Thursday, January 17, 2008

The Killer's Wife-Bill Floyd

The Killer's Wife
Bill Floyd
St. Martin's, Mar 2008, $23.95
ISBN 9780312373399

Six years have passed since Nina Mosley found proof that her husband, Randy, was a nationwide serial killer. After he was convicted in California and put on death row, she quietly divorced him and moved to the coast with their preadolescent son, Hayden. She changed her name to Leigh Wren and settled in Cary, North Carolina.

Things seem fine for Nina and Hayden until an angry father of a victim finds her in Cary and informs everyone that she is the wife of a killing demon who sired her son. Friends reject her as if she and Hayden killed all these people; they hold her culpable for not recognizing the monster she was married to. However, everything changes again when mousey cringing Nina becomes the mouse that roared when someone tries to kill Hayden.

THE KILLER’S WIFE provides an interesting spin on the serial killer thriller as the focus is on the wife and son of the sociopath. The story line is at its best when the focus is on Leigh, who was avoiding the limelight trying to make a safe life for her and Hayden only to have that destroyed by another victim. The reaction of her friends is priceless and her look back to her married day (though at times intrusive due to much frequency) adds to understanding her as she wonders how she missed the signs. When the plot switches to Nina amateur sleuth it adds tension, but loses the uniqueness of a deep character study into other victims of a serial killer.

Harriet Klausner