A Good Neighbourhood book review

A provocative novel about class, race and star-crossed love in modern America from New York Times bestselling author Therese Anne Fowler that implicates us all in its damning, heart-wrenching conclusion.

‘Compelling, complicated, timely, and smart . . . hard to put down and hard to forget’ 

A Good Neighbourhood explores how class, race and star-crossed love will change two families’ lives forever. Perfect for fans of Celeste Ng and Jodi Picoult.

In Oak Knoll, a tight-knit North Carolina neighbourhood, professor of forestry and ecology Valerie Alston-Holt is raising her bright and talented biracial son. All is well until the Whitmans move in next door – an apparently traditional family with new money, ambition, and a secretly troubled teenage daughter.

With little in common except a property line, these two very different families quickly find themselves at odds over an historic oak tree in Valerie’s yard. 

But as they fight, they fail to notice that there is a romance blossoming between their two teenagers. A romance that will challenge the carefully constructed concepts of class and race in this small community. A romance that might cause everything to shatter…

A Good Neighbourhood book review
A Good Neighbourhood published by Hachette RRP $32.99 available from Booktopia and all good bookstores

Duffy’s Thoughts On A Good Neighbourhood

A Good Neighbourhood is a powerful read, so be prepared to get sucked into the lives of the residents of Oak Knoll within the first few pages.

It’s exceptionally well written with an air of gentle melancholy, and a shadow of foreboding which gets darker and heavier as the plot unfolds. It’s crazy to think that in 2020 there is still such intolerance, unconscious bias and racism in the world. A Good Neighbourhood left me hoping for change, but also sad that lives are still so deeply affected. It also left me with feelings of shame on account of my own unavoidable white privilege and also infuriated at how some of the characters used theirs to manipulate and get what they wanted in the book.

If you enjoyed the movie Magnolia or the books Unremarkable Body or Work Like Any Other you will love A Good Neighbourhood.

It’s a book that will certainly linger in your thoughts long after the last page is turned.