The Twilight Wife by A.J. Banner (5 out of 5)
Mid-winter, I got an email from Tara at Touchstone (Simon & Schuster) about a book coming out that they were VERY excited about. I had to be one of 20 people to email back first to get a copy of the advance. I heard psychological thriller and I was on board. One of my favorite genres; also one of the ones where I am freaking let down consistently. I replied to said email, but I had been off the day of the email, so I got a note saying as soon as new copies were printed, they would send me one. A few months went by, and then I got an advance. I had, in all honesty, forgotten about it. Then I saw the letter inside from Tara. Well, Tara, I FINALLY got to it! No idea when it comes out, because the copy I did get is in a manuscript form. Easy to read, but hard to keep it bound together and hard to scour it for info on release date and author. So I apologize. I really do not have much info on it. I DO know this…I really dug it.By far, one of the better psychological thrillers I have read since Girl On The Train.
Kyra is a woman lost. She has a rare form of amnesia that resulted from a skuba diving accident that seriously injured another friend. Had it not been for her devoted husband Jacob, she wouldn’t have survived. And that’s the weird thing. No matter how much Jacob tells Kyra he loves her and will help her try to regain her memories, something is gnawing at Kyra. She begins to investigate the past and finds some sort of proof that signifies she had an extramarital affair. But did she? Her long distance best friend Linny tries to help via email, and Kyra secretly begins digging in town as well as beginning to go to a therapist, to regain her memory and quiet the sea of discord rising up inside her. Supporting cast characters lend an ear of authenticity to the story ( except for Van’s allergic reaction during the dinner and where the Epipen went. That had an ominous tone to it, but it was dropped. Also..what about Nancy’s obsessive behavior where Jacob is concerned? Two ends that I felt weren’t wrapped up completely) but some of them, I felt, were more sinister window dressing than evildoers in the story. The creepy resemblance of Kyra to a wild woman named Matilda, and that connection to David Ingram, the town’s elder recluse, does add another layer to the story that I didn’t see coming. I won’t lie, I did have a hard time getting into this until the first initial glimpse of married life with Kyra and Jacob receded into the background and Kyra started kicking ass and taking names. And once that started, the story took off on a wild ride with one curve ball after another, and it doesn’t stop until the last page. It was a pleasant surprise once things started to get discovered. Before that, Kyra struck me as meek and way too docile for someone who had a close call and yet let her husband chastise her for asking pertinent questions. Jacob? I really wanted to kick his ass for how he spoke to his poor amnesia-ridden wife. All she wants are answers and her life back, and this schlub who loves her can only knock her down? Why? What are the people in the town NOT telling her? All in all, a satisfying flourish, plot twists by the chapter, and a finish that didn’t defy the boundaries of intelligence. Thrillers like this are a pleasure to read.