Book Review: A Stranger on the Beach by Michele Campbell

There is a stranger outside Caroline’s house.

Her spectacular new beach house, built for hosting expensive parties and vacationing with the family she thought she’d have. But her husband is lying to her and everything in her life is upside down, so when the stranger, Aidan, shows up as a bartender at the same party where Caroline and her husband have a very public fight, it doesn’t seem like anything out of the ordinary.

As her marriage collapses around her and the lavish lifestyle she’s built for herself starts to crumble, Caroline turns to Aidan for comfort…and revenge. After a brief and desperate fling that means nothing to Caroline and everything to him, Aidan’s obsession with Caroline, her family, and her house grows more and more disturbing. And when Caroline’s husband goes missing, her life descends into a nightmare that leaves her accused of her own husband’s murder.


Caroline sees a stranger outside her new beach house. Her house that reflects her outwardly perfect life.

Her husband however is lying to her and everything in her life is turning upside down.

So, when Aiden shows up, a bartender at the party where she has a very public row with her husband, she turns to him for comfort… and revenge.

Although their brief fling means nothing to Caroline, Aiden becomes obsessed.

Then Caroline’s husband goes missing and her life descends into chaos where she is suspected of her own husband’s murder.

I’d not read any of Michele’s novels so this was my introduction. It did not disappoint.

This novel pretty much had me on the edge of my seat all the way through.

It’s a rollercoaster of suspense, tension and an ending that blindsided me.

The style of writing was interesting. It jumps around but I was soon completely into the story.

It’s told from both Caroline and Aiden’s point of view as they pursue their relationship and events develop.

Caroline is a complicated character and I couldn’t make my mind up about her at all.
Aiden was very cleverly written. There were sections where I suspected him but I also had a large amount of empathy for him also.

As a reader, you are plunged into the action and in my opinion, it didn’t really end until the last page. It’s a look into what we, as people are capable of doing to each other.

Overall, A Stranger on the Beach was a gripping, compelling thriller that kept me guessing.

I loved it.


About Michele: 

Michele Campbell is a graduate of Harvard College and Stanford Law School and a former federal prosecutor in New York City who specialized in international narcotics and gang cases.

A while back, she said goodbye to her big-city legal career and moved with her husband and two children to an idyllic New England college town a lot like Belle River in IT’S ALWAYS THE HUSBAND.  Since then, she has spent her time teaching criminal and constitutional law and writing novels.  She has had many close female friends, a few frenemies, and only one husband, who – to the best of her knowledge – has never tried to kill her.

Say hi to Michelle on Twitter: or via her website:

A Stranger on the Beach was released in the UK by HQ on 9th January 2020. Click to view on Amazon UK

Thank you to Michele and HQ for a review copy. 


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I’m Laura. I started Novel Kicks in 2009. I wanted a place to post my writing as well as give other writers like me the opportunity to do the same. There is also a monthly book club, a writing room which features writing prompts, book reviews, competitions, author interviews and guest posts.

I grew up by the sea (my favourite place in the world) and I currently live in Hampshire. I am married to Chris, have a cat named Buddy and I would love to be a writer. I’m trying to write the novel I’ve talked so much about writing if only I could stop pressing delete. I’ve loved writing since creative writing classes in primary school. I have always wanted to see my teacher Miss Sayers again and thank her for the encouragement. When not trying to write the novel or writing snippets of stories on anything I can get my hands on, I love reading, dancing like a loon and singing to myself very badly. My current obsession is Once Upon a Time and I would be happy to live with magic in the enchanted forest surrounded by all those wonderful stories provided that world also included Harry Potter. I love reading chick lit. contemporary fiction and novels with mystery.

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