Imagine that your husband wrote you a letter, to be opened after his death. Imagine, too, that the letter contains his deepest, darkest secret–something with the potential to destroy not just the life you built together, but the lives of others as well. Imagine, then, that you stumble across that letter while your husband is still very much alive. . . .
Cecilia Fitzpatrick has achieved it all—she’s an incredibly successful businesswoman, a pillar of her small community, and a devoted wife and mother. Her life is as orderly and spotless as her home. But that letter is about to change everything, and not just for her: Rachel and Tess barely know Cecilia—or each other—but they too are about to feel the earth-shattering repercussions of her husband’s secret.
In alternating chapters, we peel back the layers of each woman’s life. Cecilia doesn’t read the letter right away, but before she does, we meet Rachel and Tess, and see how very slowly their lives are already intersecting with Cecilia’s in Sydney, Australia.
Tess’s marriage is in disarray from an unexpected source. She has fled from Melbourne after a betrayal. Rachel is still grieving a long ago loss. Yet the three women keep finding themselves at the same places as the others. And when the connections between them are fully realized, one can ask what if life had taken a different turn for each of them? Would their lives be better or worse?
The characters in The Husband’s Secret were completely believable and I could relate to them. I liked how each of them had philosophical internal monologues that revealed their thoughts and feelings, as well as their conflicts and dilemmas. In the epilogue, the author plays a little game with the reader to show how some of those alternate lives might have played out. A quirky tale, but with lots of heartfelt angst, rage, and love. Very human emotions that remind us that life is not black and white, but full of ambiguity. As each woman experiences her world, we see the ordinary moments as well as the complexity of the issues with which she is dealing. Through it all, we can see how the numerous facets of each woman’s life has brought her just what she needed. Five stars.