The Younger Wife by Sally Hepworth

I picked this one up in a little library in Sydney. It’s by an Australian author and set in Melbourne. I knew from initial impressions and some light reading on good reads that it was a “domestic thriller” similar to the work of Liane Moriarty. I debated about bringing it back but eventually decided to try for it as my plane reading.

My expectations were low because I don’t really read a lot of these domestic thrillers. Upon reflection when I have read the popular ones, I don’t mind them as much as say modern romance novels.

I found myself liking this more than expected. I did figure our the twist half way. I didn’t love the romance or abuse survivor storylines. I think these thrillers use trauma too much as a plot device. The resolutions to these storylines was a bit too neat as well.

What was good is the author seems to really know middle class women and to a certain extent, a woman from a poorer background. Of course the women are all white and most of it happened in a very privileged setting. Still, I found myself actually liking and relating to the women in the book. They were all messed up but the author had a nice way of showing their relatability.

As a novel published in Australia by an Australian, I found moments and words which were for that audience and would likely have been changed for international readers. I liked that after my own experience travelling in the country.

Not bad pulp fiction. Didn’t regret reading it and it kept me occupied for a few hours. Sometimes these kind of novels are great for travel.

3.5/5 stars. Read January 13, 2023.

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