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  • Writer's pictureJudith D Collins

He Said He Would Be Late

Narrated by Kelli Tager

ISBN: 9781250882455

Publisher: Macmillan Audio

Publication Date: 03/14/2023

Format: Audiobook

My Rating: 4.5 Stars 🎧 (ARC)

A fast-paced, twisty psychological debut about the complexities of marriage and new motherhood, told through the frenetic lens of a wife seeking the truth about her husband, at all costs, as the validity of the life she once knew unravels page by page.

Liz Bennett knows that she is one of the lucky ones. Wealthy and charming, Arno is a supportive husband to Liz and a doting father to their daughter, Emma. A rising banker at a top firm in the Boston area, he is the picture of perfection, rounding off their idyllic New England life. But when Liz sees a text on Arno's phone with a kissy-face emoji, her anxiety kicks into overdrive and she begins to worry that her luck has run out.

Plagued by persistent skepticism and countless sleepless nights, Liz decides she must uncover the truth about her husband—as any wife would. So she takes a deep breath and dives down the rabbit hole. As Liz peels back layers of deceit and tracks down every lead, a frenzy begins to take over her life. Could Arno really be unfaithful? Or is Liz's imagination getting the best of her? When everyone around her is convinced she's become unhinged, she must prove, if only to herself, that a woman's intuition expands beyond a single cryptic text.

A Macmillan Audio production from Henry Holt & Company.


"Frank, funny...a read-in-one-sitting ride that’s crazy, heartfelt, and maybe a little heartbreaking as well."

―Gilly Macmillan, New York Times bestselling author of The Nanny

“A sharp debut examining the often-destabilizing identity of new motherhood, as well as postpartum depression, anxiety, and insecurity. Sullivan deftly conveys the overwhelming frustration of maintaining appearances as she leads readers through an emotional journey to an open-ended but deeply satisfying conclusion.”

―Chris Cander, USA Today bestselling author of A Gracious Neighbor

"A pacey, compelling tale of obsession that's also an insightful and intimate look at marriage and the many vulnerabilities of new motherhood, this gorgeous debut truly shines!"

―Christina McDonald, USA Today bestselling author of The Night Olivia Fell

“He Said He Would Be Late is mesmerizing and propulsive―at once a humorous and relatable exploration of motherhood and marriage and an entirely successful story of suspense. I absolutely adored this book.”

―Nora Murphy, author of The Favor

My Review

Justine Sullivan's clever debut, HE SAID HE WOULD BE LATE is a twisty domestic suspense about motherhood, marriage, and a search for the truth.

Set in New England area, Liz Bennet is married to a wonderful man, Arno, and a mother to Emma. She has never had an issue trusting her husband until she sees a text on her husband's phone from a work colleague with a kissy face.

Now, this is all she can think about. She becomes obsessed, determined to find out the identity of this woman. Arno works long hours at a banking firm in downtown Boston while Liz and Emma are home.

However, nothing is as it appears.

Liz is an author with one published book but she cannot get into her current book. She cannot concentrate thinking of her husband traveling and enjoying life while she is at home with a baby and trying to write.

She has a nanny but is following her husband instead of writing. He gets home late, and Liz starts sleuthing, determined to discover what he is up to.

Is he faithful or not?

HE SAID HE WOULD BE LATE is an emotional, insightful, and compelling exploration of marriage and motherhood. Beautifully written with humor, rich character development, and a satisfying conclusion. I would class this as a suburban mystery.

The book shines with the witty dialogue inside Liz's head as she second-guesses everything. Add in a therapist, neighbors, and friends to weigh in.

The audiobook was outstanding, performed by narrator Kelli Tager. I love the cover, and the book draws you in. Highly recommend the audiobook.

It would make an interesting book club pick. Look forward to reading more from this author. For fans of Nora Murphy and Stacy Willingham.

Thank you to #MacmillanAudio and #NetGalley for a gifted ALC in exchange for an honest review.

@JudithDCollins | #JDCMustReadBooks

Pub Date: March 14, 2023

My Rating: 4.5 Stars

About the Author

Justine Sullivan was born and raised just outside of Baltimore, Maryland, where she failed to learn how to shuck a crab and never attended a single Orioles game. She did, however, discover a passion for reading at her local Harford County Library. She went on to study English Literature at the University of Delaware and then earned her master's in journalism from Boston University and has since spent a number of years working in both newsrooms and the world of branded content.

Justine lives outside of Boston with her husband and two terribly behaved dogs. He Said He Would Be Late is her debut novel. READ MORE







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