Review: Poison by Galt Niederhoffer

Posted November 27, 2017 by Lily B in Reviews / 25 Comments

Review:  Poison by Galt NiederhofferPoison by Galt Niederhoffer
Series: standalone
Published by St. Martin's Press on November 21st 2017
Genres: Psychological Thriller
Pages: 320
Format: Kindle Edition
Source: Publisher
Buy on Amazon
Rating:1 Stars

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Poison is a literary psychological thriller about a marriage that follows minor betrayal into a bubbling stew of lies, cruelty, manipulation, and danger.
Cass and Ryan Connor have achieved family nirvana. With three kids between them, a cat and a yard, a home they built and feathered, they seem to have the Modern Family dream. Their family, including Cass' two children from previous relationships, has recently moved to Portland —a new start for their new lives. Cass and Ryan have stable, successful careers, and they are happy. But trouble begins almost imperceptibly. First with small omissions and white lies that happen daily in any marital bedroom. They seem insignificant, but they are quickly followed by a series of denials and feints that mushroom and then cyclone in menace.
With life-or-death stakes and irreversible consequences, Poison is a chilling and irresistible reminder that the closest bond designed to protect and provide for each other and for children can change in a minute.

Cass and Ryan Connor seem like a happy family on the outside. They have three children, two from Cass’ previous marriage and one between them. They have moved to Portland, have stable jobs, and a lovely family home. But the perfect marriage turns into a nightmare when Cass starts to discover that her husband had started to lie daily to her omissions and white lies that turn into a series of denials and threats. Soon Cass is in trouble as she goes up against her husband, who seemed like a loving father, but is now a completely different person and the people who are bent on believing a man’s word over the woman’s.

Okay, I hate giving one star reviews, but with this book I just couldn’t rate it higher.

I wanted to love it, but I quickly grew to despise it. If you are planning to read it and don’t want any spoilers, I’d stop reading the review now because the rant that follows is why I have such strong dislike for this wrong.

One, the format. It was all over the place. Sometimes the story jumped between present and past with no clear cut definitive line and it makes your head swim as you scramble to find out what just happened. One minute it’s in the past, the next minute the author is talking about the present, the switch is so sudden it felt like whiplash.

Second, I am not sure what the author was trying to do here. I get that she puts forth a lot of stuff she believes in and how she feels the world functions and it’s very feminist to the point of being overwhelming?

Like for example. Cass has this perfect family and out of no where, her husband grows another head and becomes a man that she no longer recognizes, capable of violence. There are odd scenes between Cass and Ryan when she confronts him about his cheating and he attacks her, and chokes her, and says your life is over now, you will leave me – something along those lines. It was the most random and weirdest thing, like… ever

Now here is the part that really starts to piss me off. Cass is being poisoned by her husband, but NO ONE believes her, with the exception of her best friend. She goes to the hospital and rather than checking her first for poison, they escort her to the psych ward because apparently hospitals don’t believe women if they come into the ER claiming that their husband is trying to murder them, only crazy people come into the hospital claiming to be poisoned. So rather than checking the person first to see if they are telling the truth, THAN sending them to loony bin if necessary, they do it automatically. Right…

So she goes to her lawyer, and he barely believes her.

She goes to the cops and they do not believe her…

She calls her father, who automatically accuses her of pissing her husband off. Oh, and does not believe her…

Even her mother turns on her.

So this well educated woman in her 30s? 40s? is suddenly being viewed by EVERYONE that she has a mental illness, because her husband said so and no one in this country believes women and they all try to discredit them, even our own parents and mothers will testify in court and say – yup this child I raised, who has a good education, has never had a mental illness is obviously mentally ill..

Excuse me? Are you KIDDING ME?

Fine… Let’s say there are hospital in the USA that will throw you into a psych ward if you come in accusing your husband with poisoning you (I’ve been told otherwise, anyone heard differently?) but it’s not like she didn’t have symptoms, she did.

But I never got the sense that her mother would turn on her, like what? Why? I mean, come on…

Also, why did he all the sudden turn on her? I understand she accused him of cheating, which we never got quiet the answer to that, or why he was trying to kill her.

It just did not work for me at all. I get the sense that the author had a strong dislike for the male population in general, including how this country is run in courts, in police, in hopsitals, there is a strong emphasis on male misogyny and was trying to spread the word (or hate) through a psychological thriller, but I never felt like it worked.


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25 responses to “Review: Poison by Galt Niederhoffer

  1. Wow, this one sounds like a total mess. If it was *just* the format with the past/present jumps I might could deal with it but add everything else in and I’m surprised you didn’t DNF it. It just sounds so completely implausible. Why would EVERYONE doubt this woman and assume she was mentally ill? Not one single person believed her – just jumped to the conclusion she was insane? That makes no sense is seems so unbelievable. Ugh, hope your next read is much, much better.

    • Because her husband said so XD so it must be so, her friend believed her – but I thought back to the court part and I don’t remember her testifying on her behalf

  2. oh I really really do not like it when authors are preching against men. I mean really? Some of the most honorable people I know are males so it does sound like the author is trying to display her feminist views in the book because many things mention here wouldn’t happen.

  3. I like a good psychological thriller, but this one does sound like a mess. I mean NO ONE believes her? That seems unlikely. I think I would agree with you on this one, sorry it was a bummer!

  4. I mean, it’s believable enough to me that a lot of people wouldn’t believe her, including family, because people never want to believe that a seemingly good person (her husband) would hurt someone else, but it does seem forced that the hospital wouldn’t even check her physical symptoms to see if she was poisoned, and that her husband totally snapped into a diff person like that. And the jumping from past to present sounds super frustrating and confusing.

    • But it was her mother who testified against her, despite her telling her mother everything that happened, and how she wanted her to take the children so they could stay out of trouble. I never felt that her and her mother had any kind of conflict for her to go ahead and stand in court and discredit her own daughter, especially after hearing the story, it just felt kinda unrealistic. If it was his family, yeah maybe, but I never felt like through the story that her mother had ever had an issue with her /shrug

  5. Nope! The plot makes no sense particularly in this day and age. Now, a few hundred years ago? Probably.

    It really does look like a big hot mess. You read further than I probably would have.

  6. Sheesh – definitely not for me. I can see people not WANTING to believe he’s poisoning her, but to completely turn against her without even getting tests done? Like what? Who are these people?! Thanks for sharing but sorry it didn’t work.


  7. Yikes this book sounds very random and confusing. Someone doesn’t just turn into this dangerous guy who chokes his wife when she confronts him of cheating. They’re typically subtle signs at least. And the jumping from past to present would be hella confusing.. Sorry this one was such a bust!

  8. I hate reading books that are so obviously unrealistic. They would definitely test her at a hospital, especially if she was having symptoms. Although, I’ve heard some poisons are hard to detect especially if you don’t know what was being used. Also, I need a motivation for crazy behavior to make it believable. Like the heroine discovered some mistress, murder, or financial wrongdoing she was going to expose. Then I could believe this complete turnabout in the husband. Sounds like a train wreck I’ll take a pass on. Great honest review, Lily! 🙂

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