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Vow: A Memoir of Marriage (and Other Affairs) Hardcover – February 12, 2013
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“Vow is brilliant from both a literary and a psychological perspective. It certainly takes emotional honesty to write with such candor about the drama and allure of one's personal adulterous experiences, but this book is more that simply honest -- it is also searingly well told. A tremendous achievement.” ―Elizabeth Gilbert, author of Eat Pray Love and Committed
“Crack open Vow and prepare to be quickly carried away by Plump's vivid prose, so-close-you-can-hear-it voice, and suspenseful storytelling skills. You'll find yourself sneaking a page or two in the elevator, during a walk from point A to B, and trying to avoid drifting off to sleep so you can turn one more page... A thought-provoking, compelling read. The events, which Plump describes with amazing clarity and detail, are by turns gut-wrenching and addictive...The fact that such events are 'unimaginable' is one reason that I think every woman should read this memoir.” ―Redbook
“[A] jaw-droppingly frank but ultimately instructive post-mortem on [Plump’s] 18-year marriage…While literature has always taken adultery as one of its great themes...nonfiction books on the subject tend to be sanctimonious accounts of political or celebrity scandals... In addition to being strikingly well-written, what separates Vow from most personal accounts of adultery is Plump's forthrightness about her less-than-chaste record as a wife. It's rare to see infidelity portrayed in the round ― from the perspective of both betrayer and betrayed…[A] gutsy, intelligent examination of vows and the tantalizing allure of the illicit.” ―NPR.org
“[Plump's] memoir is like a conversation with a super-smart pal.” ―Ladies Home Journal
“Plump gradually reveals the degree of self-deception [these] two married people practiced over many years, as mismatched needs and gnawing mistrust fed their mutual appetite for risk, sex, and guilt... Plump manages in this frank memoir to fully capture her life --[as a] woman, wife, and mother who leaves nothing unexamined and has nothing left to lose.” ―Publishers Weekly
“Metaphors and similes and original descriptions can't defend the reader against the sheer pain of broken vows. Wendy Plump creates a beautifully wrought word painting from which I, for one, came away with a new slant on ‘marital vows.' Couples should read this book--and then write their own.” ―Carly Simon
“Vow is so tender and sharp….This book is a real gift.” ―Elizabeth Weil, author of No Cheating, No Dying
Top Customer Reviews
In what has to be a very painful and embarrassing outing of an all too personal life that included details that were intimate to the point of being cringe worthy at times to me, Wendy Plump dissects her marriage and the reasons why marriages lose their luster and lead the marital partners to cheat. I'd lie if I said I didn't find this interesting. With a heavy dose of hindsight, Plump does a terrific job at looking at infidelity and the whole dynamic of cheating.. While I don't condone cheating, I get it. It's something that happens especially when people get careless or reckless or just tired of the complacency and boredom of their lives. Hormones don't get automatically shut down once a couple gets married, bored, lazy, and lax.Read more ›
The authors writing style really draws you in. I felt for her and at the same time I was screaming at her, "Again! Really, you're going to have another affair?!" Almost as if she were a friend. Through all of the affairs on both sides, the author wanted to keep the marriage together. It's interesting how she can look at both sides of an affair, from the standpoint of the cheater and the one being cheated on.
The book needs to be read with an open mind. We are all flawed and the author is very brave to put her flaws on display and in print for the world to see. I would recommend this book to anyone who has gone through this situation or to anyone who is considering starting a relationship outside of their current one. It's an eye opener!
Early in the marriage, when she began disclosing her own extramarital affairs to her husband, he refused to discuss anything and swept it all under the rug. And she tolerated his rugsweeping.
Fast forward 18 years into the marriage. Husband and wife are continuing as before, her unconscious and he rugsweeping, only now he has a secret second home in which he keeps a secret other woman of many years duration and now a secret other child. In fact, if not in law, he has a secret second wife. Now his betrayal of her, his first wife and mother of some of his children, is not just sexual and emotional but also financial, social, and familial. Once this rather open secret at long last is revealed to her by others, he again sweeps it under the rug and simply divorces her.
She describes only the shallow surface of her life. Did she ever experience it any more deeply than that? Is she really as numb as she seems? Her denial is palpable. As she describes them, her affairs were intense but certainly not intimate, and she says that suited her. She describes herself as unaware, even oblivious, and when not then floating outside her body, in a fog, nothing real. The clinical term for this, which she does not use, is dissociation: specifically depersonalization and derealization. She does use the term compartmentalization: dissociation is compartmentalization in the extreme.
A better title for this book would be the very ironic saying "Relationship Broken, Add More People".
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This book helped me see that no marriage is perfect & explained the complexities of life while married. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Book Reviewer
I read this book in probably the shortest amount of time that I've read a book in a long time. This book broke my heart time and time again. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Tidbit
This is an intimate look into the mind of someone who has cheated and, in turn, been cheated on. Far from being clichéd and worn, it presents a fresh and thoughtful look and... Read morePublished 7 months ago by Annie V
This was a good read! Some parts are chillingly accurate, and I thought she was so brave to share all of her faults and mistakes with the world.Published 11 months ago by Heather McConnell
This is really tough because Wendy Plump is an immensely talented writer. The problem wasn’t with the quality of her writing; it was her lack of deep introspection needed to tackle... Read morePublished 11 months ago by Diana
Too many of her own personal opinions when she went on rants.Published 16 months ago by Amazon Customer
I am so grateful for this book. to the author Wendy, thank you for your honesty , courage and if u think about amazing integrity. Read morePublished 16 months ago by Regina A. Srsen
This story is well worth the read (or in the case of the audiobook, the listen).
Vow is a very brave and honest account of a relationship that was doomed from the... Read more
I think Wendy plump has done a fabulous job of discussing infidelity and all the different ways it can creep into a marriage, and how much it hurts even if you yourself have been... Read morePublished 21 months ago by Kristin Louise Duncombe