Title: Wife Goes On
Author: Leslie Lehr
Release Date: March 1, 2008
Challenge: A to Z Challenge
Genre: Chick Lit
Rating: 4 out of 5
From the back cover:
After years of plodding through a not-terrible-terribly humdrum marriage, all the while feeling that life – real, exciting, satisfying – was out there somewhere, Diane is finally free to explore what’s next, even if it means starting over with a mountain of debt, two kids, and an inexplicable sense of optimism…
Beautiful Lana came to Hollywood to make it as an actress. Instead, she found a role as arm candy for a movie star husband – until his very public affair made her fodder for every gossip rag in town. Playing the humiliated spouse isn’t Lana’s idea of a career, and there’s no place like Hollywood for staging a dramatic comeback…
Back in High School, homecoming queen Bonnie and football star Buck were the golden couple everyone envied. Now, as Buck walks out the door leaving Bonnie with two young children, her storybook marriage is in tatters, and she’s not at all certain of the next chapter.
Hard-edged divorce lawyer Annette knew the odds going in, but once she fell for Jackson, she closed her eyes and took the leap. She always hoped they’d make it, but some secrets can’t be ignored, no matter how much Annette wants to try.
When I first heard about Wife Goes On, I thought it sounded like a fun, light-hearted book. I knew it would deal with divorce, a weighty issue, but I expected it to be an easy novel to read. I was definitely right, but I also found a lot that I wasn’t expecting within the pages of Wife Goes On.
Anyone who reads my reviews on a regular basis knows that I love books about women coming together and forging friendships, regardless of the reason. I like getting to know each of the characters through their own eyes, as well as through the voices of the other characters. I loved the way Lehr connected the different characters in the book. At the beginning, I’d be reading Diane’s story, cursing the woman who bought her house from under her and cheering at the bottle of wine she stole from the house before leaving it. Then, a few pages later, I’d be reading Annette’s story, cursing the woman who stole a bottle of wine from Annette’s new house. It took time for me to make the connection that these were two different sides of the same story.
It really is telling that I sympathized with each and every character in the book. Lehr writes each of these women very well; the reader roots for each and every one of them, even when their happiness seems to be a zero-sum game. I have to say that my favorite character was Diane. I love the metamorphosis she went through after her divorce; it definitely serves as an inspiration to women everywhere!
So what was I not expecting about the novel? The sex. Not so much man-woman sex, but the tools a woman can use to…service herself. It’s actually a big part of the book. I found it surprising at the beginning, but as I got into it, I definitely found the whole thing amusing. It’s not graphic, and it’s actually used as a business opportunity in the book (can’t say much more or I’ll spoil it!). It’s definitely not dirty, but if the idea makes you uncomfortable, this book might not be for you.
I really enjoyed Wife Goes On; despite the rather familiar 4-women storyline, the book is refreshing and original. A huge thank you to author Brenda Janowitz for putting me in touch with Leslie, and thank you to Leslie for sending me Wife Goes On to review!