Two Widows by Laura Wolfe #bookreview

I’d grown desperate for company since the discovery of the dead woman in town…

Gloria lives alone in an old farmhouse surrounded by empty land, miles from the nearest town in northern Michigan. Widowed and grieving her husband, mourning her broken relationship with her estranged son, lonely Gloria searches for answers in self-help books and has only faded photographs and stacks of unpaid bills for company. Her days all look the same.

Then the dead body of an unidentified young woman is found on the beach near Gloria’s house.

When freelance travel writer Beth arrives with her trailer to live on Gloria’s land, Gloria is relieved not to be alone. The police have no suspects in the murder and fearless Beth makes Gloria feel safe. Then Gloria discovers Beth is a widow too: the women become closer and begin to share their secrets.

But soon Gloria starts to wonder… what does she actually know about Beth? About what brought her to this isolated spot? About how her husband really died? Is it a coincidence that she’s arrived just as this small town has seen its first murder in decades?

Gloria thought that Beth had told her all her secrets. She was wrong.

My thoughts on Two Widows…

Two Widows was one of those books that I thought would be one thing but ended up being something else. I expected a typical psychological / domestic thriller. I got something between a suspense / mystery novel and contemporary fiction.

The suspense / mystery came from the death of local women in town, which has Gloria feeling anxious – especially when she chooses to rent out an apartment above her garage to a stranger who likes to come and go in the middle of the night. It’s hard to believe it could be anyone living locally who would want to kill the women – which makes the outsider the obvious choice.

Of course, Beth is an outsider too – but as a woman Gloria is much more accepting. In fact, she welcomes Beth with open arms and lets her rent a space on her farm for her tiny house. Yes, Beth seems to behave in ways that can’t be described as anything but odd but Gloria is sure there is a reasonable explanation – especially because she likes Beth and has started to see her as a friend.

And Beth’s story is where the contemporary fiction comes to mind for me. There were elements here that reminded me of Diane Chamberlain and the way she slowly reveals her character’s secrets. For people who were looking for pure mystery / suspense and lots of twists, turns, and – maybe – a bit of blood and gore, this is probably a disappoint. For me, though, it was a lovely – and welcome – surprise.

I really enjoyed Laura Wolfe’s way of writing and weaving a story that put her characters front and centre of any drama. They felt very real, something I need in a book. Which meant I found Two Widows a really enjoyable read. My only complaint? It felt a bit rushed at the end. I would have liked a slightly slower conclusion.

That’s it though. Other than that – highly recommended.


Please note: I received a copy of this book in return for a fair and honest review. All thoughts, feelings and opinions are my own.

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