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The Wife Upstairs by Rachel Hawkins


The Wife Upstairs by Rachel Hawkins
UK Publication Date: 5th Jan 2021
Reviewed by: Book Worm
Rating: [★★★]

One word review – fun. Two word review – great fun.

This ARC was provided by Harper Collins UK (via NetGalley) in exchange for an honest review.

Synopsis from Goodreads: A delicious twist on a Gothic classic, Rachel Hawkins’s The Wife Upstairs pairs Southern charm with atmospheric domestic suspense, perfect for fans of B.A. Paris and Megan Miranda.

Meet Jane. Newly arrived to Birmingham, Alabama, Jane is a broke dog-walker in Thornfield Estates––a gated community full of McMansions, shiny SUVs, and bored housewives. The kind of place where no one will notice if Jane lifts the discarded tchotchkes and jeweley off the side tables of her well-heeled clients. Where no one will think to ask if Jane is her real name.

But her luck changes when she meets Eddie Rochester. Recently widowed, Eddie is Thornfield Estates’ most mysterious resident. His wife, Bea, drowned in a boating accident with her best friend, their bodies lost to the deep. Jane can’t help but see an opportunity in Eddie––not only is he rich, brooding, and handsome, he could also offer her the kind of protection she’s always yearned for.

Yet as Jane and Eddie fall for each other, Jane is increasingly haunted by the legend of Bea, an ambitious beauty with a rags-to-riches origin story, who launched a wildly successful southern lifestyle brand. How can she, plain Jane, ever measure up? And can she win Eddie’s heart before her past––or his––catches up to her?

With delicious suspense, incisive wit, and a fresh, feminist sensibility, The Wife Upstairs flips the script on a timeless tale of forbidden romance, ill-advised attraction, and a wife who just won’t stay buried. In this vivid reimagining of one of literature’s most twisted love triangles, which Mrs. Rochester will get her happy ending?

My Thoughts: This was just the book I needed right now. I loved Jane Eyre and I really appreciated this retelling of the story with strong (not always good) female characters. I was amused by the way key events were twisted to fit the modern day setting and it was great fun spotting the foreshadowing from the original novel.

This is fast paced, great fun and just ever so slightly twisted.

This quote from the acknowledgements really sums up the whole book for me:

“And lastly, thanks to every woman who ever got to the end of Jane Eyre and thought, Honestly Jane? You could do better”


Who would like this? I would recommend this to anyone who needs to escape reality right now and who doesn’t mind their romance just ever so slightly twisted.

We want to hear from you! Have you read this book? What did you think? 

One Comment Post a comment
  1. Remedial Stitcher #

    Yay! I’ve been curious about this, ever since I saw the title and knew what it was without even reading the synopsis. I’ll definitely snap it up!


    January 7, 2021

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