Book Review: Dead To Her by Sarah Pinborough

Dead To Her

I really enjoyed Sarah Pinborough’s last book – Behind Her Eyes – so when I saw her new book on NetGalley I immediately put in a request for a review copy.

Here’s the blurb:

Something old…
When Marcie met Jason Maddox, she couldn’t believe her luck. Becoming Jason’s second wife catapulted her into the elite world of high society. But underneath the polite, old money manners, she knows she’ll always be an outsider, and her hard-won life hangs by a thread.
Something new…
Then Jason’s widowed boss brings back a new wife from his trip to London. Young, beautiful, reckless – nobody can take their eyes off Keisha. Including Jason.
Something you can never, ever undo…
Marcie refuses to be replaced so easily. People would kill for her life of luxury. What will Marcie do to keep it?”

The book is set in Savannah in Georgia in the US – where a group of wealthy individuals have intertwined lives.  Marcie is a second wife – and seen as the new girl on the block, until an even newer younger model arrives in the shape of another second wife, Keisha,  a Londoner in this strange world of tradition and history.

Marcie is convinced Keisha is after her husband (I guess when you move from mistress to wife you leave a vacancy based on past behaviour?!) but it’s not as simple as that (and I have to say I guessed that twist very early on).

The book then follows Marcie and Keisha and their husbands – who work and socialise together – and how their story develops as part of this close knit community.

There is a bizarre black magic theme interwoven in the book which all feels a bit odd and forced – it definitely wasn’t a part of the storyline I liked.

The tension in the book builds, and I wanted to know what happened and who would potentially frame whom for the ‘crime’ – but I just didn’t love this  book as much as I’d hoped.  I’m not sure if it was the American setting, or the seemingly stereotypical cliches of characters – but it just didn’t feel quite right.

Just like Behind Her Eyes, the ending is a cracker – and could set you up for a sequel – although I’m not entirely sure I’d bother……..

Thanks so much to NetGalley and the publisher for my ARC.


Book Review: Behind Her Eyes by Sarah Pinborough

When I was given this book to borrow by a friend she told me it was amazing – which always makes me feel a bit pressured reading a book.  And after reading the blurb – see below – I knew there was going to be a huge twist – so I had my wits about me from the start!

“Don’t Trust This Book
Don’t Trust These People
Don’t Trust Yourself
And whatever you do, DON’T give away that ending…

Behind Her Eyes has been called the new Girl on the Train and Gone Girl . This is one psychological thriller you will not want to miss.

Since her husband walked out, Louise has made her son her world, supporting them both with her part-time job. But all that changes when she meets…
Young, successful and charming – Louise cannot believe a man like him would look at her twice let alone be attracted to her. But that all comes to a grinding halt when she meets his wife…
Beautiful, elegant and sweet – Louise’s new friend seems perfect in every way. As she becomes obsessed by this flawless couple, entangled in the intricate web of their marriage, they each, in turn, reach out to her.

But only when she gets to know them both does she begin to see the cracks… Is David really is the man she thought she knew and is Adele as vulnerable as she appears?
Just what terrible secrets are they both hiding and how far will they go to keep them?”



From the start I really enjoyed it (although was bit confused by the first 2 super short chapters entitled ‘then’ and ‘later’).  After that it settled in to a routine of the chapters being told from the view point of either Adele or Louise – and their complicated love triangle with David – Adele’s husband and Louise’s ‘Man In the Bar’ / boss.

It twists and turns and is very clever – a true psychological thriller.  There were times when you just wanted to shout at Louise to come clean or talk to someone – but still it kept you reading.

I can’t really give any more of the plot away – you need to see it unfurl yourself.

On the back of the book Sam Baker (co-founder of The Pool, and someone whose book choices I tend to agree with) is quoted as saying ‘Just when you think you’ve nailed it, Pinborough pulls the rug out from underneath you…. A tenner says you’ll NEVER guess this ending.’ and I would totally concur with her – and the hashtag also on the back #WTFthatending.

It’s so very clever – and I will definitely be searching out further books by Sarah Pinborough.

Another one ticked off the 2017 Reading Challenge in a number of possible categories!