The Perfect Husband

The Perfect Husband  - Lisa Gardner Tess Williams, after a dismal childhood, found herself married to the "perfect husband" who turned out to be her biggest nightmare. After discovering he was responsible for the murder of at least ten women, Tess helped in his capture. Now he's escaped from prison and she knows his ultimate goal is to find her and her daughter and kill her. She decides to go on her own and prepare herself physically and mentally for the inevitable confrontation by hiring a mercenary to train her. J. T. Dillon is the man she seeks out. He's a burned out ex-Marine in retirement but agrees to take the assignment. This is a gritty story with a truly dispicable adversary in Jim Beckett, Tess' ex-husband. He's resourceful and because he was one, he thinks like a cop and is effective at eluding capture. Tess is almost a tragic figure if not for the burning drive to protect her daughter. J. T. Is fighting the demons of his childhood and the disintegration of his relationship with his sister, his only sibling. The dialogue is terse and the narrative simple and direct. The story is chilling and suspenseful and will keep you edgy, at least it did me. There were times when I was so tense I had to put the book down, regroup and gather my courage to resume reading. The one weakness I found in the story was the romance between J. T. and Tess. I wasn't able to connect with the thing that attracted them to each other. His interactions with her were mostly harsh and cruel, which was unsettling. She was a contradiction, having been so passive for most of her life but asserting herself with J. T. in odd ways. J. T.'s family history was always in the background and it was disturbing and a bit confusing. While I liked both of them, a few tender moments in their relationship might have made the romance more plausible. Though the romance has some weaknesses, the strength of the story is in the suspense surrounding Jim Beckett. This guy was seriously scary and diabolical, thwarting the efforts of many law enforcement agencies to capture him. I was worn out by the end of the story and he had left a bloody trail. Read this if you have the nerve.