The Two-Family House

“A novel you won’t be able to put down.” —Diane Chamberlain, New York Times bestselling author

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: dutiful, quiet Rose, who wants nothing more than to please her difficult husband; and warm, generous Helen, the exhausted mother of four rambunctious boys who seem to need her less and less each day. Raising their families side by side, supporting one another, Rose and Helen share an impenetrable bond forged before and during that dramatic winter night.

When the storm passes, life seems to return to normal; but as the years progress, small cracks start to appear and the once deep friendship between the two women begins to unravel. No one knows why, and no one can stop it. One misguided choice; one moment of tragedy. Heartbreak wars with happiness and almost, but not quite, wins. Moving and evocative, Lynda Cohen Loigman’s debut novel The Two-Family House is a heart-wrenching, gripping multigenerational story, woven around the deepest of secrets.

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Praise for The Two-Family House

“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

“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

“In a single, intensely charged moment, two women come to a private agreement meant to assure each other's happiness. But as Loigman deftly reveals, life is not so simple, especially when it involves two families, tightly intertwined.”

Christina Schwarz

National bestselling author of Drowning Ruth (an Oprah’s Book Club Pick)

“[Full of] great skill and compassion...a novel you won't be able to put down.”

Diane Chamberlain

New York Times
Bestselling author of The Secret Life of CeeCee Wilkes and Pretending To Dance

“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

New York Times
Bestselling author of Is This Tomorrow and Pictures of You

“A spellbinding family saga...[and a] rare, old-fashioned read you never want to end!”

Cassandra King

National bestselling author of The Sunday Wife

“…the author’s vivid characters . . . drive the story with suspense and . . . emotional tension to make it a page turner.”

“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

“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

“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

“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