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The Nest by Cynthia D'Aprix Sweeney

The Nest

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June 2017 Debut of the Month.

A thought-provoking and wittily pointed debut, about the life and loves of the Plumb family. There are four siblings at the centre of this novel, Leo causes uproar when a chunk of their common nest egg is syphoned off for him. A tale of love, hate and everything inbetween, complicated layers are peeled away, revealing a family in turmoil. There were times I almost felt as though I was eavesdropping, hearing a particularly juicy piece of gossip, could it possibly be true! The tale occasionally slips and slides away from the siblings, to other characters, the links combine to create moments of stillness and thought, or expose and cause mayhem. Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney writes with eloquence, she has a beautifully light touch as she captures moods and feelings and sets them free in your mind, to flicker and provoke. ‘The Nest’ is a gorgeously expressive and captivating read and I highly recommend making room for it on your bookshelf. ~ Liz Robinson

Reader Reviews

In addition to our Lovereading expert opinion some of our Reader Review Panel were also lucky enough to read and review this title. You can click here to read the full reviews.

  • Annette Woolfson - 'The characters, their inter-entwined lives, and the messes they have made – it kept me reading well into the wee small hours. There is humour, pathos and beautiful observation to detail in this novel.'
  • Angie Rhodes - 'The dry humour, entwined with the tenderness of the story is just perfect!!'
  • Suzanne Marsh - 'This is a novel with problems for the Plumb family. I personally like reading novels about family problems.'
  • Jennifer Moville - 'This book keeps you thrilled with the wonder of what happens next. Don't expect to do much else if you pick up this book - it kept me glued to it until the wee small hours as I lost track of time being engrossed in its pages.'
  • Sarah Hamid - 'An enjoyable novel, which gives an insight into how a large family works, and in particular the effect a potential inheritance can have on family dynamics, and also other relationships.'
  • Karen McIntosh - 'A beautifully told story of a family with life mapped out before them.  When they are forced to reassess things get very interesting.'
  • Nicola Briggs - 'The Nest is a warm, funny and perceptive study of the complex nature of a family's love and how expectation, financial and otherwise, plays out in our lives.'
  • Sharon McKinlay - 'Enjoyable story about siblings in a dysfunctional family waiting to receive their trust fund. Good debut.'
  • Victoria Halliday - 'Terrific, un-put-downable, one of the best books of 2016.  Read it now!'
  • Katie Hoare - 'The complex issues of how money, legacy and families are brilliantly told within this debut story, and how these issues are then intertwined with each of the sibling’s partners and spouses.'
  • Edel Waugh - 'Overall this was a great story of a family going through the ups and downs of life and inheritance with a selfish egotistical brother at the centre of it all.'
  • Evelyn Love-Gajardo - 'I would recommend it to anyone looking for good, contemporary American fiction. Definitely an author to look out for - I'll be waiting for the film!'
  • Kathryn Eastman - 'Cynthia D'Aprix Sweeney's debut is an absolute joy to read. You'll find The Nest a juicy page-turner as you discover if dysfunction can ever start to function as a family.'
  • Claire Simms - 'Excellent novel regarding the Plumb family which evolves around The Nest, an inheritance left to them by their father.'
  • Rachel Shapey - 'I did enjoy this novel, as there are a number of humorous moments and it does reach a climactic point, but I then felt slightly dissatisfied by the ending.'
  • Kathryn Murphy - 'Overall I did really enjoy this novel and as someone who would not have necessarily chose a family-saga novel as my book of choice, I would happily read about the Plumb family all over again.'
  • Suzanne James - 'This tale of a dysfunctional family had me completely engrossed in no time...You can't help but identify a little with them all, even Leo, whose behaviour is unashamedly self-serving.'


The Nest by Cynthia D'Aprix Sweeney

When black sheep Leo has a costly car accident, the Plumb siblings' much-anticipated inheritance is suddenly wiped out. His brother and sisters come together and form a plan to get back what is owed them - each grappling with their own financial and emotional turmoil from the fallout. As 'the nest' fades further from view, they must decide whether they will build their lives anew, or fight to regain the futures they had planned ...Ferociously astute, warm and funny, The Nest is a brilliant debut chronicling the hilarity and savagery of family life.


'Relentlessly entertaining'

'In her intoxicating first novel, Cynthia D'Aprix Sweeney has written an epic family story that unfolds in a deeply personal way. The Nest is a fast moving train and Sweeney's writing dares us to keep up'

'A masterfully constructed, darkly comic, and immensely captivating tale...Cynthia D'Aprix Sweeney is a real talent, and I am incredibly impressed by this book'

'Breezy, light-footed debut ... plenty of tart observations to savour in this enjoyable tale of flawed, self-absorbed characters trying to find their way in a newly uncertain world'

'[A] generous, absorbing novel ... a wise, affectionate study of how expectations play out in our lives ... A fetching debut from an author who knows her city, its people, and their hearts'

'A wry look at the importance of money in our lives ... D'Aprix Sweeney's characters might be imperfect and desperate, but it's their desperation that makes them likeable'

'Darkly funny'

'A wise, funny, compassionate family drama, full of irresistible surprises, witty conversations, and necessary emotional truths'
JAMI ATTENBERG, author of The Middlesteins

'This dysfunctional family novel has best-seller potential written all over it. You'll find it's certainly every bit as entertaining as a movie, too, and impossibly witty to boot'
ELLE, 16 Novels by Women Everyone Will Be Talking About In 2016

'Humor and delightful irony abound in this lively first novel'

'A comedy of filial greed and affection ... Sweeney knows these people well, and she captures them in short scenes that glow with the confidence of an experienced comic writer. For all the acerbic humor that Sweeney wrings from this family's self-absorption, she maintains a refreshing balance of tenderness ... HBO, if you're not considering a TV version, why not?'


About the Author

Cynthia D'Aprix Sweeney

Cynthia D'Aprix Sweeney lives in Los Angeles with her husband and children. She has an MFA from Bennington.

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Book Info

Publication date

1st June 2017


Cynthia D'Aprix Sweeney

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The Borough Press an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers


416 pages


Family Drama
Debuts of the Month
Literary Fiction
Reading Groups
Relationship Stories
Summer Reading
eBook Favourites

Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)



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