I'm not sure why reviewers and publicist alike are comparing this book with Gone Girl. I think the comparisons are creating less favorable reviews for The Silent Wife, because expectations aren't fulfilled. It's a good story on its own. I had to listen at 1.25 speed due to the slowness of Karen White's narration (it was torture at regular speed). A good listen overall at the increased speed.
I felt this book was misrepresented as it is not at all similar to the novel Gone Girl. I found the story line to very dull and boring.
I really enjoyed this book. As someone who LOVED Gone Girl I was intrigued to listen to something similar. The reviews of readers that said it was not as good as Gone Girl, made me hesitate in purchasing this book. I am so glad I went ahead and got it! It may not have been quite as good, but I think it was a solid, stand alone book that kept my interest and gave me the back and forth perceptive that I had enjoyed with Gone Girl.
I purchased this book because it was advertised as being similar to Gone Girl, by Gillian Flynn. The only thing that made the two books similar was the male and female back and forth stories and infidelity. There were obvious twists and turns in this story. It did not hold my attention well. Also the female reader was choppy and her words seemed forced. It was not easy to listen to.
This book was okay. But that was it. Just okay. I have to say I enjoyed the husband's character - his complete selfishness and expectation that everyone should understand his point of view was hilarious. The hours spent listening to the woman's psychotherapy regarding her relationships with her siblings was excruciating. And I'm a psychologist!
I have not.
The performances were fine. Nothing spectacular.
No. There was definitely not enough going on for the constant drama and action demanded of today's movies or TV shows.
It's nothing like Gone Girl - not matter how much it's hyped.
I was so intrigued by this story, I just couldn't stop listening. Usually I only listen while I'm working out, but had to keep listening until I heard it all.
The plot kept me on the edge of my seat. I kept thinking how can she be this naive? How can he be such a creep? The ending really surprised me too.
The New York Times runs a regular feature called Bookends. On September 24, 2013, writers Mohsin Hamad and Zoë Heller discussed "Are We Too Concerned that Characters be 'Likable'?" I thought of that article as I listened to this book.
I didn't like a single character in A.S.A Harrison's "The Silent Wife" (2013). I was indifferent to some; disliked a few, like Cliff, the contractor; and I spent most of the book hoping for a murder suicide to put an end to Jodi and Todd, the couple at the center of this tale, but that isn't what happened. "The Silent Wife" is a book without a protagonist.
"The Silent Wife" is compared to Gillian Flynn's "Gone Girl" (2012), for good reason. Both novels are written predominantly in the present tense, fairly new in popular books. Both have alternating wife/husband chapters, which works exceptionally well in Audible format. Both are marketed as 'psychological thrillers', but that's not very accurate. "Gone Girl" is a mindf*** (sorry for the vulgarity, but I couldn't find a better word - that term means 'To intentionally destabilize, confuse or manipulate the mind of another person.'). "The Silent Wife" uses classic Adlerian psychology as a framework for a fictional story. Explainer: Alfred Adler (1870-1937), a psychotherapist colleague of Sigmund Freud, coined the term 'inferiority complex.'
Do I have to like the characters in a book to like the book? I didn't like Jay Gatsby of F. Scott Fitzgerald's "The Great Gatsby" (1925) - or, for that matter, his beloved Daisy Buchanan - but I kept listening, and Gatsby stuck with me. I kept listening to "The Silent Wife" for the same reason - I had to know why other people were reading it so voraciously. Harrison isn't Fitzgerald by any means, but to be fair, Fitzgerald's lush, evocative writing would not have worked in the present tense.
There was a neat little twist at the end, so it is worth listening all the way through.
The title of this review is a nod to Edward Albee's play about a famously dysfunctional marriage, "Who's Afraid of Virginia Wolf?" (1962).
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I would not read another book by the author and I most certainly would not listen to another audible by these narrators. This is the most poorly produced book by Audible I've ever listened to. The volumes constantly changed, the actor may have changed--I can't really tell considering how often he lost the character's voice. And the actress spoke as if she had taken 20 sleeping pills...staccato and sleepy.
I thought the ending was extremely anti-climactic. The publisher has not done a service to the author by labeling this as the next Gone Girl. It is virtually nothing like Gone Girl. In fact, the females could not be more different, one is passive, the other passive aggressive. The men are both cheaters and victims, yes, but their stories are vastly different. Gone Girl is a whodunit. A mystery that unfolds and baffles the reader in trying to figure out exactly what happened and who did it. Here, there really is no mystery as to what happened or why. It's just a matter of watching two people handle their dissolving relationship. I might have enjoyed this better without the expectation that it was more like Gone Girl.
I would not listen to another book was narrated by Karen White and Donald Corren. As for Ms. White, I had such a difficult time getting into her staccato pacing that for the first 20-minutes of the book, I kept playing with my speed buttons in my Audible app because I thought it was on a low-speed. When I realized the actress was reading like that on purpose I debated whether I was going to continue listening to the Audible. I didn't want to lose my credit and I think my time for a refund expired. Besides being staccato, her voice always felt like she was coming off of a yawn or sigh.
During the second chapter "HIM", I had even more issues that continued throughout the book. I could hear the actor, Mr. Corren, coming in and out because the volumes were different and so was his voice. His voice was so different in some parts of the second chapter that I wondered if they had change the actor all together. If you listen to him in other chapters, you will clearly hear that the actor was not able to maintain his character's voice throughout the book--or even individual chapters.
Overall, the Audible was poorly produced. I shouldn't be able to hear volume changes. The producer should've told the actor he lost the character's voice, and I could barely stand the actresses robotic voice. I...don't...know..what I...should........do.
This was very annoying and difficult to listen to and I do NOT recommend anyone buy this Audible. If you're interested in the story, buy the book instead.
A little bit of a twist of a plot, couple of stories within a story. The narrator does a great job in describing these characters quite well. An unpredictable ending though. Just when you think it will end in a classic sense the twist brings you back around.
Like many of you, I got pulled in by the, "it's the next Gone Girl" hype. Some similarities but it's definitely no Gone Girl. I couldn't stop talking about that book for a week after I finished it. The Silent Wife sets you up to think there are all sorts of twists and turns, but leaves you dead in your tracks. No big startling ending, and a lot of questions remain unanswered. What's up with the thrush? And where did her friend go? And oh so many more. That was frustrating.
I can't say I regret the use of credit. It kept my attention. The story telling was well done and I was never bored. But not on pins and needles (like I was hoping) either.
So really all I can say is, eh it was ok.