DETAILS: A Reliable Wife: A Novel by Robert Goolrick. Copyright 2009. Historical literary fiction.
SUMMERY: It's Wisconsin, 1907. Ralph Truitt has advertised for a wife, not for love but for convenience. But when she comes, she is not what he expected, a woman with a hidden past and a secret agenda of her own.
PROS: The storytelling is masterful, the story is filled with unpredictable twists and turns. Mr. Goolrick weaves a master tale of love, loss and lust that leads to an unforeseen but satisfying ending. I wondered many times what would happen, as I could see a thousand possibilities. But the choices Mr. Goolrick made were not what I expected, but were more fitting and satisfying than the ones I had thought of.
CONS: The book seemed a little slow to get going, it took me a couple of chapters to get into it. Occasionally I felt the descriptions went on a little long. His habit (albeit surely an intentional one) of starting consecutive sentences with the same pronoun, grated on my nerves a bit. Also a warning to readers of a sensitive nature: this book would be rated R for sexual content, so just be aware of that going in.
BOTTOM LINE: The story is a little slow, but perfectly woven. Fans of Cormac McCarthy's writing will enjoy this book as well. Four stars out of five.