one in three tess stimson
Book Review / Reviews with Spoilers / Tess Stimson

Tess Stimson | One in Three

one in three tess stimson

The Book: 

One in Three by Tess Stimson, 2021

The Characters: 

Louise and her daughter Bella
Her ex-husband Andy
Andy’s new wife Caroline/Caz

The Plot (from Goodreads):

Both of them loved him. One of them killed him . . .

Louise has had to watch her husband, Andrew, start a new family in the four years since he left her. The ‘other woman’ is now his wife – but Louise isn’t ready to let Caz enjoy the life that was once hers, or to let go of the man she still loves.

As Louise starts to dig into Caz’s past, the two women’s pretence of civility starts to slip. But in trying to undermine each other, they discover more about the man they both married.

And when Andrew is murdered at a family party, both women are found standing over the body.

And when Andrew is murdered during the anniversary celebrations, both women are found standing over the body.

It’s always the wife. But which one?

Click here for book spoilers for One in Three
Book spoilers ahead–if you haven’t yet read One in Three, I suggest you turn back now.

The Twist: 

Andrew is sleeping with his daughter’s teenage friend and gets her pregnant. Everybody hates him, so multiple people could have killed him.

The Ending:

It was Louise’s mother who did it. Caz walked into the beach house and found Bella standing over the body. She suggested to Louise that they both blame each other to protect Bella, because if they cops couldn’t decide between the two of them then no one would be convicted. Louise’s mother had calmly slipped in and out before Bella got there and no one saw her do it. Bella had come to confront her father but found him bleeding out.

The Review: 

I thought the title of this book was really clever, given the cover blurb: “one in three marriages end in divorce, but this one ends in murder”. I really liked the premise that the husband is dead and both wives look equally guilty.

However, I was expecting a bit more “thrill” to this thriller. Up to 60% of the way into the book, there wasn’t much suspense or intrigue other than the knowledge that Andy is dead. It was just a lot of drama between two petty wives. Both Caz and Louise are clearly unreliable narrators who each think the other is in the wrong. I was surprised to find myself liking Caz more and taking her side–Louise just came across as whiny and needy and dependent. None of the adults in this story were likable, though. 

The ending was good and redeemed the book somewhat. I’m definitely on the outs with my opinion, because all I’ve seen are 4 and 5 star reviews!

I still found the story interesting, but I keep getting books from NetGalley (other places too, but NetGalley in particular) that market themselves as thrillers when they aren’t. This one was a family drama with a little mystery around Andy’s death. 

One In Three will be available on January 5, 2021. Many thanks to NetGalley and Avon Books UK for an eARC in exchange for an honest review.

one in three tess stimson

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