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The Wife [Paperback]

Meg Wolitzer
3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
RRP: 8.99
Price: 6.29 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Book Description

5 Aug 2004

A Husband. A Wife. Their Secret

Joe and Joan Castleman are en route to Helsinki. Joe is thinking about the prestigious literary prize he will receive there, while Joan is plotting how to leave him. For too long she has played the role of supportive wife, turning a blind eye to his misdemeanours, whilst quietly being the keystone of his success. But behind the compromises, the disappointment and disillusionment there lies a secret.


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Product details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage; New Ed edition (5 Aug 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0099478196
  • ISBN-13: 978-0099478195
  • Product Dimensions: 13.2 x 20 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 13,660 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Review

"Meg Wolitzer is so funny and clever she should be bottled and sold as tonic" (Allison Pearson)

"A triumph of tone and observation, The Wife is a blithe, brilliant take on sexual politics" (Lorrie Moore)

"Hilarious and touching" (Erica Wagner, The Times)

"With a great lightness of touch, Wolitzer's novel satirises American literary circles of the Seventies and Eighties and traces the generation of wives who poured their own creative energies into "stoking the fires" of their husbands' reputations." (Emma Hagestadt, Independent)

Book Description

Sharp witty tale about the sexual politics of a marriage from New York Times bestseller and author of the acclaimed The Interestings

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Indulge yourself! 11 Sep 2005
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
Entertaining and easy to read, this is a book to relax with and to enjoy. The blurb compares the author to "a tonic" who should be bottled; I couldn't agree more! I felt that in her company I'd visited a therapist to hammer out some of my hang-ups about life and men; and then gone on to indulge myself further in an evening of gossip with a good friend and a bottle of wine! If this sounds like chick-lit, it isn't - its so much MORE! You won't have to feel guilty about reading Meg Wolitzer, because her book is intelligent and profound. She writes perceptively and humourously, with a delicious enjoyment of language. Highly recommended.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Honest and engaging 25 April 2007
By Jaybird
Format:Paperback
This book is brilliant. It is the story of a woman looking back over her marriage in middle age, the choices and compromises that she made.

It is totally let down by the cover, which makes it look like chick-lit and it definitely is not that. Firstly, it is extremely well-written, without ever being hard going. Secondly, there is nothing saccharin or sentimental about this book. However, it certainly geared at a female audience.

Sadly overlooked, this book deserves a wider readership. One for women of any age.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars If you grew up reading Cosmo ... 14 Oct 2008
Format:Paperback
I agree with the previous reviewer that this would work better as a short story (and then it wouldn't matter so much that the end is so utterly predictable). It's a mildly interesting dissection of a long-standing marriage but somehow the sexual politics seem a bit old hat ... there can't be many young women today who would be quite so accommodating of monstrous male egos. In the end, I lost interest in the novel because the Wife had been such a terrible drip! I know it's supposed to be witty and tongue in cheek but for me the humour got weighed down by a heavy dose of Guardian wimmin-ish feminism.
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9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book, bad cover 20 Oct 2004
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
This is a really fantastic book but is totally let down by the cover. The publishers seem to have tried to make it look like a chick lit book when it's not. Which means that half the readers who would enjoy it will ignore it on the shelves. It's a serious read and beautifully written.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspiring writing 21 July 2011
Format:Paperback
What was Meg's publisher DOING, stitching her up with such a stupid cover? This is a STUNNING novel - darkly humourous, yes - but insightful and beautifully written. I read it nearly two years ago, so can't give the specifics, but I remember being uncontrollably stuck into it. This book also has a special significance for me: on finishing it I decided I had to start writing the first novel that I'd been mulling in my head for months, and put pen to paper that very day. My 'darkly humourous' novel (MEN DANCING) will be published in October 2011. Thank you for the inspiration, Meg.
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4.0 out of 5 stars stylish and enjoyable 1 Jun 2014
By Bobbie
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Joe and Joan Castleman are en route to Helsinki. Joe is thinking about the prestigious literary prize he will receive and Joan is plotting to leave him. I enjoyed this stylish novel about the literary rivalry of the sexes quite a bit, despite the feminism feeling more 50s than noughties throughout and the unsurprising reveal. It’s also good on the perils of graduating from other woman to second wife.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Almost perfect 21 April 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Apart from the "storytelling by flahsbacks" method I found this novel interesting and engaging. It starts with Joe and Joan on their way to Helsinki, he has been awarded a literary prize...
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3.0 out of 5 stars Easy read 11 April 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Bought this on recommendation from family member. It's an easy read, keeps you interested and turning the pages though rather transparent story line
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Very good, very well written but didnt touch on some ...
Very good, very well written but didnt touch on some more deep level. Probably as I didn't find either of the 2 main characters believable,
Published 2 days ago by Susie
5.0 out of 5 stars Book Worm
Heard this reviewed on Radio 4, sounded like my "thing", was meant to be funny, but I found it hard going, did not really enjoy it
Published 5 months ago by Ann Carol Langford
5.0 out of 5 stars My wife loved it
Bought for my wife after hearing a review. She really enjoyed finding a new writer, loved the book and is now reading more from Ms Wolitzer.
Published 6 months ago by E.D. Palmer
1.0 out of 5 stars dull dull dull
Totally predictable. I wouldn't read another book by this author based on this rubbish. And why does it say 'hilarious' on the back cover? Read more
Published 6 months ago by S. Atkins
2.0 out of 5 stars Is it really so clever to put men down all the time?
This book is great if you're cynical, fed-up with life and sanctimonious. This steriotipical view of 'useless man' is so last century. Why
bother to depress yourself further. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Elisabeth Stephania Maria
4.0 out of 5 stars well written book; good twist at the end
I bought this book after it was reviewed on Book of the Week, where it had mixed reviews. I could see where everyone was coming from, and in a way its quite frustrating that she... Read more
Published 7 months ago by andrea wood
4.0 out of 5 stars Don't overlook this book!
Wolitzer is a terrific descriptive writer. She get's into the heads of us all and you'll find yourself recognising such a lot of what she has to say about the human race. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Jane Grey
3.0 out of 5 stars Served her right
I know this is perhaps a childish response to this long and complex novel, but all I could think all through the book was that the second wife (I can't even remember her name and I... Read more
Published 9 months ago by CC
2.0 out of 5 stars Frustrating and disappointing
I loved The Position and The Interestings, so I really wanted to love this book. It's well written, witty, full of sharp observations about human nature... Read more
Published 10 months ago by book book book
1.0 out of 5 stars Not that great
Book was a bit bitter/depressing but sometimes necc to point out the fact that if you are not equal in a relationship - get out of it - dont wait til the end.
Published 13 months ago by A wife
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