Matthew James Acquires Palin’s Globetrotting Thriller ‘The Wife Before Last’

A “sophisticated and sinister” globetrotting thriller by author David Palin.
‘The Wife Before Last’ is a gripping tale of deceit and vengeance.
Publishing in 2024 by Matthew James Publishing
‘The Wife Before Last’ author David Palin


Matthew James Publishing is proud to announce the acquisition of a “sophisticated and sinister” new thriller, ‘The Wife Before Last’ from author David Palin. Worldwide rights to the novel, which will be released in 2024, were acquired by James Shaw, publisher at Matthew James Publishing.

Beginning with the fall of the Berlin Wall, ‘The Wife Before Last’ traces the story of three former Stasi operatives who, over several years, infiltrate the British criminal underworld in different ways. With elements of espionage, white-collar crime, and psychological thrillers, ‘The Wife Before Last’ will have readers on the edge of their seats. “It’s a sophisticated and sinister thriller,” says publisher James Shaw. “Espionage and white-collar crime meet the kind of heart-stopping psychological thrills that David Palin is a master of… I can’t wait for people to read it”.


As the world celebrates the fall of the Berlin Wall three men, all ex-Stasi operatives, exploit the chaos and escape Germany. Thick as thieves the trio stick together; quietly reinventing themselves in the shadows of the British criminal underworld. Michael and Richard still live and breathe the violence that got them where they are, but Marcus is different. 

Crafting a sinister double life, Marcus uses the internet to target wealthy and vulnerable women for his own financial gain. However, when one of his scores goes wrong and the gang’s money is on the line, Marcus goes into hiding knowing that his partners are out to get him.

From the hidden corners of the dark web to the vibrant cityscapes of Europe, The Wife Before Last is a high-stakes game of deception. Revenge may be best served cold, but survival demands staying off the menu.

“Writing The Wife Before Last gave me even more opportunities to weave dark threads into an intricate knot and challenge the reader to untie them,” says Palin. “We all have secrets, but I think this psychological thriller illustrates only too well the adage: never do anything that leaves you fearing a knock at the door!”

Palin’s brand of ominous and shadowy writing is not unfamiliar to Matthew James Publishing, who published the author’s dark and macabre, board game-centred thriller, ‘Let The Game Commence’ in 2022. 

“It’s so fulfilling to be working with Matthew James Publishing once again,” says Palin. ”They understand what I’m trying to achieve with my work and are hugely supportive. Collaborating with them to get my work out there is also a lot of fun and I can’t speak more highly of the team”.

‘The Wife Before Last’ is slated to release in 2024.

About David Palin

David Palin has an appetite for the dark and mysterious. Born in West London but now residing in Berkshire, he is intrigued by the things that hide, often in plain sight, in the shadows beyond the light of our everyday lives. From studying both English and German literature, he believes we are drawn to darker tales and imaginings. All of this manifests in his work. Away from writing David enjoys sports, music, and the theatre — all of which have seemed like elements of a fantasy tale in our recent tough times.

About Matthew James Publishing

Matthew James Publishing is an imprint of Andrews UK. Matthew James Publishing focuses on high-quality contemporary fiction and popular non-fiction books.

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