in English from Susquehanna University and an MFA from George Mason University and currently lives in Virginia. Find her on Twitter and Instagram, @TaraLWrites.


Twitter: @TaraLWrites
Instagram: @taralwrites


  1. I love that this takes place during Halloween! This definitely looks like a book I'd enjoy.

  2. I love Halloween so this looks good.


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