Psychology, suspense and drama in Jane Corry debut novel

My Husband’s Wife by Jane Corry is an interesting debut novel. A psychological suspense story, it explores the idea that sometimes people have to do something wrong before they can make things right.

Newly-wed lawyer Lily is assigned by her firm to work on the case of convicted murderer, Joe Thomas. When Lily visits Joe in prison, she finds him to be controlling and perhaps dangerous yet she is strangely drawn to him. He  reminds her of her adopted brother Daniel whose death, Lily believes, was partly her fault.

Working with a barrister and aided by some anonymous tip-offs, Lily manages to secure Joe’s release. It’s a landmark case and Lily’s professional career takes off. But is Joe really innocent?

Meanwhile Lily’s marriage is not working out too well. Lily is burdened by a secret from her past and things get worse when she discovers that her new husband, Ed, probably married her for reasons other than love.

When, Carla, a neighbour’s 9-year-old daughter, enters Lily and Ed’s life, things initially improve. Bullied at school and neglected by her mother, Carla is a beautiful child who becomes a muse for artist Ed. But Carla’s longing for acceptance at school causes her to make some poor decisions that have lasting consequences for herself, her mother and the other characters in this novel.

Carla is not the only flawed character in My Husband’s Wife. None of the characters in this novel is entirely good or bad. Each has at least one flaw that contributes to the motivations and actions of others.

Lily and Carla are the strongest characters and the narrators in My Husband’s Wife.  Bit by bit, as they tell their stories, the actions and motivations of all the other characters emerge. And while it’s actions that make My Husband’s Wife a thriller, it’s the character flaws and motivations that make this an intriguing and engrossing read.

My Husband’s Wife by Jane Corry is published by Penguin. The Kindle edition is publishing on 26 May 2016 with the print edition due out in August. [Disclosure: I received an advance review copy via Netgalley].