Tuesday, 12 June 2018
The Adulterer's Wife by Leigh Russell
Julie accidentally finds out that her husband is having an affair and decides to tackle him about it and throw him out but only after their son's final exams, until then her knowledge will remain a secret from both of husband and son. Getting home from taking her son to sit that fateful final exam she finds her husband dead - in bed.
Naturally Julie becomes the obvious suspect and as she came home drunk and can remember nothing of the previous evening can she be sure she didn't do it?
As the police keep strengthening their case she sets about trying to find the truth.
This story is very different to the Geraldine Steel mysteries that Russell is normally associated with and this deviation, like the Christmas short story, shows once again how flexible this author is. There is no prize for guessing the outcome but, once again, it's the way the outcome is reached that keeps you hanging on the edge of your seat. And then there's a final twist where it all hangs in the balance...
Opening with the scene where Julie finds out about the affair is a great way to capture the reader from the very start. How would you react? How would I react? I have to admit that I have no idea and to see Russell's interpretation of Julie's reaction was eye opening in many ways. And as Julie undertakes some completely irrational actions you find you can't challenge them because you don't know what insanity would kick in.
Then... as you read on and the case against Julie builds Russell investigates the rights of the child in such a situation and how this affects Julie.
An extremely compelling book for various reasons at various points that will have you reading right to the end - despite knowing the murderer already.
Genre - Adult crime
Publisher - Bloodhound Books