Washington Square Press | June 2018 | 272 pgs
Source: Library

If you've read The Wife Between Us, you should be familiar with author Sarah Pekkanen as she wrote that book together with Greer Hendricks and it has received positive reviews from many readers. Sarah has also written several books in the past and this latest domestic drama explores a marriage in crisis and a woman's determination in finding the truth surrounding her husband's infidelity.

Josie and Frank Moore have been married for ten over years and live in the Chicago suburbs with their two young daughters. Although their life are hectic and Josie feels burn down by the girls' attention and the domestic life at times, she thinks she is lucky considering Frank is a great father and husband; and that he still showers her with love throughout the years. Until one Saturday morning she borrows Frank's phone to make a quick call and sees an email that shatters her world.

Frank met Dana at a work conference and they have maintained their "friends" relationship for seven weeks. When Josie confronts him about his infidelity, he says they have only kissed twice and nothing beyond that. Josie doubts it, and thereafter set her plan in uncovering Frank's secret by every means.

The Ever After may seem like a domestic thriller but is actually more of a women's fiction and an account of a woman's determination in finding out about her husband's infidelity. While Josie's findings may seem aggressive at times, there isn't much intensity and the pace is rather slow as it is very much focus on her emotional state, her rants and her "investigations". The first part was interesting but the second part was mostly bogged down by her rants and her reminiscent of their past. She is also indecisive if she should move on or take any actions; and once or twice she left her daughters to stay in a hotel simply because she is too angry and she needs to think. At some point I figured I was tired of reading it with the plot going nowhere but plodded along since I was hoping to see some resolution, which to my relief there was in the end. As a first-time reader of Sarah Pekkanen's book, this is certainly not my favourite mainly because I dived into this book with an impression that this was a domestic thriller but it turns out otherwise (I think I'd have liked this more under different circumstances). Then again, it wasn't a bad read as Sarah's writing was engaging and would probably appeal to readers of the women's fiction genre. 

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10 Responses
  1. Infidelity in thrillers can make for an interesting nuance, but I admit I am not a huge fan of it in women's fiction. I haven't tried anything by this author before, and probably will skip this one by her if I am tempted to give her work a try.

  2. Melody Says:

    Wendy - Yes, infidelity in thrillers can make for an interesting nuance but in women's fiction the reading experience is different. I suppose it reads more like reality (not that the thrillers don't, just that the focal point is different) and it just saddens me to read about spouses being unfaithful. Anyway, spoiler or not, I'm glad to note there's a happy ending in this book because it deserves a happy ending given the subject matter, isn't it?

  3. Kay Says:

    Melody, I read this book a while back, but didn't write a review. Honestly, I don't remember much about it, though I think I did like it a little better than you. I've also read this author's book with Greer Hendricks and am looking forward to their new one coming out in a few months. I've read other books by Sarah Pekkanen that I enjoyed more - The Perfect Neighbors (think that's the title) was one. You might try some of her backlist. And I'm not a big fan of reading about infidelity either.

  4. Melody Says:

    Kay - I'm glad to hear you enjoyed this book more than me, Kay. I'll definitely check out Sarah Pekkanen's backlist as I've heard some of her books are good, too. And I'll be sure to look out for her new release with Greer Hendricks as well.

  5. Lark Says:

    I might have read it if it were a thriller; as it is, I think I'll pass. :)

  6. Melody Says:

    Lark - I was disappointed that it wasn't written as a thriller. I'd be curious what Josie would do after she's found out about her husband's infidelity. OK, so that's my thought based from a thrillers reader's perspective. ;)

  7. jenclair Says:

    Win some and lose some is part of the process, isn't it? Infidelity isn't my favorite premise, but if it wasn't even a thriller, I'm going to pass on this one.

  8. Melody Says:

    Jenclair - Indeed, Jenclair. I'm looking forward to read "The Wife Between Us" since I've this book.

  9. Iliana Says:

    I hate it when I'm expecting a certain type of story and that doesn't happen. I've read another of her books which was quite good but it was also more of a women's drama. Lots about the secrets everyone hides, etc. I can't remember the title of it right now but I think it was written with someone else too.

  10. Melody Says:

    Iliana - I suppose I should look out for the genre of this book. Anyways it was an interesting premise from another angle.

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