|Print List Price:||$9.99|
Penguin Group (USA) LLC
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The Husband's Secret Kindle Edition
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|Length: 418 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
|Page Flip: Enabled||
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Top customer reviews
Tess and Felicity and Will are in a complicated relationship. Their story, present and past (flashbacks) is presented in one introductory segment. Another segment presents the story of Cecelia as she raises three daughters and deals with an increasingly distant (as in moody) husband. Another story is one of Rachel and how she copes with events in her life. Initially these three stories are presented in a linear fashion without a lot of connection to each other. That is what sent me to the highlighter function after interrupted reading.
Then some threads from each of these stories begin to intersect. Characters begin to interact across groups in subtle and then increasingly complex ways. This is where the appreciation of Moriarty’s writing skill grows as the reader is led to reflect on possible subtexts. On page 204 there is a conversation in a kitchen between Tess and Cecelia in which Tess, referring to a text about the history of the Berlin Wall says “I always like reading about the escape attempts.” Cecelia agrees and adds “Me too,” ……The successful ones, that is.” To understand the importance of the Berlin Wall, read the book. This exchange could have been left out. A different conversational gambit between Tess and Cecelia could have been used. I was just stopped by the perfection of this sentence to tie elements together and illustrate the desire to escape for which many characters in this work feel a need.
The flashbacks are not annoying; they are well crafted stories on their own. Characters are not brought together by improbable circumstances; the story flows well and believably.
I found control to be a central theme. Cecilia controls her life with calendars, to do lists, and physical organization of everything she owns. She joins every community activity. Believing she can control and even fix anything, the one stable element in her life is Tupperware.
Rachel’s story is about a different type of control; it is more accurate to describe it as coping. Her life is a long series of losses, the most important of which are her loss of a daughter (past) and the imminent loss of Jacob (a grandchild).
Tess and Felicity are “almost twins”. Lifelong friends, Tess has always been the one seemingly in control, the decision maker. As the story proceeds, she becomes increasingly aware that not only is she not in control; she never was. And she does not want to accept this.
The book moves along at a fast, interesting pace until approximately the middle, then there is an explosion. After that I put off all the mundane tasks; I could not put the book down.
I found this book to be equally as absorbing as Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl.
Why, then, am I giving this book four stars rather than five? Two reasons: (1) There are a few too many coincidences. I know, I know. Sometimes authors just have to throw in a few coincidences to make the plot work out right. But let's try to keep those to a minimum. (2) There are a couple of bizarre scenarios, or events, in this book that probably would not happen in real life. So, this is fiction where anything can happen - right? In "Little Big Lies," though, every single scenario seemed plausible. In "The Husband's Secret," not always.
Some reviewers said they figured out the book's ending early on (although that didn't detract from their enjoyment). Okay, maybe there is an aspect of Greek tragedy here, where the viewer sees an inevitable disastrous ending looming ahead. But maybe not. I'll throw in a red herring here by saying that things may not be exactly what one assumes they are going to be. Maybe so, maybe not. This is not a plot spoiler; just a titillation to keep you guessing rather than wrapping things up half way through.
I'll give Moriarty a rest for a bit, but will definitely consume all her books in the not-too-distant future.
Most recent customer reviews
This is a great read, lots of twist and turns.
Makes you really think about consequences for your actions and how it can change your...Read more
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