Updated: Mar 30, 2020
This book was such a wild ride and is totally underrated! It is easy to get sucked into the new release craze, feeling pressured to read the newest published book that everyone is raving about, which makes you not pay attention to backlisted books and recently published books that have not gotten as much attention. Hence, my surprise when I read My Lovely Wife by Samantha Downing and was blown away by how addicting it was. I have mentioned it before, but I do not dole out five star reviews lightly. To qualify as a five star in my book, pun intended, it was to completely draw me in, to the point where I cannot stop thinking about it and want to drop everything to read it. A book where I want to scream it from the rooftops that everyone should read it, for one reason or another. A book that I cannot stop recommended to anyone who pauses long enough to hear me ramble on about books. My Lovely Wife is a five star book that is added to my top books of 2019. If you love thrillers, I guarantee you will love this one.
Millicent and her husband are the typical nuclear family. Two children, a boy and a girl, nice house in a high end suburban area, successful careers as a real estate agent and a tennis pro at a country club. Millicent seems to have it all together. She runs a tight ship at home, with homecooked family dinners every night, scheduled homework time for the kids, activities on the calendar, but she shares a major secret. Her and her husband like to murder people for fun to spice up their marriage. He lures the unsuspecting victim and together they plot the murder. It is wicked and psychologically thrilling, but oh so entertaining.
Their first murder starts innocently enough (as innocent as murder can be!,) as a form of self defense. The thrill that comes from it leaves Millicent and her husband breathless and craving more. From there, murder becomes an obsession that they plan out together. Millicent is a beautiful perfectionist who craves order and inflicting pain and her husband cannot get enough of her. He is obsessed with her and helps her carry out their demented plans. He poses as a deaf man named Tobias and meets unsuspecting women to determine if they will be their next victim. They cover their tracks and leave no loose ends, until their murders start to catch up to them and affect the people around them.
This book was an absolute rollercoaster ride. I could not get enough of the dark, twisted plot and Millicent's perfectionist, murdering ways. Downing does a great job with plot development and keeping the reader guessing. The chapters are short, which make My Lovely Wife a book you can easily consume in a matter of hours. Downing just a great job of making a twisted storyline light, by developing the characters into somewhat likeable killers. My Lovely Wife is being compared as a cross between Mr. and Mrs. Smith and Dexter, which I completely agree. Millicent's husband narrates the book, though you never find out what his real name is. The entire story is from his perspective and the reader experiences the fall of his entire life, while the murders unravel. The plot builds gradually, starting at a simmer, until it boils over in the last few chapters.
I could not put this one down and was literally itching to leave work, so I could rush home and read it. It was deliciously addicting and one of my favorite psychological thrillers of all time. Downing does a fabulous job developing a demented character like Millicent, while creating an unnamed narrator that somehow becomes likeable.
I gave My Lovely Wife by Samantha Downing ★★★★★ and recommend it to all my thriller loving friends. This book is underrated and I want to let everyone know, it is a freakishly good book.