Cover Image: A Marriage of Lies

A Marriage of Lies

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date:

Member Reviews

I loved “The Stone Secret” and was hoping this would be as good. It’s even better!! I read this in on sitting, flying through the pages having to see what happened. This book has an intriguing plot, interesting characters, and was totally unpredictable. So many times domestic dramas are all the same; it was refreshing to read something with more unique plot points. I’ll be recommending closer to pub day. Thanks for the opportunity to read!

Was this review helpful?

A Marriage of Lies
By: Amanda McKinney
4 🏡 🏡🏡🏡

Detective Rowan Velky and her husband Shepard have been together for years. They met in foster care and shared experiences no one can fathom. After fifteen years of marriage they have become two ships passing in the night and they are both struggling.
🏡
One night Detective Rowan gets the case of a lifetime. A woman is found alone in her upscale home apparently murdered and with distinctive markings on her body.
🏡
Detective Rowan works along side a younger partner and their chemistry is evident as they start unraveling not only this murder but more.
🏡
I really enjoyed all the twists in this novel with some dark content. There are a couple POV, but I felt it missed one POV which I would like to have heard from. I can’t wait to read more by this author.

Triggers: Suicide, Mutilation, foster care, dementia, child abuse, eating disorder

Was this review helpful?

I really enjoyed this,
I loved how even though it was a detective sort of book It was still full of mystery and twists.
I loved the characters They all had so much background it brought them to life.
I loved the fast paced and completely gripped I was I really couldn’t put it down.
It was a brilliant thriller full of twist and turns

Was this review helpful?

Some wounds never heal, especially the psychological ones. This story is about two people who had horrific childhoods, grew up in foster care, and only had each other to depend on. But it’s those same psychological wounds that cause one of them to retaliate.

Rowan and Shepherd are now married but their marriage has become stagnant. Rowan is a detective who has been assigned to a gruesome murder. As she is investigating this crime, two more murders occur. Shepherd is growing more and more distant but her loyalty to him is unwavering. Solve the crimes, save the marriage, balance life/work schedules - it’s all becoming too much for Rowan.

This book is fast-paced, gripping and so creatively plotted. I was not expecting the twist at the end, which only made the book better. I rate this book 4 stars and highly recommend it. Thank you, NetGalley and Storm Publishing for the ARC.

Was this review helpful?

I could not put it down!

Thank you to NetGalley for an ARC of this book.
Amanda McKinney was an author new to me and I was hooked from the very first chapter. Detective Rowan Velky is called to the scene of a disturbing murder. While dealing with this investigation, Rowan must also deal with the troubles in her marriage and in her own life. Told from different characters and point of views, the story seems to be going in one direction, until twists and turns give you whiplash in the best possible ways. I can’t wait to dive into Amanda McKinney’s other books!

Was this review helpful?

𝑯𝒐𝒘 𝒍𝒊𝒕𝒕𝒍𝒆 𝒕𝒊𝒎𝒆 𝒘𝒂𝒔 𝒏𝒆𝒆𝒅𝒆𝒅, 𝒔𝒉𝒆 𝒕𝒉𝒊𝒏𝒌𝒔, 𝒕𝒐 𝒆𝒏𝒅 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝒍𝒊𝒇𝒆 𝒔𝒉𝒆 𝒍𝒐𝒗𝒆𝒅, 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝒍𝒊𝒇𝒆 𝒔𝒉𝒆 𝒃𝒆𝒍𝒊𝒆𝒗𝒆𝒅 𝒘𝒂𝒔 𝒉𝒆𝒓𝒔. 𝑴𝒆𝒓𝒆 𝒎𝒊𝒏𝒖𝒕𝒆𝒔. 𝑩𝒆𝒄𝒂𝒖𝒔𝒆 𝒕𝒉𝒂𝒕 𝒍𝒊𝒇𝒆 𝒊𝒔 𝒐𝒗𝒆𝒓, 𝒐𝒇 𝒕𝒉𝒊𝒔 𝒔𝒉𝒆 𝒊𝒔 𝒄𝒆𝒓𝒕𝒂𝒊𝒏. 𝑶𝒏𝒆 𝒉𝒖𝒏𝒅𝒓𝒆𝒅 𝒑𝒆𝒓𝒄𝒆𝒏𝒕. 𝑺𝒉𝒆 𝒘𝒊𝒍𝒍 𝒏𝒐𝒕 𝒃𝒆 𝒎𝒂𝒓𝒓𝒊𝒆𝒅 𝒕𝒐 𝒂 𝒍𝒊𝒂𝒓.

This book was so much more than what I thought I was getting. I thought I was getting a domestic suspense with the focus being on the unraveling of a marriage; however, I also got a richly layered police procedural that was damn near perfect.

Rowan is a homicide detective who is called to the scene of a brutal crime at the unlikeliest of settings, the wealthy neighborhood of Mirror Lakes. She is horrified to find a young woman strangled to death with jagged X’s carved over her eyes. Before she can even get her bearings, two more similar murders are uncovered.

The book's book switches seamlessly back and forth from Rowan's investigation of these crimes to her dealing with her crumbling marriage. After reading several books with a huge cast of characters, I appreciated the limited characters so that I could really focus on them and get to know them. I really appreciated the detailed and insightful exploration of children who grow up in "the system" that is known as foster care and how it can shape what kind of adult those children grow up to be.

Betrayal, secrets, suffering, and jealousy all collide in this tense thriller. Thank you to NetGalley, Storm Publishing, and Thriller Book Lovers Promotions for this early read. This book will publish March 29, 2024.

Was this review helpful?

An experienced detective ninety minutes outside of Houston, Rowan Velky has just been presented with one of the most disturbing cases of her career. Called to the wealthy neighborhood of Mirror Lakes, she is startled to find a young woman strangled to death and with X’s carved over her eyes. Just as Rowan and her team are getting down to business, however, a second body is found. And then a third. All with the same mark, just in a different location. Who is perpetrating these chilling crimes? And why were they killed?

Meanwhile, Rowan’s life isn’t all roses and sunbeams at home. In a loveless marriage, she and her husband, Shepherd, barely speak, let alone connect. After fifteen years together, though, she can’t imagine her life without him in it. Perhaps due to this or some internal battle, Rowan has begun to attend therapy on her own. Not that it seems to be doing much good. And as her work life becomes more complicated with the appearance of the FBI on the scene, Rowan starts to wonder: can she hold it together? Or is it all about to come horribly undone?

Oh. My. God. Give me a second while I wipe this s*** eating grin off of my face. From the shocking twists and turns to the dynamite cast, A Marriage of Lies took all of my expectations and threw them aside. Not once as the plot unfolded before me was I able to guess where it was all headed. Even better, the deliciously dark topics and blindingly fast pace meant that all I could do was hold on for what was a neck-snapping ride of suspense.

The plot itself initially felt somewhat like a bait and switch. Not exactly lining up with what I had expected, I was prepared to be let down in the end. Boy, was I wrong. Instead, this was one utterly thrilling storyline that could easily rival The Wife Between Us or The Last Mrs. Parrish. Not for the topic matter, but because of the earth-shattering twist that took a normal plot and turned it completely on its head. Trust me when I say, there’s NO WAY you’re going to see through this about face. Brilliant and perfectly plotted, I was totally in awe.

As for the characters, they too were simply sublime. Engaging and realistic, I connected with most of them from the very first word. Granted, I had my favorites, but between the two primary POVs, they directed the plot in just the right direction to keep me blind to the truth. I particularly liked Rowan who was loyal to a fault as well as smart and intelligent. Well, for the most part… Just the same, her flaws made her come across as genuine as well as fully fleshed out.

The only piece to this dynamite novel that wasn’t pure perfection had to do with the ending. Not that it wasn’t superbly timed and smartly written. I just wish there had been a bit more of an exploration of what happened AFTER the fact. Especially to the villain. At the same time, everything was wrapped up with one of those glorious neat, little bows that I love, so all in all, it wasn’t that big of a flaw.

Done and dusted, I’m now an ardent admirer of Ms. Amanda McKinney. The first of her books that I’ve read, she’s easily edged her way onto my auto-buy author list. After all, with ever ratcheting suspense, palpable tension, and an intricate plot, this psychologically acute thriller struck quite the perfect balance. In all honesty, McKinney just might be my new favorite queen of misdirection. Now I can’t wait for her next book to come out. Until then, I’ll have to settle for exploring her backlist ASAP. Rating of 5 stars.

Thank you to Amanda McKinney, Storm Publishing, NetGalley, and Thriller Book Lovers Promotions. All opinions are my own.

Was this review helpful?

I read this book in one sitting! The main characters are Rowan and Shep, a married couple with a very sad and difficult past. Rowan is a detective and her husband has not been pulling his weight holding down a job and has been going out drinking. So much drama, twists and turns in this story! Rowan works long hours and is helping to solve a string of murders. Or is she the murderer?
This book will keep you on your toes trying to solve this tangled web of lies and betrayal!

Thank you netgalley and Storm publishing for this eArc to read in exchange for my review !

Was this review helpful?

Holy moly! What a wild ride. A Marriage of Lies by Amanda McKinney was thrillingly good. I never knew what to expect and thought I had things figured out, but I was wrong and shocked by how things turned out, who was involved, and what happened at the end.

A Marriage of Lies is a jaw-dropping, dark, and twist-filled emotional rollercoaster of a read.

The story is told from different perspectives, adding so much tension and drama in seeing how the story unfolds from these different perspectives and the information they alone have to share.

The book is a good reminder that life is hard at times and that people struggle behind closed doors and behind perfect facades that eventually become exposed.

At first, I wasn't quite sure what to make of Rowan and her relationship with her work partner, Kellan. It appeared kind of saccharine and inappropriate.

Also, I felt sorry for Amber and what her marriage was like, as well as dealing with her young son and possibly him having possible developmental delays. But my views changed throughout reading the story and discovering so many crazy things about each character.

I would highly recommend this book. I will also check out more books by this author as I enjoyed her writing style and how she crafted this story.

#AMarriageofLies #NetGalley @Stormbooks_co

Was this review helpful?

Detective Rowan Velky is investigating a horrific murder. The investigators can only guess at the meaning of certain marks on the body.
Soon, there is a second murder, and the same marks are present, but in a different place.

Rowan's marriage is breaking down, and she is in therapy with Amber, who tries to convince Rowan to leave her husband, to no avail, as Rowan feels she owes her husband something for saving her when they met.

Wow. This is a very dark and twisty novel.
I found it well written with no 'fluff'. Different POV's keep it interesting.
I like Rowan, she is a character who is loyal. A smart detective, and I really like Kellan, her partner.

The novel is fast paced and the ending ties together all the loose ends very nicely. The story flows well, and builds up the suspense with every chapter. I was totally engrossed.

Thanks to Netgalley and Storm Publishing for the opportunity to read this book.

Was this review helpful?

A fun, twisty thriller that had me hooked from page one. At no point did this story go the way I thought it was going to go. It certainly kept me on my toes.

Was this review helpful?

What. Did. I. Just. Read?!?!? Buckle up friends because this one was a wild ride!! Murder, affairs, lies and back stabbing. Who can you really trust and believe? This book had me invested from the start and couldn’t put it down! I read this in a day which isn’t typical for me. Every chapter I thought I had it figured out and then plot twist! I couldn’t have been more wrong! This book is a must read!!!!

Was this review helpful?

The story flowed well and the characters were well developed. I recommend this book and look forward to more from this author.


****Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for providing an ARC in exchange for my honest review****

Was this review helpful?

Now this is what I call a satisfying thriller.

Rowan is a homicide detective who is called upon when a unprecedented murder occurs followed by two more. The narrative switches from Rowan's investigation of the murder, her crumbling marriage and her past. We also have another POV which makes you question it's place in the book but it all ties together at the end.

Rowan's character was detailed and kudoa for highlighting the mental effects of children in the public system. How the constant changing of homes and lack of stability has a profound impact on their personality.

I like how the author stuck to limited characters and kept the story going seamlessly. The only thing I felt would have enhanced the story would be if we got a glimpse of a certain psychotic patient. I felt that the chapter started with promise and then abruptly ended.

On the whole, the book was an absolute delight to read and I look forward to reading more of this author's books. I give it 4.5 stars.

I thank Storm Publishing for inviting me and NetGalley for providing the E-Arc of this book. I am leaving my review voluntarily.

Was this review helpful?

I wasn’t sure if I would like this as I usually don’t like police detective books as I find all the police chat boring but WOW this had me hooked. It was a gripping read with twists that I wasn’t expecting. It was really well written that I forgot it was a detective book as I was so engrossed in the story. Highly recommend even if you are like me about police books give this a try it’s like no other fantastic. Thanks to netgalley and the publisher for my advanced copy.

Was this review helpful?

What a wild ride this was! From the first page! It just kept getting better and better.

I’m not into detective thrillers usually, but this was awesome. I really liked Rowan as a character and loved Kellan as well.

The twists and turns just kept coming. Some things you can figure out from the beginning, but new twists were sprinkled in throughout.

This book was in multiple perspectives but it didn’t get confusing. The authors writing style was great, there weren’t any repetitive sentences or monologues just to increase the length of the book.

Highly recommend this one!!

Was this review helpful?

This book is on the dark and twisted side and I loved it!

Detective Rowan Velky is a dedicated police officer and a wife struggling to keep her marriage together. Shepherd has been pulling away from his wife since he lost his job. He saved her a long time ago and now she feels like she owes him. She looses herself in the process.

Rowan and Shepherd both have a dark past and have leaned on each other to get through it all. As children they were failed by the system now it looks like someone is taking matters into their own hands to get vigilante justice.

This was first book by this author but she did such a masterful job of fleshing out the characters warts and all. The desire to be loved and cared for in a relationship will resonate with you and pull at your heart strings.

Was this review helpful?

Rowan is married to Shep. She is a detective. Shep has lost his job and taken up drinking.
Amber is married to Mark. They have a son named Conner who possibly may be on the spectrum. Amber is Rowans therapist.
Someone is killing women and carving an X into them.
A police procedural and a story of how their lives intertwine. Betrayal, Deception and Murder

Was this review helpful?

Detective Rowan Velky is a dedicated officer, much to the disgust of Shepherd, her husband. Shepherd is out of work, drinks too much and disappears for hours on end, but then begrudges the amount of time and loyalty Rowan gives to her job. When it appears that there maybe a serial killer in the area, Rowan goes into overdrive, but the consequences are dire.

A first for me by this author, but I like her style! Though dark and includes some disturbing events, it is a quick, easy read, no fluff and filler, a good story well told. Aunt Jenny was a star! Yes, the denouement was not unexpected, but still a good all rounder that I read in one sitting.

Thank you NetGalley and Storm.

Was this review helpful?