by Rowena Wiseman
Luisa has fallen madly in love with sculptor Jarvis, so she comes up with a plan to find a new wife for her husband Luke so she can exit stage left. She wants to screen potential stepmothers for her 8-year-old son Max and has strict criteria: the woman must be a single mother; have no more than two children; she can't be authoritarian; she must be creative, nurturing and not much prettier than Luisa.
After a few carefully orchestrated meetings with different women that fail to raise a spark, Luke finally connects with a potential replacement wife. However, Luisa isn't prepared for the fact that Luke's interest in the other woman makes him a better man and a more attractive husband. After suffering for years in a half-dead marriage, Luisa starts to remember what it was about Luke that she originally fell in love with. But is it too late?
I have chosen this book attracted from the cover and was not disappointed, although it is not as I expected. It was an interesting and pleasant reading but it is not light, is very realistic, sometimes sad.
Louisa's tired of her marriage to Luke. Her husband became a boring man, no social life, his only interest is his job, their son and movies, only those reviewed well by his trusted reviewers. When she meets again Jarvis falls in love madly. She's convinced that he is her soul mate and realizes she must finish her marriage to live her new love freely. But she does not want to be the one that ruins their family. She really wants to find a replacement for her husband, so the fault will be only of Luke. Finally found the right woman but her idea will turn against her
Louisa is a complicated character, it's hard to get in sympathy with her. At times is superficial, childish, irresponsible, often she performs actions really silly. It 's sad to think that both partners become again active and full of life only when they meet another person.
It 's a story well plotted and very original, beautifully written, with a style simple but brilliant.
Highly recommended.I received an advanced reader copy from the author in exchange for an honest review.
It was my brother Chris’s fortieth birthday party, and I was in the kitchen helping my sister-in-law prepare salads. I was chopping spring onions when I saw Jarvis walk through the back gate. He’d grown a beard, so at first I wasn’t sure it was him. I asked Melissa, ‘Is that Jarvis?’
‘Yeah. He’s finally coming along to something,’ she responded. I watched through the window as Jarvis greeted my brother with a hefty handshake and a six-pack of ciders. It must have been at least a dozen years since I’d seen him, but it appeared now that my long-ago crush had left a tiny cavity in my heart. Distracted, I turned my attention to grating carrots for the Ottolenghi sweetcorn slaw, but ended up grazing my knuckle.
An hour later, after we’d eaten, I was sitting on the back deck. My best friend, Hattie, had just left when Jarvis walked up and sat beside me.
‘Hey there,’ he said, cautiously.
Greetings dealt with, an awkward silence fell.
‘I always wondered what had happened to you,’ I said at last. ‘I haven’t seen you for years.’ My voice felt trapped in my throat.
‘I’ve been around. It seems I prefer my own company to most people. I was curious about you, though. Your brother said you’re married now.’
I pointed out my husband, Luke, and my son, Max, who were over by the shed. Luke was standing with his arms crossed, watching Max hurl water balloons at his cousin Thomas.
‘I always took you as a free spirit,’ Jarvis said, smoothing a crease in his pants. ‘I thought it would’ve been hard for you to settle down.’
Gathering words seemed to be like catching fairy dust in the air. ‘What’s that Coelho quote? “If you think adventure is dangerous, try routine. It is lethal.”’ I had a strange urge to show him that I wasn’t living in domestic bliss, that my window was open to the fragrance of adventure.
He smiled, his mouth betraying his serious, thoughtful eyes. His plain blue shirt was buttoned all the way up to his neck, his beard was obsessively neat, and his chunky black-framed glasses reminded me that he read more than the sports section of the newspaper. With my nerves expanding in my chest, making breathing difficult, I cursed myself for being a mouth-breather. My words came out as though they were colliding with a road train. ‘What are you doing now?’ I finally managed.
‘I’m a sculptor. Well, working at an abattoir pays the bills. But sculpting’s my thing. I’m working on a major piece to enter in the McClelland Sculpture Award. Fourth time lucky, perhaps. I’m thinking maybe it’s my artist’s statement that’s letting me down: I can get carried away with my writing sometimes.’
‘I could help you, if you like,’ I said, skidding over my own enthusiasm. ‘I’m an editor. Words are my thing.’
‘Really? That would be great.’
‘You can email it to me.’ I reached into my handbag to get out my purse, but pulled out Max’s cricket box instead. ‘Oh, this is Max’s . . . He played cricket this morning; I don’t always carry dick-protectors in my bag. Joys of being a mother — you end up with all sorts of crap in your handbag. It used to be sultanas or Matchbox cars—Ah, now I’m rambling . . .’ Jarvis’s laugh was as confident as steel.
Eventually, I found my purse and took out my business card. My hands were trembling just slightly as I handed Jarvis my card.
‘Luisa, let’s go. Max is all wet,’ I looked up to see Luke’s face staring down at me impatiently.
‘It’s only water, he’ll dry off,’ I said, my neck feeling flushed.
‘He’s soaked,’ Luke said. Then he leaned in and said, ‘Thomas is a bully. Let’s go, he’s not being nice to Max.’ I knew the real reason Luke wanted to go was that he expired at social functions somewhere between two and three hours. He’d make any excuse to get back to the comfort of his own home; to a TV programme he liked, his feet on the coffee table, and four squares of Cadbury Dairy Milk chocolate at hand.
‘I’ll email you,’ Jarvis said, half waiting to be introduced. But Luke was in a hurry, and didn’t care to meet whomever I was talking to. No doubt he was already imagining his feet up on the coffee table.
‘Nice to see you,’ I said to Jarvis, gathering my handbag up off the ground before trailing after my husband pathetically. I left the party forgetting my salad bowl, but carrying a new seed of pleasure in my otherwise routine life.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Rowena Wiseman writes contemporary fiction, young adult and children's stories. She was recently named as one of the 30 most influential writers on Wattpad.
Rowena's blog Out of Print Writing, about writing and publishing in the digital revolution, has been selected for the National Library of Australia's archive program PANDORA http://www.outofprintwriting.blogspot.com.au/.
She works in the visual arts sector and lives on the Mornington Peninsula, Victoria.
Buy Link: http://www.amazon.com/Replacement-Wife-Rowena-Wiseman-ebook/dp/B00WDN9R24/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1438030369&sr=8-4&keywords=replacement+wife
GIVEAWAY INFORMATION and RAFFLECOPTER CODE
Rowena will be awarding an eCopy of Replacement Wife to 3 randomly drawn winners via rafflecopter during the tour.