Book Review: The Third Wife – Lisa Jewell

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Published: 9th June 2015 (the version I reviewed for netgalley was an ebook but I also purchased the hardback edition)

Synopsis: You think you have the perfect life. You’re successful. Attractive. Well liked. And you’ve just got married for the third time. But that’s OK because everyone’s happy. Your children are happy. You’re happy. And so is your new wife…

London, 3am: a tragic accident, and Adrian’s life starts to fall apart. Because everyone has secrets and secrets have consequences. Some of which can be devastating.

I have been a long time reader of Lisa Jewell’s books right from the start and with Ralph’s Party so I wish thrilled to be given the opportunity to review The Third Wife through Netgalley. The Third Wife did not disappoint, another beautifully written novel.  A story of a very dysfunctional family formed from three marriages who, on the surface (or maybe just from Adrian’s blinkered point of view!) are happy and have managed the balance of ex-wives/current wives and children/step-children. The bond between the children is particularly lovely, given the different parentage, lifestyles, location and ages. However, as the story progresses, it becomes evident all is not what it seems.

Jewell attracts the readers attention by not delaying the death of Maya (who was the third wife of Adrian) which is the opening chapter. The present day anguish and the past from Maya’s point of view are wonderfully interwoven, eventually providing the whole picture and teaching Adrian a very valuable lesson about himself, his families and the hurt he has inadvertently caused and in blissful ignorance of.

The characters were well thought out and likeable. This novel is not as comedic and light-hearted as Jewell’s other novels however there was subtle humour interwoven within the grieving of not only Maya’s untimely passing but also of the marriages and families that went before.

A beautifully written novel which I was disappointed to come to the end of.

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