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The War of the Wives Hardcover – 19 Jul 2012


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Doubleday (19 July 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0857520342
  • ISBN-13: 978-0857520340
  • Product Dimensions: 13.5 x 3.7 x 20.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (58 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 469,761 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Tamar Cohen (who also writes as Tammy Cohen) is a freelance journalist writing for national magazines and newspapers. A late starter to fiction she has now written five novels - The Mistress's Revenge, The War of the Wives, Someone Else's Wedding, The Broken and Dying For Christmas - all published by Doubleday/Black Swan. Her sixth novel, First One Missing, is out in July 2015. She is a Writer in Residence at Kingston University and lives in North London with her partner and three (nearly) grown children, plus one very badly behaved dog.

Product Description

Review

"Moving, funny and completely absorbing... you won't be able to put this one down until you finish it" (Prima)

"A pacy tale of two women who discover they've been simultaneously married to one man - at his funeral. Witty, ludicrously melodramatic and psychologically perceptive, and you'll polish it off between Luton and Heraklion." (Sunday Telegraph)

"A smart, gripping story that we just couldn't stop reading - you won't believe the ending. *****" (Closer Magazine)

"The most fantastic gripping book [on Mistress's Revenge}" (Lisa Jewell Fabulous Magazine)

"A funny, smart and savvy read" (Sainsbury's Magazine)

Book Description

A happily married woman whose husband dies unexpectedly is confronted at his funeral by a woman who claims that she was his wife. By the author of The Mistress's Revenge.

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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Beatrix on 8 Aug. 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
War of the Wives is gripping from the start, with the discovery of a dead body in the Thames closely followed by the shocking revelation that the man in question - Simon Busfield - was leading a double life. The lives of his two families become irrevocably entwined and an intriguing story unfolds, told, in turn, by his two very different wives, Lottie and Selina, as they experience denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance. In her second novel Tamar Cohen perfectly captures the fragility of contemporary family life and relationships, and the unpredictability of teenage behaviour, with a pacy narrative that is often highly amusing and chillingly accurate. I enjoyed every minute!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Katharine Kirby TOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 28 Jan. 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Two mums; Selina and Lottie. Two sons, Felix and Josh. Two daughters, Flora and Sadie. Something is amiss, there's only one husband/dad, slippery, secretive Simon... And now he's dead. There are a chorus of confidantes, sisters, friends, who cluster around and advise, but no one else really understands what being betrayed so effectively feels like.

A page turner, for sure; I just had to find out how it sorted itself. This is an undercurrent of drama, money is missing, dark forces are at work. The police appear slow to uncover the truth. A lot rides on the result, insurance payments, property deals.

I was irritated by the very short bites we had of each lady. In quick succession we hear from sharp Selina, in her smart upmarket home and Lottie who is softer, slightly more bohemian. Flick, flick. This is written for people with a short attention span. I would preferred more depth, more time to get to know each situation.

I read it on the kindle, which as usual, meant the words passed by my eyes rather differently than when holding a paper version. Throughout, however, I was enthralled, excited and engaged.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Y. L. Dudley on 2 Sept. 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
I was really looking forward to this book as I had enjoyed her previous one. This book was okay, a bit simplistic, readable and funny in places. It wasn't unusual or anywhere near as gripping and powerful as the previous one.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By L. H. Healy TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 17 July 2012
Format: Hardcover
Two women who have both been married - one for twenty-eight years with three children, the other for seventeen years with one daughter - to the same man who travels a lot, suddenly come face to face with each other for thefirst time at his funeral. There they learn of the existence of each other, and the novel follows their thoughts and behaviour as they both experience the feelings of denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance, each of which are the titles of the five parts of this story.

The two wives, Selina and Lottie, narrate the story alternately throughout. Selina and Lottie are vastly different women in terms of their lifestyles and outlooks, but inside, they have shared concerns and have both been deeply hurt. Somehow they must now learn to deal with each other.

This is a thoroughly entertaining and compelling read, at times droll and darkly humorous, at others deeply emotional and tragic. It is a very witty novel with a deliciously exciting starting point, which immediately arouses curiosity in the reader as to what will happen next. The author deftly unpicks the seams of these two seemingly contented families to expose the secrets, hurt and confusion underneath, and portrays two distinctive women who are forced to confront the same harsh reality and re-examine their pasts in a new light. The use of the two first-person viewpoints allows us to get right to the heart of everything that happens, making for a memorable and intimate story.

4.5 stars
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By ElaineG TOP 50 REVIEWER on 6 Jan. 2015
Format: Kindle Edition
I did enjoy this read. Two women, Lottie and Selena discover they were both married to the same man Simon, at the same time. Simon unfortunately is dead at the start of the book, thereby avoiding the fallout that follows when the two women discover each other’s existence. The story is told alternatively from each woman’s viewpoint. Selena is a society wife, lives a privileged lifestyle with everything a woman could wish for. She is a “lady who lunches” and appearance is all important to her. Lottie, on the other hand, is more bohemian and far more laid back than Selena. Whilst I enjoyed reading both viewpoints, I think Selena just had the edge for me although I couldn’t explain why. Each narration feels very real and natural, exactly how that character would feel in that situation.

This is not a story about sisterhood, the women do not see each other as fellow victims, but most definitely as rivals for the post of “widow” and their narrations are liberally stuffed with snide and nasty digs at each other. To sum it up properly, at times I liked each character, at other times I disliked each character, but I don’t think there was any occasion when I liked both women at the same time.

Running all the way though the book is a feeling that something is not right about the way Simon died, and that feeling of tension builds with strange and quite unnerving things happening to the women. As the story builds to a climax that does tie up all the ends with a few shocks along the way, I did feel that maybe there was a couple of shocks too many. It seemed to go overboard on twists at the end, and losing a couple of them would have kept the story more “real”.

However, it is a book that is well worth a read, one that really keeps your interest. Thanks to the publishers for the review copy.
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