The Prodigal Wife

( 2 )

Overview

“Deservedly compared to her countrywomen, Binchy and Pilcher, Willett is an equally gifted storyteller.”—Booklist

The Keep - that beautiful, ancient family home where the Chadwick family had lived for generations - is still a haven from the heartbreaks and storms of life. Jolyon Chadwick, a famous television presenter, takes his new girlfriend Henrietta home meet his extended family - and also to meet Maria, the mother who deserted him and his father many years ago, now ...

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The Prodigal Wife: A Novel

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Overview

“Deservedly compared to her countrywomen, Binchy and Pilcher, Willett is an equally gifted storyteller.”—Booklist

The Keep - that beautiful, ancient family home where the Chadwick family had lived for generations - is still a haven from the heartbreaks and storms of life. Jolyon Chadwick, a famous television presenter, takes his new girlfriend Henrietta home meet his extended family - and also to meet Maria, the mother who deserted him and his father many years ago, now re-appeared and seeming to want forgiveness. Jolyon, however, is not in the mood for forgiveness - although his father Hal, now married to his cousin and childhood sweetheart, feels a lingering guilt about Maria and wants them all to be friends. And Henrietta, still vulnerable from the break-up of her own parents' marriage, is not sure whether she can move on.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In this gentle, charming novel of indiscretion, grudges, love and mortality, two middle-aged couples reunite late in life following long separation and marriages to others. As the children of these first marriages fall in love, they draw everyone together again, including a couple of trouble-making ex-spouses. With so much deferred love-involving infidelity, divorce, traumatized kids, wasted years, and more-there is much to be emotional about, and the latest from British novelist Willett (The Way We Were) is chiefly engaged in rehashing these feelings endlessly. For all the introspection, however, there is a lack of nuance-characters' emotional self-exploration is more prolific than profound. Still, a generally likable cast outweighs their emotional transparency, and the plot clicks along with pleasant, cathartic rhythms and an intriguing mystery subplot.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780312672294
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press
  • Publication date: 1/18/2011
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 336
  • Sales rank: 848,463
  • Product dimensions: 5.20 (w) x 8.10 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

The Prodigal Wife is MARCIA WILLETT’S eleventh novel to be published in the U.S. Her novels are available in over ten countries around the world. She lives in Devon, England.

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Posted June 12, 2010

    Everything comes together for an entertaining, easy read.

    Marcia Willet's latest book, The Prodigal Wife, will not disappoint her many fans. The story centers around Jolyon Chadwick, a newly famous television personality. Handsome and charming he nevertheless suffers a lack of confidence as a consequence of his mother's ill treatment and ultimate abandonment. Now his mother is back, stirring up the past, just when he has finally found a girlfriend who loves and understands him.
    Marcia Willet combines interesting and realistically drawn characters who you can't help but like with gorgeous depictions of the sea and country side. The plot is unique with romantic twists and a mystery with a surprise ending. Everything comes together for an entertaining, easy read.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 18, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    engaging Chadwick Family Chronicle

    Renowned TV gardening show host Jolyon accompanied by his beloved girlfriend Henrietta returns to the family estate the Keep that has been owned and occupied by Chadwicks for several generations, to celebrate a birthday with family. However, he is unaware that his mother, whom has not seen in about fifteen years, has come to the Keep to spend quality time with him. Jo's father Henry and his stepmother Fliss worry how he will react to seeing the woman who abandoned him.

    Maria feels alone since her spouse Adam died. She wants to make amends with her son as spending Christmas alone for the first time weighs heavy on her. Although Hal is receptive and Fliss kind, Jo refuses to believe his mother wants to end their estrangement; instead he assumes Maria wants a piece of his fame. Hal feels guilty for his role in the break-up as he never emotionally moved beyond his Fliss even after he was married to Maria and Henrietta struggles with the end of her parents' marriage. Although constantly rejected by her son, Maria refuses to quit trying as she knows she failed Jo.

    The latest Chadwick Family Chronicle (see Looking Forward, Holding On and Winning Through) is an engaging entry that focuses on Jo and Maria as the latter tries to atone for the hurt she caused to the former. The story line is character driven as the Chadwick family look back to events already showcased in the previous entries, but with new perspective especially at Maria who came across as an uncaring rat whenever mentioned in the earlier tales. Although the Christmas Tree ending provides some closure, it feels more of a set up for book five rather than a clean climax. Still fans of the saga will relish this fine entry.

    Harriet Klausner

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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