The Widow by Fiona Barton
First of all I’m going to tell you that I only gave this book 3 stars. Billed heavy to the fans of Gone Girl and The Girl on the Train, it was very similar in that we got to explore the relationship between a dysfunctional married couple. We know for sure that the widow’s husband, before he died, was not a good person, putting it mildly. At the very least he abuses his wife and is addicted to Internet porn, at the most he is a child killer, and we spend the book trying to decide which one it is.
The story from the point of view of the widow is alright, I was more fascinated by the interaction between the police and the media when trying to solve the case. The police really wanted to find the child, but the media was only interested while the story was hot. That part is true as true life can get.
What I liked about this book
- It had a solid beginning. I was roped in from the first chapter, and I really felt for the widow in the beginning.
- It kept the pages turning for me. Written from multiple points of view (the widow, the reporter, the detective) and short chapters I felt eager to get to the end.
- I thought it carried a good message about the importance of on-line safety, anyone and everyone can watch you from a distance, and they probably are.
- This is Barton’s first novel, and in that case I hope that we can expect even better literature from her in the future because it was pretty well written with so many working parts.
What I didn’t like about this book
- It was pretty predictable. About halfway through I was sure that I knew what was going to happen, and I was right.
- Where was my huge plot twist? I was waiting for a moment when I was going to drop the book and cover my mouth while shouting WHY GOD WHY?!? ….but sadly it never came, not at that level anyways.
- I felt like it was very similar to Gone Girl in that each of the characters were so unlikable. Yes sure I felt bad for the widow and her obvious battered woman syndrome, but it felt hard to get invested in any of them.
The final verdict: I am glad that I read this book, but I probably wouldn’t read it a second time. There are plenty of people out there that loved this book just as much as any other thriller. If you liked Gone Girl, Girl on the Train, and The Widow, then try The Woman in Cabin 10.