My Wife is Missing by D.J. Palmer

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press

Date of Publication: May 10th, 2022

Genre: Thriller, Mystery, Suspense, Psychological Thriller, Contemporary

Purchase Links: Amazon | Audible | B&N | WorldCat

Goodreads Synopsis:

A family vacation turns into a nightmare for Michael Hart when he discovers his wife and two children have disappeared from their New York City hotel room. Horrified, he fears they’ve been kidnapped. Michael’s frantic search to find them takes a shocking turn when he discovers that his wife, Natalie, appears to have left quite willingly, taking their children with her. The police want to know why, and so does Michael. But there may be a reason why Natalie ran, something Michael can’t tell the police — the truth about his past. While untangling his deceptions might be the key to locating Natalie, Michael knows it could also be his undoing. To find his wife, he must now turn to the one person capable of exposing all that he’s been hiding. Natalie thinks she has Michael all figured out and has hatched a plan to escape from him permanently. One detail, though, threatens to derail her efforts: sleep — or more accurately, the lack of it. Since the moment the shocking revelations about her husband came to light, Natalie’s insomnia has worsened to the point that she now suffers from delusions. Are her fears about Michael valid — or a symptom of her condition? With her children’s lives at risk, the stakes for Natalie could not be higher. On her own, running low on energy and resources, avoiding increasingly close calls with Michael — who is on the hunt and closing in fast — Natalie needs someone to turn to for help. But who can she trust when she can’t even trust herself?


First Line:

As Michael Hart rounded the corner to his hotel room, he saw a small, lifeless shape lying on the floor of the hallway.

My Wife is Missing by D.J. Palmer

My Wife is Missing is a fast-moving psychological thriller that will keep you on the edge of your seat.

Natalie and Michael have some martial/personal issues, and they decide to take a trip to New York City to reconnect. While Michael is out getting dinner, Natalie takes the kids and disappears. Michael is confused, angry, and concerned. Why? Because Natalie has had insomnia, and he fears the lack of sleep has made her irrational. What Michael doesn’t know is that Natalie has discovered some of Michael’s long-buried secrets, and those secrets have scared her enough to run. But hindering her is her severe insomnia, and she begins to wonder if what she saw and discovered were hallucinations brought on by it. Can Natalie trust herself to get to somewhere safe? Will Michael find her? Will she find out if what she saw/found out is the truth or hallucinations?

I was immediately intrigued by the blurb of this book. I don’t think I have ever read a book where insomnia was a huge and prevalent part of the plotline. I didn’t realize that severe insomnia could result in hallucinations/delusions.

Natalie was such an unreliable character, and I loved it. Her insomnia started when she realized Michael was cheating on her, and it kept getting worse throughout the book. I loved reading her detective work into Michael’s past and his affair. I also loved that when she decided to make a move, she made up her mind and did it. I was cheering for her as she out maneuvered Michael time and time again (even as exhausted as she was).

I wouldn’t say I liked Michael. But, he did gain a little bit of my respect with his detective skills. Even though Natalie was one step ahead of him for 90% of the book, he was close enough to get her a couple of times.

The storyline with Natalie, the kids, her insomnia, and being on the run kept me on the edge of my seat. I was internally cheering her on and wanting her to get to her final destination without Michael finding her. I was a little disappointed with how it ended, but my disappointment was short-lived. It was because the author brought this storyline and the storyline with Michael’s cheating/his past together, and it EXPLODED!!

Michael’s storyline, cheating, and past were well written. Again, it kept me glued to my Kindle. A twist to the cheating storyline and the story about Michael’s history took me by surprise.

The twists in the storylines made the book. I was not expecting either of them. When they both made their appearances (one towards the end and one at the very end), my mouth dropped open. I couldn’t believe that the author went where he did with both twists.

The end of My Wife is Missing was good. The author was able to wrap up all of the storylines in a way that both shocked and pleased me. I was happy to see that at least one of the main characters would have a happy life. But at the same time, I wish the author could have redeemed the other main character somehow. That would have made the book so much better for me.

I would recommend My Wife is Missing to anyone over 21. There is violence, language, and some mild sexual situations.

The Golden Couple by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press

Date of publication: March 8th 2022

Genre: Mystery, Thriller, Suspense, Psychological Thriller, Contemporary

Purchase Links: Amazon | Audible | B&N | Apple Books | WorldCat

Goodreads synopsis:

The next electrifying novel from the #1 New York Times bestselling author duo behind The Wife Between Us.

Wealthy Washington suburbanites Marissa and Matthew Bishop seem to have it all—until Marissa is unfaithful. Beneath their veneer of perfection is a relationship riven by work and a lack of intimacy. She wants to repair things for the sake of their eight-year-old son and because she loves her husband. Enter Avery Chambers.

Avery is a therapist who lost her professional license. Still, it doesn’t stop her from counseling those in crisis, though they have to adhere to her unorthodox methods. And the Bishops are desperate.

When they glide through Avery’s door and Marissa reveals her infidelity, all three are set on a collision course. Because the biggest secrets in the room are still hidden, and it’s no longer simply a marriage that’s in danger.


First Line:

Ten sessions might not seem like nearly enough time to solve complex therapeutic issues, but according to Avery Chambers, her unique brand of intensive short-term counseling sessions changes lives.

the golden couple by greer hendricks

I am a huge Greer Hendricks/Sarah Pekkanen fan. I have read almost every book they have written, and I am always looking for their newest book. So when STP contacted me to read/review The Golden Couple, I jumped on it. This book was fantastic!! I am happy that I read it.

The Golden Couple had an exciting plotline. Avery is a controversial therapist who has lost her license. She has a ten-session program that she guarantees will change the lives of her clients. Marissa and Matthew Bishop are new clients whose marriage is in trouble. Marissa has cheated and wants to repair her marriage for the sake of their 8-year-old son. But there are more secrets in Marissa and Matthew’s marriage than Avery expected. Who will survive the secrets? And who is hiding the biggest secret of them all?

Psychological thrillers are one of my favorite genres to read. I love having my head messed with, and The Golden Couple delivers on that. There are so many twists and turns in the plotline that I almost had an issue keeping up. That made it so much more delicious to read.

Avery was a very unreliable narrator who operated in a morally gray area. She honestly wanted to help her clients (and did with resounding success), but her methods were unorthodox. I disagreed with how she gathered information on her clients, but hey, if it works, it works. There was a point where she seemed to be coming unraveled, but I loved how the author resolved that. It was perfect!!!

I didn’t care for Marissa at first. She blindsided her husband (and Avery) with the confession that she had cheated. She refused to name who she was cheating with and played victim every time Matthew got upset with her. But, as the book went on, I started to see that she had reason to be paranoid, and my opinion began to change. The only thing I even found fault with, after a while, was that she still refused to name the person she cheated with. At one point, I was like, “Girl, just tell THEM.”

Matthew was an enigma the entire book. I didn’t quite know what to think about him. His actions kept me a little off-center for the whole book. He seemed to love Marissa and was willing to do anything to fix their relationship. But then he would blow up at her. At first, I thought it was normal (he was mad), but it started to ring false to me as the book went on.

The mystery angle of The Golden Couple was terrific. I could not figure out who the mystery man was, but I was wrong about what was going on with Avery. The twists in the plotline took me by surprise. The major twist left me sitting there with my mouth hanging open (I am sure I looked like a fool) and an explosive “No EFFING Way!” coming out of my mouth. Side note: Don’t do that in the middle of the night. It wakes up grumpy husbands and 8-year-olds who don’t sleep very well.

The suspense angle of The Golden Couple was just as amazingly written. I was kept on the edge of my seat, wondering about all different things (some of which I can’t put here because of spoilers).

The end of The Golden Couple was very anti-climatic. There was a minor plot twist that involved Avery. Out of everything in this book, I did see that coming. Still, I liked that it ended on a good note instead of making me wonder “what if.”

I would recommend The Golden Couple to anyone over 21. There is language, mild violence, and no sex.

The Sinful Live of Trophy Wives by Kristin Miller

Book Cover
The Sinful Lives of Trophy Wives by Kristin Miller

Publisher: Random House Publishing Books – Ballantine, Ballantine Books

Date of publication: July 20th, 2021

Genre: Thriller, Fiction, Mystery, Suspense

Purchase Links: Amazon | Audible | B&N | World Cat

Format Read: Unedited ARC

Got Book From: Publisher

Trigger Warnings: Domestic Violence, Cheating


Goodreads Synopsis:

Mystery writer Brooke Davies is the new wife on the block. Her tech-billionaire husband, Jack, twenty-two years her senior, whisked her to the Bay Area via private jet and purchased a modest mansion on the same day. He demands perfection, and before now, Brooke has had no problem playing the role of a doting housewife. But as she befriends other wives on the street and spends considerable time away from Jack, he worries if he doesn’t control Brooke’s every move, she will reveal the truth behind their “perfect” marriage.

Erin King, famed news anchor and chair of the community board, is no stranger to maintaining an image–though being married to a plastic surgeon helps. But the skyrocketing success of her career has worn her love life thin, and her professional ambitions have pushed Mason away. Quitting her job is a Hail Mary attempt at keeping him interested, to steer him away from finding a young trophy wife. But is it enough, and is Mason truly the man she thought he was?

Georgia St. Claire allegedly cashed in on the deaths of her first two husbands, earning her the nickname “Black Widow”–and the stares and whispers of her curious neighbors. Rumored to have murdered both men for their fortunes, she claims to have found true love in her third marriage, yet her mysterious, captivating allure keeps everyone guessing. Then a tragic accident forces the residents of Presidio Terrace to ask: Has Georgia struck again? And what is she really capable of doing to protect her secrets?


First Line:

Pain is the first thing I remember.

The Sinful Lives of Trophy Wives by Kristin Miller

Review:

I will be the first one to admit this: I judged The Sinful Lives of Trophy Wives by the title of the book. Since Kristin Miller is a new author to me, I assumed that this book would be something like Joan Collins writes. So I wasn’t surprised when I started reading TSLOTW and realized that this book was nothing like Joan Collin’s books. Instead, this was a psychological thriller.

The Sinful Lives of Trophy Lives follows three women: Brooke, Erin, and Georgia. Brooke moves into the gated community with her husband, Jack. Erin is married to Mason and has just quit her job to focus on her marriage. Georgia, also known as “Black Widow” because of the deaths of her previous husbands, is engaged to be married. There are dark secrets that the three women keep. These secrets could destroy lives if revealed. What are they, and will they be revealed?

The plot for The Sinful Lives of Trophy Wives is fast-paced. This book starts with a literal bang and doesn’t stop until the last page. The author was able to keep the pacing of the book up, even with the three separate POVs. I loved it!! I also loved that there was a slight lag too.

I loved Brooke, Erin, and Georgia, and I loved how the author kept me on edge with their characters. Just when I thought I knew those ladies, the author threw a tidbit or had them do something that made me go, “Really!!” It made for a good read because I didn’t know how these characters would end up.

The mystery/thriller angle of the book was well written. There were red herrings all over the place, and nothing was what it seemed. As soon as I thought I figured out what was going on, the author did a 180 and changed things. I loved it!!!

The secondary characters made the book too. Mason, Jack, and so many others. There were ones I loved and ones that I loathed.

There was a secondary storyline that involved Brooke and her past. I did predict what happened, but I didn’t expect what grew out of it. That took me by surprise!!

I wasn’t surprised at what was revealed about the deaths of Georgia’s husbands. I guessed that pretty early in the book. But I was surprised at who was involved and why that person got involved. So that made me look at that character differently.

I am going to warn that domestic violence is discussed at various points. For example, there are scenes where a woman gets beat by her husband in front of a child and another scene of a husband smacking his wife where the bruises couldn’t be seen and covered up with makeup.

The end of The Sinful Lives of Trophy Wives was insane. I almost couldn’t keep up with everything that the book revealed. There was a huge twist that shocked me. I did not see it coming, and it blindsided me. But, once it was announced, it made perfect sense.


I enjoyed reading The Sinful Lives of Trophy Wives. This book hooked me from page one, and I couldn’t put it down.

I would recommend The Sinful Lives of Trophy Wives to anyone over the age of 21. There are trigger warnings, which I discussed above. They are domestic violence and cheating. There are also scenes of pill-popping, sexual harassment (Erin’s male boss told her to get on her knees and beg for her job), and lots of drinking.

Chatroom With A View by Glenn Maynard

Chatroom with a View by [Glenn Maynard]
Chatroom with a View by Glenn Maynard

Publisher:

Date of publication: May 5th 2021

Genre: Psychological Fiction, Psychological Thriller

Purchase Links: Amazon

Format Read: Published Book

Received From: Author

Trigger Warnings: Mental Illness, Bullying, Domestic and Child Abuse


Goodreads Synopsis:

Lizzie Borden took an axe . . . and so goes the song depicting the 1892 axe murders of her father and step-mother. Research indicates that a killer gene could be passed down through generations of family members, and evidence begins with Lizzie’s ancestor who murdered his mother in 1673. Chatroom with a View opens with a bone-chilling episode, and what’s left of Troy Cullen’s dysfunctional family keeps him even further from the normal integration with society. Troy’s life further unravels when his ex-girlfriend, Veronica, announces that she is pregnant. Troy loses control and plots to do unto others as they have done unto him. When Veronica digs into his family’s past, she exposes this killer gene; she must try to balance her obsession for a family with shielding herself and their baby from evil. But Troy has his own agenda, resulting in an epic showdown.


First Line:

The wind gusts reached into the woods and sporadically shifted the little log cabin at its base, and the raindrops thumped the structure with little more vigor when they did.

Chatroom with a View by Glenn Maynard

When the author contacted me to review Chatroom With A View, I was on the fence about reviewing it. I left it hanging in my email for a couple of days while I thought over my decision. What ultimately made up my mind was the blurb. I wanted to know more about this killer gene. I am glad that I read this book, but man, was it dark.

Chatroom With A View is a fast-paced book. The author didn’t build up any backstory; instead, he chose to dive headlong into Troy Cullen’s messed up and complicated life. There was a slight lag in the middle of the book, but the author was able to get the book back on track.

Troy was a complicated character for me to connect to. I did feel bad for him because of the abuse. But as the book went on and I got to know his character, I started not to like him. The things he did were awful, and they just kept getting worse as the book went on.

The storyline with Troy and the girls (the waitresses who bullied him in school) was sad to read. Troy had so much anger from what those girls did to him. I was a little surprised how that particular storyline ended. I was expecting something more dramatic.

The storyline with Troy, his father, and the cabin was truly awful to read. I could understand why Troy was so torn about what to do about his father. I also understood his curiosity about the cabin. When Troy’s father told Veronica and Troy the story behind the cabin, it made sense.

Veronica’s storyline was a mess. She was severely mentally ill, and she started spiraling as soon as Troy broke up with her. She manipulated and lied her way to find him. Once she found him, she hit rock bottom. I won’t say much after that. I will say, though, I was surprised at how her storyline ended.

The end of Chatroom With A View disappointed me a little bit. I figured that what happened was going to happen but still. I wanted something more.


I did enjoy reading Chatroom With A View. It was well written with fleshed-out characters. I felt that everything that happened in the second half of the book was just there to be sensational. Also, I wouldn’t say I liked the end of the book. After a fast-moving plotline, I felt it was anti-climatic.

I am on the fence if I would recommend Chatroom With A View. It is a dark book that explores themes that could trigger people or, in the least, make them uncomfortable. There is sex (not graphic) and violence. There is minimal gore (at the beginning of the book).