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Goodreads⎮Reviewed Mar. 2018
Narrator: Saskia Maarleveld
Length: 7 hours 14 minutes
Publisher: Tantor Audio⎮2017
Synopsis: Can you ever really know the ones you love?
When a woman is killed on the other side of the world, Anna Blackwell realizes that her past has caught up with her. That her greatest fear is about to come true. That it’s her turn next.
Uncover a web of lies and deceit in this chilling, twisty suspense thriller.
4.25★ Audiobook⎮ I’m new to Shalini Boland, but already impressed. The Millionaire’s Wife was a solidly told thriller. It may not have knocked me off my feet or necessarily even kept me on the edge of my seat, but it definitely kept me listening.
At just over seven hours of runtime, I was easily able to hear all of The Millionaire’s Wife in one day. Boland’s writing style was concrete and straightforward, bordering on simple. You wouldn’t think that style of writing would work well for suspense, but Boland has proven that a good thriller doesn’t have to be overly complex. With a premise as original as this one, there’s no need for convoluted twists and turns.
The plot’s development may have edged toward predictable at times, but never in an unsatisfactory manner. Is satisfyingly predictable a thing? Like when you’re aware of where the plot is [probably] headed, but are okay with it because it’s where you want it to go. Shock and awe isn’t everything, people.
The Millionaire’s Wife was more of a psychological thriller than an all around action-packed adventure. However, the action it did have was well executed. It had the feel of an old film classic, probably starring Julia Roberts or Sharon Stone. Although the main character was a blonde Swedish woman, so Malin Åkerman is probably a more modern selection. Anyway, I could absolutely see The Millionaire’s Wife being optioned for film.
I plan to return to Shalini Boland the next time I’m in the mood for some quick suspense. I typically turn into Agatha Christie in those times, but it’s nice to have a more contemporary author who can deliver the same effect.
Narration review: I have heard Saskia Maarleveld’s narration before, but never like this. My previous experiences with her as narrator were in the context of Speculative Fiction. I’ve heard her narrate Paranormal, Urban Fantasy, and Young Adult Fantasy, but never a thriller. I have to say, the performances are not comparable. They’re like apples and oranges. As much as I enjoyed Maarleveld’s previous work, The Millionaire’s Wife was her best performance to date. She seemed comfortable with the material and in her element, vocally. I hope Boland plans on working with Maarleveld again. ♣︎