Your Preview Verdict: One of Us by Kylie Kaden

Your Preview Verdict: One of Us by Kylie Kaden

Behind the tall hedges of the affluent, gated community of Apple Tree Creek, not all is as it seems …

Out of the blue, Gertie’s husband decides they need a break and he leaves her with their three children. Two streets east and three gardens down, successful businesswoman Rachael discovers her husband has cheated on her – again – even though she’s pregnant with his third child. Thrown together by a chance encounter, the two women bond over the shared disaster that is their marriages.

People can only be pushed so far…

When one of their husbands is attacked, and ambulance sirens cut through the serenity of manicured gardens and cobblestone streets, the small community is shocked at the violence that’s played out in their midst. CCTV reveals no outsiders visited the estate that night, confirming that the assailant must be one of their own.

As the web of neighbourly relationships unravels and the secrets of Apple Tree Creek are exposed, one question will be asked: which one of us is willing to kill?

Buy a copy of One of Us here.

Read some great reviews from our Preview readers here:

Wow – One of Us by Kylie Kaden was unexpected. It’s so much more than a dark thriller and surprisingly filled my head with thoughts about life, community and relationships. It’s thought provoking as much as it’s an addictive mystery. Wealth, power, inequities, fear, perfection, secrets, keeping up appearance, true self and friendship are twisted within the pages. The book has heart. In a strange utopian way you can find something relatable to yourself within these pages and this co-exists with the unravelling intriguing twists. A totally enjoyable read – this thriller tugs at your emotions and it’s fantastic. Cathy, QLD, 5 Stars

From the impactful prologue that kept the identities of the characters involved a secret for the reader to unpack along with how that day had come to happen, this novel had me hooked. As Kaden revealed the backstory of all of the characters, particularly the relatable two main characters Gertie and Rachael, my belief in who was responsible for the events of the prologue was constantly shifted and questioned. However, I very quickly lost any concern that this was a detective or mystery novel (genres I don’t particularly enjoy reading or viewing) and settled into the lives of the families of Apple Tree Creek. Looking behind their facades, their lives are anything but perfect. Kaden’s descriptions of family life, particularly Gertie’s with parenting special needs kids, were engaging and absorbing. As a reader, you just ‘knew’ there was something not quite right with Spencer, that something had happened with Kat and Sam, and there was more to Ed being in Singapore than was first revealed. A definite read for fans of Liane Moriarty and Jodi Picoult. Louise, WA, 5 Stars

Thank you to Better Reading for the opportunity to read and review One of Us by Kylie Kaden. Gertie and Ed have 3 kids and have been married for years but now he’s leaving to work in Singapore. Rachel and Sam have 2 kids and another on the way, 10 years together, another affair. Money doesn’t bring happiness, all seems perfect in the affluent community of Apple Tree Creek, but it’s not. It’s a tangled mess of dissatisfaction, secrets, hurt and betrayal thrown in the mix in a very witty way. Very enjoyable read. Nicky, QLD, 5 Stars

WOW – Loved this book – One of Us by Kylie Kaden – A page turner from the start to the gripping finish. I loved how the story unfolded slowly giving us a little at a time. A thriller with a difference. Read it you will love it. Debbie, VIC, 5 Stars

I’ll never look at my neighbours the same again! Kylie Kaden’s novel provides a gripping view of upper class Sydney life and the different facades people show the world. We learn early on in the novel that all is not what it seems in Apple Tree Creek and each turn of the page is like peeling back the layers of an onion, revealing the true nature of all of the characters who live in this affluent estate. We all know people similar to those in the novel and it is this realness to the storyline that makes it so easy to engage with. I loved it! Janine, VIC, 5 Stars

I really enjoyed this ARC of One of Us. What is really going on behind some of the closed doors of the gated, seemingly perfect, well to do community of Apple Tree Creek ? It’s not what you probably think. I was engaged in this believable story right from the first page. I found the characters authentic and I could feel their emotions and pain as the story evolved. The relationships between the female characters is endearing. I felt empathy for the dysfunctional families that were revealed. This story kept me intrigued to the last word. Thank you to Better Reading for the chance to review this great read and I will be looking for more of Kylie Caden’s books into the future. Helen, NSW, 5 Stars

A thoroughly enjoyable read. It’s intrigue kept me turning pages, waiting, guessing. This story unfolds at a wonderful pace, with great characters and a wonderfully awful setting. Lisa, WA, 5 Stars

Kylie Kaden’s One of Us’ takes us into an upmarket housing development where we find lies, deceit and betrayal hiding behind this perfect facade of domesticity! It’s darkly funny and asks what wouldn’t a mother do to protect her child? I found it entertaining and easy to read and enjoyed the inclusion of wit and humour. The epilogue was a surprise! Liesl, NSW, 5 Stars

A novel for our times exploring pertinent topics, domestic violence and bringing up children in a digital age to name a few. Absorbing and interesting that kept me reading on and on. This will resonate with many struggling with family issues. Jenny, VIC, 5 Stars

What a fantastic book. From the prologue to the final chapter I was kept guessing. The plot was like Desperate Housewives meets Cluedo. I loved the characters – strong women who don’t even realise the strength they have until called to protect their children. In these times of #Metoo the story is very topical. I enjoyed the language the author use throughout the book. Her writing style is incredible. She had me laughing at her way with words. It was a very entertaining read that I actually had trouble putting down but also wanted to savour and read it slowly so it didn’t finish to quickly. I would highly recommend this book. Kim, VIC, 5 Stars

This is my first encounter with this Aussie author, and certainly won’t be my last. This “domestic noir” has an Aussie flavour, but isn’t “ocker”. I found the story and the characters engaging, although I’m not sure about the ending.. it was a little too neat. I am sure this will end up as a great movie or Netflix series. Thank you to BetterReading and Pantera Press for an uncorrected proof preview in exchange for an unbiased review. Tracy, VIC, 5 Stars

First time reading this author and not the last. So many interwoven stories in there but easy to follow and twists you didn’t see coming that gave you a little surprise along the way. I had to rush through the last half because I just had to know how it was going to end. Not an ending you could have guessed like so many other books. Would recommend it to anyone I know. Off to buy her other novels. Tracy, WA, 5 Stars

This was a book that was hard to put down. Well written, engaging with plot twists. Centered around 2 main families, Kaden examines the concept of marriage, betrayal, domestic abuse, grooming and the effects of lies and deception. Kaden is masterful in the way she ties it all together. Definitely an author to keep an eye on. Cath, ACT, 5 Stars

All is happy in the Apple Tree Creek estate…or is it? This engaging book delves into the lives of the people behind the family facades, weaving together strands of each family’s lives, and keeping the reader guessing until the end. There’s empathetic Gertie, whose chaotic life with 3 children is thrown into further disarray when her husband Ed decides to take up a job posting overseas…without his family. And businesswoman Rachael has it all – fabulous business, gorgeous, loving (& Olympic medal winning) husband, beautiful house, but looks can be deceptive. ‘One of Us’ explores themes such as: what it means to be a family, coercive control, community, how relationships within a family change over time, shame, sense of self, young people’s relationships with the online world, what constant digital surveillance can do, and teenage angst. It is a cracking read, taking the reader on a rolling tale that will engage a range of emotions. Whilst dealing with serious and concerning issues, there are laugh out loud lines. Although set in Sydney, it could well be anywhere in the world, exploring the universal themes of family and what a parent will do to protect their families. Michele, VIC, 5 Stars

I thoroughly enjoyed this book for all kinds of reasons. Great characters, a believable plot, excellent dialogue, contemporary issues explored, satisfying ending. Weaving a ‘family saga’ storyline through a murder story, with a diverse range of motives really worked for me. And I do like it when the baddy gets his comeuppance! And I will not be moving into a gated estate any time soon. Victoria, NSW, 5 Stars

Wow!!! This story is so we’ll put together. The suburban reality of Apple Tree Creek has many secret’s and Gertie and Rachel find themselves amongst the town’s gossip,of the unfolding violence in their small community. The two women bond together over their husbands infidelity and bringing up their children alone. What a magnificent read…. Beautifully flawed characters and a magnetic read to the end…I lived it and loved it… Suspense Plus… Noeleen, WA, 5 Stars

New to reading Kylie Karen, I was pleasantly surprised with this book. A book of mystery, where things are not as they seem. A dramatic beginning with a gradual build of suspense. A contemporary story where we get introduced to the main characters & find out how they fit into the puzzle. No one really ever knows what goes on behind closed doors! An attention holder from start to end. Tracey, VIC, 4 Stars

Loved this book!!!!! It’s the type of book I love reading. It was so hard to put down. I love any book that leaves you guessing. Christine, QLD, 4 Stars

Kylie Kaden’s One of Us is an intriguing suburban domestic noir thriller where everything is not as perfect as it may seem and there are secrets lurking everywhere. Set in an exclusive gated community that I found somewhat reminiscent of the setting of Harlan Cobin’s Safe, we gradually learn about the array of flawed characters as Gert and Rachael develop their friendship. Along the way, many potential motivations for murder are uncovered leading toward the climax. Gently paced to match the developing friendship, this is an enjoyable mystery perfect for an afternoon by the fire. J, VIC, 4 Stars

Oh this book was very cool. A domestic thriller that was a fun and addictive read full of intrigue and suspense! I could not put this one down and highly recommend it!! My favourite character was Gertie. She was such a real, relatable and honest version of an everyday Mum. Full of quirkiness, triumph and self-doubts as she blunders her way through motherhood, always trying her best… just like all of us Mum’s! Haha!! This is one of those books where you fall into the story and cannot stop reading as you absorb all the juicy details as things unfold, and the suspense just keeps building. I loved it! A story full of husband’s behaving badly, the bonds of true friendship, teenagers and their secrets, and Mum’s who are trying to protect those they love and hold everything together… This book is a must read, full of emotion, excitement and shocks galore. Definitely add this one to your list!! Chryssie, QLD, 4 Stars

From the outside, everything looks normal. So often, things are not what they seem as we follow the main characters through this book. This book is an excellent read and I needed to find out what was going to happen. The author has created a story that seem quite straightforward at the start, but is really more complex and thought provoking. Cynthia, SA, 4 Stars

First time reading this Australian Author and definitely wasn’t disappointed. From the very start of this book I was enthralled in the story. The Gated community in an up market suburb is not what it seems. The two main characters Gertie and Rachael lead what everyone believes is the perfect family life, but is it really? Both women have problems in their marriages and they form a friendship discovering many secrets but also discovering themselves. The reader is lead on a journey with the slow reveal of information until an accident happens and the mystery deepens. What really happened? How? And most importantly Who? A great read that had me captivated. Rebecca, QLD, 4 Stars

An interesting yarn which took a little while to warm up but when it did, it became compulsive reading with a surprise ending. Jenn, VIC, 4 Stars

An affluent gated community where perfect people live their perfect lives with their perfect families…NOT. A suspenseful domestic noir story of two women bonding over their strained, troubled marriages. We know a man is injured, but we don’t find out who until much later. And the how and why is revealed bit by bit with all the juicy gossip that comes with living in a picture perfect, highly monitored estate. I loved the relationship with Gertie and Rachael and all the flawed characters and relationships, the kids, the parenting, the teen angst, it was all very relatable. Hanadi, NSW, 4 Stars

I really enjoyed this book. Two women and their families living in a gated community and both with totally different backgrounds and financial circumstances, become good friends. No-one knows what goes on behind closed doors. The two women become more open with each other and begin their mutual support. Good read. Vivien, ACT, 4 Stars

One of Us is the fourth novel from Aussie author Kylie Kaden and it’s an intriguing and suspenseful domestic noir. The story begins with a severely injured man on the floor of his home, but the victim’s identity is not revealed until much later. As I was reading there was no shortage of candidates for both the suspect and the victim, with a multitude of secrets and lies being revealed. It appears no one in this exclusive gated community is telling the whole truth and this it was made One Of Us such a riveting story. I didn’t pick the killer and changed my mind plenty of times about what had actually happened. My favourite characters,Gertie and Rachael, and their chance encounter which leads to friendship was also a highlight of the story. Reading the women’s interactions as they supported each other through relationship woes was very true to life and relatable. I highly recommend this twisty read to all lovers of domestic suspense. It was an incredibly engaging book. Brooke, VIC, 4 Stars

I found this really addictive to read and hard to put down, the community of apple creek really have hidden secrets and its engaging to follow the individual lives.The neighbours and friends storyline creates real intrigue to the reader, very well written. Julie, NSW, 4 Stars

I really enjoyed this book. The story had my hooked from the start. The characters were really likeable and the twists kept you guessing right to the end. Nicky, NSW, 4 Stars

With many of us living in suburbia, who gives a thought to what really goes on behind the landscaped yards and freshly painted doors. “One of Us” by Kylie Kaden opens the door on seemingly happy families to discover of dysfunctional relationships, family secrets and gender stereotypes. Opening with the discovery of a murder, the book then teases out the truth of who committed the crime, by exploring a number of families and couples, all of whom are potential perpetrators and their relationships to each other. After a slow start, I soon found I couldn’t put the book down, as all the while a feeling of discomfort grew as I became invested in the characters. After I finished the book, I found myself looking at my neighbours houses in a whole new light, while making sure that the front door was locked. An exciting read, but with some important social messages to share. Karina, QLD, 4 Stars

With a slow start One of us really picks up and has your mind racing with wonder and second guessing with so many shocks thrown in you will be page turning to race to find out what really happened. 4
Kirralee B SA ‘One of us’ invites the reader into a perfect estate, filled with imperfect families. Each page-turn reveals secrets and motives – with a sprinkling of humour that might just make you laugh out loud. Will be adding it to my ‘read it again’ pile. Shayla, NSW, 4 Stars

This was a fairly tame book. I will admit I was expecting more grit. A large part of the book is devoted to setting the scene for a stabbing, and revolves around the lives of families living in an exclusive gated community. There is certainly no shortage of suspects. These people have a lot going on. One Of Us is perfectly readable, but not overly gripping. Karen, VIC, 4 Stars

Gertie, a nurse and Ed started married life without much but won a charity prize home in Apple Tree Creek Estate and moved in with their three children. Katerina 12, Abe 2 and Harry a small baby. Ed announces out of the blue that he has a 12 month contract in Singapore and is leaving citing that Gertie needs to find herself. Devastated and left with the responsibilities of the children, Gertie returns to midwifery. Katerina is now 17 and the boys growing older. Meanwhile, pregnant Rachael and Sam a professional athlete are also living in the estate, and Gertie and Rachael become firm friends. Others in the estate also have issues! ‘One of Us’ by Kylie Kaden was such a good read, interesting with a great plot. Gillian, QLD, 4 Stars

One of Us by Kylie Kaden is a delightfully wicked tale of unrest in suburbia. Kaden paints a compelling picture highlighting that beneath the seemingly perfect facade of an idyllic elite community lay a troublesome bed of lies, deceit and betrayal. An addictive read! Thank you to Better Reading Preview for the advanced copy. Sarah, VIC, 4 Stars

Domestic thrillers are so addictive, and this one is no different. Here we have a ‘gated community’ where each neighbour has secrets that have the potential to destroy their polished facade. Gertie has a husband who thinks the best idea is to cut and run, Penny’s husband has made a gross error in judgment and Rachael’s husband has cheated, again, and the kids are not alright. I thought this was an addictive read. The mystery surrounding each neighbour was a tangled mess and the twists made for propulsive reading. The characters are relatable, complex and well-developed, but what hooked me the most was the perfectly imperfect dynamics of the families and the need that everyone had to appear like it’s all alright. Aotea, QLD, 4 Stars

It took me a while to get into but once in. Great characters that end up all linked by living in Apple Tree Creek community and brilliant finish. Elizabeth, NSW, 4 Stars

One Of Us is a ‘whodunnit’ style domestic thriller that opens with a bang at a crime scene in the affluent gated community of Apple Tree Creek. We follow the lives of Gertie and Rachael; getting to know these women, their families, how they intersect with each other and ultimately how the opening incident came to happen and what this means for them both. Kaden explores what really goes on behind the seemingly happy doors of Apple Tree Creek and shines a light on the imperfect realities of everyday suburban life. I found the book a little slow-paced, with a very gradual teasing out of the mysterious incident and the possible suspects, but it certainly picked up towards the end with a very shocking and surprising conclusion which I totally did not see coming. I was happy with the ending and how the main characters’ struggles were resolved though I felt a few peripheral characters/issues were still left to be somewhat hanging. I loved both main characters particularly Gertie who was relatable, fun, endearing, quirky and real. One Of Us will make you think very differently about your neighbours and what truly lies behind their white picket fences! Yvette, NSW, 3 Stars

One of Us is a tale of suburban mischief behind the ultra exclusive fence of a gated in community. Very Australian in tone including the many uses of the word ‘Hon” to reference your children and friends. If you can get past that you are greeted with a number of characters that you would have seen on many a tv show or novel; the Alpha Male who is not who he portrays himself to be, his beautiful but downtrodden wife who on the one hand can run a successful business but on the other puts up with some appalling behaviour from her husband. The busy body neighbour who likes to show a prosperous front to the neighbourhood but, as you guessed it, all is not what it seems. And then we have the Justine Clarke type character – struggling housewife with three kids, two of whom may or may not be on the spectrum, still loves her husband after many years but suddenly that is thrown into disarray. Not a bad read but I found myself predicting the plot and wasn’t far off in the end. The main point for me was that I didn’t really care by the end either. Katrina, VIC, 2 Stars

Reviews

Appearances Can Be Deceiving: Read an Extract from One of Us by Kylie Kaden

Review | Extract

19 May 2022

Appearances Can Be Deceiving: Read an Extract from One of Us by Kylie Kaden

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          Publisher details

          One of Us
          Author
          Kylie Kaden
          Publisher
          Pantera Press
          Genre
          Fiction
          Released
          03 May, 2022
          ISBN
          9780648677093

          Synopsis

          Behind the tall hedges of the affluent, gated community of Apple Tree Creek, not all is as it seems …

          Out of the blue, Gertie's husband decides they need a break and he's leaving her with their three children. Two streets east and three gardens down, successful businesswoman Rachael discovers her husband has cheated on her – again – even though she's pregnant with his third child. Thrown together by a chance encounter, the two women bond over the shared disaster that is their marriages. But did one husband push his wife too far?

          When the ambulance sirens cut through the serenity of Apple Tree Creek, the small community is shocked at the violence that's played out in their midst. CCTV reveals no outsiders visited the estate that night, confirming that the assailant must have been one of their own. Is the culprit still living among them? And why didn't any of the cameras, designed to keep them all safe, catch anything?

          As the web of neighbourly relationships unravels and the workings of their inner lives are exposed, questions will be asked, but not everyone wants to learn the answers.

          You can only push people so far.

          Kylie Kaden
          About the author

          Kylie Kaden

          Kylie Kaden was raised in Queensland and spent holidays camping with her parents and two brothers at the Sunshine Coast, where much of Losing Kate is set. She now lives in Brisbane with her husband and three young sons. Losing Kate is her first novel.

          Books by Kylie Kaden

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