The best books about love triangles that turn deadly

Who am I?

I have a close girlfriend who was once involved with a man she wanted to marry. The trouble was, the guy was always hanging out with this other woman who he’d known since childhood. Just friends, he said. Nothing going on. Ha! The shenanigans they got up to were unbelievable, and extremely upsetting to my girlfriend, who eventually broke up with the cad. Her unlucky experience got me interested in the psychology of the love triangle, and why some people remain mired in these dead-end relationships. My reading jam is anything twisty and suspenseful, and what’s more fraught than a three-way competition for someone’s affections.

I wrote...

Down a Bad Road

By Regina Buttner,

Book cover of Down a Bad Road

What is my book about?

Ron Burley has a rule against messing around with married women, but lovely Lavender has convinced him to break it. Their steamy affair sets someone off, but it isn’t Lavender’s clueless husband—it’s Marta, Burley’s clingy childhood friend and ex-lover. 

Hoping to win Burley back, Marta dangles a lucrative job offer. Though he’s sorely tempted, Burley’s afraid to trust her due to the sketchy circumstances surrounding their bitter breakup years ago; but this might be his only chance to get back at her for what she did. Meanwhile, Lavender has become suspicious of Burley’s romantic history, and consults a psychic for guidance. Watch your back, the woman warns her. Someone’s out for revenge, and this love triangle could turn deadly.

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The books I picked & why

Book cover of The Next Wife

Regina Buttner Why did I love this book?

Beware the replacement wife! Those folks we envy because they appear to have it all (flawless family/home/career, etc…) are often frantically treading water, desperate to keep that facade of perfection afloat. I know because I’ve been there, in a seemingly idyllic marriage where underneath the trappings of material success was, well, crap.

In this novel, the second wife thinks she’s got it goin’ on with the first wife’s ex, but things are not as they seem (are they ever in domestic thrillers, or real life??) I got a vicarious kick out of the two wives’ scheming and revenge-lust, and the dry humor laced throughout the story had me snickering with snarky delight!

By Kaira Rouda,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Next Wife as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

An Amazon Charts bestseller.

There is no limit to the lies, suspicion, and secrets that can poison the perfect marriage in this twisting novel of suspense by USA Today bestselling author Kaira Rouda.

Kate Nelson had it all. A flourishing company founded with her husband, John; a happy marriage; and a daughter, Ashlyn. The picture-perfect family. Until John left for another woman. Tish is half his age. Ambitious. She's cultivated a friendship with Ashlyn. Tish believes she's won.

She's wrong.

Tish Nelson has it all. Youth, influence, a life of luxury, and a new husband. But the truth is, there's…

Book cover of Murder In The Adirondacks

Regina Buttner Why did I love this book?

In 1906, a handsome scoundrel named Chester Gillette murdered his girlfriend, Grace Brown, by rowing her out onto a secluded mountain lake, whacking her with a tennis racket and pushing her overboard.

Why? Grace was a lowly factory girl, and her inconvenient pregnancy threatened to rain on Chester’s skirt-chasing parade. I was sucked into this poignant tale, having camped and canoed in upstate New York where the crime took place. I even teared up as I imagined what it felt like for poor Grace, cast to the bottom of a lake by the young man she thought was going to marry her.

This carefully researched non-fiction account is an irresistible combination of detective story and romantic drama.

By Craig Brandon (editor),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Murder In The Adirondacks as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Over 100 years ago, the Chester Gillette Grace Brown murder case was considered the trial of the century. The case became the basis for Theodore Dreiser's classic novel An American Tragedy and the movie A Place in the Sun, starring Montgomery Clift and Elizabeth Taylor. Revisit the tragedy at Big Moose Lake and the ensuing trial in this fully revised and expanded edition of the definitive book about the Gillette Brown murder.In the 30 years since the best-selling Murder in the Adirondacks was written, author Craig Brandon has continued to research the Gillette Brown murder case. This revised and expanded…

Book cover of The End of Her

Regina Buttner Why did I love this book?

This one had my head spinning right round, baby! Happy marriage, babies, a nice home—what more could a young wife ask for?

How about someone she can trust, for starters, and how ’bout her husband’s ex-lover quits coming around all the time, tattling tales of his murky past? It reminded me of an old friend of mine who fell in love with a guy she’d met through an online dating site. He claimed he was long divorced, but—whoops—was actually still married, and living with his estranged wife in separate parts of their house.

You can probably guess how that ended, but not this book. With every wild plot turn, I was grabbing for the Oh sh*t handle and gasping for breath.

By Shari Lapena,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The End of Her as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'The queen of the one-sit read' Linwood Barclay

'Shari Lapena is one of the best thriller writers in the business' Steve Cavanagh

'I tore through it. It kept me on my toes throughout and the ending was just fantastic. Really tense!' Harriet Tyce, author of Blood Orange


It starts with a shocking accusation . . .

Stephanie and Patrick are recently married, with new-born twins. While Stephanie struggles with the disorienting effects of sleep deprivation, there's one thing she knows for certain - she has everything she ever wanted.

Then a woman from his past arrives and makes a…

Book cover of Unmissing: A Thriller

Regina Buttner Why did I love this book?

Picture it: you’re a woman married to a man whose first wife went missing, presumed dead. Then: knock, knock, who’s there? It’s the missing wife.

I loved the freaky premise, the mystery, and the scheming among the members of this shockingly unexpected and awkward ménage à trois. I can relate to Merritt, the caring second wife who feels a moral obligation to help the now-unmissing Lydia. I’d want to help too, and like Merritt, I’d probably feel guilty for enjoying a dreamy new life with another woman’s husband.

I enjoyed pondering the thorny legalities of the situation, but as the parties involved dig deeper into the circumstances of Lydia’s disappearance, it turns out that who’s legally married to whom is the least of their worries.

By Minka Kent,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Unmissing as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A return from the past knocks a family dangerously off-balance in a novel of spiraling suspense by Washington Post and Wall Street Journal bestselling author Minka Kent.

Merritt Coletto and her husband, Luca, have the life they dreamed of: a coastal home, a promising future, and a growing family. That dream ends with a late-night knock on the door.

Weak, broken, and emaciated, it's Luca's first wife, Lydia. Missing for ten years, presumed dead, and very much alive, she has quite a story. Her kidnapping. A torturous confinement that should've ended with her dead. And finally, escape. Racked with guilt…

Book cover of Rebecca

Regina Buttner Why did I love this book?

Is it really a love triangle when one of the people is dead?

The unnamed English girl in this classic novel is up against it from the get-go because she thinks her new husband, Maxim, is still in love with his previous wife, the beautiful, sophisticated Rebecca, who drowned in a sailing accident.

The marriage is a bit crowded, seeing as there are three people in it. It’s a tough position to be in when you can’t confront the other woman because she’s now at the bottom of the bay (or, as in a case that I have an unfortunate but intimate familiarity with, she lives in another state).

I was rooting for the girl the whole time, praying she’d grow a backbone and stand up to the ghost of Rebecca.

By Daphne du Maurier,

Why should I read it?

37 authors picked Rebecca as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

* 'The greatest psychological thriller of all time' ERIN KELLY
* 'One of the most influential novels of the twentieth century' SARAH WATERS
* 'It's the book every writer wishes they'd written' CLARE MACKINTOSH

'Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again . . .'

Working as a lady's companion, our heroine's outlook is bleak until, on a trip to the south of France, she meets a handsome widower whose proposal takes her by surprise. She accepts but, whisked from glamorous Monte Carlo to brooding Manderley, the new Mrs de Winter finds Max a changed man. And the memory…

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Dinner with Churchill

By Robin Hawdon,

Book cover of Dinner with Churchill

Robin Hawdon Author Of Number Ten

New book alert!

Who am I?

My writing is eclectic and covers many topics. However, all my books tend to have a thriller element to them. Perhaps it's my career as an actor and playwright which has instilled the need to create suspense in all my writings. I sometimes feel that distinguished authors can get so carried away with their literary descriptions and philosophical insights that they forget to keep the story going! It is the need to know what happens next that keeps the reader turning the pages. Perhaps in achieving that some subtlety has to be sacrificed, but, hey, you don't read a political thriller to study the philosophical problems of governing nations!

Robin's book list on lone heroes and threats to national security

What is my book about?

This is a new novel by one of the UK's most prolific writers. It is based around an extraordinary true incident at the start of World War II when fierce political opponents Winston Churchill and Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain encountered each other at a famous dinner party. Seen from the perspective of Lucy Armitage, a young girl suddenly conscripted by a strange stroke of fate into Churchill's overworked but adoring team of secretaries.

As Churchill prepares to take over the leadership of the nation, Lucy finds herself increasingly involved in her famous employer's phenomenal work output and eccentric habits. When romance and the world of espionage impinge on her life, she becomes a vital part of the eternal struggle between good and evil regimes that still exists today.

Dinner with Churchill

By Robin Hawdon,

What is this book about?

It is on historical record that, on the evening of October 13th 1939, six weeks after war had been declared on Hitler's Germany, Winston Churchill and Neville Chamberlain, fierce and implacable opponents for years over the appeasement issue, met together with their two wives, Clementine and Anne, for a private dinner at Admiralty House, and event which caused ripples throughout Westminster.

Chamberlain was still Prime Minister, but had seen all his efforts to negotiate peace with Hitler shattered. Churchill had been recalled to the cabinet after ten years 'in the wilderness', his dire warnings of the Nazi threat vindicated.


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