Review of The Other Half by Sarah Rayner


About The Other Half

Chloe, bright, hip and single, is a feature writer with ambitions to launch a magazine of her own. When she meets James, her potential new boss, she knows she shouldn’t mix business with pleasure, but finds it impossible to resist…

Maggie appears to have it all. She’s beautiful, a talented writer, and has a gorgeous husband. But something’s not quite right: his job as a magazine publisher is keeping him in the city until late most evenings, and some nights he doesn’t come home at all…

Told in the alternating voices of the mistress and the wife, this story of an affair is a sharp, seductive take on modern love.

Who, if anyone, comes out unscathed?

In writing that is lively, sexy and sharp, the international bestselling author Sarah Rayner explores modern-day relationships and age-old moral dilemmas.

My Review

Rayner was clever in allowing the audience pieces of James through the eyes of Chloe and Maggie. Through his tangled relationships with both women we gather enough of James to have a clear idea of the person and man he is based on actions and choices which isn’t pretty.

I wasn’t a fan of any of the characters, they lacked emotions, feelings. They came across as wooden and only displayed emotions when appropriate feeling very stilted. With James revealed at a distance I failed to see the attraction either woman held for him, Maggie being the exception since she’s married to him. The entire narrative felt too detached, remote especially given the delicate subject matter.

James is confused, self-absorbed and a cad. Chloe likes complicated hopeless relationships and failed to show any constant signs of remorse or guilt, too selfish. Maggie is in denial, trying to convince herself her gut instinct is off, however I commend her for standing her ground.

Rayner demonstrates the destruction of infidelity in a plausible manner. The story being told from the eyes and perspectives of wife and mistress without being partial was refreshing. We were privy to two very different sides of James/Jamie which lead to great interest.

About Sarah Rayner1021011

Sarah Rayner is the author of the international bestseller, ‘One Moment, One Morning’ (2010). Her two latest novels, ‘The Two Week Wait’ (2012) and ‘Another Night, Another Day’ (2014), are also set in Brighton, England, and feature some of the same characters.

As a novelist, Sarah is known for tackling difficult subjects such as bereavement, infertility and mental illness with empathy and insight, but her latest books are non-fiction. ‘Making Friends with Anxiety’ is a little self-help book which Sarah hopes will enable people who panic and worry a lot to regain confidence and control, and is often enjoyed with ‘Making Friends with Anxiety: A calming colouring book’ which is illustrated by Jules Miller. ‘Making Friends with the Menopause’ is a guide she’s co-written with Doctor Patrick Fitzgerald to support women through their body changes.

Sarah has also written two more light-hearted novels – ‘The Other Half’ and ‘Getting Even’. Originally published in the early noughties, these have been fully revised and updated by the author and are now available on Amazon.

You can find Sarah’s website and it always makes her day to hear from from her readers.

Published March 25th 2014 by St. Martin’s Griffin (first published February 14th 2013)

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