Publisher: Atria Books
Publication Date: 09/02/14
My Rating: 5 Stars
From the bestselling author of The Comfort of Lies, an engrossing look at the darker side of a marriage—and at how an ordinary family responds to an extraordinary crisis.
Maddy is a social worker trying to balance her career and three children. Years ago, she fell in love with Ben, a public defender, drawn to his fiery passion, but now he’s lashing out at her during his periodic verbal furies.
She vacillates between tiptoeing around him and asserting herself for the sake of their kids—which works to keep a fragile peace—until the rainy day when they’re together in the car and Ben’s volatile temper gets the best of him, leaving Maddy in the hospital fighting for her life.
Randy Susan Meyers takes us inside the hearts and minds of her characters, alternating among the perspectives of Maddy, Ben, and their fourteen-year-old daughter. Accidents of Marriage is a provocative and stunning novel that will resonate deeply with women from all walks of life, ultimately revealing the challenges of family, faith, and forgiveness.
A special thank you to Atria Books and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
Randy Susan Myers’ ACCIDENTS OF MARRIAGE, a bittersweet account of a complex marriage relationship, derailed by dishonesty, emotional abuse, and rage—A tragedy forces one dysfunctional family to reexamine their lives, face their fears, and accept responsibility for their actions, before healing can begin.
The Illica Boston family is a ticking time bomb waiting to ignite. (A broken corporation, Illica Sucks, Inc). The pressure mounts daily and has built up with fifteen years of crap. Something has to happen in order for a change to occur and release the pressure.
Maddy, a social worker, a busy wife and mother, is trying to balance her career, and three children (Emma 14, Gracie 9, Caleb 7), while taking pills in order to cope, and live with Ben, her high strung, angry, controlling, verbally and emotionally abusive narcissistic husband. Brilliant, handsome and charming,
Ben could turn into a raging bull when crossed—and despite her training as a social worker Maddy is never sure what would set him off on a rampage.
A family turns into competitions for time, daily emotional battles, and aggressive behavior. As the pressures mount, and tempers flare, shattered dreams erupt for a final explosion—as it trickles down, even to the children’s behavior and reactions—an accident driven by a short fuse, forces this family to face the truths, where nothing will be the same, with devastating consequences. When recovery means more than just facing physical injuries, and a marriage becomes too broken to be repaired.
Told from three different POVs (Maddy, Ben, Emma), Myers creates a poignant, and compelling detailed account of an ordinary family, and its downward spiral—for a heartbreaking tale with well-developed, flawed and realistic characters. Filled with intensity, a deeply moving gripping story; a psychological look inside this family tragedy —with great insight into the human complexities of life, written with compassion, while laced with wit and humor, for an engaging page-turner!
This was my first book by Randy Susan Myers’, and enjoyed her sharp writing style and look forward to reading her previous books! Fans of Jane Green, Amy Hatvany, Lisa Genova, Diane Chamberlain, and Liane Moriarty will enjoy this thought-provoking family drama of love unraveled, and life’s messiness.
Quotes I liked:
“The ideal man. Bears the accidents of life with. Dignity and grace. Making the best of circumstances. That’s Aristotle. I copied it. From Zelda’s office. I so wanted to be. Dignified and graceful. But now I know. How could I? I didn’t have an accident. Of life. It was. An accident of marriage.“
“We can’t be waiting for someone to hand us respect, for a man to make us feel good, as though we’re puppies waiting to have our bellies patted. Happiness comes from a whole lotta different places. A man’s love is just one piece of that huge cake. And even harder? You gotta bake that damn cake yourself.”