Minda’s pregnant review of Such a Perfect Wife by Kate White.
What I drank prior: It’s like 60 degrees in DC in late December, so took a hike and drank lots of water!
Must be blonde, beautiful, and a good Catholic girl…
On a sunny morning in late September, Shannon Blaine, a blonde, green-eyed 34-year old wife and mother of two, sets off on a jog along the rural roads near her home in Lake George, New York. It’s her usual a.m. routine, her “me time” after dropping the kids off at school…except on this day she never returns. The residents in the idyllic lakeside town—which is popular with summer tourists—are stunned. Would Shannon have just taken off, overwhelmed with the pressures of being the perfect wife and mother? Did a stranger snatch her? Or could her husband be responsible for her disappearance?
The hot new online magazine Crime Beat wants to cover the case and they hand the assignment to noted true crime writer Bailey Weggins. It doesn’t take long for Bailey to see that the story has fars more facets than she initially realized: a bitter sister, an unfaithful brother-in-law, an evasive deacon, and a creepy motel owner who watched Shannon run every morning. When an anonymous caller reaches out to Bailey and gives her the cryptic clue that Shannon was a “good Catholic girl,” the tip eventually leads Bailey to the grisly discovery of Shannon’s body. And suddenly, based on what else Bailey finds, everything about the case shifts, suggesting that Shannon’s murder isn’t an isolated incident but rather the work of a serial killer with a very specific calling card. Bailey sets out to expose the killer before another woman has to die, including herself.
My Summary: After a beautiful but slightly mysterious wife and mother goes missing near Lake George, crime reporter Bailey goes to follow the case and gets way more than she bargained for as she becomes part of the case herself.
Spoiler-free Thoughts: The meat of the book was exactly what I wanted it to be with twists and leads to unravel the mystery, though the ending lacked a little depth and plausibility for me.
Characters: First we have Bailey, the reporter for the online publication, Crime Beat. She is quick on her feet and great at finding the holes in what people are telling her. A little too eager to get involved in others’ problems, but probably what makes her a good reporter. Shannon—the missing person—to me was not really fleshed out. I wish there was one person who could have told us more about her, but everything seemed mostly surface level to me. Her family (husband, sister, brother-in-law, and mother) all had their share of secrets, but did they do it? I also loved the local reporter, Alice. She was so great and feisty.
Plot: Like I said, the book is fast paced and definitely keeps things moving along which I liked. Some things seemed a little coincidental, but it happens.
World Building: Despite the grisly murder, this book made me really want to visit Lake George! I was nearby this summer in Vermont and the descriptions made it sound really lovely.
I was just not that into the-husband-did-it-because-his-army-buddy-told-him-where-he-hid-bodies-in-his-past-and-I-so-happened-to-marry-a-woman-from-that-area. Like, it’s a bit too coincidental/crazy, right?
Pairing: Redbull and vodka is the perfect (yes, I did that) pairing for this fast-paced read.
Rating: 4/5 shots
Soon-to-be drinking again,