Before I start my review, I want to thank NetGalley and Grove Atlantic for allowing me to review Black Widow by Chris Brookmyre.
**All opinions stated in this review are mine and mine alone. I received Black Widow from NetGalley via Grove Atlantic as an ARC for my honest and unbiased review**
Now, onto my review:
Format read in: Kindle
Author: Chris Brookmyre
Publisher: Grove Atlantic
Date of Publication: November 1st, 2016
Where the book can be found: Amazon
Number of pages: 432
Part of a series: Yes
What series: Jack Parlabane
Quite Ugly One Morning – Book 1
Country of the Blind – Book 2
Boiling a Frog – Book 3
Dead Girl Walking – Book 6
Black Widow – Book 7
Diana Jager is clever, strong and successful, a skilled surgeon and fierce campaigner via her blog about sexism. Yet it takes only hours for her life to crumble when her personal details are released on the internet as revenge for her writing.
Then she meets Peter. He’s kind, generous, and knows nothing about her past: the second chance she’s been waiting for.
Within six months, they are married. Within six more, Peter is dead in a road accident, a nightmare end to their fairytale romance.
But Peter’s sister Lucy doesn’t believe in fairy tales, and tasks maverick reporter Jack Parlabane with discovering the dark truth behind the woman the media is calling Black Widow…
This is a book where you honestly have to struggle through the first couple of chapters before it starts getting good and you are genuinely left wondering….did Diana do it? The book starts at a trail and the author goes between 1st person (Diana and then our mystery woman) and 3rd person (Jack Parlabane)
Diana Jager’s character was a hard one to like and to sympathize with. Her childhood is less than perfect (cold father, distant mother) and her adulthood hasn’t been any better. She anonymously wrote a blog that basically called out Scottish surgeons for sexism in the hospital. Then her life came apart when she was hacked by some hospital IT guys and her personal information was leaked. She is let go from her job (and yes, the IT guys were punished) and immediately got a new one in Inverness….where she meets Peter.
I didn’t like Peter from the get-go either. He came across as too naive and too nice. Normally, that isn’t an issue but it bothered me (and I am glad that it did). Plus, he was too secretive with Diana.
Add in Jack’s storyline and you get a mystery that will keep you absorbed until the end of the book.
I will say that while I normally don’t like it when the author switches suddenly between points of view but in this case, it worked perfectly with how the story is being told. While it gives the impression of jumping around, it really doesn’t.
The author did a great job of keeping a bunch of things hidden until the end. Let’s just put it this way, the ending messed with my mind because what I thought was true ended up not being true and it screwed with me….lol. I finished the book while sitting next to BK and my exact words to him about this book were “This book just mind fucked me” (pardon my French).
How many stars will I give Black Widow? 5
Why? This is a genuine whodunit with false leads, red herrings and dead ends masterfully woven into the tale. The fact that this is the 7th book in the series isn’t even a point with me because this is a totally standalone book.
Will I reread this book? Yes
Will I recommend to family and friends? Yes
Age Range: Adult
Why? Sexual situations, some language