Thanks to Bookouture and Noelle Holton for my opportunity to read and review The Stranger in My Bed by Karen King, as well as to participate in the blog tour. Scroll down for my review.
Published November 23rd 2020 by Bookouture
About the Book: ‘We have a patient who has been involved in a serious accident. We believe he’s your husband.’
When Freya first met Phil, she thought he was the man of her dreams. He bought her roses every week, booked surprise trips to sun-soaked destinations, and showed her affection like she’d never experienced before. But over time the dream has become a violent nightmare. And now Freya is packing her bags, knowing it’s time she escaped their increasingly broken marriage.
But then Freya gets a visit from the police. Phil’s been in a horrific car crash and – as he comes around – it becomes clear that he remembers nothing since their blissful honeymoon two years before, back when their relationship was perfect. All he wants is to be happily married again.
Freya knows giving him another chance could be dangerous. But now he’s the one who needs her, it’s a chance to turn the tables, and to change the outcome of their relationship once and for all. After all, he will only know what she chooses to tell him…
But what really happened during those two years of marriage? And as they start over again, who is safe? And whose life is in danger?
Fans of The Girl on the Train, Behind Closed Doors and Date Night, who are looking for a dark, gripping psychological suspense novel, will love The Stranger in My Bed.
The Stranger in My Bed is the first book I have read by Karen King, but I also understand this is her first foray out of romance. This book is billed a thriller with a twist, but I say it is more of a domestic suspense or psychological suspense. I was hooked from the opening and enjoyed this well written book, but there wasn’t much of a twist. Phil Keegan falls for Freya Swinton the first time her sees her. He sweeps her off her feet during a whirlwind courtship and they quickly get married. It takes only six months after their wedding for Freya to see the real Phil and for his violent, narcissistic personality to come out. She is ready to leave him, when she gets a knock on the door. Phil has been in an accident and is in the hospital. He isn’t seriously injured but has lost his memory of the last two years of his life. Not only that, but it appears someone tampered with his brakes and tried to kill him, or perhaps it was Freya they were after. Freya decides to give him another chance, that perhaps she can get him to change, but can anyone change someone’s true nature?
As I was reading this, I kept going back and forth trying to figure out who was telling the truth. Were they all unreliable narrators. The secrets are doled out as Phil recovers and regains his memory. There is also a third POV, from someone who hates Phil and is sneaking around, even being the person who tampered with his brakes. This is a realistic and devastating look at the chaos and trauma that abuse can wreak on those subjected to it. I really felt for Freya and her dire situation. She was a likeable character, rushing to be by Phil’s bedside even after making the decision to leave him because of the abuse he subjected her to.
As the story unfolds we learn that Phil really is not a very nice person, and I wanted to know who else wanted to make him pay. The ending was a bit rushed, but overall, it was a satisfying way to end this story. This was an emotional story and I was involved right up until the end. I was gifted a copy of this book upon request. The rating and opinions shared are my own.
Currently published by Bookouture and Headline. Karen has recently signed a two-book deal with Bookouture to write psychological thrillers. The first one will be out in November, and the second one in 2021. She is also contracted to write three romance novels for Headline, which will be out in 2021 and 2022