Under the Palms
by Kaira Rouda
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Pub Date 21 May 2024 | Archive Date 04 Jun 2024
During a weekend retreat, a powerful family plays a dangerous game of dark secrets and cold-blooded ambition in a novel by Kaira Rouda, USA Today bestselling author of Beneath the Surface.
Under the direction of the Kingsleys’ new president, Paige, the family has gathered for a weekend retreat at a luxurious Laguna Beach resort.
Still clinging to the hope of succession are the sons of Richard Kingsley, the family patriarch and CEO: John, the oldest, who’s clawed his way back from a dark tragedy, and Paige’s estranged husband, Ted, the golden boy. When Richard’s ex and his wayward daughter join the fray, Paige finds herself with two fast allies. They know a secret that could shatter the family legacy. Call it leverage, call it revenge, the Kingsley women believe they have the upper hand.
But as the power games begin, greater threats than the howling Santa Ana winds are coming. Because this weekend, amid so much greed and betrayal, no Kingsley is safe. It’s family. Watch your back.
A Note From the Publisher
She lives in Southern California with her family and is at work on her next novel. She is a founding member of the Killer Author Club, supporting other suspense and mystery authors. For more, please visit her website, www.KairaRouda.com.
Praise for Kaira Rouda
Beneath the Surface
“Original, clever, deftly crafted, and featuring the author’s distinctive and narrative-driven storytelling style” —Midwest Book Review
“Beneath the Surface is a perfect summer escapist read.” —Mystery & Suspense Magazine
“When the wealthy patriarch of a family business invites his children on a trip from Newport Beach to Catalina Island aboard his new yacht, Rouda fans will know to buckle their seat belts…King Lear goes to the beach. Yes.” —Kirkus Reviews
“It’s Succession on a yacht in this delicious and fast-paced thriller! Beneath the Surface has it all—secrets, lies, and rich family drama. Filled with characters you love to hate, this was a twisty and entertaining ride I never wanted to end. Rouda is at her best!” —Jeneva Rose, New York Times bestselling author of You Shouldn’t Have Come Here
“Devious, twisty, and completely unputdownable, Kaira Rouda’s Beneath the Surface is Knives Out meets Succession but on a billionaire’s yacht! Beneath the Surface is Rouda at her stupendous, binge-worthy best! I devoured this delicious thriller!” —May Cobb, author of A Likeable Woman and The Hunting Wives
“Succession meets The White Lotus on the open seas. With a penchant for revealing the darker side of wealth and the antics of family values deteriorating, Kaira Rouda takes us on a journey where an embattled family gathers for a high-stakes weekend, clambering to the top, and risking everything.” —Georgina Cross, bestselling author of One Night, Nanny Needed, and The Stepdaughter
“Kaira Rouda has cornered the market on scandal and intrigue among the one percent. Suspenseful and glamorous, full of scheming and twists, Beneath the Surface is Succession meets Elin Hilderbrand.” —Michele Campbell, bestselling author of It’s Always the Husband
“Beneath the Surface is a gripping thriller filled with characters you love to hate. I couldn’t put it down until the very last page!” —Freida McFadden, New York Times bestselling author of The Housemaid
“A deliciously diabolical take on marriage, politics, and the lies that bind.” —Library Journal
“[A] wild mix of intrigue, secrets, and corruption.” —Publishers Weekly
“What happens when ‘the woman behind the man’ has a dark secret of her own? Slick and rocket paced, The Widow by Kaira Rouda is a top-notch political thriller. With hairpin twists and turns, insider knowledge, glamorous settings, and a whole cast of untrustworthy characters, Rouda expertly ratchets up the tension, keeping her readers breathlessly turning the pages. And the deliciously devious Jody Asher is as cold and calculating as she is riveting. A captivating read!” —Lisa Unger, New York Times bestselling author of Secluded Cabin Sleeps Six
“The Widow pulls back the curtain to reveal an insider’s look at the fascinating and duplicitous world of DC politics. This stunning page-turner has a cast of characters with dangerous secrets and hidden motives. Rouda’s best so far!” —Liv Constantine, internationally bestselling author of The Last Mrs. Parrish
“Known for her fiendishly cagey characters, Kaira Rouda introduces readers to her most diabolical cast to date in the cleverly crafted The Widow. Tense, sharply written, and ticking with suspense, The Widow is a killer edge-of-your-seat thriller with an eye-popping glimpse into DC politics and simmering grudges. Rouda is at her best with this devilishly smart novel that kept me guessing to the very end. Clear your calendar; you don’t want to miss one scintillating minute with The Widow.” —Heather Gudenkauf, New York Times bestselling author of The Overnight Guest
“Kaira Rouda is back with another delicious and darkly comedic tale, this time pulling back the curtain on the glamorous and backstabbing world of Washington politics. Rouda takes her readers into the heart of a messed-up marriage, where scandal threatens to sap a congressman’s reelection campaign. Packed with juicy secrets and intrigue, The Widow is a propulsive, unputdownable tale of a couple’s battle for power, and an incredibly fun ride.” —Kimberly Belle, internationally bestselling author of My Darling Husband
“With her signature dark wit and clever insights, Kaira Rouda takes us deep into the fascinating world of power and politics, where ambition and manipulation reign and shameful secrets become weapons. The Widow is a breathless page-turner with a ruthless and conniving protagonist that you can’t help rooting for. This might be Rouda’s best book yet!” —Robyn Harding, bestselling author of The Perfect Family
“Kaira Rouda is on top of her game with her latest thriller, The Widow, a suspenseful tale filled with backstabbing, page-turning goodies: Capitol Hill shenanigans, manipulative lobbyists, adulterous politicians, opportunistic interns, and dirty backroom deals. In other words, welcome to Washington, DC—a place where the secrets have secrets. Rouda’s ‘I’m not a bitch, you’re a bitch’ protagonist is an overly seasoned, ‘supportive’ spouse living her best life in the hallowed halls of Congress…until that lifestyle is threatened. Then look out: Rouda will come at you with zingers and power plays, giving the coldhearted widow her veil of opportunity, proving repeatedly that it is the political spouse who wields the real power on the Hill, and she has no intention of letting go.” —Lisa Barr, New York Times bestselling author of Woman on Fire
“Gripping and brimming with insider intrigue, The Widow delivers with each scandalous, suspenseful page! With a main character I loved to hate, this story has all the twists and turns readers have come to expect from Kaira Rouda. Grab your copy and get ready to tear through The Widow faster than a pile of unmarked bills.” —Elle Marr, Amazon Charts bestselling author of Strangers We Know
“I tore through this book in two breathless sittings. With The Widow, Kaira Rouda has given us a political thriller that’s ingeniously structured and packed full of razor-sharp observations about the machinations of Washington power couples. It’s smart, timely, and wickedly fun. You won’t be able to put it down.” —Grant Ginder, author of Let’s Not Do That Again and The People We Hate at the Wedding
“In The Widow, Kaira Rouda perfectly captures the experience of being a congressional spouse and all the complicated intricacies of that lifestyle and then adds her signature flair to make it a riveting story that only she could tell. It is impossible to put down.” —Lacey Schwartz Delgado, filmmaker, former congressional spouse, and Second Lady of New York
Listed in “Best Thrillers Coming in 2022” by She Reads
“Whatever the opposite of family values is, Rouda seems intent on perfecting a genre that enshrines it.” —Kirkus Reviews
“Suspense and thriller readers will be on the edge of their seats for this novel that exposes the dark underbelly of human nature.” —Library Journal
“There are great characters moving the story along, that sweep away the reader in this story of families, revenge, and secrets.” —News and Sentinel
“A truly unputdownable novel that had me gripped—and anxious—from the first sentence! Captivating, fast paced, and unsettling, Somebody’s Home is astonishingly good. I gulped it down.” —Sally Hepworth, New York Times bestselling author of The Good Sister
“Somebody’s Home kept me riveted from the first page to the last. A gripping psychological thriller you don’t want to miss!” —Lucinda Berry, bestselling author of The Perfect Child
“Somebody’s Home starts like a hurricane out at sea: some wind, some waves, a sense of approaching danger. But the story moves fast, gains velocity, and suddenly you are turning the pages, unable to stop, heart in your throat, knowing that something terrible is going to happen and nothing will stop it. The threats come from all sides, and it’s so hard to know who to trust. The characters are wonderful and complex; the setting feels like the house next door, which makes it all the more terrifying; and the ending nearly killed me. Kaira Rouda has written a terrific, gripping thriller.” —Luanne Rice, bestselling author of The Shadow Box
“With an intriguing cast of characters and a killer premise, Somebody’s Home is a thriller worth staying up all night for. Fast paced and relentless, Kaira Rouda cranks up the tension with every turn of the page. With unexpected twists and jaw-dropping revelations, Rouda knows how to draw readers close and keep them entranced.” —Heather Gudenkauf, New York Times bestselling author of The Overnight Guest
“Privilege, social disenchantment, and extreme family tensions are the threads running through this tense novel. Kaira Rouda lets us into the lives of two families and what happens when their paths cross. Gripping and fast paced with an explosive conclusion!” —Gilly Macmillan, New York Times bestselling author
“Taut with foreboding from the first page, Kaira Rouda’s Somebody’s Home is an unsettling portrait of an antisocial man, a master of the universe, and the women caught between them. The rotating points of view and incisive, clear writing are sure to keep you flipping the pages until you reach the shocking conclusion!” —Katherine St. John, author of The Siren
“Trust your instincts and grab a copy of Kaira Rouda’s Somebody’s Home. In Rouda’s latest thriller, a mother trusts her instincts when she knows the person on her property is threatening her family. But what if the threat is coming at her from all sides and more than one person is hiding a dark secret? A compulsive, fast read, Somebody’s Home reveals what people will do to protect not only their homes but the families within those four walls. A captivating read.” —Georgina Cross, bestselling author of The Stepdaughter
The Next Wife
“Rouda hits the ground running and never stops…[The Next Wife] is so much fun that you’ll be sorry to see it end with a final pair of zingers. The guiltiest of guilty pleasures.” —Kirkus Reviews
“This gripping psychological thriller from Rouda (The Favorite Daughter) offers a refreshing setup…Rouda keeps the reader guessing as the plot takes plenty of twists and turns. Suspense fans will get their money’s worth.” —Publishers Weekly
“In The Next Wife, two women go ruthlessly head-to-head. Kaira Rouda knows how to create the perfect diabolical characters that we love to hate. Equally smart and savage, this is a lightning-fast read.” —Mary Kubica, New York Times bestselling author of The Other Mrs.
“Rouda’s talent for making readers question everything and everyone shines through on every page of her propulsive new thriller, The Next Wife. Her narrators are sharp and unpredictable, each one with a tangle of secrets to unravel. The Next Wife will leave you tense and gasping, with a chilling twist you won’t see coming.” —Julie Clark, New York Times bestselling author of The Last Flight
“One of the most insidious, compulsive books I’ve read recently. Kaira Rouda has a way of drawing you in with great characters, fast-paced writing, and a story that won’t let you go. Brilliant, dark, and dazzling.” —Samantha Downing, USA Today bestselling author of My Lovely Wife and He Started It
“One man. Two wives. Kaira Rouda has masterfully created cunning twists and sharp narration that take you on an unexpected and delicious journey and will leave you with a gasp. Devious and fun, The Next Wife should be the next book you read!” —Wendy Walker, bestselling author of Don’t Look for Me
“I absolutely inhaled The Next Wife. Nail-biting suspense, dark humor, and family intrigue. I savored every page and now have the worst book hangover. Loved it!” —Michele Campbell, internationally bestselling author of The Wife Who Knew Too Much
“No one writes deliciously devious narcissists like Kaira Rouda. The Next Wife showcases her remarkable talent for making unlikable characters alluring. With twisted egos, lavish wealth, and three women vying for power, this compelling, compulsive thriller is sharp, fun, and shocking. I was riveted by every word.” —Samantha M. Bailey, USA Today and #1 national bestselling author of Woman on the Edge
“Kaira Rouda has a gift for writing characters we love…to hate. Dark and devious, The Next Wife is a fast-paced, twisty thriller that will have you laughing, shaking your head, and gasping out loud right until the end. A perfect one-sitting read.” —Hannah Mary McKinnon, bestselling author of Sister Dear and You Will Remember Me