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  • Headline Review

The Dictator's Wife: Behind her smile lies a secret... The most darkly gripping debut novel of the year

Freya Berry

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Historical fiction

A dictator's wife, overthrown and awaiting trial, pleads her case to a young female lawyer, while also drawing her into a tangled web of lies and dark, dangerous secrets. This dazzling and devastating debut is a Lead Launch for Headline Review for Spring 2021.

'I am not my husband. I am innocent. Do you believe me?'

'A remarkable new talent' ANTHONY HOROWITZ

The beautiful, enigmatic wife of a feared dictator stands trial for her late husband's crimes against the people. The world will finally know the truth. But whose?

'A gripping and moving debut from a talent to watch' HARLAN COBEN
'A darkly atmospheric, rich, compulsive and page-turning read' KATE HAMER
'One of the most original debuts I have read' DAISY GOODWIN
'Such a fascinating exploration of absolute power, female agency and the complexities of complicity. Atmospheric, claustrophobic and so elegantly written' ELLERY LLOYD
'What a debut. This book is magnificent' CHARLOTTE PHILBY
'Excellent - horrifying and immersive with its strong characterisation and nightmare-like atmosphere' HARRIET TYCE
'Engrossing, evocative, chillingly claustrophobic and wonderfully written' KAREN HAMILTON

WOMAN
I learned early in life how to survive. A skill that became vital in my position.

WIFE
I was given no power, yet I was expected to hold my own with the most powerful man in the country.

MOTHER OF THE NATION
My people were my children. I stood between him and them.

I am not the person they say I am.
I am not my husband.
I am innocent.

Do you believe me?

Visceral and thought provoking, haunting and heartbreaking, The Dictator's Wife will hold you in its grip until its powerful conclusion and keep you turning the pages long into the night...

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