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My Lovely Wife: Book summary and reviews of My Lovely Wife by Samantha Downing

My Lovely Wife

by Samantha Downing

My Lovely Wife by Samantha Downing X
My Lovely Wife by Samantha Downing
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  • Published in USA  Mar 2019
    384 pages
    Genre: Thrillers

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About this book

Book Summary

Dexter meets Mr. and Mrs. Smith in this wildly compulsive debut thriller about a couple whose fifteen-year marriage has finally gotten too interesting...

Our love story is simple. I met a gorgeous woman. We fell in love. We had kids. We moved to the suburbs. We told each other our biggest dreams, and our darkest secrets. And then we got bored.

We look like a normal couple. We're your neighbors, the parents of your kid's friend, the acquaintances you keep meaning to get dinner with.

We all have our secrets to keeping a marriage alive.

Ours just happens to be getting away with murder.

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Media Reviews

"Readers will be fascinated by the abject coldness of Millicent, the odd and unreliable narrator, and the almost unbelievable denouement." - Booklist

"The first-person, present-tense narration makes readers feel uncomfortably complicit in all that transpires, underscoring the plot's grim and twisted nature. Readers will eagerly await Downing's next thriller." - Publishers Weekly

"Wow! My Lovely Wife is a stunner - full of twists, well-drawn characters, and riveting suspense." - Harlan Coben, #1 New York Times bestselling author 

"Clever. Manipulative. Dark. Disturbing. What more can you ask for?" - Jane Corry, national bestselling author of My Husband's Wife

"An assured and deliciously engrossing debut. You'll surely devour My Lovely Wife, but it will linger long after you've reached the last page." - Sarah Pinborough, New York Times bestselling author of Behind Her Eyes

"You'll never look at your neighbors the same.  I couldn't pull myself away from this story...Make sure you clear your schedule before you pick it up. Absolutely unputdownable." - Liv Constantine, USA Today bestselling author of The Last Mrs. Parrish

"Truly horrifying in the most delicious way. Samantha Downing sucks you in with a great story, pitch-perfect prose and disturbingly dead-on insights into the dark side of human nature.  I hope I never meet her in a dark alley..." - Nick Petrie, national bestselling author of The Drifter

"A fantastic foray into what we know - and what we do not - about those closest to us. Intricately plotted, fascinating characters - I loved it!" - Heather Graham, New York Times bestselling author of Fade to Black

"Dark, twisted - and impossible to put down. Samantha Downing has written a wickedly plotted and suspenseful psychological thriller." - Meg Gardiner, Edgar award-winning author

"I loved this this brilliantly dark and twisted novel. One of the best books I've read this year! I have a sneaky feeling this is going to be big!" - C.J. Tudor, Sunday Times bestselling author of The Chalk Man

"Totally engrossing and I kept on thinking, one more chapter…an intelligent page-turner that makes you question everything." - Araminta Hall, author of Our Kind of Cruelty

"It's no mean feat to find something fresh in the crowded thriller field, but Downing pulls off an indisputable triumph with My Lovely Wife.  Exemplary writing and outstanding pacing confirm Downing's talent, but it's her deliciously depraved characters that kept me flying through the pages. Couldn't get enough of this subversive love-gone-sideways tale!" - Sophie Littlefield, national bestselling author

The information about My Lovely Wife shown above was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's online-magazine that keeps our members abreast of notable and high-profile books publishing in the coming weeks. In most cases, the reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author of this book and feel that the reviews shown do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, please send us a message with the mainstream media reviews that you would like to see added.

Reader Reviews

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Elizabeth of Silver's Reviews

Unbelievable - Elizabeth of Silver's Reviews
A Lovely Wife is definitely a misnomer. A demented psycho is more like it.

Everything Millicent does seems innocent on the outside, but it is truly evil. She plans things that will benefit her and only her with her family being at the brunt of the control issues she has. Millicent is definitely a character to hate.

One day after a number of years of marriage, she had the most bizarre plan. Her husband who was never given a name in the book did what he did to keep Millicent pleased most likely because he was afraid of his wife.

MY LOVELY WIFE is unbelievable, but Ms. Downing does an excellent job of keeping you engaged from the first page, and the engagement doesn’t stop just like Millicent doesn't stop the murders of young women.

Ms. Downing's debut is unique and well-written, but also has a story line that is unthinkable and unimaginable.

If you enjoy a fast-paced book that takes you on a crazy ride and will have you biting your nails, then MY LOVELY WIFE will be a book you will want to take a look at.

You HAVE to read this book to believe what the characters are doing. You won't be able to turn the pages quickly enough. 5/5

This book was given to me as an ARC by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Laura E. (El Cajon, CA)

A true page turner!
Clever, different, interesting and frightening all wrapped up in one engrossing tale. This book's twists and turns kept me intrigued and disturbed at the same time. It takes the reader to some dark places and makes one stop and wonder how a normal looking (to the outside world) middle-class marriage can be so dysfunctional and messed up. What a tale! I think this would be a good one for Book Clubs and also anyone looking for a well written page turner. I was also fascinated that the book was written by a woman. It was pitch perfect told in the words of the main character, the husband. Samantha Downing, outstanding job!

George M. (Antioch, CA)

Ozzie & Harriet, With a Twist
My Lovely Wife is a great lesson in the Law of Unintended Consequences. I mean, you take a middle class couple with two adolescent kids who have added an odd extracurricular activity to their family dynamic and you have a recipe for an exciting and gripping and very surprising result. It definitely pays to pay close attention to the story and stick to it til the mind-blowing end. Samantha Downing has really given us a tale that we will find enthralling and exciting and breathless. Read this book and prepare for a great experience

Vicky R. (Roswell, GA)

Twists and turns
This is my kind of book! Totally off the beaten path and full of twists....thrillers are a trending genre right now and it's difficult to find unique story lines. This one is somewhat unbelievable however it's a fun read and I couldn't wait to see how it ended.

Darcy C. (San Diego, CA)

So Much Fun To Kill !
This book was such a pleasurable ROMP! A mystery quickly devoured and completely engaging! The story had me thinking of the mystery in my non-reading time. To me, this is the mark of an engaging read. Downing's story is not an in-depth dive into a killer's psyche. The family is not fleshed-out, yet this didn't detract from this tightly-wound murder mystery. It's entertaining and had beautifully dark overtones. The husband was emasculated by his controlling wife and I would have like this more explored. I felt this to be a story weakness.

The book's premise of a bored suburban couple spicing up the pabulum of their marital life with murder – here and there. This was a great hook and this same hook kept me on the author's fishing pole throughout its entirety. Not every mystery has to be Capote's "In Cold Blood" and that's the space where this novel shines. I hope you will be gripped by the snappy dialog, the wry social observations and surprised by who ends up dead. Lastly, there are some dynamite plot twists that utterly thrilled me. Get this book, you'll have a great romp!

JW Davis, CA

Who is the psychopath?
This story is GOOD. Haven't enjoyed a mystery/thriller as much as this in a very long time. Just when the reader thinks they know it all - they don't! It is creepy and disturbing but so well constructed that one cannot put it down. The characters are believable and clever and their deeds fit their personas.

Samantha Downing has a great future ahead of her if she can turn out more stories like this one. I look forward to that future.

...35 more reader reviews

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Author Information

Samantha Downing Author Biography

photo: Jacqueline Dallimore

Samantha Downing currently lives in New Orleans, where she is furiously typing away on her next thrilling standalone. My Lovely Wife is her first novel.

Author Interview
Link to Samantha Downing's Website

Other books by Samantha Downing at BookBrowse
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