AD • I received a copy of this book from the publishers via NetGalley. My review is voluntary and opinions are entirely my own.
In what might possibly be my final book review of the year, today I’m talking about one of this summer’s hottest thriller releases. Now you’re probably thinking “but Hayley, the summer was AGES ago.” And you’re right. The book I’m reviewing today is one that I was approved for many many months back. But unfortunately, the file was broken and by the time I realised, it had already been archived so I had to wait until I could get hold of a copy to review. So I finally got around to reading it and honestly, WOW. While it may not be one of my favourites of the year, it’s still very VERY good. If domestic thrillers are your thing, you’re gonna want to check this one out. So without any further ado, here’s my review of The Husbands by Chandler Baker.
by Chandler Baker
Date of Publication: 3rd August 2021
Format: eBook (353 pages)
Source: Review copy from NetGalley/own copy
Hardback • eBook • Audiobook
The wives here are different. They are living proof that women can have it all: successful careers, loving families, beautiful homes.
Their husbands are different too. They are living proof that men can do just as much as women. They can remember the kids’ schedules, use an iron and notice when the house needs dusting.
Nora thinks she’s found the perfect new home for her family. But when she agrees to get involved in a wrongful death case in the neighbourhood, Nora becomes convinced that there’s a dark secret at the heart of this perfect world.
For these women, it seems the secret to having it all is worth killing for . . .
I’m honestly gutted that I didn’t get to rave about this one closer to its publication date because it really is great. This is a deeply compelling and suspenseful novel about motherhood, gender roles and what it takes to truly “have it all”. So you have this social commentary throughout about how society perceives women but especially women who are also mothers. It tackles internalised misogyny, inequality in the workplace and at home as well as being incredibly candid about all the things that mothers have to manage on a day-to-day basis. As a mother myself, I could relate to that societal pressure and those feelings of never being quite “enough”.
That said, I think the title misses the mark a bit. The husbands in question are very much in the background, rarely seen or heard. (Maybe this is satirical?) Even the mystery itself relates more to a suspicious death in the neighbourhood as opposed to the husbands and how they are actively defying gender roles and supporting their career wives. A title focusing more on the women or the neighbourhood itself would have felt more apt, in my opinion.
All in all, this was a page turner with all the makings of a solid thriller. It features a strong but relatable lead who is also incredibly human. And the mystery makes you suspicious of everyone and their motives. There were so many twists that I didn’t see coming including the big reveal about why the husbands are so supportive. I had no idea how that particular aspect was going to pan out and I’d expected it to be more sci-fi than it actually was.
Will you be adding The Husbands to your TBR? Let me know your thoughts below.