Beth Murphy is on the run…
For nearly a year, Beth has been planning for this day. A day some people might call any other Wednesday, but Beth prefers to see it as her new beginning—one with a new look, new name and new city. Beth has given her plan significant thought, because one small slip and her violent husband will find her.
Sabine Hardison is missing…
A couple hundred miles away, Jeffrey returns home from a work trip to find his wife, Sabine, is missing. Wherever she is, she’s taken almost nothing with her. Her abandoned car is the only evidence the police have, and all signs point to foul play.
As the police search for leads, the case becomes more and more convoluted. Sabine’s carefully laid plans for her future indicate trouble at home, and a husband who would be better off with her gone. The detective on the case will stop at nothing to find out what happened and bring this missing woman home. Where is Sabine? And who is Beth? The only thing that’s certain is that someone is lying and the truth won’t stay buried for long.
Click here for an excerpt.
What People Are Saying
“This domestic thriller messes with our understanding of how well we can truly know someone else. Dear Wife’s switchbacking plot revolves around two women: one who’s disappeared and one who’s reinvented herself and skipped town to flee an abusive marriage. But which woman is which? We weren’t sure until the book’s last sneaky twist. Kimberly Belle, author of the bestseller The Marriage Lie, keeps us guessing, alternating the perspective between a character named Beth; Jeffrey, the husband of a missing woman; and Marcus, an Arkansas detective trying to figure out what on earth is going on. Belle has a flair for quick and sassy first-person narration—her writing style is as sharp as her characters.”
— Apple Books Best Book of June
“Kimberly Belle is astonishing. DEAR WIFE is an irresistible page turner, the riveting story of a wife on the run. And yes, it’s twisty, and full of secrets, and jaw-droppingly unpredictable. But what makes this read special is that it’s also a deeply revealing portrait of a modern marriage. DEAR WIFE is so emotionally compelling it will haunt you long after you race through the pages.”
— Hank Phillippi Ryan, bestselling author of Trust Me
“This is Kimberly Belle at her best. The pacing is perfect. A brilliant, terrifying thriller. My heart pounded the entire time I read it.”
— Kaira Rouda, bestselling author of The Favorite Daughter
“A woman on the run, a grieving husband, a bereft sister, a brokenhearted lover, a determined detective - or are they? Nothing is as it seems in Kimberly Belle’s knockout thriller, DEAR WIFE. I tore through the pages of this clever, multi-layered stunner. Not even the most astute suspense fan will be able to see what’s coming until the final, jaw-dropping twist. Clear your calendar and put DEAR WIFE at the top of your to-be-read list. Five breathtaking stars!”
— Heather Gudenkauf, New York Times bestselling author of The Weight of Silence and Before She Was Found
“DEAR WIFE had me at hello. From the moment I met Beth, a smart, tough woman on the run from her abusive husband, I couldn't stop reading--and that was before the twists started coming fast and furious. Written with heart, humor, and a hefty dose of truth beneath the thrills, DEAR WIFE is a wild and massively entertaining ride.”
— Amy Gentry, author of Good as Gone and Last Woman Standing
“Gasp-worthy, twisted, she’s-outdone-herself best. If you love thrillers this one’s gonna leave fingerprints…”
— Kristy Barrett, A Novel Bee
“Subtle, insidious, clever... DEAR WIFE is spellbinding. I was hooked from the first page. You’re going to love Kimberly Belle’s latest outing. And you aren’t going to see it coming...”
— JT Ellison, NYT bestselling author of Tear Me Apart
“Kimberly Belle’s DEAR WIFE is a powerhouse psychological thriller, filled with all the twists and turns of a woman crafting herself a new identity while escaping an abusive marriage. Masterfully written, Belle has outdone herself with this thrilling and emotionally complex tale. This one shines.”
— Jennifer Hillier, author of Jar of Hearts
“An enthralling plot with compelling characters that make it impossible to pull yourself from the page. Belle has hit another one out of the park!”
— Liv Constantine, internationally bestselling author of The Last Mrs. Parrish and The Last Time I Saw You
“In DEAR WIFE, Kimberly Belle expertly takes you on an adrenaline-filled, twisty rollercoaster ride that’ll keep you guessing about who’s missing, who’s lying, and, ultimately, who might get away with murder. Compelling and addictive!”
— Hannah McKinnon, author of The Neighbors
“At the start of this intense thriller from Belle (Three Days Missing), a woman called Beth drives west from Arkansas into Oklahoma to escape her violent husband. She’s carefully planned her exit for almost a year. Meanwhile, Jeffrey Hardison returns to Pine Bluff, Ark., after a business trip to discover that his real estate broker wife, Sabine, is not yet home and has once again left the house a mess. When Sabine’s car is found abandoned, and her whereabouts remain unknown, Det. Marcus Durand of the Pine Bluff PD investigates and soon focuses on Jeffrey as the chief suspect in her disappearance. As the first-person narrative shifts among Beth, Jeffrey, and Marcus, hints of each main character’s motivations emerge. The stakes rise when the police learn that Jeffrey abused Sabine. Multiple plot twists keep the reader guessing all the way to the stunning conclusion, and the link between Beth and Sabine comes as one of the book’s bigger surprises. Belle once again displays a knack for high suspense.”
— Publisher’s Weekly
“A woman is on the run with cash, a burner phone, and plans that have taken most of a year to build. But can she escape? Beth Murphy, from Pine Bluff, Arkansas, has planned every detail of her departure meticulously; from her new name to her new appearance and car, she is leaving nothing to chance. But the person she is fleeing continues to be an overwhelming presence in her mind, and she expects to see him hiding in every shadow. He has trained her well through years of abuse, and she knows that he will find her—the only question is when. Her jumpiness during the days and terror-soaked nights are hardly going unnoticed, and it becomes obvious to her new co-workers and rooming-house neighbors that she is not who she says she is. From her new life as a cleaner in Atlanta, Beth obsessively tracks the media coverage of a missing woman from Pine Bluff, Sabine Hardison, and the police's search for her. Sabine is a successful realtor who disappeared one afternoon while her husband was away on business, but as the police dig deeper, it becomes clear that this was not a happy marriage. Suspense author Belle (Three Days Missing, 2018, etc.) switches among three points of view as the story unfolds, giving insights into Beth and her efforts to re-create herself; Sabine's husband, Jeffrey, who is picking up the pieces left behind by his wife's disappearance while coming to terms with the aggressive publicity around his marriage's shortcomings; and the detective, Marcus, who has been assigned to find out where Sabine has gone. Is Beth actually Sabine? Is she not? Are those continuity errors the whisper of red herrings or just the different ways multiple characters perceive the same events? An unexpected ending hinges on information missing from the story. Everything is not quite as it seems in this quick, satisfying read.”
— Kirkus Reviews
Real estate agent Sabine Hardison has disappeared without a trace. At the same time, a woman named Beth Murphy appears just outside of town, on the run from an abusive husband. Beth has put months’ worth of effort into reinventing herself, squirreling away money and deliberately laying a misleading trail to her whereabouts. Dogged detective Marcus Durand has identified Sabine's husband Jeffrey as the prime suspect in her disappearance, but as both Marcus and Jeffrey dig deeper, they find that Sabine had a secret life outside of her marriage. Meanwhile, Beth begins to build a new life in Atlanta, including friends and a job cleaning a megachurch—but the person who’s after her isn’t going to stop. Belle’s latest domestic thriller has everything genre fans want: plenty of twists, turns, and misdirection, plus an unexpected and satisfying ending. The alternating points of view give readers a glimpse inside the minds of Beth, Marcus, and Jeffrey—a woman in peril and the two men who will stop at nothing to track her down. Ideal for fans of Gilly Macmillan and Alafair Burke.