EXCERPT: Nina’s Diary – July 4
I am writing this to raise the alarm in the event of my untimely death. This is hard to admit, even to myself, let alone to the world. My husband is planning to kill me. For obvious reasons. He’s in love with someone else. And he wants my money.
ABOUT THE WIFE WHO KNEW TOO MUCH: Tabitha Girard had her heart broken years ago by Connor Ford. He was preppy and handsome. She was a pool girl at his country club. Their affair should have been a summer fling. But it meant everything to Tabitha.
Years later, Connor comes back into Tabitha’s life—older, richer, and desperately unhappy. He married for money, a wealthy, neurotic, controlling woman whom he never loved. He has always loved Tabitha.
When Connor’s wife Nina takes her own life, he’s free. He can finally be with Tabitha. Nina’s home, Windswept, can be theirs. It seems to be a perfect ending to a fairy tale romance that began so many years ago. But then, Tabitha finds a diary. “I’m writing this to raise an alarm in the event of my untimely death,” it begins. “If I die unexpectedly, it was foul play, and Connor was behind it. Connor – and her.”
Who is Connor Ford? Why did he marry Nina? Is Tabitha his true love, or a convenient affair? As the police investigate Nina’s death, is she a convenient suspect?
As Tabitha is drawn deeper into the dark glamour of a life she is ill-prepared for, it becomes clear to her that what a wife knows can kill her.
MY THOUGHTS: The Wife Who Knew Too Much is not my favourite of Michele Campbell’s work. Although it starts well, it lacks subtlety and soon deteriorates into something resembling a soap opera.
None of the characters are at all likeable. I felt nothing except exasperation for Tabitha, the main character, who comes across as totally pathetic and needy for the majority of the book. The character of Connor, her ‘one true love’, goes through several metamorphoses, but remains, in my eyes, an utter sleaze. While we’re talking characters, there is zero character development.
The plot had plenty of potential, but became unwieldy and unrealistic. Yes, I know this is fiction, but still, this was OTT. Eye-rollingly OTT in parts. I prefer more mystery, fewer thugs and when all else fails ‘run them off the road/shoot them’ solutions. It almost felt like two different people wrote the two halves of this book. So, rather than classifying this as a murder mystery, I would define it as a (schmaltzy) romantic thriller. Sorry, but not my cup of tea. This may come across better as a movie.
THE AUTHOR: Michele Campbell is a graduate of Harvard College and Stanford Law School and a former federal prosecutor in New York City who specialized in international narcotics and gang cases.
A while back, she said goodbye to her big-city legal career and moved with her husband and two children to an idyllic New England college town a lot like Belle River in IT’S ALWAYS THE HUSBAND. Since then, she has spent her time teaching criminal and constitutional law and writing novels.
She’s had many close female friends, a few frenemies, and only one husband, who – to the best of her knowledge – has never tried to kill her.
DISCLOSURE: I listened to the audiobook of The Wife Who Knew Too Much, written by Michele Campbell, narrated by Dylan Moore and published by HQ via Overdrive. All opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own personal opinions.
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