The plot of this book sounded appealing. The main character is an old woman in a nursing home who remembers two lives. She is struggling to remember which one is real and which is fake. Great premise right?
Sadly, it fell victim to too many hidden, okay, not so hidden, political points that the author wanted to make. And then the ending was just a letdown.
So the plot. One life, she’s a victimized homemaker, the stereotype of a wife forced to pop out as many babies as possible. She almost dies from giving birth, each time, is miserable, husband is mean to her, he actually burns the love letters he wrote her. And eventually, oh yes, after twenty sum years of marriage, leaves her for another man. Not a typo, he literally ends up being secretly gay.
The other life? She doesn’t get married. Is happy as a clam, travels all of Europe, and… falls in love with a woman. Yup. It goes lesbian.
Needless to say, this book is a little heavy in the anti-men department. It’s a bit hard to swallow.
It also takes place in Europe and there all kinds of language barriers that I didn’t know existed. Her husband can’t get a good job because he graduated from college with a Third. Whatever that is.
And the ending, spoiler alert. She can pick which life she wants. And you don’t even get to know which she picks. She just gives you the cheesy line of: “She wouldn’t have been the person her life her made her if she could have made any other answer.”
And if the two different lives isn’t confusing enough. There’s a ton of characters, for example—seven kids total, and there are grandkids too. And just to make it more confusing, the main character gives herself about seven different nicknames as the book unfolds. Be prepared to either stop caring or create a quad chart.
Luckily, the plot doesn’t have much going for it, so no confusion there. Her life is very boring and normal. Other than the weird relationships, that keep popping up. For example: one of her kids grows up to be in a man-man-woman long-term relationship. It has nothing to do with anything, it’s just there to make another political point.
Would I suggest this book? No. Not unless you are into feminist activist, liberal type books. Cause that is who this book is targeted for. In other words, if you hate men, this is the book for you.