From the author of Someone’s Listening comes another thriller that will leave you breathless, about a housewife implicated in a murder investigation, perfect for fans of The Last House Guest and Someone We Know.
Melanie Hale has the perfect life. Her husband, Collin, is a loving and supportive partner and she loves their small-town home just outside of New Orleans. She doesn’t mind (too much) that she’s given up her career dreams to care for her two beautiful children. It’s all worth it.
So why, when she joins a writers’ group for fledgling novelists, does she embark on a steamy affair with Luke, a local bestselling author who gives a talk during the group? Why does she go back to Luke again and again, when she knows it’s wrong?
And then Luke is found dead, and Mel knows she was the last person to see him alive. Now, she not only has to keep the affair a secret, but somehow avoid being implicated in Luke’s death. But who would want to kill him? And if Mel finds the truth, will she be next? What follows is a sinister cat-and-mouse game that will leave readers guessing until the very last page.
What I Loved
Such a Good Wife is a story about a perfect wife and mother. She cares for her mother-in-law, who is bedridden and living with them, and her two children, one of which who is a special needs child. Melanie Hale is such a good wife, or is she? Even good wives have secrets.
My favorite part of the story was about 80% into it when the story changed from being a slow-burn, fairly predictable psychological thriller tale to unique and fascinating. The story twisted and turned and then twisted back on itself until I couldn’t turn the pages fast enough to find out what would happen next. I loved that drastic change of pace in the storytelling.
The character development is exceptional, with every slight nuance explored, and every emotion conveyed with expert precision. The life of being a stay-at-home mom means a life of caretaking – of putting others’ needs ahead of your own. It’s not an easy life, and it means giving up on your dreams if they don’t work within the role. Everything Mel is going through is portrayed so realistically, and that, perhaps, is the scariest aspect of all.
Melanie Hale’s need to break out of her life, though never acknowledged or admitted to by her, is genuine and present in her flawed but honest portrayal. As she struggles through wants, desires, and figuring out what is most important to her in life, the reader shares her pain and joys as the development is just that precise.
Reminds Me Of
This book was a very different reading experience from the first book I read by this author, Someone’s Listening. It reminded me of other slow-burn thrillers I’ve read, such as Please See Us by Caitlin Mullen Or Takes One to Know One by Susan Isaacs.
To Read or Not to Read
If you are looking for a slow-burn domestic thriller with exceptional character development, Such a Good Wife is the perfect choice for your summer book stack.
Seraphina Nova Glass is a professor and playwright-in-residence at the University of Texas, Arlington, where she teaches film studies and playwriting. She holds an MFA in playwriting from Smith College, and she’s also a screenwriter and award-winning playwright. Seraphina has traveled the world using theatre and film as a teaching tool, living in South Africa, Guam and Kenya as a volunteer teacher, AIDS relief worker, and documentary filmmaker.