Fiction Book Review: “Wife 22” by Melanie Gideon

Photo Credit: THZ Melanie Chima

Photo Credit: THZ Melanie Chima

I’ve loved reading books ever since I was really little, and there’s nothing that excites me more than a trip to the library or bookstore. You know how some people look forward to buying a new pair of shoes? Well, since my feet are quite big, I don’t go shopping for shoes that often. I instead channel my energy into finding a really great book that I can sink my teeth into. And by “really great,” I mean that it should grab me within the first chapter.

I was kind of having a hard time finding a book that completely engaged me recently, and when I came across a book titled “Wife 22” last week, I thought “The cover looks kind of cheesy, but the author has the same first name as me, which is pretty cool.” I started reading a couple of pages in the store, and I was so into what was happening, that I bought the book. Not only that, but once I started reading it at home, I had a hard time putting it down!

You’re probably wondering what the story is about, right? Well, Alice and William Buckle have been married for twenty years, and lately Alice has found herself thinking about her health, her kids, her marriage, and more.  She decides to participate in an anonymous online study about marriage, and without giving too much away, I’ll say that she gets more than she bargained for when she starts answering questions in the survey.

The story had a clever mix of Facebook statuses, Google searches, email messages, cute Facebook conversations between her and her dad, and yes, some pages that were just like a regular fiction book. Even if you only like stories that read like a regular fiction book, you will find a lot to love in this story.

Here’s the first line of the second chapter (the first chapter was only a page), and it happened to be the line that also drew me in: “I stare into the bathroom and wonder why nobody has told me my left eyelid has grown a little hood.” In another part of the story she thinks she’s being robbed, and she tries to scare off the robber by yelling “And I have nunchakus!” I’ve never seen a character say that in a story, and it made me giggle.

I loved the conversations Alice had with her children and friends. Some of the conversations were so witty, and I never knew what some of the characters were going to say next. I also loved how she revealed some interesting parts of her life through the answers she gave in the survey. At first I was bothered that you had to go to the end of the book to see all the questions that were asked in the survey, but the answers started becoming more and more interesting as the book went on and I didn’t mind that I had to flip to the back of the book to see the questions.

The writing style was very original, and I think both men and women will get a kick out of the book. There are enough witty and clever lines in the book that will appeal to both sexes. The ending totally caught me by surprise, and I think it fit perfectly with the clever nature of the book. If I had one complaint with the book it would be that it wasn’t long enough. That has nothing to do with the story ending abruptly, and more to do with the fact that I was enjoying the story so much that I didn’t want it to end.

If you love books that are funny, original, and thought-provoking, you are sure to love this book.

My rating: A+

My rating scale:

A+ — Run to your nearest bookstore this week and get it

A — Run to your nearest bookstore within the next two weeks to get it

B+ — Definitely read it soon but there are a couple of flaws in the book that stood out to me

B — It’s a decent story but be aware that there are more than a couple of flaws in the book

C+ — I would have a hard time recommending it to my good friends

Anything below a C+ and I don’t have the heart to even recommend it to my enemies.


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