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The Ex-Wife by Jess Ryder

Updated: Jan 24, 2021

Publisher:                              Bookouture

Date of Publication:             1st June 2018

Date of Review:                    24th July 2018


Newly married Natasha has the perfect house, a loving husband and a beautiful little girl called Emily. She’d have it all if it wasn’t for Jen, her husband’s ex-wife who just won’t leave them alone …

Then Natasha returns home one day to find her husband and Emily gone without trace. Desperate to get her daughter back, Natasha will do anything even if it means accepting an offer of help from Jen. But can she trust her? And do either of them really know the man they married?

My Review

True to its genre, The Ex-Wife is full of lies and deceit, as well as confusion. Starting with a flash-forward style prologue, we see the first-person narrator intubated in hospital. By her bedside is an ‘angel’ who the narrator believes to be Emily (Natasha’s daughter) as an adult.  I love prologues that give snapshots of what’s to come and this one is exceptionally clever. With no indication as to who the narrator is for this section of the book, this is something that will really make the reader think about who the protagonist actually is.

When Natasha’s husband (Nick) and Emily, go missing she has nobody to turn to.  Her in-laws looked on his first wife (Jen) as their own daughter and Natasha as the evil witch who stole Nick away from her. They say they don’t know where he is but are they telling the truth? With Natasha and Nick still being married and Nick having joint parental responsibility, the police won’t help either. The only other person Natasha has is her own mother, who she has a strained relationship with. Until unexpected help comes in the form of Jen. Natasha isn’t sure she can trust her but is left with little choice. Jen is her only chance of getting Emily back.

With a dual first-person narrative we gradually see past and present time-lines converge to reveal what happened in this love triangle.  The past timeline is narrated from Natasha’s perspective, and the present is narrated from Anna’s perspective. Anna is hiding something from her past and is in grave danger; but just who is Anna?  When I discovered who this was I was left gasping. I didn’t see that clever twist coming.

This domestic noir type psychological thriller is just my cup of tea and I whizzed through it in just a few sittings. 

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Under Literature Love’s rating scheme, this book has been awarded 5 out of 5 stars.

5 Stars means I absolutely loved this book and couldn’t put it down.

I recommend you stop what you’re doing and go and buy this book now!

Thank you to the author, publisher, and NetGalley for an Advance Review Copy of this book.


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