Tuesday, August 26, 2014

The Husband's Secret by Liane Moriarty

Recently at a dinner with friends, we were talking about books (naturally) and someone brought up The Husband's Secret by Liane Moriarty.  She went on and on about how good it was so that evening I added it to my library reserve list.  I was surprised at how quickly it came in and got started on it right away.  I know I have mentioned before my usual dislike of anything I would consider "chick lit", but this one I enjoyed.  Perhaps other people would argue with the "chick lit" label, but the fact that it isn't too "chicky" could be why I liked it.

This is one of those fun books that begins with three different story lines that all eventually converge into one story.  It begins with one woman finding an old letter addressed to her from her husband to be opened in the event of his death.  She is pretty shocked by this and so calls her husband who happens to be out of town and asks him about it.  He tries to brush it off as sentimentality written down in the wake of the birth of their first child, but she senses it is something more.  She agrees not to open it, but the curiosity about what it could really be gnaws at her.  In another story line, a husband informs his wife is in love with someone else and in the third story line, an elderly woman is grieving the death of her daughter nearly three decades previous.

This was a perfect quick read that kept me turning the pages.  It would be wonderful for a book club discussion because there is plenty to debate and it is sure to allow plenty of secret sharing opportunities.  It was funny and sad and shocking in all the best ways.  I especially loved that the epilogue tidied up any loose ends and even allowed the reader to see what could have been.  It ends with this wonderful paragraph:

None of us ever know all the possible courses our lives could have and maybe should have taken.  It's probably just as well.  Some secrets are meant to stay secret forever.  Just ask Pandora.

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