Monday, August 12, 2013

Literary Wives: Scheduled Reads, New Wives

We've finished up four months of Literary Wives reads and it's been wonderful.

I've read books I probably wouldn't have picked up (American Wife) nor finished (American Wife) were it not for this group, and it the end, some of the books have been the most sticky, uncomfortable, can't-shut-up-about-them of the year (American Wife).

We started with American Wife, then went on to The Paris Wife (which I kind of didn't really start, and it was an accidental-maybe-intentional DNF), then A Reliable Wife, which I adored, and finished with The Aviator's Wife.

It's been quite fascinating to see how wives are played out in contemporary fiction (all these titles have were published in the last five years, I believe) and how each heroine was particularly shaped by being a wife.  In each book, we were faced with a flawed marriage, with women who became wives rather reluctantly -- and yet were mostly publicly known only as the wife to their spouse rather than for anything they did on their own.

Upcoming Reads

I hope you'll consider joining us on our upcoming reads!  Due to the realities of life and the size of our upcoming reads, we're switching to an every-other-month schedule.  Our next reads will be:

As with the other Literary Wives reads, we'll be discussing these books from the starting point of these two questions, proposed by Ariel:

1. What does this book say about wives or about the experience of being a wife?

2. In what way does this woman define “wife”—or in what way is she defined by “wife”?

I hope you'll consider diving in and joining us!

About the Wives

Ariel of One Little Library.

Ariel is an editorial assistant at a Southern California publishing house. A literature enthusiast, she likes heroines full of gumption and conflicts fraught with ethical dilemmas. Her favorite book is and always will be Jane Eyre. [Note: Ariel is the founder of Literary Wives, for which I'm deeply grateful!]


Emily is a Ph.D. student studying professional communication who has worked as an editor and a composition instructor. She is the mother of two little girls and loves chocolate and ice cream. The thing she wants most right now is a day in bed with a good book, preferably fiction.

Due to personal issues, Angela of Persephone Writes has decided to leave the Literary Wives.  I'm grateful for the lovely conversations we've had and I know we'll all miss her!

We've added a few more wives to the group, too!

Carolyn at Rosemary and Reading Glasses:

After five years in graduate school, Carolyn O is on hiatus to be the read-at-home-parent to her small son. She works as an editor, proofreader, and writer on the side, and hopes to return to teaching soon. She loves used bookstores, early modern drama and poetry, feminism, and anything Joss Whedon creates.

Cecilia at Only You.

Cecilia teaches writing and self-presentation skills to international professionals by day and night (the curse of time zone differences) and in between squeezes in some reading and writing of her own. Her reading tastes are pretty eclectic, though she loves literary fiction and memoir most of all, and works by women and international writers in particular. The best part of her day is the end-of-the-day book club that she shares with her 9 year old son.

Lynn of Smoke & Mirrors.

Lynn is an avid (some might say “obsessive”!) reader, former Borders bookseller (my dream job!), and now blogger of books and reviews! My only limitation to reading and posting more often is that necessary full-time job! I am mother to three sons, soon-to-be 10 (yes, 10!) grandchildren, and one beautiful and “purr”fect gray kitty, Smokie…oh, and perhaps most importantly, I can count one of the kindest, most caring, and complex men I’ve ever known as my full-time partner and husband! Life is good!

If you're interested in becoming a formal Literary Wife, do let me know, and if you know of any great books with 'wife' in the title, tell me in the comments!

1 comment :

  1. I like the connections you made among the first 4 books, Audra! Definitely "flawed" marriages, yet the longer I live the more I wonder if there are any without their own unique flaws! I was quite impressed with Anne Morrow Lindbergh and all her accomplishments, though as you note, "publicly" she was still known as Charles's wife! Scary! Can't wait to add even more "wives" to the mix!