The three most important parts of a book are: a well constructed plot, compelling characters, and a satisfying conclusion.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

THE OTHER HALF By Susan Rayner

The Other Half by Sarah RaynerPublisher:  St. Martin's Griffin
Expected Release Date:  March 25, 2014
Pages:  304

Book Description:  In the internationally bestselling author Sarah Rayner's The Other Half, Chloe, bright, hip and single, is a feature writer with ambitions to launch a magazine of her own. When she meets James, her potential new boss, she knows she shouldn't mix business with pleasure, but finds it impossible to resist...
 
Maggie appears to have it all.  She's beautiful, a talented writer, and has a gorgeous husband. But something's not quite right: his job as a magazine publisher is keeping him in the city until late most evenings, and some nights he doesn't come home at all...
 
Told in the alternating voices of the mistress and the wife, this story of an affair is a sharp, seductive take on modern love.
 
Who, if anyone, comes out unscathed?
 
In writing that is lively, sexy and sharp, the international bestselling author Sarah Rayner explores modern-day relationships and age-old moral dilemmas.

Wanda's Thoughts:  The Other Half is the story of human frailty and failings, loss and betrayal - a story filled with deception and lies. A step-by-step-guide to marital infidelity is not a subject I find interesting or approve of. The overt sexual theme, painted by the author, was not for me - very disappointing. 

Most of the characters were not likable and I never connected to them, with the exception of Maggie, the wife. I did find her to be a strong woman and it was interesting to find out how she handled her mental anguish brought on by her husband's infidelity. I found James, the husband, to be a weak character who acted on infidelity with his eyes wide open. Chloe, the mistress, was compelled on getting on with her life when she went into the affair. It really didn't seem to matter that James had a wife. Both James and Chloe were totally without scruples and I found them to be very shallow characters. 

On a positive note - there was a satisfying conclusion, although rather predictable. 

This certainly was not my cup of tea, but the mistake was mine for accepting this book to review. My rating is 2.5 stars.  I received a complimentary copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. All opinions shared are my own.

Sarah RaynerThe Author:  Susan Rayner - Most readers today know Sarah Rayner from her bestselling novel, One Moment, One Morning, which has sold over 250,000 copies in the UK, and is currently being translated into 11 languages. But before that she published two rather different novels – The Other Half (Orion 2001) and Getting Even (2002), and these have been fully revised and updated by the author and just republished by Picador as ebooks. 

Sarah's follow-up novel The Two Week Wait, came out in summer 2012 and was likewise well received by critics. She calls this is a 'sister' novel rather than a sequel to One Moment, in that it features some of the same characters and is also set in Brighton, yet is a standalone story and there's no need to read one to enjoy the other. Her fifth novel, Another Night, Another Day, continues the story of her Brighton-based characters and is out in the first half of 2014, and in the US and Canada later next year.

You can find Sarah's website at thecreativepumpkin.com and it always makes her day to hear from from her readers.