‘The Good Widow’ a Clever Mystery about Betrayal and Second Chances

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With their new book, “The Good Widow,” Liz Fenton and Lisa Steinke depart from their usual “turning forty” theme and create a mystery about two couples and the betrayal that the survivors face when two of them die.

Jacks, a teacher married to James for many years, had a secret she kept from him until long after they said their vows. Now she’s regretting keeping the secret and wondering if that’s why he died in Maui, far away from Kansas, where he was supposed to be traveling for work. The fact that he died on what was clearly a vacation with another woman, Dylan, was devastating.

When Nick, Dylan’s fiancee, shows up at her door asking questions and wanting answers, Jacks decides that she, too, wants some answers. He wants to travel to Maui and recreate their trip to find out more about what their relationship was and how they died. After some soul-searching, Jacks decides to go, too.

What they find out and what happens when they return home will keep readers interested and turning the pages. The story is told in “before” and “after” from Jacks’ and Dylan’s points of view. Each new narration brings a new revelation that leads to the reader learning more about the four individuals and their relationships. The beginning seems fairly straightforward, with Jacks finding out about Dylan and James’ affair, but after Nick steps into the picture, things start changing.

While some might guess the twist at the end — especially after reading reviews talking about the book as a mystery rather than the author duo’s usual chic lit — it still is a very entertaining read. Perfect for a beach read or quick staycation weekend read.

Please note: This review is based on the final paperback book provided by Lake Union Publishing for review purposes.

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