“Double Deceit” by Julienne Brouwers – Book Review

The premise is intriguing. Jennifer Smits and her husband Oliver have gone away for the weekend for a break in attempts to heal the rifts in their marriage. However, Oliver goes for a walk after a row, and then is found dead.

The police, who rule Oliver’s death accidental, tell Jennifer that he was wearing women’s red velvet underwear at the time of his death. Intriguing, certainly. Then she finds out that Oliver was having an affair during the months leading up to his death…

Later, Jennifer begins to suspect that the powerful law firm where her husband worked are hiding something…

The first chapter of this novel was gripping and I had high hopes for the novel. Then, when Jennifer begins to become unraveled by events, I started to think that my interest in her fate was unraveling as well…

Why wouldn’t she leave well enough alone? Why not spend her energies on looking after her toddler son and working at her medical practice? As a medical doctor she showed very few decision-making skills and acted often times in a rash and foolhardy manner.

While reading this thriller, I couldn’t decide whether I was torn between admiration that Jennifer would persevere in looking into the circumstances surrounding her husband’s death, or, whether she was crazy to do so.  Her actions required the reader to stretch their credulity to accept on many occasions.

The Amsterdam setting is one which I was very interested in, and I was fascinated by how the characters seemed to travel almost everywhere by bicycle – even when dressed up for a night out – wearing stilettos!The plot was rife with red herrings, and this fact alone will attract many readers. In my personal opinion the story was rather too far-fetched and didn’t quite live up to the outstanding premise. The true villain, when revealed, came as a surprise to me, but I felt the ending was rushed and tied up a tad too neatly. My opinion seems to be in the minority as many others thoroughly enjoyed the read. I urge you to read it and decide for yourself.

This review was written voluntarily and my rating was in no way influenced by the fact that I received a complimentary digital copy of this novel from the publisher via Chris Nijs of JB Publishing.

ISBN: 9789083034836  ISBN: 9789083034829274 pages


Julienne Brouwers worked as a pharmaceutical scientist and medical physicist before becoming a writer. She lives in the The Hague in the Netherlands, with her husband and three children, where she has published two successful thrillers in Dutch. For “Double Deceit” she worked closely with editor and translator, Sarah Fencott.

Follow Julienne Brouwers on Twitter @JulienneAuthor, or on Instagram @JulienneBrouwers

About Fictionophile

Fiction reviewer ; Goodreads librarian. Retired library cataloger - more time to read! Loves books, gardening, and red wine. I have been a reviewer member of NetGalley since October 2013. I review titles offered by Edelweiss, and participate in blog tours with TLC Book Tours.
This entry was posted in Book Reviews, Legal thrillers, novels in translation and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to “Double Deceit” by Julienne Brouwers – Book Review

  1. Carol says:

    The Amsterdam setting adds interest!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Wonderful review! The Amsterdam setting is definitely a bonus. xx

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Pink Roses says:

    I want red velvet underwear too.


  4. Joyousreads says:

    Ugh. It sucks when a novel starts off great for you then peter off to mediocrity.

    Hope you’ll enjoy your next pick!

    Liked by 1 person

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