Book Review / DJ Palmer / Reviews with Spoilers

DJ Palmer | My Wife Is Missing

The Book: 

My Wife Is Missing by DJ Palmer
Published May 10th 2022 by St. Martin’s Press
Date read: April 21, 2021

The Characters: 

Michael and Natalie

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Buy it on Bookshop.org | Amazon


The Plot (from Goodreads):

A family vacation turns into a nightmare for Michael Hart when he discovers his wife and two children have disappeared from their New York City hotel room. Horrified, he fears they’ve been kidnapped. Michael’s frantic search to find them takes a shocking turn when he discovers that his wife, Natalie, appears to have left quite willingly, taking their children with her. The police want to know why, and so does Michael. But there may be a reason why Natalie ran, something Michael can’t tell the police―the truth about his past.

While untangling his deceptions might be the key to locating Natalie, Michael knows it could also be his undoing. To find his wife, he must now turn to the one person capable of exposing all that he’s been hiding. Natalie thinks she has Michael all figured out and has hatched a plan to escape from him permanently. One detail, though, threatens to derail her efforts: sleep―or more accurately, the lack of it. Since the moment the shocking revelations about her husband came to light, Natalie’s insomnia has worsened to the point that she now suffers from delusions.

Are her fears about Michael valid―or a symptom of her condition? With her children’s lives at risk, the stakes for Natalie could not be higher. On her own, running low on energy and resources, avoiding increasingly close calls with Michael―who is on the hunt and closing in fast―Natalie needs someone to turn to for help. But who can she trust when she can’t even trust herself?

Click here for book spoilers for My Wife Is Missing
Book spoilers ahead–if you haven’t yet read My Wife Is Missing, I suggest you turn back now.

The Twist:

Audrey was the sister of a girl that Michael was accused of killing as a teen.

Tina had killed Audrey. They were the ones having the affair. Audrey wanted to out their relationship, but Tina was married to a man and was worried about losing her job. She set Michael up, but Natalie found out because she found Tina’s locker key.

The Ending:

Michael was innocent. In the epilogue, it came out that it was a teacher who killed Brianna.

The Review: 

Thank you to St. Martin’s Press for this gifted copy in exchange for an honest review.

Talk about a dysfunctional marriage! Michael and Natalie aren’t on the same page in the slightest. Natalie is suffering from insomnia, and Michael is using it as an excuse to cheat on her with one of her coworkers.

The POV alternates between Michael and Natalie. Clearly one of these narrators is unreliable, but the reader can’t tell if it’s Natalie’s insomnia driving her crazy or Michael gaslighting her. I was hooked right away by the premise, and couldn’t wait to figure out who the liar was.

The beginning and end were well-paced, but the middle dragged a little bit. I think maybe one less misdirection from Natalie would’ve been the sweet spot. The author also talked about Natalie’s insomnia constantly, and I think some show-don’t-tell could have been implemented here.

I was very satisfied by the big reveal. The ending made the journey worth it! I will say that a few threads were tied up a little too simply (a few things were unrealistic), but I liked where the author took the story in the end.

I have read three out of DJ Palmer’s four books and enjoyed them all. I would say My Wife Is Missing ranks second after The New Husband, and I will certainly be looking out for others by him in the future!

Audio Review: I was glad I had an audio copy to listen to, as it always helps me get through a slow middle. I’ve listened to a handful of Karissa Vacker’s narrations, including A Good Marriage and The End of Her. I enjoy her style and definitely think she added to the suspense of the story! The production was high quality and top notch, and I would certainly recommend listening to this book.

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