Imagine stumbling across a letter that is written for you by your husband or wife that is meant to be opened only after they had died. Except they’re still alive. Do you read it? Would you want to know everything? This question is answered in The Husband’s Secret by Liane Moriarty.
When a husband has something to confess to his wife, you usually think of adultery. In the case of Tess – this is true. Well, almost true, rather. Nothing physical, but Tess’s husband has fallen deeply in love with Tess’s cousin, who she thinks of as a sister.
She immediately packs up herself and her son to go back to her hometown of Sydney where she enrolls her son in St. Angela’s elementary school. There she sees the familiar Rachel, the mother of one of Tess’s schoolmates who was tragically murdered back when they were in school. The murderer has never been caught, and Rachel still has this hanging over her head, long after her husband has died and her son has long grown up.
While Rachel has been grieving her loss, Tess’s schoolmate Cecilia has built up the picture-perfect life. She married one of the most popular boys in school from a family with a great name in town. While Cecilia begins to feel like her life needs more meaning, she uncovers a secret living within her own family that threatens to tear them apart at any moment.
Each woman is dealing with a situation distinctly their own, but their tales are beautifully woven together by Liane Moriarty. This book will be hard to put down. In fact, I started reading it on a flight and came home from the airport and before even taking my jacket off I sat down and finished the book.
After navigating through the each woman’s journey, you can unravel every “what if” in the story. If Tess let her cousin around their family less often, if Rachel was on time for the dentist appointment, if Cecilia never met John-Paul… What would life be?
This novel is quite literally a murder mystery, but you’d never know by Liane’s light tone and humor. Her breezy narrative touches on heavy themes. What do you consider a sin? And how do you find forgiveness? Can you ever truly repay your sins or let go of guilt?
Throughout the book, get ready to ask yourself, “oh my god, what would I do?” The challenges these women face are truly baffling and Moriarty tells the story in such a thought-provoking and entertaining way that you won’t be able to stop thinking about this book.
If you loved Big Little Lies, you’ll love the Husband’s Secret.