To start the new year, all chapters of the Girly Book Club in January will be reading and discussing The Wife Between Us by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen. Earlier this year, when the book was first published, filed this report.

If you pick up The Wife Between Us, know you are in for many sleepless nights. This piece of literary perfection will have you hooked from the very beginning.

Even the title is fat with unanswered questions. Whose wife? Which wife? Is it Nellie, the wife-to-be? Or Vanessa, the ex-wife who is determined to stop the wedding?

And, who can stop reading after bait like this, all in the first chapter:

  1. Nellie is jolted from sleep by a vision in white, but the woman she thinks she sees standing in her bedroom is only her wedding dress hanging from the closet door.
  2. She has a heavy engagement ring on her finger, and a heavy heart about something that happened when she was in college, something that troubles her sleep still.
  3. She misses her father, who would rub her to sleep until she was 9, when her parents divorced and he left.
  4. She has a baseball bat by her nightstand, three locks on her door, and bars on the windows. Is she paranoid, or just another New Yorker?
  5. Nellie’s roommate thinks rich, handsome, considerate Richard, Nellie’s husband-to-be, is “too good to be true.”
  6. Nellie is getting anonymous phone calls and messages that are nothing but the sound of someone breathing.

Not hooked by Chapter 1?  You will be when you notice that Chapter 2 is written in the first person by Vanessa, the ex-wife. She supplies even more reasons to keep reading:

  1. Vanessa is, apparently, still madly in love with Richard, even though he cheated on her with Nellie.
  2. Vanessa has come down in the world since the divorce. Living on charity with a relative, her roots are showing, and she misses her walk-in closet, her Mercedes, and her house in Westchester.
  3. The clothes, the clothes, the clothes. In the turmoil of divorce, Vanessa has dropped to a size 4, and she just started a job on the designer floor of Saks Fifth Avenue, selling rich-wife clothes to women she used to invite to parties.
  4. At one of those parties, she remembers, Richard asked her to bring up a few bottles of wine from the case he’d bought a week ago. Vanessa knows the case is empty, and you’ll want to keep reading to find out why.

The Wife Between Us, aptly, is the work of two women: Sara Pekkanen, author of seven previous novels including The Best of Us, and Perfect Neighbors; and Greer Hendricks, once Pekkanen’s editor at Simon & Schuster. Published a month ago, their book jumped to best seller lists in two weeks, with glowing reviews from all corners.

And even before the book was finished, the authors had a movie deal with Steven Spielberg’s Amblin Partners, the Hollywood team that put “The Girl on the Train” on the screen. Who will star in the movie? The suspense continues…

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The Wife Between Us in now available for purchase. 


Image courtesy of Macmillan Publishers. Photo credit: Bill Miles

Greer Hendricks spent over two decades as an editor at Simon & Schuster. Prior to her tenure in publishing, she worked at Allure magazine and obtained her masters in journalism from Columbia University. Her writing has been published in The New York Times and Publishers Weekly. Greer lives in Manhattan with her husband and two children. The Wife Between Us is her first novel.

Sarah Pekkanen is the internationally and USA Today bestselling author of seven previous novels. A former investigative journalist and feature writer, her work has been published in The Washington PostUSA Today, and many others. She is the mother of three sons and lives just outside Washington, D.C.

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