Book reviews

Dirty Little Secrets by Jo Spain – Book Review



Six neighbours, six secrets, six reasons to want Olive Collins dead.

In the exclusive gated community of Withered Vale, people’s lives appear as perfect as their beautifully manicured lawns. Money, success, privilege – the residents have it all. Life is good.

There’s just one problem.

Olive Collins’ dead body has been rotting inside number four for the last three months. Her neighbours say they’re shocked at the discovery but nobody thought to check on her when she vanished from sight.

The police start to ask questions and the seemingly flawless facade begins to crack. Because, when it comes to Olive’s neighbours, it seems each of them has something to hide, something to lose and everything to gain from her death.

The new psychological thriller from the bestselling author of The Confession, perfect for fans of Liane Moriarty.



This is a psychological thriller by Jo Spain and is set in a privileged and wealthy gated community close to a village in Wicklow,  Ireland. 

The body of Olive Collins, a retired woman, is found in a nasty, decomposing  state after lying undiscovered in her home for three months. DI Frank Brazil is jaded from all then atrocities he has seen and is close to retirement a and is upset when the evidence shows this may be a suspicious death and will need an full, in depth investigation….just what he needs!

However, his partner, Emma Child, young and ambitious is delighted with the challenge that lies ahead.

At first sight the small community appears totally respectable and quite normal, but why did no-one check on their neighbour Olive? Surely it would be neighbourly to wonder why she hasn’t been seen and to check on her…. 

The story is told from the perspectives of the inhabitants of the community and the police officers and in this way we find out, you just never know what goes on behind those closed doors !!!!

There are so many secrets, porn addiction, affairs, rivalries and so much more. Olive herself was a lonely woman who had made efforts to get to know her neighbours, but was constantly shunned and she was upset by this somewhat and used her knowledge to manipulate and upset those around her.

The police begin to uncover a whole range of emotions aimed at the dead Olive, rage, hate and more leading to many suspects…..just who hated her enough to kill….?

I enjoyed the great cast of characters and felt they well written and the story is gripping and utterly compelling right to the marvellous twisted ending….thoroughly entertaining.

I would like to thank the Author/the Publishers/NetGalley for the opportunity to read this book for free in exchange for a fair and honest review.

you can buy a copy here


About the Author


 Jo Spain is the author of the Inspector Tom Reynolds series. Her first book, top ten bestseller With Our Blessing, was a finalist in the 2015 Richard and Judy Search for a Bestseller. The Confession her first standalone thriller, was a number one bestseller and translated all over the world. 

Jo is a graduate of Trinity College Dublin, a former political advisor in the Irish parliament and former vice-chair of InterTrade Ireland business body. 

She now writes novels and screenplays full-time. Her first co-written TV show TAKEN DOWN was broadcast in Ireland in 2018 and bought by international distributors Fremantle. 

Jo lives in Dublin with her husband and four young children. In her spare time (she has four children, there is no spare time really) she likes to read. Her favourite authors include Pierre Lemaitre, Jo Nesbo, Liane Moriarty, Fred Vargas and Louise Penny. She also watches TV detective series and was slightly obsessed with The Bridge, Trapped and The Missing. 

Jo thinks up her plots on long runs in the woods. Her husband sleeps with one eye open and all her friends have looked at her strangely since she won her publishing deal. (Courtesy of Goodreads)

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