Literary Wives

Welcome to the Literary Wives Online Book Discussion!

I don't actually remember exactly how I first discovered the Literary Wives, but I immediately started reading the books and participating in the discussions once I had. 
I was fascinated by the premise, since I had also noticed that many books 
included "wife" or "wives" in the title and already owned quite a few. 
Actually, it was this "club" that finally motivated me to establish a real blog! 
My first blog posting on June 1, 2013, was the review of the second book in this series, 
The Paris Wife by Paula Mclain. (Yep! You can tell it was my first! lol) 
I simply linked to my Goodreads review for the first book, American Wife by Curtis Sittenfeld and commented on the others' blogs. 

Imagine my thrill when later asked to become one of the co-hosting bloggers for this group! 
(In case you're wondering, yes, it was indeed "happy dance" time...and I did just that!!)

The Literary Wives virtual book club "meets" every third month/once per quarter to discuss a book 
with the word "wife" or "wives" in the title or 
a book that discusses marriage but whose title lacks either of these words. 
We are particularly interested in the way(s) in which wives are portrayed in literature. 
We try to answer this question:

What does this book say about wives or about the experience of being a wife?

Each of us extends our discussion into more specific areas we can 
personally relate to which makes for enlightening comparisons!
I believe this is more pertinent for me due to my 'longer life experience' 
or perhaps 'advanced age' is a more realistic term!

We read books across genres and hope to generate discussion about each title.

Check out our Facebook page! And PLEASE, if this interests you, 
read with us and at least participate in the discussions, 
or post your own review and link it to the FB page and any or all of our blogs! 

What's coming up next?
The Sentence by Louise Erdrich
to be reviewed on Monday, June 6, 2022
**NOTE: My review will be a bit delayed since I inadvertently read the wrong book! 

Here is our future review schedule:

September 2022               Red Island House by Andrea Lee

December 2022                State of the Union by Nick Hornby

March 2023                       His Only Wife by Peace Adzo Medie

June 2023                         The Harpy by Megan Hunter

September 2023               Sea Wife by Amity Gaige

December 2023                Hamnet by Maggie O'Farrell

March 2024                      Mrs. March by Virginia Feito

June 2024                        Recipe for a Perfect Marriage by Karma Brown

September 2024              Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston

Here is a comprehensive listing of all the books read and reviewed thus far:

#51 I'm Fine and Neither Are You by Camille Pagan
        March 2022
#50 The Summer Wives by Beatriz Williams
        December 2021
#49 The Amateur Marriage by Anne Tyler
        September 2021
#48 Monogamy by Sue Miller
        June 2021
#47 Every Note Played by Lisa Genova
        March 2021
#46 *The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton
        December 2020
#45 *Alternate Side by Anna Quindlen
       September 2020
#44 *The Dutch House by Ann Patchett 
        June 2020
The War of the Wives by Tamar Cohen
        March 2020
#42 The Home-Maker by Dorothy Canfield Fisher 
        December 2019
#41 *Happenstance by Carol Shields
        October 2019
#40 Ties by Domenico Starnone, translated by Jhumpa Lahiri
        August 2019
#39 *A Separation by Katie Kitamura
       June 2019
#38 *Wait for Me, Jack by Addison Jones
        April 2019
#37 They Were Sisters by Dorothy Whipple
       February 2019
#36 The Stars Are Fire by Anita Shreve
       December 2018
#35 An American Marriage by Tayari Jones
       October 2018
#34 First Love by Gwendoline Riley
       August 2018
#33 *Stay With Me by Ayobami Adobayo
       June 2018
#32 The Headmaster's Wife by Thomas Christopher Greene
       April 2018
#31 *The Blazing World by Siri Hustvedt
       February 2018
#30 A Lady and Her Husband by Amber Reeves
       December 2017
#29 *Dept. of Speculation by Jennie Offill
       October 2017
#28 *On Beauty by Zadie Smith
       August 2017
#27 *The Awakening by Kate Chopin
       June 2017
#26 *Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald by Therese Fowler
       April 2017
#25 The Wife by Meg Wolitzer
       February 2017
#24 Mrs. Hemingway by Naomi Wood 
       December 2016
#23 American Housewife by Helen Ellis
       October 2016
#22 How To Be a Good Wife by Emma Chapman
       August 2016
#21 The Disobedient Wife by Annika Milisic-Stanley
       June 2016
#20 The Happy Marriage by Tahar Ben Jelloun
       April 2016
#19 A Circle of Wives by Alice LaPlante
       February 2016
#18 The Kitchen God's Wife by Amy Tan
        December 2015
#17 The Silent Wife by A.S.A. Harrison
        October 2015
#16 The Astronaut Wives Club by Lily Koppel
        August 2015
#15 My Father's Wives by Mike Greenberg
        June 2015
#14 The Bishop's Wife by Mette Ivie Harrison
        April 2015
#13 The Last Wife of Henry VIII 
       by Carolly Erickson     February 2015
#12 The Shoemaker’s Wife by Adriana Trigiani
        December 2014
#11 Wife 22 by Melanie Gideon

        October 2014
#10 The World's Wife by Carol Ann Duffy
        August 2014
#9  The Crane Wife by Patrick Ness
        June 2014
#8  The Zookeeper's Wife by Diane Ackerman
        April 2014
#7  The Inquisitor's Wife by Jeanne Kalogridis
        February 2014
#6  The Wife, the Maid, and the Mistress 
      by Ariel Lawhon       December 2013
      Follow-up on Ariel Lawhon's blog
       January 2015
#5  Ahab's Wife by Sena Jeter Naslund
       October 2013
#4  The Aviator's Wife by Melanie Benjamin
       August 2013
#3  A Reliable Wife by Robert Goolrick
       July 2013
#2  The Paris Wife by Paula McLain
       June 2013
#1  American Wife by Curtis Sittenfeld
       May 2013

Other books describing marriage/husband-wife relationships:
Circling the Sun by Paula McLain 
     I admit it took me a bit to accurately place the couples in this book--most all of 
     them who were actually married to one another were totally unhappy and 
     amazingly dysfunctional, while those couples who appeared to truly be 'in love' 
     and happy were NOT married, but simply in 'extramarital' affairs'! Seriously, 
     nearly ALL of them! What was fascinating was to learn how vicious the gossip 
     could become and actually "ruin" people, yet, they were all doing this! 
     Such hypocrisy! Beryl Markham's life was fascinating, but the couples described 
     were just as fascinating! At least Beryl was realistic about her love for Denys and 
     his love...for her...or Karen...or anyone else. 
My Son's Story by Nadine Gordimer
     A marriage set in Apartheid South Africa. A husband who defies Apartheid laws, 
     loses his teaching position, and becomes a well-known and sought-after speaker 
     for the protests in his region. A white female aide worker assigned to his case 
     while in prison, becomes his lover. What is the impact upon the children? 
     And the marriage?
Golden Boy by Abigail Tarttelin
     Add to the usual marriage relationship the additional challenges represented by 
     a child born intersex. 
Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng
     A study of parents imposing their own wants/desires upon children...never a 
     good thing, in my opinion! It's tough enough being a kid! And how do those 
     unrequited desires affect the marriage?
Moon Tiger by Penelope Lively
     An unusual woman in unusual times. Claudia is unique in most every way for 
     the period of World War I: a war correspondent wandering the fields of battle; 
     loses the unborn child fathered by the only man she truly loved (other than 
     her brother Gordon); and having a life-partner (not a spouse) as the father of 
     her only child. She lived life on her terms and her terms only!
And...the other hosting bloggers!

Please meet our newcomer, 
Rebecca of Bookish Beck
Rebecca relocated from Maryland to England 15 years ago. 
She’s a freelancer, proofreading science articles and writing book reviews for BookBrowse, 
Bookmarks, Shelf Awareness, the Times Literary Supplement, and more. 
Between work, blogging, and volunteering at the library, she is knee-deep in books, 
and most often to be found reading with a cat on her lap. 
She and her husband have just bought their first home and 
plan to make a library room with built-in shelves and a window seat.

And the two veterans:
Naomi of Consumed by Ink
Once upon a time, Naomi worked as a biologist, math tutor, and early childhood educator. 
Since then, she has been happily reading bedtime stories to three eager listeners, 
and hopes this will never change. 
She loved traveling around the Canadian Maritimes with her family, 
visiting the used book stores and bakeries.

Kay of whatmeread
Kay is a long-time professional technical writer (now retired--yippee!) 
who has taught composition and technical-writing courses at the college level. 
She loves reading all kinds of books. 
When she recently got an iPad and spent some hours playing games, 
her husband thought she'd undergone a personality change. 
But soon she was back to reading. 
She is the secret author of three (sadly unpublished) trashy romance novels.


  1. I would recommend The Pocket Wife

    1. Have you read The Pocket Wife? I have it on my TBR list, but it sounds as if it might be even scarier than The Silent Wife! And I'm such a wuss! I think we're due to schedule more LW reads in February or so, and I'll keep this one in mind. Thank you! Feel free to join in our review discussions any time. The more the merrier! :)

  2. Hi Lynn! I'm hosting an Anne of Green Gables Read Along starting this month. I see you completed a similar read along in 2015. But I'd love to have you join or at least link up your reviews! Here's the info post: :)

    1. Well, darn, Jane! I'm just now reading your message...a year and a half later! :( I had both knee joints replaced in 2017 and am just now getting back to blogging! I trust your read-along went well. I really enjoyed those books!