Blog Tour Book Review

The Coffin Club by Jacqueline Sutherland

Some people would kill for a second chance.

Kat is rebuilding her life. After losing her husband in a tragic accident, moving to the countryside is her chance to start again.

Encouraged by her new and only friend Ginny, Kat joins New Horizons, dubbed the Coffin Club by its members. And that’s how she meets Nico. Instantly drawn to each other, Nico seems like Kat’s perfect match. He is kind, caring, handsome and, most importantly, a father to five-year-old Magdalena. This could be Kat’s shot at the one thing she has always wanted: to be a mother.

BUT SOMETIMES BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU WISH FOR…


I’m delighted to be taking part in the blog tour for The Coffin Club today.  This is one of those novels that had me instantly gripped – I felt completely pulled into Kat’s story from the first page and I couldn’t wait to find out what would happen. 

At the outset of the novel, Kat is completely alone.  Her husband died in a tragic car accident, and she has no friends or family to turn to.  Seeing little point in continuing, she considers taking her own life.  It’s a decision that she won’t be able to carry out due to circumstances outside of her control, but one that introduces her to Ginny – a down to earth animal lover who runs the local animal sanctuary.  A friendship forms between the two, pulling Kat out of her grief and reminding her that there are still things to live for.  Kat’s world is further expanded when she joins New Horizons – a group for widows and widowers – where she meets Nico and begins to see the possibility of a second chance with him and his daughter, Magdalena. 

What starts out as a tentative romance between Kat and Nico soon gains momentum, and it’s not long before Nico and Magdalena move in, much to Kat’s delight.  Set in 2016, Brexit brings the probably that Nico may not be able to stay in the UK.  Not wanting to lose them – and it is very much them – Kat suggests that marriage might strengthen Nico’s application to remain in the UK.  It’s not entirely a marriage of convenience, but it does lead to something of a shotgun wedding.  Settling into married life, however, Kat begins to notice some odd behaviour and she begins to question the haste with which they’ve moved and as it occurs to her that she doesn’t actually know Nico all that well.  I loved seeing this aspect of the novel play out – Nico does display some odd behaviour, but his explanations are reasonable when challenged.  It leads the reader to wonder whether it’s paranoia on Kat’s part or whether there is something more sinister going on.  This seed of doubt remains with both Kat and the reader and works brilliantly to keep the reader hooked. 

Kat is an interesting character and one that I found myself sympathising with, initially at least.  To have lost her husband at such a young age is heart-breaking, and it’s wonderful to see her start to overcome her grief and to find a new lease of life as she begins to make friends and to find another chance at love.  I wanted her to find happiness and it was wonderful to see her blossom.  Taking on another person’s child isn’t always easy, and yet Kat throws herself into (step)motherhood with gusto.  I have to admit that this did give me pause for thought at times – she is perhaps a little too keen, and her behaviour borders on the obsessive.   Through flashbacks, we understand that a child is something that she has always wanted, but also that she is unable to have a child of her own.  There’s a sense of desperation around Kat when she considers losing Nico and Magdalena, and one can’t help but wonder what she is willing to do to keep Magdalena in her life.

The novel plays out brilliantly as we discover more about the characters involved and as it becomes increasingly clear that there is more to them than meets the eye.  Sutherland cleverly drip feeds the reader with information throughout the novel, and these revelations work to make you question your opinion of the characters as you come to understand them more. It works brilliantly to keep the reader on their toes, and I found myself racing through the novel to see how events would play out.  It builds up to a brilliant and shocking finale, and I highly recommend this fantastic debut.

The Coffin Club is published by Point Blank and is available now in hardback, eBook, and audio formats.  Huge thanks to the publisher and to Anne Cater of Random Things Tours for the review copy and the opportunity to take part in the blog tour. 

Disclaimer – I received a copy of this novel from the publisher. This has in no way influenced my review.


About the Author

Jacqueline (Jack) Sutherland worked in corporate PR and marketing for over twenty years and now works part time as a copywriter. A few years ago, she bought her husband a beehive for his birthday, and she draws on her knowledge of beekeeping in her debut thriller, The Coffin Club. She began writing the novel on the 2020 Faber Academy course. Jack lives in Guildford with her husband and their four boys.


Make sure you check out the other wonderful bloggers taking part in the tour:

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