All posts tagged: domestic thriller

Gilly MACMILLAN chats about her serpentine new domestic suspense TO TELL THE TRUTH; a missing child, WWII bunkers, how truth can be so vastly interpreted, the love of her town, more

By Leslie Lindsay Gilly Macmillan is back with a chilling tale set in the Stoke Woods of England about a writer, and a missing child.  ~WEDNESDAYS WITH WRITERS|ALWAYS WITH A BOOK~  I’ve read and loved ALL of Gilly Macmillan’s troubling and twisty domestic thrillers–and TO TELL YOU THE TRUTH (WilliamMorrow September 22, 2020) is another serpentine thriller that delivers a potent blend of atmosphere, tarnished memories, and stunning family secrets. In TO TELL YOU THE TRUTH, bestselling mystery writer Lucy Harper’s talent for invention has given her fame, fortune, and an army of adoring readers. But her private life isn’t all that it seems. Her hapless husband Dan has unfulfilled writing ambitions of his own creating tension in the marriage. When he surprises Lucy with a home near the Stoke Woods, the wood where she once played as a child, she is undone by a dark foreboding. What could have happened at that spot to evoke such a strong reaction in her so many years later? When Dan suddenly goes missing, Lucy can no longer …

Twists, turns, and toxicity: THE END OF HER is wicked good, a dark escape into brilliantly actualized characters, plus who Shari Lapena would cast *if* it were adapted into a movie

By Leslie Lindsay Deliciously dark and deceptive, the most awry characters, set in a bucolic suburban setting in Shari Lapena’s new thriller, THE END OF HER.  ~WEDNESDAYS WITH WRITERS| ALWAYS WITH A BOOK~ #1 Internationally Bestselling Author Shari Lapena, the author of last summer’s propulsive thriller, SOMEONE WE KNOW returns to the bucolic town of Aylesford, nestled in New York’s Hudson Valley. Here, in THE END OF HER (Penguin/Pamela Dorman Books, July 28 2020),  we meet Stephanie Kilgour, a young woman who seemingly has it all: A beautiful home; a loving architect husband, and twin baby girls. But she’s exhausted. The babies are only four months old and colicky. Stephanie is unraveling. Fatigue and new motherhood is taking it’s toll. Her husband, Patrick, does what he can, but work is intense. And then, a woman from his past shows up unexpectedly. He’s flabbergasted and terrified. Secrets surface. The woman, Erika, is insidious, weaving her way into Stephanie’s life, Patrick’s partner’s bed, and more. THE END OF HER is deliciously deceptive, full of twists and turns, …

A murder? An accident? A cold-case or more? Megan Goldin’s deliciously dark and creepy follow-up to last summer’s explosive debut thriller THE NIGHT SWIM featuring a podcast, a small town, and secrets

By Leslie Lindsay  Deliciously dark and creepy mystery featuring a true crime podcast–a brutal cold case, and so much more.  ~WEEKEND READING SPOTLIGHT| ALWAYS WITH A BOOK~ Last summer, Megan Goldin’s explosive debut thriller, THE ESCAPE ROOM was called ‘addictive’ by Time Magazine; Louise Penny called it, “Simply revienting” and Harlan Coben said, “Gripping and unforgettable.” This August, Goldin is back with her brilliant follow-up, THE NIGHT SWIM (St. Martin’s Press, August 4th). Quick Take: Twenty years ago, a young woman was assaulted and found dead. Her terrified sister never revealed what she witnessed that night. Today, in the same town, another woman is brutally attached and the town’s golden boy is accused. Rachel Krall is covering the trail for her hit podcast, “Guilty or Not Guilty,” which became an overnight sensation making Rachel a household name. Officially, Jenny Stills tragically drowned all those years ago. But letters that are resurfacing suggest she was murdered–and when Rachel starts asking questions, no one wants to answer. Past and present start to collide as Rachel begins to …

Alexandra Burt begins Shadow Garden as a ‘thought experiement’: Does wealth and privilege sway moral corruption? Do we risk more if there’s more to lose, plus gorgeous prose, houses and homes, plus memory and tragedy

By Leslie Lindsay  A dark, haunting and atmospheric read about memory and twisted family dynamics set amidst luxury. ~WEDNESDAYS WITH WRITERS|ALWAYS WITH A BOOK~ I’ve read all of Alexandra Burt’s stunning books and when SHADOW GARDEN (Berkley, July 2020) came to my attention, I knew I had to get my hands on it. This is such a haunting read that feels claustrophobic and uncomfortable at every turn. Burt is absolutely gifted at atmospheric prose, psychological detail, gorgeous turns-of-phrase, and generally giving readers dark intrigue. Here’s the quick take: Donna Pryor has lived a life of luxury, being a ‘lady of leisure.’ Her husband is a successful plastic surgeon. Her only daughter is grown, she has a housekeeper who caters to every whim. She lives in a gated complex, her home is beautifully decorated. But. Something’s off. Donna is recovering from a recent hip surgery. Her memory isn’t what it used to be. Her daughter never calls. She and her husband are estranged. Her only companions seem to be the caregivers and housekeepers who manage her luxury neighborhood. What’s going on? Immediately, I …

Debut thriller DARLING ROSE GOLD dives into the after-effects of a girl raised by a mother who poisoned her, plus Stephanie Wrobel talks about what’s next, her dog, and what she did ‘right’

By Leslie Lindsay  Chillingly unpleasant tale of a highly dysfunctional mother-daughter relationship inspired by the true story of Dee Dee Blanchard and Gypsy Rose. ~Wednesdays with Writers| Always with a Book~ A most anticipated book by Newsweek ∙ Marie Claire ∙ Bustle ∙ Shondaland ∙ PopSugar ∙ Woman’s Day ∙ Goodhousekeeping ∙ She Reads ∙ BookRiot Stephanie Wrobel’s debut DARLING ROSE GOLD. (Berkley, March 18 2020) explores the horrific and ultimately highly dysfunctional mother-daughter relationship and psychiatric issues of Munchausen syndrome by proxy; an adult knowingly abusing (injuring, starving, poisoning) a minor child in order to receive medical care/attention and other gains. DARLING ROSE GOLD is a must-read for those who enjoy Jessica Knoll, Megan Miranda, and Elizabeth Little. This story was the talk of the London Book Fair and rights have been sold in 15 countries. Informed by real-life cases like that of Gypsy Rose Blanchard, and Julie Gregory’s story, SICKENED, DARLING ROSE GOLD, as Wrobel puts it, “Begins where most novels about Munchausen syndrome by proxy end–with the reveal upfront.” Patty Watts is in prison serving a 5-year sentence for …

Deliciously dark and creepy domestic thriller now in paperback–Samantha Downing talks about MY LOVELY WIFE, her publishing journey, and her next thriller, HE STARTED IT

By Leslie Lindsay  5 juicy stars to this tautly paced, all-encompassing deliciously dark domestic suspense, MY LOVELY WIFE (Berkley, March 26 2019) will capture and ensnare and have you looking twice at your neighbors.  ~PUB DAY PREVIEW|ALWAYS WITH A BOOK~ NOW IN PAPERBACK!! with new dark cover INSTANT USA TODAY and NATIONAL BESTSELLER! #1 Library Reads, IndieNext, and Amazon Best of the Month in Thriller! “A dark and irresistible debut.”—People Truly stunning, jaw-dropping, and so engrossing, you simply cannot look away. That’s what debut author, Samantha Downing, is so skilled at in her debut–this is a debut, people!–and you absolutely have to read it. Here’s the thing: it’s dark. It’s twisted, but on the surface, it’s oh-so-saccharine. Married for 15 years, Millicent and her unnamed husband, the protagonist/narrator have found themselves in a slightly boring marriage. They have two kids, a boy and a girl who are on the cusp of adolescence. It’s a nice life in a comfortable suburban area of Florida where everyone goes to work and then home for a pre-planned dinner. There’s soccer and tennis …

Mary Kubica is back with her most twisty and disturbing tale yet–THE OTHER MRS., plus backstory and character development and Maine as the backdrop

By Leslie Lindsay  Soon to be a Netflix film, THE OTHER MRS. is a twisty, spine-tingling read chocked full of twists, turns, and deception. Mary Kubica has won me over countless times since her debut, THE GOOD GIRL in 2015. Perhaps its her down-to-earth approach, the fact that she resides in the Midwest and writes about family and geography of which I am familiar, yet with a twisted jaw-dropping jolt. THE OTHER MRS. (Park Row, February 18 2020) is no exception. Sadie and Will Foust have only just moved their family–two boys, 14-year-old Otto and younger Tate–from Chicago to small-town Maine following the death of Will’s sister. They’ve inherited Alice’s old, creaky home along with her 16-year old daughter, Imogene. Sadie is working as a one of the only two physicians at the small island clinic. Will is a part-time professor at a small college. Shortly after moving in, there’s a murder of a female neighbor. Suspicions rise. Will is known to be a philanderer and Sadie the jealous wife. Could they be involved? What about Imogene? She’s struggling with her mother’s suicide. Or maybe …

Debut literary thriller about a family man grappling with his sense of self, a downward spiral, plus true-crime inspiration, character development and so much more in A GOOD MAN

By Leslie Lindsay  Debut thriller about a man grappling with his sense of self after his life spirals out of control.  ~WEEKEND READING|ALWAYS WITH A BOOK~ Ani Katz will have readers on edge the entire time they are immersed in her riveting debut, A GOOD MAN (Penguin Books Original, January 14 2020). Katz plays with the dysfunctional family dynamic, an unstable/unreliable male narrator, and the picture-perfect family. Thomas Martin is a devoted family man with a beautiful wife, a sweet daughter at a private school, a home on Long Island, a job as an ad man. He has an eccentric family of origin he’s running from–but sheltering–at the same time. In a sense, A GOOD MAN is a fairy tale, complete with flittering glimmers of dysfunction. Thomas Martin is a devoted family man with an enviable life: a beautiful wife and daughter, a well-appointed home on Long Island, a job at a prestigious Manhattan advertising firm. He’s also a devoted brother and son, yet this family of origin is disturbingly sheltered. What happens when Thomas’s life—and ego—are rocked to …

Debut author Lauren North talks about her early inklings for THE PERFECT SON (hint: isolation), how her background in psychology helps with writing, the house that inspired Tess’s and more

By Leslie Lindsay  Grief and despair wrapped under the guise of a psychological thriller fraught with emotions, disbelief, and empathy.  When Tess Clarke wakes in a hospital room she knows three things: 1) She’s been stabbed 2) Her husband is dead 3) Her son is missing. But the rest of it is buried under the fog of Tess’s mind.  THE PERFECT SON (Berkley August 13) starts with Tess in the hospital and sort of works backward in time, allowing readers to piece together their own theories. I am so impressed that this is a debut for author Lauren North. A bit about the plot: After Tess’s husband, Mark dies suddenly in a tragic accident, a few months earlier, the only thing keeping her together is their son, Jamie. And now he’s missing. To save him, Tess must piece together what happened between Mark’s death and Jamie’s disappearance. Plus, there are some ‘shady’ characters with ulterior motives Tess must grapple with. The structure of the story is what I found especially compelling. There’s a bit of a countdown to Tess’s …

Kelley Armstrong talks about her whip-fast, razor-smart thriller set in the Chicago suburbs about a missing child, her messy first drafts, how she loves ‘dive’ pizza joints and more in WHEREVER SHE GOES

By Leslie Lindsay Juicy, twisty, can’t-put-down psychological thriller about a child abduction, a questionable narrator with a dark past, and so much more in WHEREVER SHE GOES. I was completely smitten with WHEREVER SHE GOES (June 25, Minotaur Books) by New York Times bestselling author, Kelley Armstrong, whose work I’ve yet to read. Just how far would YOU go to save a child? How far would you go to prove to the authorities that you are not delusional, that you know what you saw and you are worried about a child in danger? That’s the overarching question of this book, where Aubrey Finch is just sure she saw a boy taken from the playground against his will. But the officers called onto the case say no one has reported a missing child; end of case. But Aubrey is insistent. She spoke with the boy and his mother just recently at that very park; they exist. The boy is missing. But Aubrey is recently separated from her defense attorney husband and she doesn’t have full custody of their daughter–in fact, she only …