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My Wife's Affair
     

My Wife's Affair

4.5 2
by Nancy Woodruff
 

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Peter accepted his fate as a failed novelist turned semi-successful businessman, but even after three children, his wife Georgie always held onto the actress inside her.

When Peter gets a job in London, the move sets Georgie down a seductive path to the life she always wanted. Landing a one-woman show, she is drawn into the romance of the stage and begins to

Overview

Peter accepted his fate as a failed novelist turned semi-successful businessman, but even after three children, his wife Georgie always held onto the actress inside her.

When Peter gets a job in London, the move sets Georgie down a seductive path to the life she always wanted. Landing a one-woman show, she is drawn into the romance of the stage and begins to feel a kinship with her character-Dora Jordan, a famous eighteenth-century actress who had thirteen illegitimate children, ten fathered by the future King of England-and develops an irresistible attraction to the show's playwright, beginning an affair that will irrevocably change her life, her marriage, and her world.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Woodruff (Someone Else's Child) leaves not a dry eye in the house in this gripping ode to theater and the love it can command—and crush. Former actress turned restless suburban New Jersey mom-of-three Georgie and her journalist husband, Peter, transplant to London for Peter's new job. There, Georgie finds her way back to the theater and lands a role in a small one-woman production of “Shakespeare's Woman,” playing famous 18th-century British stage actress Dora Jordan. It's a part that consumes Georgie from the start, notes Peter, who achingly chronicles his wife's affair with her part and, eventually, with playwright Piers. Georgie's tour de force as Dora comes from her total recognition of the character—“Two hundred years later and it's exactly the same thing,” Georgie tells Piers—and her life as Dora and as Piers's lover begin to take precedence over her husband and children. Peter's excruciating autopsy of his crumbling marriage is unsparing and relentlessly punishing, but the kicker at the novel's end makes the adultery feel like a cozy little tea party. It's brutal and lovely. (Apr.)
Library Journal
Business writer Peter recounts his relationship with his wife, Georgie, an actress whose several-year stint as stifled stay-at-home mother ends abruptly when the family moves to London. Georgie gets the chance of a lifetime to star in a one-woman play, and she grabs it, despite conflicting emotions about leaving her children. She soon loses herself in the role of Dora Jordan, a famous 18th-century actress who, after a wildly successful career, 13 children, and a decades-long love affair with the Duke of Clarence, died penniless and alone. Caught up in the heady excitement of acting again, Georgie falls for Piers, the charismatic playwright, and in days her mostly happy marriage is in ruins. VERDICT Woodruff offers some thoughtful insight into modern marriage and draws many parallels between women's circumstances in the 18th century and today. However, melodramatic foreshadowing seems too strong for the story. It's not until the final page that Woodruff drops a bombshell, creating an abrupt, unsatisfying ending. Readers interested in the real Dora Jordan would be better served with a biography.—Christine Perkins, Bellingham P.L., WA
Kirkus Reviews
Three people in a previously happy marriage, but why?Woodruff (Someone Else's Child, 2000) fails to offer a convincing explanation for the scenario that underpins her entire slender story. Georgie Connolly and Peter Martin have recently relocated to London with their three young sons, an especially happy move for aspiring actor Georgie, who has not enjoyed the preceding few years spent living in suburban New Jersey. When the couple met, Peter hoped to be a novelist but now he's a successful business journalist and his posting to England offers a comfortable fresh start. An acting job comes up-a one-woman show based on the life of historical figure Dora Jordan, 18th-century mother/actor/mistress/celebrity/survivor, "the Angelina Jolie of her time." Georgie, clearly identifying with aspects of Dora, becomes obsessed with the part and lands the role. After a successful London run, the production heads out of town for regional performances and Georgie starts sleeping with its playwright, Piers. When Peter discovers the adultery, the couple struggles to find a way forward. Narrated by Peter in a melancholy voice, the tale seems unlikely to have a happy outcome although Woodruff has a late surprise up her sleeve. A slight story, thinly characterized, but narrated with some poise.
From the Publisher
"A beautiful but devastating novel of infidelity, a gripping story of a woman devoted to her family but driven by her ambition." Ann Darby, author of The Orphan Game

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780399156298
Publisher:
Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
Publication date:
04/15/2010
Pages:
288
Product dimensions:
6.52(w) x 9.26(h) x 1.04(d)
Age Range:
18 - 17 Years

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher
"A beautiful but devastating novel of infidelity, a gripping story of a woman devoted to her family but driven by her ambition." Ann Darby, author of The Orphan Game

Meet the Author

Nancy Woodruff, the author of Someone Else's Child, currently teaches at New York University.

Johnny Heller has earned multiple Earphones Awards from AudioFile magazine, including one for Closing Time by Joe Queenan, and has earned two Audie Awards and many more nominations. Named one of the Top Fifty Narrators of the Twentieth Century by AudioFile, he has recorded over five hundred titles.

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My Wife's Affair 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
ellisonWM More than 1 year ago
A writer husband and an actress wife move from NYC to London where the wife gets a role in a one-woman play. She is attracted to the writer of the play. Heartbreaking.
AmberMist More than 1 year ago
I read a lot of books and I came across this from magazine ratings. I read what it was about and it caught my attention. I like the way it's based on a true story and it entwines with fiction. This is a "dark" book of sorts and I am a dark movie fan. I don't reread too many books, but I would this one. Hope you enjoy!