Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Silent Wife

The Silent Wife / A.S.A. Harrison
Toronto: Penguin, c2013.
326 p.

More silence! This time from a very patient wife whose patience is at an end...

Jodie and Todd have a relationship with certain parameters; she overlooks his lapses in monogamy as long as he is discreet and her calm professional world is not affected. As this book opens, however, Todd has fallen into an affair deeper than ever before -- his very young girlfriend (daughter of his old friend, who is also pretty PO'd when he finds out about it) is insisting he leave Jodie and start a life with her.

Before the story ends, everything that Jodie believed about herself has shifted -- she has become someone she wouldn't have recognized in the opening pages.

I'm not going to cover the plot, because the twists and turns are part of the pleasure of reading this novel. I thought it was a great read, intellectual and clever and emotionally twisted. There's a fair bit of suspense, some wonderful character development (I was ready to punch Todd in the nose myself), and lots of drama to keep you reading. I was actually surprised when I re-checked the page count while writing this review because it didn't feel like it was a very long book when I was reading it...it's a fantastic choice for a summer read. Much tighter structure than Gone Girl but some of the same marital drama, if you like this kind of thing ;)

Anyhow, you might have already read this one by now -- it's been so immensely popular around here -- but if you haven't and you'd like a suspenseful, well-written psychological thriller, this is the one to pick up.

Sadly, the author died before she could appreciate the success of her first crime novel. She led a colourful life, as detailed in her obituary in the Globe & Mail. This book, and that obit, are so worth your time to read.

8 comments:

  1. The author dying is doubly sad: sad that she didn't get to see her book's success, and sad that such a talented writer won't be writing any more books. I haven't read this one, but it sounds good. I like psychological thrillers a lot. Thanks for reviewing this one!

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    1. I agree, Lark -- I think of her every time I talk about this book and feel so sad that she didn't get to enjoy her success.

      If you do pick it up, I hope you'll enjoy it -- the opening paragraphs really sucked me in!

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  2. This one got lodged on my TBR thanks to the "CanCon Equivalent" feature of it on "The Next Chapter" at some point. (It was probably a long time ago; I'm nearly always listening to the past!) The alternative was Gone Girl, and I've not read that one yet either. Good to hear that you enjoyed it such a lot!

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    1. If you're in the mood for something a little suspense-y and full of messy relationships, this is it ;)

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  3. This has been on my radar for a while. I didn't know the author had died, though. How sad!

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    1. A good summer read, Laurie, if you do decide to pick it up.

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  4. I read this one as an audiobook and totally loved it. I agree that the twists and turns and the way the main character evolved made the book so interesting. Because the changes came bit by bit, you can see how believable something like this is. Interesting too about the different laws around common law relationships in different jurisdictions.

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    1. I thought Jodie was fascinating right from the first page. And yes, the finer points of laws and emotional ties were quite fascinating.

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