Thursday, January 05, 2017

Review: The Stepmother by Claire Seeber (audio)

Title: The Stepmother
Author: Claire Seeber
Narrator: Karina Fernandez
Published: July 2016, Bookouture
Length: 9 hours 42 minutes
Source: Audible via Publisher

The perfect wife. A fairytale family. Don’t believe your eyes…
Jeanie and Matthew are a happily married couple who both have teenage children from previous relationships.

No one said it would be easy to raise a blended family under one roof but Jeanie and Matthew are strong. They will make it work.

And whilst Jeanie’s step-daughter Scarlett rejects her, Jeanie will just have to try harder to win her over.

But Jeanie has a past. A terrible secret she thought she’d buried a long time ago. And now, it’s coming to the surface, threatening to destroy her new marriage.

Someone is playing a terrifying game on Jeanie and she must put a stop to it once and for all.

After all, a fairytale needs a happy ending … doesn’t it?

My thoughts: This is the first book I've picked up by Claire Seeber and I can tell you it definitely won't be my last! I found myself completely engaged in this book from start to finish and loved that it was loosely based on the Snow White fairy tale. Combining a fairy tale with a psychological thriller - I was hooked, not to mention it wasn't something I had seen done before, so I was definitely intrigued!

The characters in this book are so dynamic - they all come to life and whether you end up liking them or not, you can't help but feel just how life-like they are. And believe me, there are some unlikeable characters in this book! They are flawed, sure, but some of them are just detestable. On the other hand, the likeable ones have their flaws, too and sad to say, got on my nerves, too. But, that's what made them all so dynamic - just think, in real life you don't love everyone all the time!

This story is told from two alternating view points - Jeanie, the stepmother, and her sister, Marlena. They are as different from each other as two sisters can be. Jeanie has just married Matthew and is trying to blend their two families together - not an easy process, especially when there are secrets that are being withheld, secrets that of course slowly start to come out. 

The tension in this book is palpable and slowly builds as the book progresses. Sinister events start happening, all aimed at Jeanie and as the plot starts to thicken, you can't help but become more intrigued. So many twists and turns and just when I thought I had it all figured out, more secrets are revealed!

I really enjoyed this twisted, dark fairy tale of a story and look forward to picking up more of Claire Seeber's work!   

Audio thoughts: I thought Karina Fernandez did a great job with the narration of this audio book. Her characterization of the voices good and her pacing was spot on. It was easy to differentiate the chapters between Marlena and Jeanie and Karina used just the right amount of tension in her voice when needed. 



  1. Ooh, I am so glad that I have this one waiting on my stacks (well, in my Kindle). I love this kind of story. Thanks for sharing.

  2. I always tend to avoid books with a stepmother character because I'm a stepmother myself and we typically aren't portrayed very well in fiction! I'm so glad I saw this review as this sounds really good! I love a book with lots of secrets and I'm very curious about just what Jeanie is hiding.

  3. I read this one and I was on edge (in a good way!).


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