Monday, June 5, 2017

War of the Wives by Tamar Cohen

When I returned the last book I read, Dying for Christmas, I didn't have any other books on hand and one by the same author was available so I decided to pick it up.  You should note that the "Tammy" Cohen who wrote Dying for Christmas, is the same person as "Tamar" Cohen who wrote War of the Wives.  In fact I enjoyed this book much more.  While it had the same unexpected plot twists, it was not nearly as dark which is more my style.

Selina has been married to Simon Busfield for 28 years; they have three children, Felix, Flora and Josh.  While Simon spends half his time traveling, Selina keeps busy running her family's lives, decorating her home, exercising and doing charity work.  It is only when she is advised in the middle of the night that Simon has been found drowned in the Thames that she discovers her whole marriage was a sham.  Lottie shows up at his funeral, with her daughter Sadie in tow, claiming to have been married to Simon for 17 years.  Sadie is his daughter.  It turns out that rather than traveling on business half his life, Simon was instead spending it with his other family.

The remainder of the book deals with how the women cope with the enormous betrayal and re-examine their lives in light of the new information.  Interestingly they turn to each other at times - as in fact the other woman is the only one who can fully understand how she feels.  We also see how the children cope with the news of their new half siblings - some better than others.  And we slowly learn of the other secrets Simon had - affairs, money problems, shady business dealings and blackmail.  Finally the mystery of his death is also solved.

I don't want to give away any more of the plot, but I really liked this book.  It is well written, well paced and the characters are fascinating.  I recommend this one over her other book if you are only choosing to read one.

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