Lead Review + #TalkingLocationWith.. feature

  • Book: The Wife
  • Location: Manhattan, New York City (NYC), The Hamptons
  • Author: Alafair Burke

Review Author: tripfiction



Angela has a history. She was kidnapped and held for three years against her will. She bore a child to her kidnapper and only found freedom when a second woman was taken to build the ‘family’. The traumatic episode has been consigned to history and she continues into her future without really addressing the impact such an experience might have had on her. Her parents too behaved as though nothing untoward had happened and decide to move on. Yet her kidnap is like a “cloud” in the present, it is potentially a dangerous secret that will need careful handling in any marriage.

Angela – the eponymous wife of the title – sets up a catering business in the Hamptons after her release, where she meets her husband to be, the squeaky clean and wealthy Jason, an economics Professor. They move to a carriage house in Manhattan where no-one is aware of her tragic past. She has really scored with Jason, who is involved in various businesses, one of which supplies clean water to developing nations. He’s simply a good guy, he takes care of his family, they can afford an amazing house in a swanky part of the city, he doesn’t stir the muddy waters of her past. Quite blissful, really, until there is an accusation of sexual misconduct against him. It simply will not go away and is then compounded by fresh allegation from another woman.

Surely her loving husband cannot be a perpetrator of serious sexual crimes? Who can she believe?

This is an excellent story that moves the goalposts, subtly and effectively, as the offences are examined by the police and the judiciary. Could Jason really be guilty? Surely two women wouldn’t fabricate stories? Where does the truth lie….

A gripping and telling story so pertinent for our times, and a little look behind the shuttered lives of New Yorkers. A trip to Agata and Valentina at 1505 1st Avenue, perhaps or dinner at Lupa (which is the author’s neighbourhood restaurant, and you can find her chatting to us about locale on this link

Back to book

Sign up to receive our e-newsletter

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
Enter the 2021TripFiction 'Sense of Place' Creative Writing Competition!

A story in which the location plays as important a role as the rest of your words.

2,500 word maximum, 750 word minimum

Judges include Victoria Hislop and Rosanna Ley

First Prize of £1,000 / US$1,350

Prizes total £1,750 / US$2,362 

Winning entry published on TripFiction site and publicised on Social Media

Entries close 6th November 2021