Just before the start of the New Year a new novel by best-selling author Tarryn Fisher hits the shelves, and it very well could be the most talked about novel of 2020. It’s called The Wives, and it’s the type of novel that you need to keep reading until you pass judgement on it.
The Wives follows the story Thursday, a married woman who only gets to see her husband one day a week. The reason for this unconventional arrangement is because her husband is seeing two other women. Thursday is aware of the other women, and lives contently knowing she is part of a polygamous relationship. Her husband only has one request of Thursday, and that’s to not seek out the other women he is involved with. Thursday can’t help herself though, and after finding a scrap of paper in her husband’s pocket with one of the other wives’ contact information on it, she reaches out and befriends her. The problem is though, after meeting the other woman, Thursday starts discovering things about her husband she wasn’t aware of. Things like a level of violence she wasn’t aware of that causes him to hit his other wife. After seeing the signs of abuse, Thursday starts to wonder who her husband is, and decides to find the third wife to see if she is dealing with the same issues. She needs to know the truth, but how far is she willing to go?
The Wives is hard to get into at first. After all the main character is a little flaky, and doesn’t seem to have any respect for herself. Characters like that are hard to understand, or even like, and after the first 50 pages or so you may find yourself wanting to stop reading the novel altogether. Here’s the thing though, don’t. When the novel starts picking up steam it doesn’t slow down, and you will find yourself having a hard time putting the book down. You simply must know what happens next. Part of the way through the novel you will find yourself starting to wonder what is going on, and you will start questioning the validity of everything you’d read so far. You might even need to flip back and double check things that have come before just to make sure you read things right in the first place.
Fisher weaves a complex story that will have people talking. The Wives is the kind of novel that will thrive on word of mouth, and once you pick it up and start reading you will quickly find out why. It hits bookstores on December 30.