My Favourite Wife Hardcover – 18 Feb 2008
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Acclaim for for Tony Parsons:
‘Funny, serious, tender and honest…Tony Parsons is writing about the genuine dilemmas of modern life’
‘He takes as his specialist subject contemporary emotional issues which almost every other male writer has ignored’ Guardian
‘Memorable and poignant – nobody squeezes more genuine emotion from a scene than Tony Parsons’ Spectator
From the Inside Flap
Hot shot young lawyer Bill Holden and his wife Becca move their four-year-old daughter to the booming, gold-rush city of Shanghai. It is a place of opportunity and temptation, where fortunes are made and foreign marriages come apart in spectacular fashion.
Bill's law firm houses the Holden family in Paradise Mansions - a luxury apartment block full of 'second wives': beautiful young women like JinJin Li, ex-school teacher, crossword addict, dedicated roller skater and the Holden's neighbour.
After Becca witnesses a near-tragedy, she returns temporarily to London with Holly - and Bill and JinJin are thrown together.
Bill wants to be a better man than the millionaire who keeps JinJin Li as a second wife. Better than any man who cheats. Becca is his best friend. But in the end can he give JinJin anything different - can he give her the love she deserves? And can he love his wife too?
My Favourite Wife is a book about the men and women of our time - their struggles, their joys and their secret longings. Above all it is a book about where sex, romance and obsession ends, and where true love begins.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
The family is central again in his novel but the Chinese family relations make for an interesting contrast. His father and their relationship is juxtaposed with the Chinese mistress and her father. Having lived abroad, I really related to the pull of the elderly relatives back at home and the innocence of those newly arrived compared to those who have lived in such an environment for some time.
Not a book to make you feel comfortable, either with the Western influence on Chinese society or the inner workings of the heart.
Please correct me if I'm wrong here but I always thought Shanghai was rather larger than the village I grew up in (Newton Solney - population 700). The reason I ask is because apparently no matter where you go in Shanghai you bump into the small handful of people you know...amazing!! Although not quite as amazing as being able to find your way back to a shack on a hillside in the middle of a typhoon which you have visited just once, c'mon Tony, I've been to Yangshou and that is way beyond unlikely. I was half expecting our 'hero' to get home to find he'd scooped the jackpot in the Euro Millions and the National Lottery both in the same week!!
I always take my books down to the British Heart Foundation bookshop after I've read them, not just to support a good cause but also because I love to read and encourage others to do likewise. I binned this nasty little piece of work so as not to inflict it on any other poor soul...it really is that bad.
Unfortunately the Amazon website wouldn't allow me give it 0 stars as I wanted to
I won't be reading any more of Parsons - I'm afraid the stories are just too repetitive and predictable. There is no real conflict, or inner development of character.
Parsons' other books have taken us through the reasons why marriages are so difficult and even how hard it is for men who cheat and why don't women just understand that if the other woman wasn't so exceptional it wouldn't have happened. In this case none of the characters is likeable (even the child is precocious and annoying) and he's so pleased with himself for painting a picture of modern China that he's forgotten to tell a human story. The interview in the back of the book is really pretentious - sorry Tone no one cares about your obsession with Asian women. And I am an Asian woman !!
The father storyline we've read before - many times - and adds little value. I felt cross when I'd finished this book as I'd spent so long waiting for something of interest to happen and it just didn't. The cover is pretty though.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Living as expat in Shanghai you can recognize this live. Recommended to everybody who has ever lived in China and fascinating for those who hasn'tPublished 14 months ago by Lenke
Practically read this in one go as found it fascinating. Am about to start another of his books. Highly recommendPublished 18 months ago by Sandy
A great but scary read. Western man as a hero figure in a culture very different from his own. Well written & very believable. The background very well set too.Published on 19 Dec. 2013 by Jill Napier
A male writer of chick flicks for men is how I have seen Tony Parsons described, I prefer to think of him as a male writer of Contemporary Fiction which can be enjoyed by both male... Read morePublished on 14 Aug. 2012 by LindyLouMac
The story is as follows: A couple with a young child move from London to Shanghai. The wife gets fed up and goes back to London with the daughter. Read morePublished on 12 Oct. 2011 by CT Squirrell
I agree, it's not the most well-written book - I found myself often looking back on previous pages to see if I had missed a 'link' to explain the point the characters were now at,... Read morePublished on 2 Aug. 2011 by jane