Wife Living Dangerously by Debra Kent is a book I found in a second-hand book store. The title amused me and I was intrigued as to what led a wife to live dangerously. After all, so many wives lead pretty mundane lives like mine I imagine. Perhaps it is just that as the menopause strikes, I question so many of my life choices including the one to get married at all. Is it possible for a wife to live dangerously? Is doing so recommended?
Wife Living Dangerously
Julia is the wife in question. Due to her upbringing she has always played by the book as a good woman, wife and mother. Her girlfriends despair of this trait and challenge her to live a little more dangerously. We follow her journey as she starts with small rebellions and goes on to have a relationship with another man.
What I liked about the book
I liked the basic premise of us following a woman who was acting out of character. It was good to think that there is hope for us middle-aged wives that someone may yet find us attractive again. Some of Julia’s rebellions were amusing such as her passing off one pet as another.
The characters in Wife Living Dangerously
Most of the characters were likeable enough. I liked Julia’s girlfriends who egged her on to greater adventures although I would have liked their own stories to have been covered in more depth. Julia was OK but did not found myself rooting for her as I have done for female characters in other books I have read recently. Julia’s husband was not a bad man but had got caught up in his own career and music interest to the detriment of the marriage’s wellbeing. The romantic interest was Evan who I though was magnificent if only for helping Julia live really dangerously and find her joie de vivre again.
What I found challenging about the book
The book is set in America and I found some of the references challenging to get to grips with. It was not a huge issue but just made the book harder work than one in a more familiar setting.
Julia worked in an academic institute concerning sexuality and I found that was just an unnecessary distraction to the story.
I felt that the stories I was most interested in like the Julia and Evan relationship did not really go into enough depth. The blurb on the back of the book said Julia would like a bit more excitement in her life. By the end of the book I felt I would have liked more excitement in the book itself.
Overall impression of Wife Living Dangerously
I guess I would say this book is OK but only OK. Much like in marriage itself, you have to question whether OK will do. That is up to the individual wife or reader depending on whether they see more exciting options available.