I was drawn to this book by a review. This happens to me often, and I’m often let down. This time I wasn’t. The review of The Widow claimed that the story grabs you at the very beginning and doesn’t let go, and for me, it did.
A debut novel by Fiona Barton, it tells of a new, young widow who is suddenly released from under the thumb of a shady and controlling husband. The plot revolves around the investigation into several concurrent crimes, and the writing is deft. Ms. Barton skillfully switches back and forth between several main voices in a way that fleshes out the characters – the detective, the reporter, the widow, even her dead husband. Other characters are glanced over, but still ring true. Despite one or two slow parts involving the monotony of the investigation where the medium was the message, the plot sped along.
Comparisons have been made to Gone Girl and The Girl on the Train, but there’s a big difference. I liked the widow. She was a sympathetic character. I came to care what would happened to her, so I kept reading even through the slow parts.
Kudos to the author for a job well done.