Thoughts on THE HUSBAND’S SECRET

Hi all. Hope all is well and that all the holiday ‘stuff’ crowding our already busy lives is getting done. Hubby and I knocked out about 60% of our gift-buying at the Walgreen’s gift card wall, lol. It’s a beautiful thing and (almost) zero stress.

tree 2014 My serenity space–when it’s uncluttered and clean, anyway. 😉

Feel as though I have been looking for my attention span for the better part of these past couple of years. Since I kind of gave up looking for it, I decided maybe I could cultivate a new one, especially when it comes to reading.

I’m sure I loved books prior to being able to read, and reading has been a passion since I learned how. IDK what’s happened these past years, but I have such a hard time getting into that next book, or even wanting to pick one up sometimes.

Lucky for me I have a friend who feeds me good fodder. She loaned me a copy of Liane Moriarty’s THE HUSBAND’S SECRET. I liked it enough to write about it.

This is an account of a happily married wife and mother of three girls who comes across a letter written by her husband. The script on the envelope instructs Cecilia to open it only in the event of her husband’s death.

Of course, Cecilia eventually opens the letter. (She held out, though. She really did.) Now she has to deal with what she’s learned. She also has to decide if she’s keeping her husband’s secret, and the ramifications of doing so as the story events unfold.

Of course, THE HUSBAND’S SECRET entails much more than I shared in that short paragraph. The writing is quite good, and the author kept me smiling with frequent parenthetical asides. She did well tying together the external and internal character journeys of her three point-of-view characters. I also feel the ending did the story justice overall.

I did find the opening chapters—which introduced each of the lead characters—a tad hard to follow at first. As the story progressed though, a definite rhythm kind of took over. I found it hard to not keep turning the pages, especially once the pace picked up. I could feel the author carrying me faster and faster to the climax.

Two things I liked:

(1)  The story’s ‘circular’ feel; it reminded me of the movie LOVE ACTUALLY, in which the seemingly separate sets of characters were all interrelated somehow, and the story brings it all together at the end. Having stated that, I’m still not completely sure that Tess’s story connected completely to the other lead characters’ external plots, nor do I fully get the metaphor of the Berlin Wall. (I did, however, look up images and information on the BW as a result. I love when fiction prompts me to do that, and that I have an internet that puts history in my hands.)

(2) The author’s take on marriage (relative to Tess, who had to decide whether or not to salvage hers): “Falling in love is easy. Anyone could fall. It was holding on that was tricky.”

Last thought: I don’t think the Epilogue added much. Where the story proper ended seemed pretty appropriate and fitting.

Have you read THE HUSBAND’S SECRET? If so, what did you think about it? Have you read any other of this author’s work? What are you reading now? Do you have to force yourself to read sometimes?

Have a wonderful week, folks. Don’t worry. It will all get done.

Joanna

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16 thoughts on “Thoughts on THE HUSBAND’S SECRET

  1. I haven’t found the spirit of Christmas yet either. Sigh. Must knock off a few gifts yet and realize it’s getting closer: 10 days to go, oh, and must mail out a few Christmas cards…
    No, I haven’t read The Husband’s Secret. I’ll be on the lookout for a copy at the bookstore since you gave such a great review.
    Merry Christmas, Joanna. Have a stress-fee one. ❤ ❤

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    1. Same to you, Tess. I find the simpler I keep the gift-giving, the more I enjoy the season. I’m just grateful for so many things. That helps.

      Take care and thank you!

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  2. Forgot to mention I’m reading The House We Grew Up In by Lis Jewell. It’s about a screwed up family. I’m only a third of the way in. So far, the mother is a hoarder, one of her son’s commited suicide at 16, the mother has died and afterwards the remaining children ruminate about their lives. Yeah, screwed up is right.

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      1. I’m half-way now. It’s one of those books that goes back and forth in time. A number of times I got lost and resented the style of writing.
        I understand what she’s doing: unfolding the story layer by layer. It’s now coming together, but I don’t really like this style. A friend lent me the book because she was excited over this novel. Goes to show how subjective reading is, doesn’t it. I’m not saying the story isn’t good, it’s just the style. BTW, I left off the ‘a’ in author’s name, Lisa Jewell.

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        1. Depending on the story, I can get into that kind of writing. It’s the cliffhanger part of each chapter that can get annoying, esp when I want to know what happened to whichever character before the switch in chapters.

          I just started a YA, Looking for Alaska, by John Greene. So far, I like the writing. I got it as part of a deal when I got Hoops for my son’s summer reading.

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          1. I kept getting lost among year here and year there happenings because, at first, I hadn’t paid attention to the small headings (within chapters, yet) showing months and years. Even if I had, I still would not have liked the head bombs.

            Time changes, especially within chapter,s are a headache for ME.

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            1. That’s a great way to put it, and how I guess I felt about the opening chapters of the book I read. Be well, Ms. Tess 🙂

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    1. Interesting. I thought it dragged in the beginning, when she was fleshing out each of the POV characters.

      Second time I’m trying to get into THREE WISHES. So much expo in the beginning. Sigh. Sometimes I really miss my focus. It used to be so much better than what it be dese days. 😉

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