Book Review: My Lovely Wife by Samantha Downing @smariedowning @BerkleyPub #MyLovelyWife #stephlvsbooks

Book Title and Author: My Lovely Wife by Samantha Downing
Publication Date and Publisher: March 26, 2019 by Berkley Publishing
Genre: Thriller, Mystery, Fiction
Pages: 359 pages
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Date Read: February 10, 2019 (e-arc)

5 Stars

Goodreads Synopsis:

Dexter meets Mr. and Mrs. Smith in this wildly compulsive debut thriller about a couple whose fifteen-year marriage has finally gotten too interesting…

Our love story is simple. I met a gorgeous woman. We fell in love. We had kids. We moved to the suburbs. We told each other our biggest dreams and our darkest secrets. And then we got bored.

We look like a normal couple. We’re your neighbors, the parents of your kid’s friend, the acquaintances you keep meaning to get dinner with.

We all have secrets to keeping a marriage alive.

Ours just happens to be getting away with murder.

My Thoughts:

My Lovely Wife is one crazy book and I mean that in the best possible way! It was one of my most anticipated reads of 2019, and I loved, loved, loved it, which could mean that I’m a bit crazy too since it is beyond diabolical, dark, and twisted. I’m completely blown away that this is Samantha Downing’s debut novel because I would have never guessed that while reading the book because it’s just that good–it immediately hooked me and never let me go, not even for one second!

I think what made this book so disturbingly crazy is that the couple in this book could be anyone you know (although I REALLY hope not!). They seem to have the perfect, upper-class life with a beautiful home in an upscale neighborhood, friends just like them, two typical teenage kids who keep them busy with their extracurricular activities but who also join their mom and dad for dinner every night where a no cell phone rule is firmly enforced by mom, who just happens to have some strict but actually awesome family rules.

And this couple is undoubtedly in love, which is great in a couple who has been together as long as they have because marriage can be tough, and I’m speaking from someone who has been married for over two decades! It takes work to keep the passion alive, and you have to find ways to keep those sparks burning. For this couple, they just happen to have rather unconventional hobbies and “date nights” that does the trick for them!

Honestly, I can’t tell you very much more about My Lovely Wife without completely spoiling the book, and I won’t do that. This is slow-burning suspense that, like I already said, blew me away; it’s full of shocks in so many unexpected places and in so many extraordinary ways that I had a few moments where I had to stop reading and go, “oh my, is this really happening?” And guess what? It was! Shocking at times is not even the right word for this book.

This is a family drama/thriller that is so well written that you won’t want to put it down as Downing intelligently weaves a tale of tawdry affairs, torture, murder, lies, manipulation, thrills, and suspense. The writing is extraordinary, the characters are so cleverly written because you shouldn’t want to like them (or a few of them) but you do (it reminded me of how I liked and rooted for Joe so much in Caroline Kepnes’ You but really shouldn’t have), and the ending just astounded me so much that I had to reread the last few pages to make sure I didn’t get it wrong…nope, Downing went there, and it was so very good!

This is a book to binge read, so you’ve been warned! I highly recommend it, and it’s definitely one of my favorite books of 2019!

~This was a marvelous Traveling Sisters’ group read! I had a great time discussing this one and hearing everyone’s thoughts! I think we all loved this one, and you can read their reviews here!~

**Thank you Edelweiss and Berkley Publishing for an ARC to read in exchange for my fair and honest review.**

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32 thoughts on “Book Review: My Lovely Wife by Samantha Downing @smariedowning @BerkleyPub #MyLovelyWife #stephlvsbooks

    1. Thanks so much, Jen! I’m glad you are loving it! Yes, it was definitely a favorite. I’m glad you liked that…You just came to mind. I loved Joe so much it’s funny. The hubby made me think of him. Happy Friday to you too!! ❤😘

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, so crazy! I’m glad you thought so too, Marialyce. I’m still astonished it was a debut. Thank you! Yes, it was hard to top. I think I couldn’t enjoy the book I picked up after it!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Laurel. The title is vague but trust me, it makes sense as you read the book and meet the wife. It’s one I think you’d enjoy and predict it’s going to be a standout this year.


  1. Fab review of a fantastic book. I was slightly freaked out by how much I was rooting for the main character. Did you catch his real name? I finished the story and couldn’t remember it, then saw another reviewer saying it’s never given.

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    1. Thanks so much! It was amazing. I know, right? I think part of that for me was because he just seemed like a normal dad trying to do the right thing in spite of his, uh, odd thing with his wife. It’s never said in the book..she never uses it or any other character, but it dawned on me that maybe that very last scene or maybe it’s the last page he reveals it. I don’t want to say how in the comments, so I’m trying to be vague, sorry! But it’s when he writes that very last text. I think that might be his real name, but that’s a guess on my part. Wild though it goes the entire book without his name.


    1. Oh no! Did you not like it? Thank you, I really did! I loved Dexter, except for that stupid series finale and it had that vibe! Thanks, Mackey! One review down, nine to go to be caught up, haha! I need to spend my Saturday writing reviews like you but instead I’m reading and online shopping!


    1. It was definitely binge-worthy…like grab snacks and settle in type of binge-worthy! I was not expecting the level of crazy in the book, lol. Thank you!


    1. It’s honestly not scary, or I didn’t think so. Crazy and a dark, but not scary. There’s no horror type suspense in it because it’s mainly psychological. Thank you! It was a really fun read if that’s possible! 😂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You’re welcome! It’s got a few descriptions that are dark, but they aren’t too graphic, at least I didn’t think so. They can be skimmed over. None of the violence takes place in the actual narrative, you hear about it later, except for one part at the end, but it’s not bad at all. I think it was just insane lol.

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