Mark D'arbenville lays bare the male psyche in this candid story that draws heavily on his own experiences with marriage, infidelity, love, and loss. Without resorting to moral judgment or platitudes, the storybook version of marriage is stripped apart when the protagonist's perfect life and marriage is disrupted by a love affair. Humphrey Bower performs the story earnestly, allowing this rare glimpse into the real, fragile perspective of a hurting man to flourish. When the affair is discovered - with tragic results - the story turns into a rare exploration of what is too often an inaccessible thing: a husband's identity and vulnerability and the pain we can cause ourselves and those who love us.
By all accounts, Mark D'Arbanville has the "perfect life" - a successful writer, he is happily married with a teenage son. But when he falls in love with another woman, Mark's life unravels, exposing regret, estrangement, and heartache. Yet, as his marriage falls apart, Mark still can't let go. Nor can his lover, Anna, who won't leave her husband.
When Mark finally does make the break, the effect is catastrophic - his wife commits suicide. The circuit breaker comes when Mark finds his dead wife's journals, and in their pages discovers a man - himself - he can barely recognize. He is forced to take stock of who he is and how men and women live their lives.
In response to The Bride Stripped Bare, The Naked Husband takes a candid look at the way men think, act, and feel inside a relationship. Shocking, disturbing, but impossible to put down, it's a novel for every woman who ever found the reality of sex and marriage so different to the fairytale, and wondered why.
©2004 Skyview Holdings Pty Ltd.; (P)2006 Bolinda Publishers Pty Ltd.
It's very rare when a man talks about his life in frank words, particularly when his actions have such an impact. I did not know before reading that the story is partly autobiographical so I was truly fascinated by the male perspective of a love affair and life as a man and father in general. Despite - or because of - its unsettling developments it is an absorbing book. I very much enjoyed listening to it. The narration is well done!
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