I wanted to love The Two Mrs. Carlyles by Suzanne Rindell. I loved her other novel, plus the combination of post-earthquake San Francisco and the potential haunting of a first wife was too much for me to ignore. Except by the end of the first act, I almost threw my e-book across the room.
The problem is that The Two Mrs. Carlyles has such strong Rebecca vibes, and no one should be attempting to pass off even the smallest hint of a Rebecca revision. That book may have its flaws, but it will remain among my all-time favorite novels. Also, no one will ever do Gothic mansions and second marriages as well as Daphne du Maurier. I rarely want to stop reading a book because it reminds me of another book, but I was SOCLOSE. No one messes with Ms. du Maurier.
Thankfully, by the time of the third act, the similarities ended. Unfortunately, that is when the problem of predictability kicks in, and I lost pretty much all interest. I only finished the book because I wanted to make sure I was correct in my assumptions and because I just could not finish a book at that late stage.
The Two Mrs. Carlyles is one giant disappointment. Not only did I get major Rebecca vibes, complete with a Mrs. Danvers wannabe, but there was also no haunting and so little about San Francisco after the earthquake. Everything I wanted for the book did not occur. Better luck next time.