The Two-Family House


Brooklyn, 1947: in the midst of a blizzard, in a two-family brownstone, two babies are born, minutes apart. The mothers are sisters by marriage with an impenetrable bond forged before and during that dramatic night. When the storm passes, everyone seems to have gotten what they wanted, but the truth is not that simple. The consequences of that night, of one misguided choice, shape the course of the families – friendships unravel, marriages change and even the sacred bonds between mothers and children are tested. No one knows why, and no one can stop it, but everyone’s lives have been shaped by that evening.

From debut novelist Lynda Cohen Loigman comes The Two-Family House, a moving family saga filled with heart, longing, love, and mystery.


“It’s hard to believe The Two-Family House is Lynda Cohen Loigman’s debut novel. A richly textured, complex, yet entirely believable story, it draws us inexorably into the lives of two brothers and their families in 1950s Brooklyn, New York…. As compelling as the story line are the characters that Loigman has drawn here. None is wholly likable nor entirely worthy of scorn. All are achingly human, tragically flawed and immediately recognizable. We watch them change and grow as the novel spans more than 20 years….engrossing from beginning to end.”
The Associated Press (As seen on, The Washington Post, San Diego Union Tribune, Daily Mail, The Daily Journal)

“Loigman debut novel is an engrossing family saga set in post-war Brooklyn. . . Loigman’s use of shifting perspectives allows readers to witness first-hand the growing consequences of long-festering secrets and the insidious lies that cover them up. This historical family drama has a dark underbelly, but Loigman’s decision to let the reader in on the secret allows the setting and mood of the novel take over as the characters move haltingly toward redemption and peace.”
Publisher’s Weekly

“Lynda Cohen Loigman has decided to tackle the ways that families grow together and apart, and why, in her thoughtful and provocative debut novel, THE TWO-FAMILY HOUSE . . . The experience of families who remain close to their culture and to each other in the face of changing times is one that anybody can relate to, for better or worse. So THE TWO-FAMILY HOUSE and its examination of generations of a family with their own high expectations to live up to resonates on several different levels. Written as a beach read, this very literary tale actually gives readers so much more than it may seem at first.”

“In her first novel, Loigman uses complex characters to deconstruct the anatomy of family relationships and expose deep-rooted emotions, delivering a moving story of love, loss, and sacrifice.”
Booklist Reviews

“Peeling back the layers that surround an irreversible, life-altering secret, this novel weaves a complex and heartbreaking story about lies and love, forgiveness and family. Written from alternating perspectives of the different family members over more than two decades, the deeply developed voices will bring tears and awe, settling snugly into the heart and mind. It’s a reminder that love is always forgiving.”
RT Book Reviews Top Pick, 4 ½ stars

“Where Loigman excels is in capturing the time period―1950s Brooklyn. She draws gender roles accurately, even capturing the frustration of Mort and Rose’s eldest daughter, Judith, whose gender constrains her life choices. Loigman nails the way family members, especially parents and children, inadvertently pierce one another with careless comments or subtle looks. As the story unfolds, we are reminded of how a split-second decision can reverberate for decades, even for generations….the real strength of Loigman’s debut effort is her characters, to whom you find your loyalty shifting as the story unfolds.”
~The Jerusalem Post

“In The Two-Family House, young sisters-in-law are thrown together in a single home, where their children live as near siblings in what on the surface seems an ideal life. Lynda Cohen Loigman plumbs the hidden world beneath the happy faces turned to the world with insight, honesty, and compassion, and in doing so explores universal truths about family, and love, and loss. I will certainly be giving a copy of this utterly charming novel to my own dearest sister-in-law.”
~Meg Waite Clayton author of The Wednesday Sisters and The Race for Paris

“Two families, both living in one house, drive an exquisitely written novel of love, alliances, the messiness of life and long buried secrets. Loigman’s debut is just shatteringly wonderful and I can’t wait to see what she does next.”
~Caroline Leavitt, author, New York Times bestselling author of Is This Tomorrow and Pictures of You

The Two-Family House is a poignant yet fast-paced family saga. With insight and honesty, Lynda Cohen Loigman’s debut novel taps into our greatest joys and deepest fears. Loigman skillfully reveals the underbelly of a dark family secret as well as the shocking consequences that span decades and ripple through many lives. I was swept away by the family dynamics, emotion, and mystery, and couldn’t put down this book.”
~Amy Sue Nathan, author of The Glass Wives

“I read the short, gripping prologue, then immediately reread it to bask again in the delicious sense of mystery. The Two-Family House explores the impact of a split-second decision on the lives of two related families. I was fascinated by the intriguing blend of personalities as the characters experienced both tragedy and joy, inextricably bound together by blood and deception. With great skill and compassion, Lynda Cohen Loigman turns a story about complex family dynamics into a novel you won’t be able to put down.”
~Diane Chamberlain, author of Silent Sister and Necessary Lies

“In this spellbinding family saga, two women share a terrible secret that binds them for life, yet has the power to destroy everything they love most. With masterful control, Lynda Cohen Loigman boldly explores the anguish and joys of families united by blood and shared loyalties, even as they are divided by jealousy, passion and mistrust. The Two-Family House is that rare, old-fashioned read you never want to end!”
~Cassandra King, author of The Sunday Wife

“No good deed goes unpunished.  In a single, intensely charged moment, two women come to a private agreement meant to assure each other happiness.  But as Lynda Cohen Loigman deftly reveals, life is not so simple, especially when it involves two families, tightly intertwined. The Two-Family House is sympathetically observed and surely plotted all the way through to its deeply satisfying conclusion.”
~Christina Schwarz, author of Drowning Ruth and The Edge of the Earth