The Affair - Sheryl Browne
Reading Challenge Category: Just really wanted to read it!
The moment she opened her eyes, she knew everything had changed. The stale taste of alcohol; her uneasy stomach. She looked at her husband sleeping peacefully, and knew she would never tell anyone what happened last night. You will think you know what happened to Alicia that night. You will see a desperate wife, lying to her husband. You will watch a charming lover, trying to win her back. You will judge her, just like everyone else. You will assume you know what happens next. But everything you think you know about the past, the relationships, what drives Alicia and her husband to lie... is wrong.
I found this book really hard to get into. It was really slow going and didn’t really seem to be going anywhere or really to be about much. We are mainly following three characters, Alicia (the mum), Justin (the dad), and Sophie (the daughter). We do occasionally get inside Alicia’s sister’s head, Jessica, and towards the end, Paul Radley gets a voice. However, for the majority, it is the main three family members giving their turn of events. Other than the car crash and the revelation, not a lot is happening, and you feel like you are rotating through the characters’ minds with not a lot being discovered. At around 40% there is a little nugget of intrigue but still not enough to want to stay up all night reading. At 50% you’re still at the same level of intrigue and then it starts to slow down again. The story comes to a head at around 80%, but it does so without any significant fanfare. There aren’t any major twists or surprises; the story just keeps on going with a pinnacle event. There is a minor shocker at the end, but it was so glossed over it didn’t really take my breath away or leave me gasping or exclaiming. It just was. The subtleties throughout the story leading you to the end were too small and too insignificant such as everything that went on with Alicia’s sister. It was all very petty and how Justin even deduced anything from what she was doing was a shocker in itself. This was a very safe story, and it plodded on and didn’t really hold my interest. It was such a shame as I really loved the premise and have enjoyed the author’s other psychological thrillers. I’d want to be able to say I was distracted or not in the right frame of mind for this. However, this isn’t the case. I’ve just read some fantastic books and was ready for another. This one just wasn’t for me, I’m sorry.