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Summary

Brought to you by Penguin. 

From the highly acclaimed author of Small Pleasures - longlisted for the Women's Prize for Fiction 2021.

When aspiring novelist Christopher Flinders drops out of university to write his masterpiece (in between shifts as a fish delivery man and builder's mate), his family is sceptical.

But when he is taken up by the London editor Owen Goddard and his charming wife, Diana, it seems success is just around the corner. Christopher's life has so far been rather short of charm - growing up in an unlovely suburb, with unambitious parents and a semi-vagrant brother - and he is captivated by his generous and cultured mentors.

However, on the brink of realising his dream, Christopher makes a desperate misjudgment that results in disaster for all involved. Shattered, he withdraws from London and buries himself in rural Yorkshire, embracing a career and a private life marked by mediocrity.

Twenty years on, a young academic researching into Owen Goddard seeks him out, and Christopher is forced to exhume his past, setting him on a path to a life-changing discovery.

©2007 Clare Chambers (P)2021 Penguin Audio

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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Enjoyable

The Editor’s Wife is a book that’s well written in the kind of way that you have to pause and appreciate how easy it is to get swept up in the story. I got this on the strength of Clare Chamber’s Small Pleasures (which was LL for the Women’s Prize and a great read), noting this appears to be a re-issue.

Chris Flinders has taken voluntary redundancy. Living on a farm outside of York we know that he started out as an idealistic novelist. However, it takes some big events to get from undergraduate writer to a man with untold stories. Gerald, his nomadic brother lends further colour along with Owen, his editor and Owen’s wife Diana.

The whole ensemble are well crafted and believable. The observations from Chris are often warm and witty, adding to the thrust of the book. With an engaging beginning and throughly satisfying ending, I thought it lost its way a little in the middle. Overall a solid 3.5*

Thanks to Penguin Random House, Cornerstone and Netgalley for an ARC

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Good book, but didn’t annoy as much as the others

Although a good book, I didn’t enjoy this as much as others by this author. Maybe it was the narration, which, although not terrible, was a little wooden and seemed to deteriorate towards the end of the book… this story seemed to lack the comfortable, homely sense that are characteristic of her other novels.

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Great characterisations

I really enjoyed this book, the characters were well developed and quite endearing. The story unfolded well and kept my interest to the end. The only thing I didn’t like was the narrator’s inability to say “th” which was replaced by a “v” sound. I found this very offputting and gritted my teeth to get to the end.

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Unexpected ending

I really enjoyed this book. easy listening but intriguing at the same time. Would recommend.