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Review: The Wife’s Tale

December 1, 2009

Mary Brody has battled her weight all of her life, except for one year of high school when she had an intestinal parasite.  The slimmer Mary has more self confidence, gets a part-time job and begins a romance with Jimmy Gooch.  When Mary discovers she’s pregnant, they decide to get married.

Mary goes into the marriage with a lie eating away at her conscience which causes her to eat everything in sight, so she gains all of her weight back, plus more.  She is embarrassed by her weight, but doesn’t seem to be able to do anything about it.  She and Gooch are getting ready to celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary and something happens that causes Mary to re-evaluate her life, face her fears and discover a strength she never knew she had.

I struggled writing a synopsis of The Wife’s Tale, by Lori Lansens, because I didn’t want to give too much of the story away.  I went into this book with no expectations, because I knew nothing about it, and I’d never read any of Lansens’ work before, and I absolutely loved it!  This will definitely be one of my favorite books of the year (even though it won’t be published until February 10, 2010).

Mary and Gooch are planning their anniversary celebration at the beginning of the book and their past is filled in as needed.  The reader learns about their relationship and their life in their small Canadian town, which Mary had rarely left.

The story is told through a third person narrator from Mary’s point of view.  Mary is a fabulous character who I could really relate to, even though I don’t have any of the problems she does.  I think we all share some of the insecurities and self doubt she has, though.  Mary is such a good person, but hides behind her weight and doesn’t really let anyone know her.

The Wife’s Tale was my first experience with Lori Lansens’ work and I just loved her writing style and hated for the book to end.  I read this book quickly because I was so engrossed in the story.  I plan to look for Lansens’ other books, and if they’re as good as this one, she will become one of my favorite authors.   I highly recommend this book!

Review copy provided by Hachette Books.   I am an Amazon Associate.

55 Comments leave one →
  1. December 1, 2009 6:16 am

    Sounds like a really good read. It is always great to go into a book expecting nothing and then loving it!

  2. December 1, 2009 6:41 am

    Thank you for telling me about an author I’d never heard of. You have a way of doing that.


  3. December 1, 2009 6:42 am

    This is the second good review I’ve read in as many days for this book – I’m adding it to the tbr list!

  4. December 1, 2009 7:26 am

    I read The Girls by Lori Lansen a couple years ago and really enjoyed it. This sounds like a winner! I’ll add it to my list 🙂

  5. December 1, 2009 7:30 am

    Interesting. I’m happy you loved it.

  6. December 1, 2009 7:52 am

    I have never read Lori Lansen either. Thanks for the great review. Will add to my TBR list!

  7. December 1, 2009 8:10 am

    Wow, sounds fantastic. It’s like finding a diamone in the dirt when you discover a new author that you just love. Fantastic review, you do a great job of not giving away spoilers.

    Have a great week and happy reading.

  8. December 1, 2009 8:24 am

    Another book for my list 🙂 Thanks for the great review. If u liked it so much then I am sure it will be a wonderful read

  9. December 1, 2009 8:44 am

    I’ve never read or even heard of the author, but with such a glowing review, how can I not write this down? After the last week, I feel like I need to go find me an internal parasite…

  10. December 1, 2009 8:50 am

    This sounds really good. I’m with Sandy though – where are those internal parasites when you need them?!!

  11. December 1, 2009 9:09 am

    I’m SO glad this one delivered! I’ve really been looking forward to it…now even more so! Great review…

  12. December 1, 2009 9:24 am

    This sounds great! I’ll have to get my hands on a copy when it comes out. Thanks for the review!


  13. December 1, 2009 9:27 am

    I loved it, too and can’t wait to buy her other two books. It’s a sure thing for a Top Pick for Book End Babes for February.

  14. December 1, 2009 9:34 am

    Can’t wait to read this one — soon!

  15. December 1, 2009 11:28 am

    This sounds really good!!

  16. December 1, 2009 12:38 pm

    I love it when you don’t want a book to end- that’s the best feeling you can get reading! 🙂

  17. stacybuckeye permalink
    December 1, 2009 12:57 pm

    Well that’s quite an endorsement. I’ll have to look for it when it comes out.

  18. December 1, 2009 1:16 pm

    I haven’t heard of this one, but it sounds great! Any books that make my bloggy buddies’ top 10 lists or faves of the year are noteworthy.

  19. December 1, 2009 1:17 pm

    I hadn’t even heard of Lansen before! Definitely an author to keep in mind.

  20. December 1, 2009 1:43 pm

    Thanks for recommending this book. I’ve not heard of this author; she’s going on my reading list.

  21. December 1, 2009 2:14 pm

    I just love the opening line of this review – and I’m definitely reading this one now. Thanks!

  22. December 1, 2009 2:20 pm

    This sounds like a book I would enjoy. Don’t you love when a book turns out way better than expected? Thanks for the great review Kathy.

  23. December 1, 2009 3:17 pm

    This was sent to me a couple of months back, and I have to say I had no expectations either, but was in no rush to pick it up. The cover you have is different! I like yours better. ANYway, now that I have read your review, I am going to read it next! Thanks!

  24. December 1, 2009 3:22 pm

    This is definitely going on the to-read list!

  25. December 1, 2009 5:46 pm

    Great review, Kathy. I’ll add this to my TBR list!

  26. December 1, 2009 7:12 pm

    I can’t wait to get a copy of this. Also a new author for me. Thanks for a great review.

  27. December 1, 2009 7:57 pm

    I have to confess, your review is making me curious to read it! Well done.

  28. December 1, 2009 7:57 pm

    This one sounds really good. I will have to put it on my wishlist. It sounds like a book I would really enjoy. Great review Kathy!

  29. December 1, 2009 8:01 pm

    It sounds interesting…especially after you mentioned Canada.

  30. libby Sutherland permalink
    December 1, 2009 8:48 pm

    already have this on my Kindle….can’t wait to read it..

  31. December 1, 2009 9:04 pm

    This sounds good – I’ll keep my eye out for it.

  32. December 1, 2009 10:16 pm

    Second favorable review that I’ve read of this one…so can’t wait to get my hands on a copy sometime!!

  33. December 1, 2009 10:37 pm

    You’ve convinced me to add this book to my wish list Kathy! It sounds wonderful.

  34. December 2, 2009 2:53 am

    Great review. I know the feeling of getting a very new book and finding out that it was very worthy read. Thanks Kathy!

  35. December 2, 2009 8:39 am

    Wow, you totally sold me on this book. Great review.

  36. December 2, 2009 10:04 am

    I like the looking-back-at-life style of writing a story. You’ve left enough mystery in your review to make me want to check this one out – plus the fact that it’s going to be one of your best of the year.

  37. December 2, 2009 2:16 pm

    I’ve heard good things about this author and need to give one of her books a try. This one sounds like a winner and I’m always looking for good novels set in Canada. Thanks for the review.

  38. December 2, 2009 3:07 pm

    Glad you liked this one Kathy. I was going to start it a while back and didn’t. Guess I should get back at it.

  39. December 2, 2009 3:27 pm

    This sounds really good. I love the cover.

    Okay another book to add to my wish list LOL

  40. December 2, 2009 4:19 pm

    Oh I am so glad that you liked this book! This is the first review I have read, but I have been interested in this book for quite awhile. Glad to know it’s so good, it is definitely going on the list after reading your review! Thanks!

  41. December 2, 2009 4:54 pm

    This sounds like a very interesting worthwhile book-I hope it comes about in paper back in 2010

  42. December 3, 2009 10:06 am

    Wow, this book sounds fascinating. I will have to keep an eye out for it next year. Thanks for the great review.

  43. December 3, 2009 2:13 pm

    Oh darn…. why do I come to your blog…. you make me so greedy to add books to my piles. Great review. I just know I’d find a thing or two to relate to in this book.

  44. December 3, 2009 3:09 pm

    I’m so glad you liked this! I am looking forward to it, as I have loved the authors writing in the past.

  45. December 3, 2009 7:12 pm

    I am thrilled that you loved it! Lori Lansens is my absolute favourite author. The neat thing is that I know much of the area she uses for her Ontario settings.

  46. December 3, 2009 8:27 pm

    Sounds like a good one; I’ll have to add it to the tbr list.

  47. December 3, 2009 9:42 pm

    Intestinal parasite…food poisoning, they both work wonders don’t they?
    Excellent review without giving anything away, which I know is super difficult.

  48. December 3, 2009 9:55 pm

    Great review, Kathy! I’ll keep this book in mind. I don’t think I’ve read anything by this author.

  49. December 4, 2009 3:06 pm

    I have an eARC of this one and can’t wait to read it. I read Lansens The Girls a couple of years ago and it was wonderful! It’s fiction, but I had to keep reminding myself of that because the characters were so real.

  50. December 4, 2009 5:13 pm

    I read a galley way back and can tell you I loved it too, it’s one of the best reads I’ve recently came upon.

  51. December 5, 2009 4:52 am

    My mom has struggled with her weight her entire life too so I think she’d be able to related to Mary. I’ll have to tell her about this one, thanks!

  52. December 7, 2009 11:53 pm

    I’m so glad to read such a positive review of this one. I read and absolutely adored Lansens’ “The Girls”. Definitely one of my top books of 2007. I highly recommend it.

  53. December 8, 2009 9:49 am

    Wow, really high praise! I have this book to review so I’m glad you loved it.

  54. December 20, 2009 7:28 pm

    I really like Lansens’ novels and I’m looking forward to this one. It’s good to know you liked it so much!

  55. justicejenniferreads permalink
    December 26, 2009 7:03 pm

    Anything that gets high praises from you catches my eyes. I will keep an eye out for this one in 2010!

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