Review: A Perfect Marriage by Alison Booth

Perfect MarriageSally Lachlan has a secret that has haunted her for a decade, although perhaps it is time to let it go. A chance meeting with the charismatic geneticist, Anthony Blake, reawakens her desire for love and, at the same time, her daughter Charlie shows signs of wishing to know more about her father. Both the past and the future are places Sally prefers not to think about, but if she wants to find happiness, she will first have to come to terms with her long-ago marriage. Only then will she be able to be honest with Charlie. And herself.

A story of love and loss, of enduring friendship and unreliable memory, A Perfect Marriage is an enthralling new book from the bestselling author of Stillwater Creek. The novel is also a tale of redemption, of new hopes and fresh beginnings.

Review

A Perfect Marriage by Alison Booth tells the story of Sally Lachclan, a woman trying to rebuild her life after an abusive marriage. The story is narrated through two main timelines. The present time narration is focused on Sally’s life, ten years after her marriage. The past timeline tells the story of Sally and her ex. It is not chronologically narrated though. It moves from different episodes in the marriage sort of like how a person’s flashback would occur. You know how you remember a period in your life? Different things come back, not necessarily in the order that they occurred. It took a little time to get the hang of it but once I did, the narration flowed easily.

This story tackles the theme of domestic abuse. Although this is a theme that I have read many times, the author brought a new angle that I haven’t found in many books.  Charlie is Sally’s daughter. She was only 10 when her father died and didn’t know much about the kind of man that he was. Sally finds herself in a position where she has to tell Charlie the truth. However, how do you tell your kid that their father was a monster? I could relate with Charlie due to my own experiences. I didn’t know how bad my folk’s marriage was until over a decade after their divorce. The two characters were so well developed and I think their portrayal was also quite realistic.

I also liked how the author developed the themes in the story. As I have already mentioned, the past is not chronologically presented. However, the author first presents the end of the marriage and the goes back slowly to the beginning.  This illustrates how abuse develops in relationships and not just the physical but also the emotional that tends to go more unnoticed.  In the present timelines, readers get to see the effect that abuse has on the victims. It wasn’t about dramatic, visible changes but more about the effects that cut much deeper such as loss of self-worth.

This is a story about family. It is also a story about secrets, love, loss, new beginnings and forgiveness. I would describe A Perfect Marriage by Alison Booth as a captivating, character-driven psychological drama.

7 Comments

  1. Excellent review Diana. I think I could get used to the structure of this book going from past to present the way you describe. It sounds like something I’d like to read. I’m sorry it reminded you of your own family situation. 😔

    I’ve added this to my tbr. Thanks.

    1. Thanks Grace. By the way, do you have a blog? I tried to click on your name but it didn’t lead me to any page. Kindly let me know. I would love to visit you 🙂

      1. Diana, I do 🙂 I just haven’t posted anything yet. I don’t know why it’s not leading you to the page though, will look into that. Thanks for showing interest still haha

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