Thursday, March 17, 2016

Review: The Widow by Fiona Barton

For fans of Gone Girl and The Girl on the Train, an electrifying thriller that will take you into the dark spaces that exist between a husband and a wife.

When the police started asking questions, Jean Taylor turned into a different woman. One who enabled her and her husband to carry on, when more bad things began to happen...

But that woman’s husband died last week. And Jean doesn’t have to be her anymore.

There’s a lot Jean hasn’t said over the years about the crime her husband was suspected of committing. She was too busy being the perfect wife, standing by her man while living with the accusing glares and the anonymous harassment.

Now there’s no reason to stay quiet. There are people who want to hear her story. They want to know what it was like living with that man. She can tell them that there were secrets. There always are in a marriage.

The truth—that’s all anyone wants. But the one lesson Jean has learned in the last few years is that she can make people believe anything…

Publication Date: February 16, 2016
I liked The Widow although it had a much slower pace than other psychological suspense novels I’ve recently read. I thought the dynamic between Jean and Glen was interesting and I found the novel interesting as a character study and how complex marriages can be when one of the partners is accused of a heinous crime.

Jean was an unreliable narrator, but I found her chapters to be a little boring. The author seemed to purposefully make her flat in order to give nothing about the plot away. The chapters from the point of view of the reporter and the detective working the case was much more engaging. However, I did like the flashbacks to Glen and Jean’s courtship and subsequent marriage to get a better understanding of why she stood by him as she saw the signs of the seemingly double life he was living.

There are some disturbing parts of The Widow that were really hard to stomach. As Jean and the police find out more about Glen’s porn addiction and how it relates to a missing child investigation, I felt truly revolted. Jean became increasingly frustrating as a character and I really couldn’t find any sympathy for the situation she finds herself in after Glen’s death.

There were a few twists that I didn’t see coming, but a few reveals were pretty obvious early on. I guess I was waiting for a big shocker to blow me away, but that never really happened. But despite my few issues, I did overall enjoy the book and finished reading the entire book within a couple days.

Rating: 3.5/5 Stars

Thanks to the publisher for a copy of the novel for review!


  1. I am a little disappointed to hear that it was kind of predictable.

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