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Thursday, May 16, 2013

Single Wife by Nina Solomon~★★

Author: Nina Solomon
Title: Single Wife
Release Date: June 12, 2003
Publisher: Algonquin Books
Genre: Fiction

Book Jacket: "Grace Brookman is in a most unusual marital crisis. Her husband of five years, Laz, is prone to disappearing for days at a time. It's just the way he is. And Grace has always dealt with it silently and in stride. But when he doesn't return for several weeks, she begins to wonder if he'll ever come back. Her solution? She decides to pretend that he's still around---to convince everyone that Laz is still home and her marriage is still intact, it seems easier than explaining. 
Grace quickly realizes that fabricating a husband is all in the details---the things left out, half-done, out of order; each morning, a pair of his socks in the hamper, a toilet seat up in the bathroom, cabinet doors open, crumbs on the kitchen counter. All the little signs that show a husband is around. She learns that the pretense of a marriage can be reduced to a few timely excuses and well-placed props---a presence conjured by smoke and mirrors. 
But as Grace masters the art of deception, she finds herself the one most deceived. She begins to realize that perhaps her marriage---and her husband---were not what she'd believed them to be. 
Meanwhile, taking on the role of a single wife becomes excessively complicated when Grace's own life starts to spin out of control. She discovers that she's being stalked by a Russian detective, and people from Laz's past appear on her doorstep. She can't get her kvetching parents to stop running her life. Her favorite shade of lipstick has been discontinued. And she can't figure out why she's angry at Laz's best friend for being in love. Grace's life is a New York mess."

Taryn's Review: It took 300 pages in this book to reveal the outcome of the story it told. To say the story dragged is a colossal understatement. There were so many little details in this book that ultimately failed to tie into the bigger picture of the story and those details left me scratching my head in confusion. 

Grace was either blinded by love or totally dense. The book doesn't really explain why Grace kept the charade of Laz's presence going for such a long time or why she felt the need to lie to her family and friends. Previously, Grace also apparently never questioned why her husband would need to abandon her for days at a time without contact.

I'm not sure if the ending of the book was supposed to lead me to believe that Grace had some sort of self-awakening while Laz was gone. Nothing she did while he was missing made me think she was becoming wiser. In fact, I'd say the way the story ended was due to secrets which were revealed because of convenience, not because Grace searched for answers.

I was really bored while reading this story and admit to skipping pages because I was sick of the limbo I was trapped in while reading the book. This limbo has worked for other books, but the "suspense" of this story was not pleasing. I really disliked this book and didn't find the author's writing style particularly unique or fantastic. I'm not sure if I'd try another book by this author; the book would have to already have rave reviews for me to consider spending time on another Soloman book.

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