Monday, July 9, 2012

Book Review: The Replacement Wife by Eileen Goudge


By: Eileen Goudge

Published: March 27, 2012


Camille Hart, one of Manhattan’s most sought-after matchmakers, has survived more than her fair share of hardships. Her mother died when she was a young girl, leaving her and her sister with an absentee father. Now in her forties, she has already survived cancer once, though the battle revealed just how ill-equipped her husband Edward is to be a single parent. So when doctors tell Camille that her cancer is back—and this time it’s terminal—she decides to put her matchmaking expertise to the test for one final job. Seeking stability for her children and happiness for her husband, Camille sets out to find the perfect woman to replace her when she’s gone.

But what happens when a dying wish becomes a case of “be careful what you wish for”? For Edward and Camille, the stunning conclusion arrives with one last twist of fate that no one saw coming.

Even though this book came out in March, I received an Advanced Review Copy of the book just a month or two ago.  I thought the premise of the book was very interesting and I looked forward to reading it.  I was completely into the book and was really enjoying it until mid-way through.  I found there were way too many characters.  Besides all the family members, there were Camille's match-making clients and their exes included in the storyline.  I was wishing I would have made a post-it note to keep track of all the characters.  I think that there were some characters that could have been left out as well as the detailed descriptions of them.

I really thought the idea of the book was interesting and honestly made me think about what I would do if I were dying.  How would I want my husband and children to be cared for?  Would I be willing to "set them up" before I am gone to assure things are playing out like I want them to?  After reading this book, I am definitely left with the decision to leave it up to God to handle.  Meddling only got Camille in trouble and I am assured that it would happen that way in real life too.

I thought there were a lot of different ways the author could have taken this story, and I wasn't thrilled with the storyline she chose.  As I said, I really lost interest half-way through when the plan started to go downhill.  I don't want to giveaway any surprises, but I became no fan of the husband in the story.  I think both Camille and her husband, Edward, acted very immaturely and Edward didn't step up when he was needed.  Because of all this drama and poor choices, I do believe this would make an excellent book club discussion for both men and women.  

I am afraid that I ended up skimming a lot of the story because the author became much too detailed for my interests.  I really didn't need a lot of the background information about people and/or details of the scene that the characters were in.  I was more interested in the main characters and how their lives were going to play out.  

So, even though I began with liking the book, I ended up being disappointed, but I did finish it.  Even though I wasn't happy with the ending, I can see the author's point in writing it that way.  Just remember, not everything always turns out the way you planned it and be careful what you wish for!

To learn more about the author, check out her website  

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