Everyone Is Still Alive

Magnolia Road is a tree-lined street in a desirable neighbourhood, home to a number of growing families. Juliet has recently moved into her late mother’s house with her husband Liam, a writer, and their young son, Charlie. Preoccupied by guilt, grief and the juggle of working motherhood, Juliet can’t imagine ever fitting in with the clique of parents on Magnolia Road. But for Liam, the morning coffees and after-school playdates soon reveal the heartaches, fears and rivalries playing out behind closed doors — all of which are going straight into his new novel.

Juliet tries to bury her unease and leave Liam to forge these new friendships. But when the rupture of a marriage sends shockwaves through the group, painful home truths are brought to light and life on Magnolia Road may never be the same again.

‘A novel of radical empathy and kindness, written with poignancy, wit and immaculate observation. There is something wholeheartedly decent and human about Rentzenbrink’s writing, which has a lingering, gentle power. I can’t stop thinking about it.’

Elizabeth Day

Incredibly tender and astonishingly insightful. I cared so deeply for the characters and read in genuine awe. An utter gem.

Marian Keyes

A soothing, tender story with loveable characters who pull you in from the very first pages. In a world of chaos, reading this novel was a reminder to slow down, zoom in and look around

Emma Gannon

A total triumph: compelling, compassionate, insightful, funny and moving

Nina Stibbe author of Love, Nina

Touching, tender and profound in its warmth and stillness – a novel that explores family, friendship, grief and love in true, tactile detail. Beautiful and very real.

Daisy Buchanan author of The Sisterhood

A wonderful novel . . . I loved it. Gorgeous and tender, fabulous at capturing time, place and atmosphere. An utter treat 

Kate Mosse

Unputdownable – brilliant, beautiful, moving and so funny and well-observed. If you want to know what Happily Ever After looks like, read this.

Philippa Perry author of The Book You Wish Your Parents Had Read (and Your Children Will Be Glad That You Did)

Sharply observed and utterly compelling, Everyone Is Still Alive had me cackling on one page and crying the next; Cathy Rentzenbrink’s warmth and wisdom are evident in every line.

Paul Hawkins, author of The Girl on The Train

An anti-romantic comedy of Lego and disenchantment, shot through with clear-eyed compassion . . . I devoured it

Patrick Gale author of Notes From An Exhibition

I love this book. Funny, wise and clever and full of honesty and kindness. It’s a page-turner that makes you look at yourself and your relationships anew. A unique and generous novel about love, loss and friendship

Kit de Waal, author of My Name Is Leon

Such a beautiful, delicate book

Jenny Colgan

Everyone Is Still Alive is a novel filled with quiet compassion about quotidian lives. Cathy writes with incredible insight about marriage, friendship and parenthood, in a book replete with hope. I absolutely loved it

Hannah Beckerman

Very funny but also sharp and poignant . . . I thoroughly enjoyed it

Adele Geras

A beautifully written and exquisitely rendered novel about family and the anxiety of the modern world. Like life, it’s both heartbreakingly sad and terribly funny. I devoured it

Wyl Menmuir, author of The Many

Readers will know Rentzenbrink from her moving memoirs The Last Act of Love and A Manual For Heartache. This is her first novel and it sounds equally poignant, warm and wise

Good Housekeeping, Books We’re Most Looking Forward To in 2021

Kind and real, funny and touching. I raced through it

Book Brunch

Every generation needs its own novels examining how marriage, children, dreams and ambitions can coexist. This one does it beautifully, with warmth, truth, humour and love

Louisa Young

…the characters are sharply drawn and the author has a knack for wry phrases… if you like Motherland, you’ll love this funny, tender book.

The Sunday Times

One of the most honest, poignant and well-observed books about family life we’ve ever read… full of wisdom, you’ll be clutching your heart for a long time.

Woman & Home, Book of the Month

We recognise that this is a book about going to new places and the fear of new people, but also about the comfort of community, the way that even a place like Magnolia Road can be a source of the kind of friendship and support that gets you through even the darkest times


A compassionate and insightful look at relationships and friendships in a wonderfully well-observed novel that is tender, sharp and, at times, very funny

Sunday Express

Warm-hearted and perceptive

The Times

One for fans of the TV show Motherland, this is a touching drama about the minutiae of family life set on a street in west London. An impressive debut from an accomplished memoirist

The i, 40 Best Books for Summer

Brilliantly caustic

Alex Preston, Guardian

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