in , by Komal, July 06, 2020

Book: ‘The Next Widow’ (Jericho and Wright Thrillers: Book 1)Author: CJ LyonsPublisher: BookouturePublication Date: 28 Jul 2020


A gripping crime thriller with unputdownable suspense

In the distance Leah heard sirens. She ignored them. Right now, her daughter needed her and Emily was just out of reach, curled up under the bed, her eyes closed, desperately shaking. Leah did the only thing any mother would do. She crawled through the blood to get to her daughter.

Dr Leah Wright returned to her childhood home in rural Pennsylvania with her husband to find peace and quiet, start afresh and raise her six-year-old daughter Emily. But when she gets home one dark winter night, clutching roses in her hand, she finds her daughter huddled under her bed and her husband’s blood all over the floor...

When Detective Luka Jericho is called to investigate, he’s shocked to learn that the killer left a witness behind – the victim’s young daughter. The scene is a painful reminder of his fiancé’s unsolved death, and he is desperate to find out what Emily saw that night. He knows that the killer could still be out there, waiting to strike again.

But growing up, Leah learned the hard way that the only person she could rely on was herself. And it’s not until she and Emily are attacked again that she realizes just how close the killer is. Can she trust Luka to keep her daughter safe?


“...it was simply a child’s desperate hope that sleep had magically erased an unpleasant reality.”

Dr. Leah Wright is an ambitious, tough, selfless woman with a god complex. She is successful and happy in her life until she finds her husband and her daughter drenched in blood. Detective Luca Jericho is assigned to investigate. Can he catch the killer before more harm is done?

This was an intense read. There are so many incidents that occur at once and that invokes overwhelmed feelings from the reader and that matches the emotions of the primary characters. The author added a ton of emotional quotient and it was easy to empathize with Leah and Luca. They were similar in a lot of ways. All the secondary characters were fun, pragmatic and that was a nice contrast. The entire book is written in the third person with simple diction. 

Foreshadowing and irony were implemented well. There are so many hints throughout the book that will convey the killer’s identity. Details regarding the setting were not elaborate and that helped the story not lose focus. But some parts represented the moods of the book.

"March hadn't come in like a lion at all. If anything, after february's storms, it had limped in with barely a whimper. This morning, the temperature hovered around 60 while the sun teased plants eager for winter to be over". 

Overall, ‘The Next Widow’ is an engaging, fast-paced, roller-coaster. This book is recommended to all crime-thriller genre readers.

Rating: 4/5

Personal Note: After my long-term rom-com YA binge, this was exactly what I needed. I’m so ready to bury my head in other books of ‘CJ Lyons’. This book has exceeded all expectations. ARC provided by Bookouture publishers and NetGalley. Thank you. 

During my read:

About CJ:

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of over forty novels, former pediatric ER doctor CJ Lyons has lived the life she writes about in her cutting edge Thrillers with Heart. 

Two time winner of the International Thriller Writers’ coveted Thriller Award, CJ has been called a "master within the genre" (Pittsburgh Magazine) and her work has been praised as "breathtakingly fast-paced" and "riveting" (Publishers Weekly) with "characters with beating hearts and three dimensions" (Newsday).

Learn more about CJ's Thrillers with Heart at www.cjlyons.net

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