Perfect Mom and Wife? Skilled Liar? Or Both?
“Sometimes, the truth will not set you free, but do quite the opposite.”
So learns devoted wife and mother Melanie Hale in Seraphina Nova Glass’s newest thriller, SUCH A GOOD WIFE, in which she “creates a normal and relatable world and then turns it upside down.”
Mel is as close to perfect as a wife and mother can be. She’s raising two kids—13-year-old Rachel, who tests her with constant arm-crossing, eye-rolling, and annoyed sighing, and second-grader Ben, who’s autistic and neurodivergent—prone to meltdowns at the slightest change in routine. Mel also cares for Claire, her husband Collin’s mother, who suffers from lung cancer and dementia.
“You’re a saint,” Collin always tells her. Everyone knows Mel’s entire life is wrapped around her commitment to her family.
Until it isn’t.
In order for Mel to have something to focus on that’s just her own, Collin convinces her to join a writers’ group at the local bookstore. “Write about your own life,” the workshop leader tells her. So Mel writes about Claire and the life that was robbed from her, and “about how I married the kindest man in the world, only to find that I almost never see him, and how my whole world revolved around behaviors, de-escalations, meltdowns, doctors, medicines.”
While at the writers’ group meeting, Mel notices the book reading happening on the other side of the store. Luke Ellison is a famous romance author, and although Mel doesn’t read romance, she wanders over and listens to him anyway. After, not wanting to be like the women fawning over him, she sits at the bar and orders wine. She’s surprised when Luke joins her.
Amid the drudgery of her daily life—a life until just recently she thought she loved—Mel can’t stop thinking about Luke. When she attends her next writers’ group meeting, he’s there in the bookstore. She’s both shocked and thrilled that he keeps looking her way.
Luke invites Mel for a drink at a bar across the street. What starts as an innocent conversation soon escalates into a sultry affair. Although guilt fills Mel, she’s appalled to realize she’s a good liar. The falsehoods roll so easily off her tongue that her husband doesn’t suspect a thing.
Read the rest of my article and interview in The Big Thrill.