The Husband's Secret by Liane Moriarty
In the Greek myth Pandora's Box, Pandora was given a beautiful jar and told not to open it under any circumstance. But, curiosity got the best of her and Pandora opened it and all the evils of the world escaped and spread over the earth. An action so small, yet with severe and far-reaching consequences. In The Husbands Secret by Liane Moriarty, Cecelia Fitzpatrick's "jar" is in the form of a letter she finds in her attic, addressed "For my wife - to be opened only in the event of my death". This one small letter changes the course of many lives.
The Husband's Secret cleverly intertwines the lives of three different families. There is Cecelia, married to the handsome John-Paul and they have three beautiful young daughters, Isabelle, Esther and Polly. Cecilia is an overly organized, overachieving wife and mother and thinks she has the perfect life - until she finds the letter. After she reads her husband's deepest darkest secret she can't seem to put her thoughts together enough to match her own shoes. Next, there is Tess, married to Will, and they have a six year old son called Liam. Tess is reeling from the revelation that her husband and cousin, Felicity (who is practically a sister) are in love with each other. Finally, there is Rachel whose 17 year old daughter, Janie, had been cruelly murdered 28 years before with no one ever being arrested for the murder. Rachel has a son, Rob, who is married to Lauren and they have a 2 year old son, Jacob, who is the light of Rachel's life. These people all live very different lives, until the discovery of that one little letter sets off a chain of events that affects each and every one of these families in its own unique way.
What I most enjoyed about this book was that the characters seemed very real, and as each alternating chapter revealed more about them, it almost felt like I was experiencing their pain right along with them. The author is that good. She makes you question if you would be able to do what you think is right even when you might be wrong. This is a very thought provoking book about the danger of keeping secrets and the reasons that secrets are kept in the first place. Excellent book club choice in my opinion.