Tuesday, October 1, 2013
How to be a Good Wife by Emma Chapman
3.5 out of 5 stars - Fast-paced and chilling, this is the story of a middle-aged woman discovering memories that make her feel that her whole life is a lie.
Marta Bjornstad has been married to Hector for a very long time, and, feeling the pangs of an empty nest, stops taking the pills that her husband has always provided for her "to help her feel better." As the amnesic effect of the medication wanes, Marta experiences snippets and fragments of people and scenes that both confuse and frighten her. She is not sure if these are memories or hallucinations. Is she really mad and delusional -- or a victim?
As the blurb says, reminiscent of the books, "Room" and "Before I Go to Sleep," the narrative takes the reader in and out of present and past and along on Marta's frantic attempts to piece together what has happened to her. Despite the sympathetic attempts husband and son make to comfort and reassure her, Marta feels that her past has been hidden from her and that terrible things have been concealed.
You'll hold your breath as you race to the end of this novel. The writing is tight, nuanced, and vague at times so you as the reader will have to form many of of the final conclusions as to what really happened.
A very enjoyable read.
Thank you to NetGalley and St. Martin's Press for the ebook ARC to review.