When a husband convinces his wife to join him in a tryst with another woman, there are unintended consequences in this sharply observed erotic tale about the challenges of modern marriage.
Kornbluth constructed an impressive read. The characters are intelligent and complex. If you’re hoping for endless steamy sex scenes, you might be mildly disappointed. Yes, sex is described but it’s not the meat of the narrative, rather it’s about the unnoticed hairline fracture, of by all appearances, a healthy stable contented marriage until the addition of a welcomed third-party turns the fracture into a full-fledged compound fracture.
David and Blair were both fascinating and irksome. Great they developed this ‘cheating pact’ but I’m surprised this cerebral couple failed to discuss or form a ‘aftermath pact.’ Apparently these two forgot the simplicity of once the damage is done it’s a challenge to reverse, if at all a possibility. David needs a backbone, he also lacked the skills of persuasion post threesome with Blair. Blair signed on, held back in round one, wanted to be more participatory in round two and then pulled the stunt she did after all was said and done. Her behavior was unfair to David as well as immature. Obviously their stellar communication and respect originally in existence was nonexistent at this juncture.
The bottom line, their marriage had issues, possibly more than this couple realized or were willing to admit, the addition of Jane was the fuel igniting the blaze. If it wasn’t for Jane someone else or something else would have shaken this couples silently teetering foundation eventually.
I love the fact Kornbluth put Blair in the position of exiting instead of going the traditional path of the man needing to quench his curiosity. Also this put a zesty spin on the cast and narrative. Would Blair have been waiting or as forgiving if reversed? I’m thinking not so much, but with this liberal couple who knows. Plus what if there was insatiable chemistry between Blair and Jane, would the outcome been different, probably. With these questions along with many others, I respect the way Kornbluth left ambiguity and wonderment hanging in the air, leaves much for the reader to question and discuss.
Great glimpse into appearances and a cautionary tale of is it worth turning a fantasy into a reality without discussing ramifications on what you believe to be a solid relationship. What’s done is done, no redo’s. Consider the aftermath before you open your marriage and bedroom to others. Perception can be very deceiving.
Loved the way Kornbluth forced this reader to consider so much, great writing, wonderful theme along with content. Be fabulous to revisit David and Blair to see what their singular futures hold as well as their marriage, will their love trump all….too much left dangling by the clever hand of Kornbluth, my curiosity piqued.
Jesse Kornbluth is the founder of HeadButler.com, a cultural concierge site. He has served as editorial director of AOL, cofounded Bookreporter.com, and has been a contributing editor to Vanity Fair and New York. The author of four nonfiction books, including Highly Confident: The Crime and Punishment of Michael Milken, he has written screenplays for Paul Newman, Robert De Niro, ABC, PBS, and Warner Bros.
Married Sex is Kornbluth’s first novel. He lives in Manhattan with his family.
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Paperback, 246 pages
Published August 25th 2015 by Open Road Media