‘The End of Us’ by Olivia Kiernan | @LivKiernan @riverrunbooks @QuercusBooks

Author : Olivia Kiernan
Title : The End of Us
Pages : 350
Publisher : Riverrun / Quercus
Publication date : April 27, 2023 (kindle edition)
Source : Netgalley


It all started to go wrong the day the Wrights moved in next door

Myles and Lana Butler live on a gorgeous new development in Wimbledon, leaning on a mortgage that is just within reach. When one of Myles’ investments goes wrong they are bound to lose everything.

Gabriel and Holly Wright have just moved in next door. The Wrights are sophisticated, ambitious and apparently very wealthy. At an after-dinner drink with their new neighbours, Myles and Lana share their worries and a solution is suggested between the couples. Life Insurance fraud. For a cut of the pay out, the Wrights would help them.

No one thought they were being serious. No one agreed they’d actually go through with it. And no one mentioned it would involve murder.

Then, one night, Lana doesn’t come home.


You might want to skip this one if you have trust issues. Just sayin’.

Myles and Lana are living the good life. Until Myles loses a lot of money in an investment gone horrendously wrong. They stand to lose everything, but neither one is bound to let that happen. After all, they deserve this life. Nothing less will do in the slightest. But surely there’s a line you don’t cross?

One evening while talking to their neighbours, Gabe and Holly Wright, the solution of Life Insurance fraud comes up. As it does. There are the beginnings of a plan, which the Wrights make sound incredibly easy, and obviously they will gladly help for a cut of the money. But nobody is serious, right? They’re not actually going to do this? Myles doesn’t think so. Until one evening, Lana doesn’t come home.

The story is told by Myles. I can’t say I particularly liked him, to be honest. For the most part, he seemed awfully entitled. It also becomes clear quite early on that he has no scruples whatsoever, doing whatever he feels is necessary to keep a handle on this nice life he and Lana have created. Despite finding himself in a situation he didn’t ask for, and dealing with things he wasn’t at all prepared for, I found it nearly impossible to muster up a smidgen of sympathy for him. In my mind, greed and overreaching is what put them in this situation in the first place.

In fact, none of the characters were all that likeable. Lana came across as rather toxic and manipulative to me, and I could never really get a solid grasp on Gabe and Holly. There’s an awful lot of backstabbing going on. Betrayal and deceit seem to lurk around every corner and nobody can be trusted. I didn’t think it was too hard to figure out at least some of what had occurred, but the bigger picture remained somewhat of a mystery to me until the reveal. And I still have a few questions, to be fair.

The End of Us‘ is a slow-burning, character-driven psychological thriller that shows how far people are willing to go to protect themselves, to survive. It’s a twisty and addictive tale full of intrigue and deception, which definitely takes “a cunning plan” to a whole new level. At its heart, there’s a moral dilemma that will make you wonder what you would do. I thoroughly enjoyed this suspenseful stand-alone by Olivia Kiernan and I very much look forward to whatever’s next.

Amazon UK (digital edition to be published April 27th, with the hardback to follow in June)

My thanks to Quercus for the advanced review copy, which I received via Netgalley. All opinions are my own.

  4 comments for “‘The End of Us’ by Olivia Kiernan | @LivKiernan @riverrunbooks @QuercusBooks

  1. April 25, 2023 at 11:48 am

    I bought a second hand copy of Murder Box just last week (I’m waiting for it to arrive) so it’s great to see she’s such a steady and brilliant writer. Now I already have another one for my list 😊 Great review Eva!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. April 25, 2023 at 12:05 pm

    Oooh love the sound of this one, I’m definitely going to check it out. Fantastic review! x

    Liked by 1 person

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