The Widow by Fiona Barton
Published by Bantam Press
14th January 2016
But what about her: the woman who grips his arm on the courtroom stairs – the wife who stands by him?
Jean Taylor’s life was blissfully ordinary. Nice house, nice husband. Glen was all she’d ever wanted: her Prince Charming.
Until he became that man accused, that monster on the front page. Jean was married to a man everyone thought capable of unimaginable evil.
But now Glen is dead and she’s alone for the first time, free to tell her story on her own terms.
Jean Taylor is going to tell us what she knows.
Jean Taylor has just lost her husband Glen in an unfortunate incident concerning himself and a bus. However she doesn’t appear to be the grieving widow, in fact, some might say she seems rather relieved. What few people don't know is that Glen was accused of abducting a small child, and whilst his case was eventually overturned, no one seemed to forget his name or his face.Jean stuck by him through the whole trial and now he has passed, journalist Kate Waters feels now is the time to approach her and get ‘the widows’ side of the story. Does Jean know more about what happened to Bella Elliott; did Glen ever confess any of his darkest secrets to her, or was he, as was eventually proved, totally innocent of all charges? This could be the scoop of the year, and Kate isn’t planning on leaving Jean’s doorstep until she has a full exclusive.
We weave back and forth through the years, from when toddler Bella goes missing from her front garden, through the police investigation that subsequently followed, to now, when Kate plans on getting the story of the year out of Glen’s wife.
We go through Jean’s past, from her teenage years when she first met Glen, through the horror of his accusation and to the hounding of her life during and after the trial. But, the question remains, does Jean know more than she has ever revealed?
I did wonder as I went through the book as to whether there would be any skeletons in the cupboard to be revealed, or whether Glen really was innocent as we meet lots of other people suspected at the time of Bella’s disappearance, and find that they too have secrets that they have kept hidden from the police. I clearly can't give anything away, but the ending makes for interesting reading. It’s a gripping debut.
Miss Chapter x