4 July 2018

Review #718: Sidney Sheldon’s The Silent Widow by Tilly Bagshawe

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

“Never allow someone to be your priority while allowing yourself to be their option.”

----Mark Twain

Tilly Bagshawe, the New York Times bestselling author, is back with a bang with another gripping Sidney Sheldon mystery called, The Silent Widow. This story revolves around a top shot psychiatrist, whose husband died in a car crash a year ago, and is still in grief, but soon her patients and acquaintances are dropping dead like flies, and the local police mark the poor widow as the prime suspect, even though her life too is in danger. Eventually forcing her to take help of a local PI, who uncovers a lot of dirt about a missing girl case 10 years ago to her husband's tragic death to the serial killings of her patients, which might even make him a victim out of it.


Sweeping from Mexico City to the dark underbelly of LA, The Silent Widow has all the trademark glamour, suspense and unexpected twists of a classic Sidney Sheldon novel.

A young American au pair, Charlotte Clancy, vanishes without a trace in Mexico City. The case is left cold, but its legacy will be devastating.

A decade later, LA is shaken by a spate of violent murders. Psychologist Nikki Roberts is the common link between the victims, her patients at the heart of this treacherous web. When someone makes an attempt on Nikki’s life, it’s clear she is a marked woman.

Nikki makes a living out of reading people, drawing out their secrets, but the key to this shocking pattern eludes her. With the police at a dead end Nikki drafts in Derek Williams, a PI who isn’t afraid to put his hand into the hornet’s nest. Williams was thwarted in the notorious Charlotte Clancy case all those years ago, but what he unearths in LA – and the mention of one name in particular – leaves him cold, and takes him on a dangerous path into the past.

A shadowy manipulator has brought his deadly game to the streets of LA. In a crime spanning generations, it seems Nikki Roberts knows all too much – and a ruthless killer knows the price of her silence.

In this crooked city, where enemies and friends are one and the same, Nikki must be the master of her own escape.

Nikki Roberts, the beautiful, hotshot LA psychiatrist, whose husband died tragically in a car crash, now finds herself in the center of the murder investigation of one of her patients and her assistant. Moroever, Nikki too has been tried to run over by a car, but it seems, L.A.P.D is more interested in putting the blame on her for all those murders in the city. Enter Derek Williams, a local PI, who helps Nikki to dig up dirt on her husband's alleged involvement with a Russian woman. Little did Derek knew that a past case, which still haunted him, would come up with one of the names that he still fears of, and that he would become that person's next target for uncovering too much just for the sake of Nikki. But can Nikki save herself before its too late, even though one kind cop and her husband's partner cum best friend are turning into something more than "just friends"?

They say, once a fan of Sheldon, will always be one. And it doesn't matter whoever is keeping his legacy alive, as long as the racy, intoxicating as well as addictive suspense keeps clawing at me every time I open a Sheldon titled book. That's the USP of his books. The plots have to be alluring, with unforeseeable twists and turns followed by dark, flawed characters, who should also be dangerously attractive to the eyes of the readers. Nevertheless, Tilly Bagshawe has done a great job over the years in keeping alive Sheldon's name in the hearts of his fans.

The author's writing style is articulate and is laced with enough tension to keep the readers frantically turning the pages of this book till the very end. The climax is bomb-blasting and as usual totally unpredictable, even though the readers will be left anticipating for it like a hungry fox looking for a prey. The dialogues are penned in an engaging manner, that has all kinds of emotions to make the readers high. The pacing is always a fast one in books of Tilly Bagshawe and will put the readers on their edges till the turn of the very last page of the book.

The tightly wrapped plot with enough twists and turns will keep the candle of suspense burn for a very, very long time. The mystery is so well concocted with edgy and page turning apprehension. Moroever it has so many layers and elements that while reading the readers are bound to feel intrigued. The scenes are penned with so much details and feels that it will feel like those are unraveling right before the eyes of the readers.

The characters are extremely well developed and well etched out from scratch with enough realism in their demeanor to make them look believable in the eyes of the readers. The central characters, Nikki, acted annoyed me most of the time, because of her fragile mentality and also always trying to be a damsel-in-distress, and sometimes her perfection was just too hot to handle for me in this story. I loved the other supporting characters, like Derek, Ann etc, more, they are simple and their psychologically twisted taste of minds are so gradually represented to us, that it felt really good to read about them, than Nikki.

In a nutshell, a must read captivating and page turning mystery novel not just for Sheldon fans but also for serious crime fiction readers too.

Verdict: A compelling, alluring story line with so much raw emotions and edgy suspense.

Author Info:
Matilda Emily N. Bagshawe was born on 12 June 1973 in England, UK. She attended local all-girls Catholic schools near her family home in Surrey. She was a single mother at 17, but she won a place at Cambridge University and took Persephone, her ten-month-old baby daughter with her. As a journalist, she went on to enjoy a successful career in London, and contributed regularly to The Sunday Times, Daily Mail and Evening Standard, before turning her hand to novels. Her first book, Adored as Tilly Bagshawe, was a smash hit on both sides of the Atlantic in 2005, and she hasn't looked back since.
Tilly is married Robin Nydes, a US businessman, and the couple have two sons together, Zac and Theo. The family divide their time between their homes in London and Los Angeles. Tilly is also the sister of the writer and politician Louise Bagshawe.
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