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  • Writer's pictureMandy McHugh

The Wives, Tarryn Fisher: A Review

I picked up The Wives after seeing some of my favorite reviewers discussing it on Twitter. I loved the cover and the blurb and dove in.

Thursday loves her husband, even if she only sees him one day a week. A workaholic, sure, but he's also a polygamist, and Thursday accepts his two other wives as a separate part of him, stowing them away as competition as she vies to be his favorite. But a slight misstep reveals the identity of one of his wives, and Thursday can't resist the urge to meet her. What follows is a bendy, contorted mind game with multiple players and complex intrigue.

Let me say, I finished this book in a single sitting. It is well written, engrossing, and while I had a hard time believing every point connecting the plot, I couldn't put it down. Thursday is one of the most unreliable narrators I've encountered, and I think the reader's distrust in her stems from one, her slightly arrogant and shallow introspective moments, and two, her obviously conflicted feelings about polygamy, despite the fact that she's married to a man with two other wives. She's jealous and insecure, obsessive about her appearance and consistently unhappy in her current situation. Indeed, her entire life revolves around Seth.

Normalizing her fears, insecurities, and unstable relationship with Seth was incredibly offputting but also super relatable. Anyone who's been in a bad relationship will recognize the giant red warning signs, but Thursday chooses to be oblivious, a factor that shapes the course of the novel. I thought this was clever and twisty, although I wish there are had been a little more in the way of "crazy" vs. "sane" dichotomy, because a lot of the burden of proof felt more like a ploy than anything the reader had actually been given.

Overall, The Wives is a wildly addicting, twisty thrill ride with the most unreliable narrator and an equally untrustworthy supporting cast.


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