Category Archives: Cate Holahan

Review: Her Three Lives by Cate Holahan

Title: Her Three Lives by Cate Holahan
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Genre: Contemporary, Domestic Mystery, Suspense
Length: 353 pages
Book Rating: B+

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley


Gaslight goes high-tech in USA Today bestselling author Cate Holahan’s new standalone thriller in which a family must determine who the real enemy is after a brutal home invasion breaks their trust in each other.

Her public life

Jade Thompson has it all. She’s an up-and-coming social media influencer, and she has a beautiful new home and a successful architect for a fiancé. But there’s trouble behind the scenes. To Greg’s children, his divorce from their mother and his new life can only mean a big mid-life crisis. To Jade, his suburban Connecticut upbringing isn’t an easy match with her Caribbean roots.

Her private life

A savage home invasion leaves Greg house-bound with a traumatic brain injury and glued to the live feeds from his ubiquitous security cameras. As the police investigate the crime and Greg’s frustration and rage grows, Jade begins to wonder what he may know about their attackers. And whether they are coming back.

Her secret life

As Greg watches Jade’s comings and goings, he becomes convinced that her behavior is suspicious and that she’s hiding a big secret.  The more he sees, the more he wonders whether the break-in was really a random burglary. And whether he’s worth more to Jade if he were dead than alive.


Her Three Lives by Cate Holahan is a page-turning domestic mystery.

Thirty-two-year-old Jade Thompson is an influential life style blogger who writes about her Caribbean American culture. Following a bit of a whirlwind romance with two decades older Greg Hamlin, she is now engaged and expecting their first child. Greg is a wealthy, successful architect who is still in midst of a contentious divorce. His two adult children, twenty-three-year-old Violet and younger son Paul are not exactly thrilled with his new relationship. Despite his children’s attitudes, Greg and Jade are blissfully happy and eagerly preparing for their future together. However, their lives are shattered when Greg suffers a serious head injury and Jade miscarries during a home invasion. After he is released from the hospital, their relationship deteriorates as Greg grows suspicious that Jade might have something to with the attack. Jade is keeping secrets from her fiancé but are they related to the vicious assault?

Jade is devoted to assisting Greg during his recovery and she is also mourning the loss of their baby. She is already under stress since their attackers have not been caught when Greg decides to install a security system. Jade sometimes does not recognize the suspicious man she is now living with. After she begins receiving threatening notes in the mail, she is afraid they are connected to her past. Unable to reveal the information she has kept hidden from Greg, Jade tries to find out for sure. Will she unearth the truth about who attacked them and why?

Greg is dealing with side effects as he recovers from his head wound. Unfortunately, he fears losing Jade if he reveals any weaknesses. So, he works hard to keep up a façade of strength when he is around her. Greg also ignores his doctor’s admonition to work with a counselor to deal with his PTSD. With his paranoia and fear of being attacked again rising, he installs a plethora of security cameras both inside and outside of their home. His daughter Violet stokes his fears about Jade and he grows increasingly distrustful of his fiancée. As his temper rises, what will Greg do about his suspicions about Jade?

Her Three Lives is a suspense-laden domestic mystery. Jade is a vibrantly-developed character who is proud of her heritage and shaped by her life experiences. Greg’s wealth insulates him ordinary life which contributes to his unwarranted but very real fears after the brutal assault.  The storyline is fast-paced and the tension increases with every chapter. With clever misdirects, Cate Holahan brings this riveting mystery to an unpredictable dénouement. I absolutely loved and highly recommend this thrilling domestic mystery to fans of the genre.

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Filed under Cate Holahan, Contemporary, Domestic Mystery, Grand Central Publishing, Her Three Lives, Mystery, Rated B+, Review, Suspense

Review: One Little Secret by Cate Holahan

Title: One Little Secret by Cate Holahan
Publisher: Crooked Lane Books
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery, Suspense
Length: 320 pages
Book Rating: B+

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley


Everyone has a secret. For some, it’s worth dying to protect. For others, it’s worth killing.

The glass beach house was supposed to be the getaway that Susan needed. Eager to help her transplanted family set down roots in their new town—and desperate for some kid-free conversation—she invites her new neighbors to join in on a week-long sublet with her and her workaholic husband.

Over the course of the first evening, liquor loosens inhibitions and lips. The three couples begin picking up on the others’ marital tensions and work frustrations, as well as revealing their own. But someone says too much. And the next morning one of the women is discovered dead on the private beach.

Town detective Gabby Watkins must figure out who permanently silenced the deceased. As she investigates, she learns that everyone in the glass house was hiding something that could tie them to the murder, and that the biggest secrets of all are often in plain sight for anyone willing to look.

A taut, locked room mystery with an unforgettable cast of characters, One Little Secret promises to keep readers’ eyes glued to the pages and debating the blinders that we all put on in the service of politeness.


One Little Secret by Cate Holahan is a riveting domestic murder mystery about a vacation in the Hamptons that turns deadly.

After dropping their offspring at camp, three couples head to the Hamptons for week of R&R. Susan Ahmadi and her husband Nadal have recently relocated to town and she is eager to make friends with their neighbors, Jenny and Louis Murray and Rachel Klein and her husband Ben Hansen. Susan gave up her career to homeschool their autistic son and Nadal is CEO of a tech start up. Jenny is an orthopedic doctor turned sports commentator and Louis is a an ER surgeon. Rachel is a lawyer and her husband Ben is a self-published author who is  stay at home dad.  Tensions flare soon after their arrival and by the next day, one of the wives has been murdered. Everyone in the party seems to be keeping a secret but is one them hiding something that is worth killing over?

Detective Sergeant Gabby Watkins is busy working a possible rape when she is called to the scene of the murder. Recently promoted, Gabby is an experienced investigator and she soon begins interviewing the rest of the group. Of course her first suspect is the victim’s husband but will she find proof he killed his wife? Uncertain whether he is their killer, Gabby and Detective Jason DeMarco continue asking probing questions in order to unearth the truth.

With the narrative weaving back and forth between the day before, the day of and the day after the murder, intriguing information is revealed that adds to the overall tension. The vacation is off to a strained beginning following a testy exchange between a husband and wife which leaves everyone uncomfortable. When shocking information comes to light, a confrontation between one couple turns extremely volatile.  And, last but not least, one of the wives suspects her husband is having an affair.

One Little Secret is an absorbing mystery that has plenty of twist and turns. Although the various characters are a bit hard to tell apart initially, they gradually become fully developed, three dimensional people. The storyline in intriguing and the suspense ratchets up with each startling revelation. Cate Holahan brings the novel to a breath-taking conclusion that is a bit unexpected but completely satisfying. An excellent mystery that I found impossible to put down and highly recommend to readers of the genre.

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Filed under Cate Holahan, Contemporary, Crooked Lane Books, Mystery, One Little Secret, Rated B+, Review, Suspense

Review: Lies She Told by Cate Holahan

Title: Lies She Told by Cate Holahan
Publisher: Crooked Lane Books
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery, Suspense
Length: 288 pages
Book Rating: B+

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley


From the author of one of Kirkus Reviews’ best books of the year, The Widower’s Wife, comes an electrifying story of love and deceit.

The truth can be darker than fiction.

Liza Cole, a once-successful novelist whose career has seen better days, has one month to write the thriller that could land her back on the bestseller list. Meanwhile, she’s struggling to start a family, but her husband is distracted by the disappearance of his best friend, Nick. As stresses weigh her down in her professional and personal lives, Liza escapes into writing the chilling exploits of her latest heroine, Beth.

Beth, a new mother, suspects her husband is cheating on her while she’s home caring for their newborn. Angry and betrayed, she aims to catch him in the act and make him pay for shattering the illusion of their perfect life. But before she realizes what she’s doing, she’s tossing the body of her husband’s mistress into the East River.

Then, the lines between Liza’s fiction and her reality eerily blur. Nick’s body is dragged from the East River, and Liza’s husband is arrested for his murder. Before her deadline is up, Liza will have to face up to the truths about the people around her, including her own. If she doesn’t, the end of her heroine’s story could be the end of her own.


In Lies She Told, Cate Holahan skillfully utilizes the book within a book format which makes for an extremely  riveting read as chapters alternate between author Liza Cole and the protagonist in her work in progress, Beth.

Liza is extremely  stressed as she and her husband, David, struggle with infertility. Adding to their difficulties is the disappearance of David’s close friend and law partner, Nick Laundau, who disappeared a month earlier.  Liza is also on a tight deadline for her next novel so she is immersed in her latest project as she departs for a  writer’s conference. With her editor Trevor pressuring her for a sexy romantic suspense novel that will put her back on the bestseller’s list, Liza is exhausted, hormonal and frustrated by David’s preoccupation with finding Nick while at the same time trying to keep their law practice afloat. Liza is soon unable to tell fact from fiction as events in the present begin to bear eerie similarities to the  novel she is writing. Is life imitating art? Or is there a far more sinister reason for the shocking parallels?

Until recently, Liza’s twelve year marriage to David has been quite happy and fulfilling. Until she failed to conceive, the only blight on their happiness is the fact that Nick intensely dislikes her and he makes no effort to keep his feelings about her secret. Her infertility has begun to take a toll on their marriage but she refuses to give up on becoming pregnany even though David is no longer an active participant. Liza is resentful of her husband’s lack of support and she is not exactly sympathetic to his concern over Nick’s disappearance.

Escaping her real life problems by focusing on her work in progress, Liza finds it surprisingly easy to get inside the head of her protagonist, Beth. Beth is a new mother who stumbles across irrefutable proof her husband is cheating on her. Instead of confronting him, she becomes obsessed with him and his mistress. This obsession culminates with a horrific act and eventually the events in Liza’s novel begin to mimic the harrowing experiences happening in real life. Which begs the question: is Liza’s work in progress a product of her imagination?

From the chilling prologue until the action-packed conclusion, Lies She Told by Cate Holahan is an engrossing, suspense-laden read. Liza is a fascinating protagonist whose flaws make her sympathetic and relatable. The chapters from the work in progress are intriguing and just as interesting as the drama unfolding in Liza’s everyday life. This intricately plotted novel has plenty of twists, turns and a brilliantly executed book within a book concept that will keep readers on the edge of their seat until the shocking dénouement. An absolutely outstanding mystery that fans of the genre do not want to miss!

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Filed under Cate Holahan, Contemporary, Crooked Lane Books, Lies She Told, Mystery, Rated B+, Review, Suspense