The Wives has an interesting premise and plenty of page-turning suspense, but overall it was a bit of a confusing hot mess. The narrator was so unreliable that I’m still not sure which scenes actually happened.
In order to avoid spoilers, here’s the summary from Amazon:
“Thursday’s husband, Seth, has two other wives. She’s never met them, and she doesn’t know anything about them. She agreed to this unusual arrangement because she’s so crazy about him.
But one day, she finds something. Something that tells a very different—and horrifying—story about the man she married.”
As you can tell by the brief summary, it’s hard to say much about the book without giving too much away.
Thursday is the narrator. Coincidentally, Thursday is also the day she “gets” to spend with Seth. Along these lines, she refers to the other two wives as Monday and Tuesday. From the outset, I found Thursday to be a very unsympathetic character, mainly because of her complete subservience to Seth. When she starts to defy him by investigating the other wives, my respect went up a notch. But then she goes into a mental death spiral and she’s revealed to be a very unreliable narrator. That added a new dimension to her character and more suspense to the plot.
But I’m still not sure what was real and what was made up. I think the author made her just too unreliable.
So, here’s the bottom line – I think The Wives will appeal to readers who like psychological thrillers that center on unhinged characters, similar to Gone Girl. It has some solid, suspenseful elements that make it worth reading. Plus it’s short and not much of a time investment if you end up hating it.
This is the most ambiguous, wishy-washiest review I’ve ever written. If you’ve read The Wives, help me out! Please write your thoughts in the comments section.