Thursday 23 June 2016

The Optician's Wife - Betsy Reavley

Can you ever really know someone?
When Deborah, an unpopular seventeen-year-old, meets the charming and handsome Larry, he sweeps her off her feet. The trouble is Larry has a secret.
Then a series of grisly murders cast a shadow over everything.
As Deborah’s world starts to fall apart she begins to suspect the man she loves of a terrible betrayal. And to keep their marriage alive, sacrifices must be made.
A compelling, psychological thriller that unpicks what goes on behind closed doors and reminds us that sometimes the worst crimes can take place closer to home than you think.
What did I think?

Although I have a gargantuan ‘To Be Read’ pile, I just couldn’t resist The Optician’s Wife after seeing lots of excited tweets about it.  So I promptly hot-footed it over to Amazon and picked up a copy from the kindle lending library.  I read it within a few hours as my eyes glued themselves to my kindle (no doubt holding onto the kindle for dear life, in fear of being ripped out).

I did literally read this in one sitting and as I gasped at the ending and finally turned my bedside light out, my eyes remained open, staring at the ceiling.  It took a little while for my heartbeat to get back to normal and I eventually drifted off to the land of nod, dreaming of floating eyeballs and buried bodies (nice).

Deborah, known as 'Dee', has a boring job in Woolworths and heads down to the river at lunchtime every day to eat her prawn sandwich.  One day she meets Larry, an optician, and is amazed that he seems interested in her, in spite of her unattractive Woolworths navy polyester tabard.  I wore exactly the same one when I was a Saturday worker back in the early 90’s, so I know just how sexy they were.

Dee seems a little na├»ve at first and does whatever Larry tells her to do.  They inevitably get married and have children, then turn into something that wouldn't look out of place on The Jeremy Kyle Show.  The poor children are left to fend for themselves whilst their parents run their dodgy ‘business’ and an abundance of shady characters filter through the house.  Then bodies of people tenuously linked to the couple start turning up in the river with their eyeballs ripped out, leaving the police hunting a suspected serial killer.  As bodies start appearing closer to home, the police move in and the killer has nowhere to hide.

Written at a pace comparable to the speed of light, The Optician’s Wife will either have you up all night reading or awake all night trying to avoid dreaming of severed eyeballs.  Creepy and shocking, it has a stomach churning ending that I will not forget in a hurry.  I’ll definitely be looking out for more books by Betsy Reavley and recommend this one to any thriller lover with a healthy constitution.

My rating:

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