The best suspense novels featuring messed up marriages

Why am I passionate about this?

Kimberly Belle is the USA Today and internationally bestselling author of seven novels of domestic suspense, including her forthcoming My Darling Husband and The Marriage Lie, a Goodreads Choice Awards semifinalist for Best Mystery & Thriller. Her books have been published in more than a dozen languages and have been optioned for film and television. A graduate of Agnes Scott College, Belle divides her time between Atlanta and Amsterdam.

I wrote...

My Darling Husband

By Kimberly Belle,

Book cover of My Darling Husband

What is my book about?

Jade and Cam Lasky are by all accounts a happily married couple, with two adorable kids, a spacious home, and a rapidly growing restaurant business. But their world is tipped upside down when Jade is confronted by a masked home invader. As Cam scrambles to gather the ransom money, Jade starts to wonder if they’re as financially secure as their lifestyle suggests, and what other secrets her husband is keeping from her.

Cam may be a good father, a celebrity chef, and a darling husband, but there’s another side he’s kept hidden from Jade that has put their family in danger. Unbeknownst to Cam and Jade, the home invader has been watching them and is about to turn their family secrets into a public scandal.

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The books I picked & why

Book cover of The Plot

Kimberly Belle Why did I love this book?

Any book about a struggling author has automatically gotten my attention, and this one is a doozy. The Plot is about Jake, a promising young novelist with a well-received first book, but who can’t manage to write a second. He’s teaching in a third-rate MFA program when a student comes to him with the plot for a book, a story too good not to steal. And steal it Jake does, as soon as he hears the student has died. Suddenly Jake is wealthy, famous, praised and read all over the world, success beyond his wildest dreams until an e-mail arrives with the message, you are a thief. Suspenseful and compulsively readable, with an ending you won’t see coming.

By Jean Hanff Korelitz,

Why should I read it?

11 authors picked The Plot as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

** NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER! ** The Tonight Show Summer Reads Winner ** A New York Times Notable Book of 2021 **

"Insanely readable." ―Stephen King

Hailed as "breathtakingly suspenseful," Jean Hanff Korelitz’s The Plot is a propulsive read about a story too good not to steal, and the writer who steals it.

Jacob Finch Bonner was once a promising young novelist with a respectably published first book. Today, he’s teaching in a third-rate MFA program and struggling to maintain what’s left of his self-respect; he hasn’t written―let alone published―anything decent in years. When Evan Parker, his most arrogant student,…

Book cover of Confessions on the 7:45

Kimberly Belle Why did I love this book?

Lisa Unger is an auto-buy author for me, but Confessions on the 7:45 might just be my favorite of her books. Selena strikes up a conversation with a stranger on the train during her commute home. The woman confesses she’s stuck in an affair with her boss, prompting Selena to confess her husband is sleeping with the nanny. A chance meeting…or is it? The women part ways, presumably never to meet again, and then the nanny disappears and strange messages begin appearing on Selena’s phone. Strangers on a Train, anyone? This is a top-notch thriller and a masterclass in plotting -- Unger at her absolute best.

By Lisa Unger,

Why should I read it?

4 authors picked Confessions on the 7 as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'WHAT A READ!... Completely engrossing, undeniably enthralling... The biggest five stars.' NetGalley reviewer, 5 stars

'A masterclass in storytelling... Unforgettable.' Samantha Downing, author of My Lovely Wife

Everyone has a secret. Who would you trust with yours?

On Selena Murphy's train home from work, a mysterious woman named Martha strikes up a conversation and shares a confession: she's having an affair with her boss. In turn, Selena shares her own secret: she suspects her husband is sleeping with the nanny.

At Selena's station the two women part, and Selena never expects to see her again. Until she receives a message.…

Book cover of Behind Closed Doors

Kimberly Belle Why did I love this book?

Holy crap, this book. It’s one of those you gulp down in one sitting, then go back and read for a second time to find all the clues you missed. Jack and Grace are the perfect couple. They have charm, elegance, wealth…except her friends wonder why she never seems to answer the phone or be able to meet for coffee even though she doesn’t work, or why she never takes anything with her when she leaves the house, not even a pen. And those metal shutters on all the downstairs windows, what are they for? Creepy and intense and dazzlingly devious, this is one live-wire of a novel.

By B.A. Paris,

Why should I read it?

5 authors picked Behind Closed Doors as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?


The perfect marriage? Or the perfect lie?

“A hair-raising debut, both unsettling and addictive...A chilling thriller that will keep you reading long into the night.” ―Mary Kubica, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of The Good Girl

“This is one readers won’t be able to put down.” ―Booklist (starred review)

"A can’t-put-down psychological thriller.” ―Library Journal (starred review)

“This debut is guaranteed to haunt you...Warning: brace yourself.” ―Bustle (10 New Thrillers to Read This Summer)

“The sense of believably and terror that engulfs…

Book cover of The Younger Wife

Kimberly Belle Why did I love this book?

When Stephen announces he’s getting remarried, his adult daughters aren’t happy with the news. His fiancé is too young, she’s a gold digger, and let’s not forget the fact he's still legally married to their mother, his first wife, now in a care facility for dementia. But Stephen doesn’t see it as a problem; he’s already initiated the divorce. Sally Hepworth is a genius at developing compelling, well-rounded characters, ones with real secrets and problems you root for them to solve. And marriages don’t get much more messed up than this one.

By Sally Hepworth,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

'Another knockout - unputdownable and completely thrilling' TAYLOR JENKINS REID, bestselling author of Malibu Rising and Daisy Jones and the Six

'Smart, suspenseful, brimming with secrets. This is Sally Hepworth at her unputdownable best' KATE MORTON

'This beauty I read in a morning... Expect a lot of secrets and revelations' BELFAST TELEGRAPH

The moment she laid eyes on Heather Wisher, Tully knew this woman was going to destroy their lives.

Tully and Rachel Aston are murderous when they discover their father has a new girlfriend. The fact that Heather is half his age isn't even the most shocking part. Stephen…

Book cover of The Wife Upstairs

Kimberly Belle Why did I love this book?

Jane is a broke dog-walker in a well-to-do community in Alabama, a neighborhood where no one notices when discarded tchotchkes and jewelry go missing. And then she meets Eddie. Rich, brooding Eddie, a handsome widower whose wife tragically drowned in a boating accident. As the two fall for each other and Jane moves into his palatial home, she becomes increasingly haunted by the legend of his first wife…and what’s that strange knocking coming from upstairs? A Gothic classic with a Southern twist.

By Rachel Hawkins,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

The Top 10 New York Times bestseller 'I was completely blown away by The Wife Upstairs. This is a compulsive, irresistible retelling of Jane Eyre with a modern, noir twist - and wow, does it work' Samantha Downing, bestselling author of My Lovely Wife Stylist's best paperbacks of 2021 Hello Magazine's best new books released in 2021

A girl looking for love...
When Jane, a broke dog-walker newly arrived in town, meets Eddie Rochester, she can't believe her luck. Eddie is handsome, rich and lives alone in a beautiful mansion since the tragic death of his beloved wife a year…

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Transforming Pandora

By Carolyn Mathews,

Book cover of Transforming Pandora

Carolyn Mathews Author Of Transforming Pandora

New book alert!

Why am I passionate about this?

Author Creator Meditator Messenger Shopaholic

Carolyn's 3 favorite reads in 2023

What is my book about?

Transforming Pandora, women's fiction with a metaphysical undercurrent, is written with humour and a light touch. As the plot slips between two time frames, separated by more than thirty years, the reader explores her life and loves: her ups and downs.

In the opening chapter, Pandora is attempting to come to terms with her husband's death. At a friend's suggestion, she reluctantly attends an evening of clairvoyance, after which her life is transformed by a mysterious spirit who sets her on a new path.

Her romantic life is reignited when she encounters a new man, but complicated by the appearance of a significant figure from her past. At the same time her spiritual life is presented with a challenge when she's offered the chance of enlightenment via a heavenly correspondence course. Her quest in life to find her true purpose is within her reach. Will she grasp this opportunity? Or will she choose love over light?

Transforming Pandora

By Carolyn Mathews,

What is this book about?

Pandora, 51, childless, and still beautiful, is attempting to come to terms with her husband's death. Having a history of being drawn to the esoteric, yet remaining a healthy sceptic, she reluctantly attends an evening of clairvoyance and raises a spirit who sets her on a new path...

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