2021 Reviews · contemporary fiction · crime · mystery · new release · suspense · thriller

New Release Book Review: The Perfect Lie by Jo Spain

Title: The Perfect Lie

Author: Jo Spain

Published: May 11th 2021

Publisher: Hachette Australia

Pages: 400

Genres: Fiction, Contemporary, crime, Mystery, Suspense, Thriller

RRP: $32.99

Rating: 5 stars

He jumped to his death in front of witnesses. Now his wife is charged with murder.

Five years ago, Erin Kennedy moved to New York following a family tragedy. She now lives happily with her detective husband in the scenic seaside town of Newport, Long Island. When Erin answers the door to Danny’s police colleagues one morning, it’s the start of an ordinary day. But behind her, Danny walks to the window of their fourth-floor apartment and jumps to his death.

Eighteen months later, Erin is in court, charged with her husband’s murder. Over that year and a half, Erin has learned things about Danny she could never have imagined. She thought he was perfect. She thought their life was perfect.

But it was all built on the perfect lie.


‘He killed himself in front of me.

My beautuiful, loved and loving husband.

Who was he?

Where do the lies begin and end?’

A shocking incident opens The Perfect Lie, the latest standalone thriller release from Jo Spain. Erin Kennedy’s husband plunges to his death in full view of his wife. Then, a year after his death, Erin is charged with murder. The Perfect Lie is story of the things we fail disclose to our loved ones, difficult truths, cover ups and retribution. A perplexing tale from the first page to the last, Jo Spain’s new novel is not to be missed.

Erin Kelly is plunged into depths of grief and confusion following the unexpected death of her husband. In a twisted turn of events, Erin witnesses her much loved husband take his own life by jumping off his apartment building. Now, months after this terrible event, Erin is charged with murder. Erin is a woman who has already seen tragedy in her life, she moved to New York to escape the pain of a family tragedy. Erin’s husband was a detective and Erin wonders if it was his career in the police force that contributed to his death. As Erin works in the months following her husband Danny’s death to piece together what was happening in Danny’s life, painful truths are revealed and shocking disclosures are made. Erin begins to question her life with Danny. Erin thought they had perfect life – but this is clearly not the case. Will Erin go down for the murder of her husband?

It is always a great feeling to discover a new author, but a writer who is established in their field is even better. I intended to read Spain’s popular standalone release The Confession in 2018, but unfortunately it has been sitting on my shelves begging to be read. Based on my thorough enjoyment of The Perfect Lie, I whipped The Confession straight off my TBR shelf to read immediately after closing The Perfect Lie. This is a solid testament to my appreciation for Jo Spain’s work. I couldn’t get enough of this talented author’s writing.

What an explosive start to a novel with a husband plunging to his death from an apartment building, over four floors down. Although my heart went out to the man’s wife Erin, I was immediately suspicious of this situation, my alarm bells were ringing – loud!  I had so many questions in the opening stages of this book and these doubts also continued for the duration of the story. Spain takes a slow drip approach to her novel, gradually dropping clues, revelations and surprising moments for the reader to jostle with. As I worked to solve this puzzle, I thought I had made some important in-roads, but Spain would issue yet another game changing clue that would throw my theories completely into oblivion.

Spain seems to have a good handle on the justice system in the US as we follow Erin’s trial closely. These courtroom scenes felt very tense, but also authentic. I liked how the courtroom dramas were interspersed by the events in the past. We are also privy to some important memories and flashbacks from Erin’s past. The then and now framework employed by Spain helps to progress the storyline and adds plenty of speculation to the unfolding tale. Multiple story threads like this novel employs can be notoriously difficult to pull off, but in the case of The Perfect Lie, it succeeded in drawing the reader right into this complex web of issues. Erin’s journey was definitely eventful and emotional, which is portrayed very well by Spain. I was suspicious of the characters that pop up in this novel, I didn’t trust many of them, they all seemed to have their dark secrets! A flooring twist marks the close of this novel and I didn’t anticipate it to close off in this way! I apologise if I am vague in my impressions of The Perfect Lie, it is hard to write this review when I don’t wish to spoil the nature of the story for anyone wishing to pick this novel up for themselves!

The Perfect Lie is a book that will make you second guess your loved ones and make you think again about any areas of your life you lock away from your partner or family. Jo Spain definitely has a brand-new fan, I rate The Perfect Lie five stars.

The Perfect Lie by Jo Spain is published by Hachette Australia on May 11th 2021. $32.99.


To learn more about the author of The Perfect Lie, Jo Spain visit here.

*Thanks is extended to Hachette Australia for providing a free copy of this book for review purposes.

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