Let's start with the positives because there are a lot of them. First off, I loved the premise of the The Husband's Secret. A woman is in the attic and finds a letter from her husband to be opened upon his death. He is of course, still alive. How incredibly tempting. I was so easily able to put myself in her position, completely torn as to whether or not to read the letter. The endless questions running through her mind, the issues of trust and betrayal. Is it a love letter that will deepen the love or is it something terrible that will make me regret reading it forever. Well, either way, I wouldn't have been able to hold out nearly as long as Cecelia did.
I also loved the way the author kept each character's story separate but yet connection all of the women to one another in some way. The empathy I felt for Rachel all throughout the story was almost tangible. The anger I felt toward Felicity and John Paul had me practically yelling at the book as I read. The author easily brought these ladies (and men) to life and gave them challenges that almost broke them but also made them reflect on their lives and contemplate their futures.
The epilogue was creative. I loved the whole "If they had only known" format. It really made me think and wish that I could go back into the story and give the characters the information that would prevent some of the tragedy.
On to the negative. There was really only one and that was that I found I was able to predict what was in the letter from John Paul almost from the beginning of the story. It didn't really have any shock value for me. However, this didn't stop me from enjoying the book and the relationships between the characters.
I had never heard of this author before and this isn't a book I would have picked on my own. I thank my group at www.shereads.org for choosing it because otherwise, I would have missed a wonderful story of tragedy and the way it can both tear people apart and bring them together. Uplifting and heartbreaking. A great read!