Rating: 4.5 / 5
A GOOD MARRIAGE by Kimberly McCreight was the first June book for the #SaturdayBookstaClub buddy read I help host over on bookstagram. June is a traditional month for weddings, so we decided to pick up some dark twists on the wedding/marriage theme!
A GOOD MARRIAGE follows Liz, a lawyer who gets an out of the blue phone call from an old law school friend. Zach is in prison for assaulting a police officer at the crime scene where his wife was found brutally murdered and it seems clear that he will soon be charged with her death as well. Liz insists that this isn’t the type of case she takes on, but Zach isn’t about to take no for an answer and Liz finds herself looking into his wife’s life. Meanwhile her own marriage is on rocky ground and she’s struggling just to keep her life together.
Alternating with Liz’s point of view, we get chapters from Zach’s wife Amanda from the days leading up to her death. Through Amanda we learn more about Zach and the world they live in from coffee dates with the neighborhood wives to the sex party where Amanda was last seen alive. Amanda has darkness in her past as well that she fears may be coming back to haunt her, though it isn’t clear if this plays into her death.
This was a fantastic read and by far one of my favorite buddy reads that we have done to date. This author constructed a twisty narrative with characters that kept me wanting to read more. The chat we had at the halfway point was full of theories and great discussion! There were a few twists that I somewhat saw coming, but so many more that I never would have guessed and I loved the wild ride that created! The back and forth narrative between Amanda before her death and Liz afterwards always kept me wanting more from both narrators!
The characters McCreight creates aren’t always lovable, but they are characters that you can love to hate. I did really connect well with Liz in particular because she finds herself cornered into difficult situations, but she has the agency to speak up for herself and take positive steps toward a good outcome. It is sometimes hard to connect with a character that you already know winds up dead, but there was much about Amanda that still really drew me in as well.
This was my first read by this author, but I already have one of her backlist titles ordered and I can’t wait to read more!