"Even when the rainbow seems to pass right by me....I'm still finding Gold in the clouds....."

16 June 2014

2014 Book Review #23: The Headmaster's Wife

Another book done and this time in 2 days.

It's been a long time since I've read a novel that quickly!  But, I had the privilege of being a passenger in my husband's car on Father's Day as we traveled out to Central NY to visit my dad which gave me a lot of time to read!  I also stayed up late last night to finish it!!  The book is one that my sister Joy loaned me as she thought I'd like it.  She was correct!


Arthur Winthrop is a headmaster, like his father before him, and his grandfather before that, at a  private prep school named Lancaster School in a small town in Vermont.  It's the only place he has known his  entire life, other than the 4 years he was away at Yale for  college.

Lancaster is also the site where things begin to go wrong in his life....things that are beyond his control.  He meets Betsy......and life begins to change.

He is found wandering naked around Central Park, NYC one winter day, and begins to tell his life story to the police.  His memories begin to clash with each other as well as the true nature of things......it is a story of love, marriage, family, and loss....a tragedy that Arthur simply does not know how to address.  All of these things come out as he is with the police.  What is the tragedy?  And what has happened to his wife Elizabeth?


This is a rather "dark" novel....it's a bit of a psychological thriller, love story and mystery all rolled into one engaging plot.

It shows the tightness of the stereotypical New England private school....and begins to explore the ties of the school with family.  It talks about the power of love tied to grief.

Nothing in this story is as it appears.  The ending is quite surprising and I found it to be too abrupt. I was actually disappointed in the ending because I wanted the story to continue!

It is a very fast-paced novel...the kind that you just have to keep reading because it thoroughly draws the reader in to the mind of Arthur.

It is a good example of contemporary literary fiction but it is NOT on the same level by any means as the previous review I have done of The History of Love.

I now need to read something lighter and easier on the emotions and psyche!!

In my opinion, this book is appropriate for ages 17 and older, not because of the reading difficulty but because of the language and some content.

On a scale of 1-10, with 10 being the highest, I rate this an 8.


Dianna said...

Thank you, Faith, for sharing about this book. It sounds intriguing and I love the cover of the book! Not sure if I will be reading it or not, but I do appreciate your honesty in the review!

Faith said...

Dianna, the History of Love was MUCH MUCH better. If you're looking for a new book....a GOOD book with DEPTH get A History Of Love. This one above was "ok"...fast paced and good but i was NOT happy about the f word usage. Totally unnecessary in my opinion. i never give books a 10 if too much profanity no matter how good the plot is. I find it soooo cheap.

Deb said...

I may not read this book, but will be looking for The History of Love. That one sounds good! I hope you are feeling much better and that your UTI is under control and responding to meds now. I have been out of town and am just now catching up with my blogging buddies. Hope you have a good day and the end of school comes QUICKLY for you!

Faith said...

Thanks Deb! Yes the infection is finally cleared up and I learned of some new options Ito prevent further ones. Menopause is tough!!! Lol you will enjoy History of Love

Joyful said...

I have found that I really love a book when I feel emotions. When the story is over too soon. I always turn to that author again. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on it.