The Innocent Wife introduces us to Samantha, a Bristol schoolteacher, who becomes obsessed with Dennis Danson, a thirty-something man who is currently twenty years into his Death Row sentence in an American prison. A recent true-crime documentary suggests that Dennis may not be the one responsible for the brutal murder of a young girl in Florida's Red River County and Samantha is so convinced Dennis's of innocence that she starts a progressively more intimate correspondence with him.
From the opening chapter you get a sense that this story does not bode well and yet, Samantha with dogged determination and little regard for her own safety travels to America to be closer to Dennis.
What then follows is a fascinating, and at times deeply disturbing, story of dark obsession and cruel manipulation. Interspersed with witness transcripts from the original investigation, the story gives a unique insight into the facts behind the case and gives voice to those characters who knew Dennis when he was younger and also gets into the mind-set of those people who are determined to try to prove his innocence.
Intricately plotted, The Innocent Wife caught my attention from the start and compelled me to turn the pages so quickly that I had finished the book in just a few short hours. The author does a great job of bringing Samantha with all of her complex vulnerability to life, whilst at the same time getting into the mentality of a young man whose life has been twisted by the tragic circumstances of his dysfunctional bringing. The action is well paced throughout and there are more than enough twists and turns to keep you guessing until the story's unexpected ending.
The Innocent Wife was chosen as The Daily Mail's First Novel Competition winner in 2016 and introduces us a remarkable new talent in crime thriller writing.
About the Author
Amy Lloyd studied English and Creative Writing at Cardiff Metropolitan University Her writing combines her fascination for true crime and her passion for fiction. She lives in Cardiff with her partner and two cats.
Twitter @AmyLloydWrites #TheInnocentWife