Book Title: The Good Widow
Author: Liz Fenton & Lisa Steinke
Reviewed By: Chelsea
Genres: Mystery, Psychological Suspense, Domestic Fiction
Date Read: 02/28/17
Pub Date: 06/01/17
Elementary school teacher Jacqueline “Jacks” Morales’s marriage was far from perfect, but even in its ups and downs it was predictable, familiar. Or at least she thought it was…until two police officers showed up at her door with devastating news. Her husband of eight years, the one who should have been on a business trip to Kansas, had suffered a fatal car accident in Hawaii. And he wasn’t alone.
For Jacks, laying her husband to rest was hard. But it was even harder to think that his final moments belonged to another woman—one who had left behind her own grieving and bewildered fiancé. Nick, just as blindsided by the affair, wants answers. So he suggests that he and Jacks search for the truth together, retracing the doomed lovers’ last days in paradise.
Now, following the twisting path of that fateful road, Jacks is learning that nothing is ever as it seems. Not her marriage. Not her husband. And most certainly not his death…
To say I was doing the happy dance the moment I heard Liz & Lisa were publishing a novel of suspense would be an understatement; I was like that dang emoji on the iPhone in the red dress, so much so that my family is still embarrassed to be seen in public with me. Oops. On one hand, I knew this storyline would fit perfect with the type of novels that Lake Union has been publishing lately; the suspenseful, domestic fiction is really working for them as a publisher right now, and for good reason. We as readers can’t get enough of these books with characters who make our lives look sane and boring. On the other hand, I was slightly nervous as this is a new venture for them and you really never know if someone can be good at everything until they try. I’m overjoyed to tell you that this one is as over-the-top fabulous as we are all expecting it to be!
“She can kill with a smile
She can wound with her eyes
She can ruin your faith with her casual lies
And she only reveals what she wants you to see
She hides like a child
But she’s always a woman to me”
Let me throw something out right off the bat; if you aren’t typically a fan of the Lake Union novel, the suspenseful and romantic tales where they may be a bit unbelievable but are totally and completely addicting, this may not be the read for you. Don’t pick this up expecting literary fiction or if you are wanting something super profound. This book is pure entertainment and bliss; I was lost completely in the fast pacing and exciting story. I pick up books like this BECAUSE they are not realistic, hence my wanting an escape from reality. There is no shame in my game; I routinely pick up books for fun instead of having a deep, intellectual experience and am proud of it. *Steps off soapbox* Ok, now that we got that squared away, let me gush over all the reasons that I absolutely sucked this book dry in under 24 hours.
From the very first lines of the prologue I was hooked. I mean utterly, completely grabbed. We start off the story with multiple huge secrets. Who are the people in the jeep? What is her big secret that she’s afraid to tell? What’s going on? I’m nosey and need to be in the middle of all the action people! The pacing does not let up until the book is finished, which I think proves the dynamic duo can confidently handle the suspense genre like seasoned pros. It’s nice to find a book that doubles as a guilty pleasure and a breathtaking, atmospheric story. I can’t implore you enough to read this, even if just for that gorgeous setting. Who doesn’t want to read a book that takes place in California and Hawaii? The descriptions were so on point that I could practically taste the salt in the air; I’m going ahead and volunteering to tag along on their next research trip. Need someone to hold your bags? Fan you? Take pictures? Count me in ladies! 🙂
I really don’t want to say much in regards of plot, but I can assure you that there are many twists and turns. Not only is there the current drama in regards to the action, but we have little flashbacks full of sentimental information to slowly piece together the secrets between our two (or is it three?) couples that the book focuses on. I truly loved the inclusion of James’ family history and culture; I think it added a much needed dimension to the story and brought it fully to life. I wish I could say more, but I guess you’ll just have to hit that pre-order button and find out for yourself just why this book is already garnering so much buzz worthy attention. The Good Widow was a speedy, light read that would fit just as well on your nightstand at home as it would while tanning on the beach, preferably in Hawaii. I think we can all agree that cover is simply swoon-worthy as well. Highly recommended to domestic fiction lovers; I’m hoping this is just the beginning of Liz and Lisa’s trip down a road full of books including suspense and intrigue!
*Many thanks to the authors for sending me an arc; you both are dears and it is such a pleasure to read your books!