Tuesday 30 July 2019

BLOG TOUR: The Hidden Wife - Amanda Reynolds


She was young and beautiful, married to a famous author. They were celebrating their anniversary at their stunning country estate. So why did Julia Blake walk out of her perfect life, apparently leaving no trace?

Seren, a junior reporter for the local paper, can’t believe her luck when she lands an exclusive with Julia’s husband, Max. But as Seren spends more time at the couple’s remote mansion, probing ever deeper into the case, dark questions await. 

What was Julia really like, behind closed doors? Was her marriage to this brooding, secretive man as perfect as it seemed? And did she really mean to disappear that night - or was she murdered? 

What did I think?

I love a good hook at the start of a book and The Hidden Wife certainly has that.  Not only is the first page labelled 'Thirty-Three Hours Missing' but the opening paragraph left me breathless and thirsty for more.

Max Blake's beautiful wife, Julia, has gone missing but that's not the tastiest part of the worm wriggling on the hook.  Max is dishevelled and desperate as he paces his designer kitchen talking to DS Katie Ingles, but he is also lying.  See what I mean about a great hook?  Just what does he have to hide?  Would a man with something to hide invite a reporter to interview him?  It felt very cool and calculating of Max to request junior reporter, Seren, whose brother also went missing without trace, to interview him for an exclusive piece in The Herald.  Add to the mix that Seren's boss, Theo, was at Max's house the night Julia went missing and we have all the ingredients for a very tasty story. There are so many facets to this story that I had all sorts of crazy ideas floating around my head.  None of them were right, of course and I was completely fooled by Amanda Reynolds' dark and twisty imagination.

It's a very character driven storyline and although I was slightly disappointed that I felt rather ambivalent towards them, I do think that the characters are portrayed very well; from Max's almost bipolar moods to Seren's naivety and desperation to do a good job in the cutthroat world of journalism.  Not forgetting Max's strange and creepy PA, Miriam who always seemed to be hovering in the background keeping her ever-watchful eyes on Seren.  As Seren spends more time at Brooke House, I worried for her safety and that part of the story reminded me of Stephen King's Misery.  Just like Misery, I think The Hidden Wife would transfer beautifully to the screen as Amanda Reynold's words create their very own suspenseful soundtrack.

Ominous and suspenseful, there's so much going on in The Hidden Wife that it kept me guessing from start to finish, with much changing of my mind in between.  The only time I admit to being wrong is when I'm reading a book but The Hidden Wife is so cleverly plotted that I don't feel ashamed to say that I would never have guessed the full story of Julia Blake's disappearance, making it an enjoyable, suspenseful and surprisingly twisty read.

I chose to read an ARC and this is my honest and unbiased opinion.

My rating:

Buy it from Amazon

About the author:
Photo credit: David Churchill Photography
Amanda Reynolds lives in the Cotswolds with her family where she writes full-time. Her debut novel, Close To Me, is a #1 e-book best- seller. The Hidden Wife is her third book. 

Follow Amanda on Twitter: @AmandaReynoldsJ and visit her website amandareynoldsauthor.com

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