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‘The Neighbors’ sucks you in, leaves you paranoid

By Staff | Dec 26, 2012

How well do you know your neighbors?

Ania Ahlborn’s new book “The Neighbors” will have you drawing your curtains and casting a wary eye.

Andrew Morrison has taken the chance to move in with a childhood friend, Mickey, in an attempt to finally gain control of his life and break free of his fearful mother. Mickey’s place is a wreck, but Andrew can’t afford to be picky, he has no job thanks to the move. But he tries to do what he can to help clean up for his friend and sleeps facing the window that overlooks the beautiful and well-kept house next door.

Andrew gets the chance to meet the neighbors and they are like something out of “Leave It To Beaver.” Red Ward, the husband, is a friendly older man with a well-maintained lawn. And Harlow, his wife, is a gorgeous woman who seems motherly at some times and flirty at others. In Harlow, Andrew sees a chance at a lovely perfect “mother” figure, especially when she befriends him, feeds him and gets him a job helping Red around the house. Andrew is thrilled to spend time in their lovely house, but Mickey oddly enough is not thrilled. He warns Andrew that the Wards are crazy and he would do well to stay away from them. But Harlow cautions Andrew that they worry that Mickey is on drugs.

Andrew starts to believe that Mickey could just be jealous, and then piece by piece, he starts to learn more about the gorgeous woman next door, and what he learns is truly frightening.

This is a thriller that unravels piece by piece, leaving the reader uneasy throughout the whole book. At first, nothing seems off about the Wards, and then as the reader gets into the minds and the pasts of not only Andrew, but Mickey, Red and Harlow, they learn that not all psychotic characters look or act like Hannibal Lector. It’s a story that sucks you in until the very last page and may make you paranoid after.

The next time you see your neighbors, you may want to smile and wave, but don’t get too close.