The Second Husband

Harper: HarperCollins. Jun. 2022. 384p. ISBN 9780062945457. pap. $16.99. SUSPENSE
Emma Hawke is shocked when the police arrive in the night to inform her that her husband Derrick was murdered in New York. Now under scrutiny, she dares not reveal that their seemingly perfect life was less than ideal. Two years later, Emma is in her first year of marriage to Tom. She is a data trend spotter, ambitious and independent, someone who spots irregularities. Tom runs his own company, is a wonderful cook, and is attuned to her needs. Life really is too good to be true. Until the lies begin. With Derrick’s murder still unsolved, his brother Kyle claims that Emma was after two valuable family paintings. New York City detective Webster suspects Emma may have hired a hit man. Tom’s adult stepdaughter is living with them, straining the marriage. A woman is murdered at his company. When Emma learns Tom has had his eye on her even before Derrick’s murder, her suspicions increase.
VERDICT White (The Fiancée) establishes a pervasive uneasy tone, ending chapters with cliffhangers and small revelations that propel this domestic suspense tale to an intense penultimate scene. The final chapter, though, is unexpectedly flat as it ties up story threads. For fans of Hallie Ephron.
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