Category Archives: The New Husband

Review: The New Husband by D.J. Palmer

Title: The New Husband by D.J. Palmer
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery, Suspense
Length: 384 pages
Book Rating: B

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley


The New Husband is a riveting thriller about the lies we tell ourselves from D. J. Palmer, the author of Saving Meghan.

Just because you love someone doesn’t mean you know them.

Nina Garrity learned that the hard way after discovering that her missing husband, Glen, had been leading a double life with another woman. But Glen’s gone—presumably drowned while fishing on his boat—so she can’t confront him about the affair or any of his other misdeeds. A year and a half after the accident, Nina considers herself a widow, even though the police never found a body. Following a chance encounter with Simon Fitch, a teacher from her daughter Maggie’s middle school, Nina finds love again and has hopes of putting her shattered life back together.

Simon, a widower still grieving the suicide of his first wife, has found his dream girl in Nina. His charm and affections help break through to a heart hardened by betrayal. Nina’s teenage son, Connor, embraces Simon as the father he wishes his dad could have been, but Maggie sees a far darker side to this new man in their lives. Even Nina’s good friends wonder if Simon is supremely devoted—or dangerously possessive.

But Nina is committed, not only to her soon-to-be new husband but also to resuming her former career as a social worker. Before she can move forward, however, Nina must first clear her conscience that she’s not making another terrible choice in a man. In doing so, she will uncover the shocking truth: the greatest danger to her, and her children, are the lies people tell themselves.


The New Husband by D.J. Palmer is a suspense-laden domestic mystery.

Nearly eighteen months after her husband Glen’s inexplicable disappearance, Nina Garrity  is moving on. She and her children, thirteen year old Maggie and sixteen year old Connor, are moving in with her new boyfriend, teacher Simon Fitch. All these months later, Nina still does not know exactly what happened to Glen. However, she learns just enough about him after he vanished to realize he is not the man she believed him to be. Nina loves Simon and although he has never done anything to raise her suspicions, she finds it difficult to completely depend on him for everything. Connor is thrilled with his almost stepdad but Maggie is certain Simon has a darker side. Will she be able to convince Nina to believe her?

Nina has mostly come to terms with Glen’s disappearance and she is very happy with Simon.  Which is why she is a little surprised that moving in with Simon raises anxiety and a few doubts. Nina is also a little frustrated by Maggie’s animosity towards Simon but she tries to be understanding of her daughter’s feelings. Although she does not like upsetting Simon, Nina restarts her career and when Simon expresses his unhappiness with her decision, she absolutely refuses quit her job. But will the increasing tension at home lead to a change of heart?

Simon is an exacting man who is well organized and eager to please Nina. He does not like to discuss his past, but Nina is aware of the circumstances that ended his first two marriages. He is so reasonable when unpleasant situations arise that Nina is quick to placate him and smooth things over.  Simon tries to be conciliatory  as he navigates his troubled relationship with Maggie, but she easily manages to get under his skin.  Thankfully he and Connor have forged a close bond and they genuinely enjoy one another’s company.

Maggie is not at all happy about the changes in her family’s life. She greatly misses her dad and she is resistant to Simon’s attempts to befriend her.  Maggie tries her best to ignore him and stay out of his way, but she is stubbornly defiant as he tries to bend her to his will. A shocking glimpse during an argument convinces her that Simon is not the man he presents himself to be. But will she be able to prove her suspicions about him to her mother?

The New Husband is a clever mystery with an intriguing storyline. The characters are well-developed but not always likable as they make questionable choices. The plot is interesting but the pacing is a little slow until a jaw-dropping plot twist near the halfway point. With the tension building with every chapter, D.J. Palmer brings this chilling mystery to an action-packed denouement.  An outstanding mystery I thoroughly enjoyed and recommend to fans of the genre.

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Filed under Contemporary, DJ Palmer, Mystery, Rated B+, Review, St Martin's Press, Suspense, The New Husband