ShortBookandScribes #BookReview – Nanny Wanted by Lizzy Barber

Nanny Wanted by Lizzy Barber was published by Pan Macmillan on 17th August in paperback, ebook and audiobook. My thanks to Josie Turner for the proof copy.

A remote Cornish mansion. The perfect couple. And the deadly secrets that bind them.

When Lily finally leaves her toxic relationship, a job as a nanny at Kewney Manor seems like the perfect solution. There, she can cut herself off from her old life, and never have to see him again.

The Rowes seem like a model family, and Lily falls instantly in love with her new home. But she can’t help feeling that something isn’t quite right. Why will nobody tell her about the nanny who came before her? Where does Laurie go at night? And what does Charles really want?

As Lily becomes increasingly entangled in the Rowes’s lives, she realizes that the perfect family may not be all that they seem. And as much as she fears the past she is running from, perhaps the present is where the real danger lies . . .

If books with a strong sense of foreboding set in a sprawling mansion peopled with unreliable characters are your bag then Nanny Wanted has all of those things in spades.

Lily flees London for Cornwall and the home of the Rowe family after seeing an advert for a nanny. Her reasons for fleeing become apparent as the story progresses but Lily is looking for somewhere where she doesn’t have to look over her shoulder all the time. Enter Kewney Manor and Laurie and Charles Rowe, with their children, Bess and Edward. However, what seems like a haven soon starts to make Lily feel ill at ease. Laurie seems fragile, Charles effortlessly charming, but is anyone what they seem?

Nanny Wanted is a claustrophobic and intense story of a young woman becoming embroiled in things that she knows nothing about. It’s character-driven and taut with intrigue. A house like Kewney Manor has plenty of dark corners and shady attics, and the house holds its own secrets, although not quite as many as its inhabitants.

Nanny Wanted is a gothic thriller with all the hallmarks of Daphne du Maurier (Lily, working her way through the author’s works in the library, would no doubt agree) and Lizzy Barber excels at conveying a sense of unease throughout.

Lizzy Barber, author of Out of her Depth, is a London-based author living in Islington with her husband George. She read English at Corpus Christi College, Cambridge.

She has worked in acting and film development, and has spent the last eight years working in the restaurant business with her brother Jamie, heading up their brand and marketing department. They have a small group of restaurants in Mayfair: Haché, Hush and Cabana.

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