Top positive review
The Wife, The Merc and The Serial Killer
Reviewed in the United States on June 28, 2018
It's really 3.5 for me.
After reading Catch Me, I was impressed with the book, especially with the connection to Gardner's other characters like Pierce & Kimberley Quincy, Roan Griffin, and even J.T Dillon and Tess Williams. So, I decided to read the first book of the FBI Profiler series.
The Perfect Husband is about a young woman named Tess Williams and Marine turned Merc named J.T Dillon. Tess was once married too a man named Jim Beckett, who seemed like "The Perfect Husband" at first. A handsome police officer who never hit her and took her away from her abusive father and married her. But then he started becoming psychologically abusive. He killed at least ten women before being taken down by Tess and going to prison. Now he's out and has set his sights on Tess, to finish off what he started. J.T Dillon is a drunken mess. He is reluctant to help Tess at first but eventually gives in. He and his sister, FBI Agent Marion MacAllister have a lot of unresolved personal baggage, mainly involving their father and somewhat involving J.T's wife, Rachel and adopted son Teddy. Meanwhile Special Agent Pierce Quincy is working with the Massachusetts authorities to help in the manhunt to find Jim Beckett, but will Jim get his revenge, or will Tess and J.T be ready to taken on mad methodical psychopath.
A crucial note: This is book marked a transition of genres for Lisa Gardner, and it is evidently clear in the amount of sex. There is nothing wrong with that, but some of it kind of feels like distraction when it's supposed to character development. Three of the key characters are very traumatized to the point where they act irrationally. It can be annoying, but also understandable. Sometimes victims of trauma aren't rational people.
As for positives, I can honestly say that I did like it when the pace picked up now and then and got exiting. The climax is a memorable one, but some might say that the last line spoken by [SPOILER] might sound a little corny.
Overall, I give it a 3.5. I think that Pierce Quincy was an interesting character (I see Hotch from Criminal Minds) and that Jim Beckett is a memorable villain, but a lot of the times, the pacing feels kind of slow, but there was a lot of really good backstory for many of the principal characters. You might get emotional by the end of this. I know I did.