By Liane Moriarty
Rating: 5/5 Stairs
This is one of those books I think you should know as little as possible before diving in. I picked this one up and I had a completely different (wrong) idea of what it was about and how the story was going to unfold. So glad I did. The book was a nice surprise.
What I can tell you, looking back on this one, is that it really is a book about choices. Each choice we make in life – yes big ones, but especially the small ones – has an impact on our path. For instance, say you choose to make pancakes for breakfast, but you’re out of eggs. So you run to the store and bump into a friend, who invites you to dinner later that evening and you accept. If you would have said, “I’m out of eggs, so I’m eating cereal,” you would have missed that friend and not gone to dinner. And who knows what could happen as a result of that dinner. Each path we take (decision we make) results in new choices and new direction. So essentially, life is kind of like a Choose-Your-Own-Adventure book. Except you can’t start over. (Unless you are Ursula Todd, but that’s another book.)
The Husbands Secret explores the decisions we make and the resulting affect these decisions have on our lives, and those around us as well. The theme starts right at the beginning, the very first sentence.
It was all because of the Berlin Wall.
If it weren’t for the Berlin Wall, Cecilia would never have found the letter, and then she wouldn’t be sitting here, at the kitchen table, willing herself not to rip it open.
The story is told from the alternating perspectives of three very different women: Cecilia, Tess, and Rachel. Told over the course of a week before Easter Sunday, Ms. Moriarty weaves the narrative around the same points in time, visiting in turn with each of the women. Her narrative is always interesting, sometimes funny, and other times heartbreaking. I listened to this one, and looked forward to hearing every sentence. This is one book that had me still thinking about it and the characters after I was finished reading.
None of us ever know all the possible courses our lives could have and maybe should have taken. It’s probably just as well. Some secrets are meant to stay secret forever. Just ask Pandora.