Jee reviews ‘Stranger in the Lake’ by Kimberly Belle @HarlequinBooks #NetGalley #StrangerInTheLake #eARC #BlogTour #Fiction #Psychological #Thriller #bookreview

Title/Author: Stranger in the Lake by Kimberly Belle

Publisher: Harlequin Books

Pages: 352

Publication Date: June 9, 2020

In a nutshell (Publisher): When Charlotte married the wealthy widower Paul, it caused a ripple of gossip in their small lakeside town. They have a charmed life together, despite the cruel whispers about her humble past and his first marriage. But everything starts to unravel when she discovers a young woman’s body floating in the exact same spot where Paul’s first wife tragically drowned.

At first, it seems like a horrific coincidence, but the stranger in the lake is no stranger. Charlotte saw Paul talking to her the day before, even though Paul tells the police he’s never met the woman. His lie exposes cracks in their fragile new marriage, cracks Charlotte is determined to keep from breaking them in two.

As Charlotte uncovers dark mysteries about the man she married, she doesn’t know what to trust—her heart, which knows Paul to be a good man, or her growing suspicion that there’s something he’s hiding in the water.

My verdict: I am now a new Kimberly Belle fan!

My thoughts:

It’s my stop for the Blog Tour today, so here’s my review!

Lake Crosby, North Carolina.

Told between two timelines and two peopleyear 1999, Jax recalled the days when he, Paul and Micah were teenage boys; present day, Charlotte (Charlie), a twenty-six-year old gas station attendant, now married to Paul, a thirty-seven years old famous and successful architect, who was also a suspect of the murder of his first wife. But despite the town’s gossips, warnings and suspicions, Charlotte still fell head over heels for Paul, and married him.

All was a bed of roses, until one morning when Charlotte found a woman dead, lying under their dock, the same spot where Katherine, Paul’s first wife was found. When the woman was identified, Paul took off and couldn’t be reached. This raised suspicion not only among those investigating the case, but Charlotte too. Was she living with a murderer?

I loved Belle’s ‘Dear Wife’. One of the best thrillers I read last year. It was so good. So, of course I was excited when I was given the chance to read ‘Stranger in the Lake’.

It had a good start with promising characters and build-upPaul acting suspicious, while Charlotte trying to hold it together with Paul being away, leaving her to handle the chaos with nobody else to rely on except her neighbor, Micah, who was also one of Paul’s best friend. Then Jax, his other best friend, appeared while he was away, and left Charlotte with a stern warning to ‘watch her back’.

Besides wanting to solve this murder mystery, the author’s writing kept me turning the pages. She had proven herself a talented writer in her previous book, and she did it again with this book.

I loved how she captured Paul’s mansion that was the envious of many (me included), the people and little town of Lake Crosby. Buddy (owner of a BBQ joint), and Diana (Paul’s mother) were quite some characters! Buddy appeared briefly but he left an impression! Charlotte was fine, but her inner voice (reflections) felt repetitive, especially about her perfect man, Paul and their perfect relationship, and how they were both so in love with each other. To me, I think Chet, Charlotte’s brother, stood out the most. He added color and life to the story.

I enjoyed this thriller overall. I had two suspects in mind, and as it turned out, those two ‘played a role’ in one of the deaths that occurred in the novel. Not too bad, huh!

Were I to pick between this and ‘Dear Wife’, I prefer the latter a wee bit more.

Will I recommend this? Yes! Will I read another of Kimberly Belle’s books? You bet I will!

Thank you Harlequin for the invitation to participate in this blog tour and the opportunity to read and review another one of Kimberly Belle’s books!

I’m planning to read ‘The Marriage Lie’ too, which from the reviews I’ve read, is REALLY GOOD!

About the Author:

Kimberly Belle is the USA Today and internationally bestselling author of six novels, including the forthcoming Stranger in the Lake (June 2020). Her third novel, The Marriage Lie, was a semifinalist in the 2017 Goodreads Choice Awards for Best Mystery & Thriller, and a #1 e-book bestseller in the UK and Italy. She’s sold rights to her books in a dozen languages as well as film and television options. A graduate of Agnes Scott College, Belle divides her time between Atlanta and Amsterdam.

Social Links:

Author website:

Facebook: @KimberlyBelleBooks

Twitter: @KimberlySBelle

Instagram: @kimberlysbelle


Buy Links:


Barnes & Noble:


IndieBound: Books-A-Million:

Do you intend to read this book? Have you read any other books by this author? Please share with me your thoughts!

Till then, HAPPY READING and may the power of good books be with you always!

8 Comments Add yours

  1. nsfordwriter says:

    Great review, glad you liked it!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Jee Wan says:

      Thank you, NS! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Glad to see how much you enjoyed this thriller that led you to become a fan of the author too! It must be so satisfying to be able to solve cases before the story unveils it though! Great review, Jee. 😀

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Jee Wan says:

      TQ, Lashaan! Yeah, that felt really good, coz I am wrong most of the time! LOL Are you into thrillers?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I used to indulge a lot of psychological thrillers around 4 years ago when it was all the buzz but then started to feel a formula that was simply rehashed by countless authors that made me bored of them. I just concluded that I might have read too many too often to be able to really enjoy them hahah I now just read some of them here and then through the year. The one modern author I follow is Ruth Ware and she mostly writes mystery rather than thriller; I think I just prefer mystery over psychological thriller too, especially classic mystery like Agatha Christie! 😀

        By the way, I always wondered, do you know why almost all psychological thrillers only have women as main characters? I’ve asked this to all those thriller readers and it has always seemed a bit weird to me hahah

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Jee Wan says:

        O..M…G…It never crossed my mind! Now that’s food for thought! Hahahaha Maybe for the fact that women tend to overthink things? LOL And you’re right about the formula, which I why I tend not to read too much of one genre at one go. Just like food. TOo much of something, you’d end up not liking it anymore haha Balance is the key, isn’t it! 😀

        And yes, Agatha Christie! I must read more of her books! I’ve heard of Ruth Ware but haven’t read any of her stuff.

        Liked by 2 people

  3. Love your review of this one, Jee! I just love this author and I’ve seen some mixed reviews for this one. With you loving Dear Wife just a touch more, that lets me know this should still work for me. ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Jee Wan says:

      Thank you, Jennifer! Yeah I enjoyed Dear Wife more but this was good too 🙂 Belle is a great writer 🙂


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