I’m so glad I’m not in a gilded cage of marriage to a mega-wealthy man if it means eating half a lettuce leaf a day, Botox until your face is frozen and total subservience. Meet Faye, who is married to Jack Adelheim co-founder of Compare, a multi-million kroner company. They have one child, a daughter Julienne. Their marriage is a bit jaded and she’s degraded but persuaded by love to glue a smile on her face even while he devalues her. However, Faye has a dark past which is suppressed when she is playing the part of a dutiful wife but after she makes several discoveries the blinkers about him are removed and she sets about revenge in such a manner that it puts a whole new spin on the meaning of the word. The story goes between the past and the present until we learn just how dangerous Faye is like as an enemy when pushed to anger.
First of all, let’s look at the characters. Jack is beyond awful, he’s so arrogant and has an overinflated sense of entitlement and his intellect. He is a user. I’d rather be Faye’s friend than enemy any day of the week as she’s not just dark, she’s jet black in her revenge! There’s a real air of mystery about her though which is intriguing. However, she’s a good friend to Chris who is a lovely character and to Kerstin who helps her in the early days of separation from Jack.
Secondly, the book is well written although I’m not entirely convinced the plot is plausible, but I really like it so I won’t dwell too long on that one and happily go with the flow!! There are plenty of shocking revelations along the way and you feel a whole range of emotions and most of them not positive about Jack and it makes me wonder what Faye ever saw in him in the first place. Their relationship and that of other wealthy couples in the story highlights the imbalance between the sexes. Talking of sex, it’s a bit steamy in places (blushes)!!!! I like that you feel Faye’s emotions – her suppression, her anger, of being trapped and discontented and I feel a sisterly camaraderie as she plots so surreptitiously and cleverly against those who have wronged her. I like the way her revenge empowers women in the business she set up to do more for themselves. The end is very satisfying.
Overall, a terrific rollercoaster read which I recommend to fans of Scandi Noir and psychological thrillers. Congratulations to the translator which is excellent.
Many thanks to NetGalley and Harper Collins UK, Harper Fiction for the ARC.