Blog Tour Review, The Wife in the Photo

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The Wife in the Photo
Emily Shiner

296 pages
published September 7, 2023

Amazon | US Audio | UK Audio | Goodreads

Listen to an audio sample here.

About the book

I pick up the photograph from their mantlepiece and carefully wipe away the dust. The beautiful wife. Supposedly happily married and enjoying a family vacation. I know her husband killed her. And I’m going to make him pay…

This is my first job as a housekeeper, but Evan Warner doesn’t need to know that. It’s the first of many lies I’ll tell him. He just lost his wife, Lola, and now he and his young daughter Jessica are adrift. But no amount of cleaning will rid this house of the secrets that have seeped into the cracks. I never forgave Lola for what she did to me. But I can’t let Evan get away with her murder.

In their impressive home, I busy myself preparing meals and peeking at carelessly discarded mail, looking for proof of his crimes. Evan hovers and I’m sure he is watching me… even as I bond with Jessica. But whenever he catches us alone together, his face darkens. I realize I have to get her out of this house before it’s too late for her, too.

Then I find Lola’s diary, tucked away in a closet out of sight. Her words, hastily scrawled on these pages, change everything I thought I knew about this family. As I hear footsteps on the stairs, I know I’m trapped. And I’m in more danger now than ever before…

The Wife in the Photo is a totally twisty psychological thriller guaranteed to keep you up all night. Fans of Freida McFadden, Gone Girl and The Couple Next Door will find it impossible to put down.

My review

This is the second book in a row that was a wild ride.  This might be the ultimate popcorn thriller.  Again this starts as a regular psychological thriller, but the more I read, the more I was drawn in, then surprised where this one kept going.  I suspected one of the twists, then doubted it, then suspected it again…  But ultimately this had a heck of a twist that I did not suspect. And I’d say pulling one over on me was not easy, but it seems I am either slipping or the authors are getting better at hiding what is coming.

Deep multi-layered characters that are grieving the loss of their wife and mother.  I wasn’t really sure I liked anyone nor whether I could trust anyone.  All of them gave off an unreliable vibe, but that is also the norm for this type of book.

If you are a fan of twisty, keep you guessing books, this one has to be on your TBR.  It stays at a nice even pace, but when I finished I was left contemplating what I had just read.  I think Emily Shiner is one I will need to add to my list of reliable popcorn thrillers authors along with Freida McFadden and Daniel Hurst.  Always wickedly fun to read and pushing the boundaries of where I think it is heading.

I both listened and read this one and can’t decide which version I liked more.  Todd Kramer and Kate Handford’s narration let the story shine and kept me engaged and wanting more along with the plot.  I am becoming such a fan of dual narration for dual POVs.  The two of them did a fantastic job.

If you need a book to start off your spooky season, you should pick this one up.  Because what could be scarier than people themselves.

About the author

Emily Shiner always dreamed of becoming an author. After spending years devouring stacks of thrillers, she decided to try her hand at writing them herself. Now she gets to live out her dream of writing novels and sharing her stories with people around the world. She lives in the Appalachian Mountains and loves hiking with her husband, daughter, and their two dogs.

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