Bookish Thursdays: The Husband’s Secret Fizzled Fast

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The-Husbands-Secret

Summary from Goodreads: At the heart of The Husband’s Secret is a letter that’s not meant to be read. My darling Cecilia, if you’re reading this, then I’ve died… Imagine that your husband wrote you a letter, to be opened after his death. Imagine, too, that the letter contains his deepest, darkest secret—something with the potential to destroy not just the life you built together, but the lives of others as well. Imagine, then, that you stumble across that letter while your husband is still very much alive. . . .Cecilia Fitzpatrick has achieved it all—she’s an incredibly successful businesswoman, a pillar of her small community, and a devoted wife and mother. Her life is as orderly and spotless as her home. But that letter is about to change everything, and not just for her: Rachel and Tess barely know Cecilia—or each other—but they too are about to feel the earth-shattering repercussions of her husband’s secret. Acclaimed author Liane Moriarty has written a gripping, thought-provoking novel about how well it is really possible to know our spouses—and, ultimately, ourselves.

**spoiler alert: I will implicitly allude to the conclusion of the novel and John Paul’s secret**

I finished this book a while ago, so this review will not be as thorough as I normally would like.

I could not write about The Husband’s Secret right away because I strongly disliked the ending and I didn’t want to let the book’s conclusion taint the rest of it…because I actually liked the book. Until the last 2 chapters. And the epilogue. If there was one epilogue that did not need to be written…it was the epilogue to The Husband’s Secret.

I really enjoyed the three different plots in the novel and was kept intrigued about how they would finally intersect. Cecilia, Tess and Rachel’s stories were all equally compelling for me. I liked the way Moriarty brought me into her characters’ most intimate thoughts, some of them not very flattering or appropriate. This made the characters real and easier to relate to. I didn’t necessarily like all the characters though. I found Cecilia annoying with her perfect life and Rachel is a tough one because she is so (understandably) bitter that she alienates her son.

Once the secret was finally revealed…I was not all that surprised…still, what does a person do if they discover such a monumental thing about their spouse? I don’t know. Cecilia’s near nervous breakdown makes sense. And how narcissistic is this guy who believes he can cover up his actions with self-punishment? That whole “don’t judge a book by its cover” cliche screams at you throughout this novel. It makes you actually wonder about that perfect family in your own neighbourhood…what kind of secrets are they hiding?

Ok, so now what? Secret revealed. Cecilia a mess. Rachel still angry. How does Tess fit into all this? She does in a roundabout way…which bothers me because what’s the point of her plot line? Really, you could take out Tess’ entire story and the plot would pretty much remain intact…why make her such a main character when she doesn’t really fit in?

Once Cecilia begins to live a chaotic, anxious life now that she holds the secret, you know that tragedy looms. Moriarty nicely creates so much tension that the book is ready to explode. And, it does. Oh, the tragedy! The least deserving person, the most innocent person is the one who falls victim to all of these characters’ flaws, faults and sins. I was speechless.

Alright. So the secret is finally revealed and Rachel knows the truth about John Paul. Cecilia knows the truth about Rachel. John Paul and Rachel are sorry and devastated by their actions. It is gut wrenching because both Rachel and John Paul have paid a very high price for their actions, but the question remains…is it enough? Should they be punished by law or is the guilty self-hatred they carry and their self-inflicted punishments enough? I wish I could decide.  Oh and once again, what does Tess have to do with this?

The answer is kind of in the epilogue. An epilogue which could have served as an outline for a whole other novel. The purpose of it is not lost on me. Moriarty wants to show us how split second decisions can affect an entire life…how one person’s universe can become topsy-turvy because of another’s actions (lack of)…except…I don’t want to know that John Paul’s secret is not really his secret. That there were other forces at work when he acted upon his anger…really? It made everything that happened in the novel so much more tragic and to a certain degree pointless.

Would I recommend this novel? Surprisingly, yes. You would think not because I’ve written pretty negatively about the conclusion, but I didn’t feel that way until the very end. I was absorbed by these characters and plot for almost the entire novel. Their stories and conflicts really drew me in. The book is easy to read and moves quickly. And, perhaps you may appreciate Moriarty’s presentation of the way life can completely alter it’s course because of the actions (or not) of people you know and people you don’t more than I did. Any book that makes me feel this strongly about how it ends is a worthy read.

Did you read The Husband’s Secret? Would love to read your thoughts!

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Bookish Thursdays: Reading The Husband’s Secret

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I’m on chapter 20 of 59. I thought I was moving right along and then I saw that there are 59 chapters! They go by quickly, but I’ve got a lot of plot left!

from kerryannmorgan.com

from kerryannmorgan.com

The Husband’s Secret is not at all what I expected. I thought I was in for light reading, but the circumstances of these characters are anything but light.

I love Moriarty’s narration so far. It is light. It is fun and easy. Yet, her characters experience great turmoil. Moriarty cleverly blends the darkness of very painful experiences with the lightness of every day routines and idiosyncrasies. It’s almost as if she’s making light of the characters…but she isn’t.

Having said that, it took me a while to get used to her narrative voice. I was really annoyed in Chapter 1 by how long it took for Cecilia to get to the letter…it went on and on about the Berlin Wall, and the Berlin Wall was a great analogy for the events opening the novel and I guess it captured Cecilia’s character quite nicely, but still…get on with it! When that was all finally over though, I was hooked.

I hate (love) the way each chapter ends with something I really want to keep reading about and the next chapter continues the story of another character (which I remember, oh yeah, I want to know about this too!)

And, THE SECRET. Oh, the secret! I finally discovered the secret and it wasn’t a complete shocker – but I didn’t expect it to be so…well, so coldly revealed. WTF, John-Paul?!? Can you IMAGINE finding out something like THAT about your husband? I really thought Cecilia would read it before seeing John-Paul which might have made for more dramatic tension. How do you ever look at the man the same way again?

I’m also very intrigued by Tess’ storyline…why oh why do Felicity and Will have to fall in love? Isn’t there another way to get Tess to Sydney than the betrayal of her husband and cousin/best friend?

I’m racking my brain trying to tie all the plots together. Right now it’s like one of the floor puzzles I do with my son. The pieces are large and obvious but I still can’t see how they come together. It’s driving me crazy! How does Tess fit into Janie’s murder? On what level is Connor responsible? What will Cecilia do? And, poor Rachel…

So far, I’m really enjoying The Husband’s Secret and am looking forward to seeing how it all falls into place, especially now that Cecilia knows the truth. What will she do

What are your thoughts on the book? If you’ve read past Chapter 20 – no spoilers please!

I hope to have it finished by next Thursday…unless life gets in the way 🙂

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WWW Wednesday

Weekly meme at shouldbereading.wordpress.com asks 3 questions every Wednesday. This where I’m at in my reading these days:

What are you currently reading?

The-Husbands-SecretThe Husband’s Secret by Liane Moriarty. I’ll be writing about my reading so far in tomorrow’s post, Bookish Thursdays

 

 

 

 

What did you recently finish reading?

Around Valentine’s day there were so many recommended “Swoon-worthy” reads that I had to jump in and start reading them. I’ve been reading Julia Quinn’s Bridgerton series…and while they are definitely sweet and swoon-worthy, they are also leaving me a little bit troubled. I’m working on a post about this that will also be published on a Bookish Thursday soon.

What do you think you’ll read next?

I’ll probably finish the Bridgerton series or move on to The Accidental Bookclub by Jennifer Scott or The Glass Kitchen by Linda Francis Lee…not sure yet.

 

Wanna participate? Go to MizB’s blog via links above or leave comments below.

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Bookish Thursdays: Up Next, The Husband’s Secret

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from kerryannmorgan.com

from kerryannmorgan.com

Summary from Goodreads: At the heart of The Husband’s Secret is a letter that’s not meant to be read. “My darling Cecilia, if you’re reading this, then I’ve died…”

Imagine that your husband wrote you a letter, to be opened after his death. Imagine, too, that the letter contains his deepest, darkest secret—something with the potential to destroy not just the life you built together, but the lives of others as well. Imagine, then, that you stumble across that letter while your husband is still very much alive. . . .
Cecilia Fitzpatrick has achieved it all—she’s an incredibly successful businesswoman, a pillar of her small community, and a devoted wife and mother. Her life is as orderly and spotless as her home. But that letter is about to change everything, and not just for her: Rachel and Tess barely know Cecilia—or each other—but they too are about to feel the earth-shattering repercussions of her husband’s secret.  Acclaimed author Liane Moriarty has written a gripping, thought-provoking novel about how well it is really possible to know our spouses—and, ultimately, ourselves.

I cannot wait to dive into this book. Finally downloaded it to my e-reader and will start it. Today. (I hope). I don’t know much about Liane Moriarty, so I  googled her and came across her website. You can check it out here if you’re interested. She’s an Australian author. Her books are contemporary with characters and plots that are fun, interesting and thought-provoking.

I will be reviewing this in a few weeks (again, I hope). If you’re interested and would like to read along with me check back next Thursday for an update on where I am in the book, what I think of it so far and, of course, so I can read what you think of it too!

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