A Reliable Wife
A NovelBook - 2009
With echoes of Wuthering Heights and Rebecca, Robert Goolrick's intoxicating debut novel delivers a classic tale of suspenseful seduction, set in a world that seems to have gone temporarily off its axis.
Baker & Taylor
Ralph Truitt, a wealthy businessman with a troubled past who lives in a remote nineteenth-century Wisconsin town, has advertised for a reliable wife; and his ad is answered by Catherine Land, a woman who makes every effort to hide her own dark secrets.
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He wanted her teeth to bite him. To leave marks in his back, his legs. He wanted her hair to strangle him. He wanted her to tell him that his touch would not kill her. He wanted to slice her open and lie inside the warm blood of her body...He wanted the moment at which he finally lay naked against her, chest to chest, her hand fluttering above his shoulders like white birds in the chill night, her frantic fingers threading invisible needles.
He made no apologies. He never tilted his head in sentimentality, or paused for her approval or her sympathy, and she never turned her eyes from his, never wandered around the room or shuffled her feet or asked for a glass of water. She just listened. It was a life he told her, entire, flawed, scarred with indulgence and self-laceration, but brave, it seemed to her, courageous at the same time.
"You see, thought Catherine, sooner or later, everything gets a fresh start. It's not just possible. It happens."
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