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Publisher's Summary

In this twisty debut psychological thriller, two families agree to a holiday house swap, each wife hoping a vacation will help her troubled marriage. But then a woman is murdered in the driveway of one house in an apparently random attack, and the secrets holding each marriage together start to come to light, with shocking consequences.

Limerick, Ireland. The driveway of the Stokes family home. American Oscar Harvey opens the trunk of the car his hosts have loaned him and finds in it the body of a woman beaten and bloody. But let's start from the beginning. Kate and Mannix Stokes and their children live beside Curragower Falls in Limerick, in a house they love but can barely afford in postrecession Ireland. On top of that, their autistic son, Fergus, is being bullied at school, and their daughter, Izzy, blames herself for not being able to protect him. What her family needs, Kate decides, is a vacation. With Mannix back at work, they can just afford it. So when she sees a beautiful Manhattan apartment on a house swap website, it seems like a dream come true.

Oscar and his wife, Hazel, live with their two children in a gorgeous apartment on Manhattan's Upper West Side. Though outwardly a successful, happy couple, Hazel has mysterious bruises, and Oscar is hiding some secrets of his own at his dental practice. They, too, need a vacation, and Hazel has long wanted to take her children back to her native Limerick. The house swap seems like the perfect solution; both Kate and Hazel hope a week away will soothe their troubled marriages. But this is anything but an ideal vacation, and the body in the trunk is only the beginning.

©2016 Siobhan MacDonald (P)2016 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"Together, the narrators create an authentic listening experience for the action set in Ireland as well as illuminating the world of Hazel, an Irish woman living in America. The listener is riveted as the story changes from one point of view to another, driving the action forward." (AudioFile)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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Performance

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Thriller?

Only the narrative thrilled me in this story of two families who each drag their utter dysfunction on a home exchange holiday. The story is so dismal, the male characters so unrelentingly awful, the mother figures so utterly oblivious and the children such victims of adult dysfunction, that I thought Twisted River was a satire during the first few chapters. While I wouldn't say it's not satire, I can say the novel is neither a mystery nor a thriller; it's a story about awful people doing awful things to other people.

Still, I listened to the end. It is a superb production; extraordinarily well presented with 4 perfectly cast narrators. I will seek out audio books from this production company.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Not much of a mystery...

Well written, but not the story I was expecting. I thought it would be more mysterious, dark, keep me guessing, etc., but that didn't really happen. Disappointed overall.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Twisted for sure

The reader will believe they know who did it...just to be proven wrong later! MacDonald story telling enhanced by skilled narrators keeps the listener glued. Many twists and turns ,best book I have listened to this year.
Highly recommend!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great Title With All The Plot Twists!

The book details and sample had me intrigued but I hesitated on getting this book for a wile because of some of the negative reviews.
I am very glad I decided to get this book.
I don't really understand why so many people disliked it.
It kept me guessing and when I thought I had things figured out I was wrong.
The narration was really great!

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Jen X
  • California
  • 02-05-18

A mix up with devestating results!

Where does Twisted River rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

In the middle.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Twisted River?

When Oscar sees his wife through the kitchen window.

What does the narrators bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Personalities.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

I gasped.

Any additional comments?

Maybe my least favorite part in some books is the character development part of the book; you know, getting to know the people that play major roles in the story. During the character development part of this book, the author does a nice job allowing you to feel like you know them well. So much so that I really didn't like either husband. . I actually thought that I could be friends with one wife and, not so much the other wife. Each family had two kids, one girl and one boy. Again, the author did a good job describing the kids; with their personalities and their social difficulties.
It is both wives that decide that maybe all they need to help their struggling relationships is a vacation, so, through a house swap web site they plan their vacations. Each family as their own issues and, they hope that a vacation will help but, the thing is; usually the issues or problems don't get better and, sometimes they follow you and sometimes the other families problem, becomes your problem and the results are devastating.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Twists you won't see coming

What does the narrators bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

I loved the accents and they seemed to be authentic

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

It really surprised me and left me a little disappointed that everything didn't turn out liked I would have wanted it to.

Any additional comments?

This was an excellent book about relationships and cultures. Two women and their families switch houses for a vacation and end up immersed in the others' lives in the United States and Ireland... the good parts as well as the bad ones! The accents were almost lyrical and I was still able to understand the words even with the thickly accented character voices. What small parts that didn't seem authentic did not detract from the story or the immersion I had listening.

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Left confused

I finished this book absolutely confused! The narrators were great! The story line had a good climax but fell short at the finale.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

great read

Loved the Irish accents, and the story line was really good. Kept me on the edge of my seat the entire time.

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

dead boring

There is no part of this book that I will miss listening to. The whole thing was slow and uneventful. The murderer obvious. Completely unimpressed.

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Weak but not entirely terrible

I'll lead with what works. The premise of the story is strong. There is some adequate character development (even if none of the characters are particularly interesting), and the narration by Gerard Doyle is, as always, excellent. I wish he could have done the whole book.
However, right from the start I felt disappointed. It's told from multiple perspectives which I typically like, but prepare to be bludgeoned by the author's ham-handed attempts to be "mysterious" and vague. I suppose this was an attempt to lead the reader down various paths to heighten the tension. It didn't work; it was just annoying. Furthermore, the "mystery" was pretty transparent and I found nothing about the book engaging or surprising. The characters are uninteresting and there is a good bit of pointless whining that made me cringe.
I did finish it though so there must have been something worthwhile about it... or I just hate to give up.
Proceed at your own risk. This book falls into the mindless entertainment category. If that's all you're looking for, this might work for you. If you expect more, save your credit.