The Evidence - K.L. Slater

Reading Challenge Category: Free ARC from NetGalley

Official Blurb:

I can see her through the glass door. She’s smaller in real life than I expected. She looks the exact opposite of the type of woman that might murder her husband.
Everyone’s heard of Simone Fischer. The young mother accused of killing her husband in cold blood, one sunny afternoon, while their son played in the room next door.
So when journalist Esme secures an exclusive interview with her it feels like the opportunity of a lifetime. Simone has remained silent since her husband’s death but after a decade in prison, she is willing to talk to Esme. And Esme, recently freed from her own toxic marriage, is confident she can get Simone to open up.
At their first meeting, when Esme sees Simone sitting across the table from her in jeans and a lemon tunic top, she is stuck by her ordinariness. Then Simone begins to tell her story of an abusive relationship where she was a prisoner in her own home, and Esme decides that the truth needs to come out.
But not everyone is pleased that Esme is telling Simone’s story. And when Esme’s beloved sister is left for dead in a nearby wood, Esme’s life begins to unravel. Forced to question what Simone has told her, she can’t help but wonder if murder was the only way out of Simone’s marriage. Why has it taken Simone so long to tell the world the truth? And will the consequences be devastating for Esme?

My Thoughts:

This wasn’t quite what I was expecting. I thought this would be mainly about the podcast, Simone, and getting justice for events that would be proved to be wrong.
However, the podcast and that part of the story is really only on the periphery of Esme’s life. The central part of the book is more about her life falling apart, her sister has gone missing, and her ex-husband has been arrested. An old crime involving her son is coming to light, and she is having to deal with nightmare in-laws, coups at work, and other disasters being thrown at her. At times the book felt a little bit too hectic, and too much was going on. This wouldn’t have been a bad thing if the protagonist had been reacting in a suitable way. However, most of the time, she ignored what was happening, carried on working, lied to her son and generally acted very strange herself. She didn’t really react to much happening around her. Her reactions were just so lacklustre. It was very hard to care about what was happening to her, and in turn, it ended up being hard to enjoy the book.
With a little bit of tweaking, the book could have been dynamite. The premise was there, but it just wasn’t tied together quite right. The podcast and Esme’s life just jarred up against one another instead of working seamlessly together. As a result, when the big reveal came at the end, it fell a bit flat. This author is usually very good at building the suspense throughout, and I did feel it a bit; I just think my frustration with Esme took over too much to really enjoy it.
So, unfortunately, this wasn’t one of my favourite Slater books. I still read it quite quickly to see if it did pick up and so that I could find out if it did all tie together. Esme just needed a little more gumption to have made this book so much better.

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The Evidence
by K.L. Slater
Date Started
25th June 2021
Date Finished
27th June 2021
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