Review: The Replacement Wife by Rowena Wiseman


Title: The Replacement Wife

Author: Rowena Wiseman

Published: HarperCollins AU September 2015

Status: Read from September 09 to 10, 2015 — I own a copy   {Courtesy the author}

My Thoughts:

The Replacement Wife by Rowena Wiseman has an unusual premise. When Luisa rekindles an old romance after a family BBQ she becomes determined to escape her lacklustre marriage of twelve years. Desperate not to be branded as a homewrecker, Luisa concocts a plan to find her husband a replacement wife, allowing her to exit the marriage blamelessly. While fantasising about the new life she will build with Jarvis, Luisa pushes a procession of single women at her husband but when it seems she has finally found him the one, she’s no longer sure she wants to be replaced after all.

Though I didn’t like Luisa at all, I thought Wiseman’s characterisation was very interesting. Luisa has a delusional self narrative, she believes herself unselfish for wanting to secure her husband’s happiness before she leaves him, compassionate for selecting women who will a good mother to her son, moral because she refuses a physical relationship with Jarvis while still married. Luisa’s skewed perspective is obvious to the reader, who can see exactly how flawed her thinking is, and the looming pitfall’s of Luisa’s grand plan.

‘Be careful what you wish for, you may just get it’ is the overriding theme of The Replacement Wife, however I struggled with the inconsistent tone of the novel. The first three quarters of the book or so reads mostly like a screwy romcom as Luisa attempts to fix up her husband with a handful of single women while swooning over the ridiculously effusive texts and emails from Jarvis, but then the tone shifts abruptly and The Replacement Wife becomes a serious morality tale, and though Luisa’s fate is deserved, the overall imbalance is awkward.

I didn’t dislike The Replacement Wife, I thought the unique premise was quite clever, and the writing of a good standard, but unfortunately the execution didn’t quite work for me.

Available to purchase from

HarperCollins AU I HarperCollins US I AmazonUS I Amazon AU

Google Play I ibooks I Kobo



2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Mystica
    Sep 11, 2015 @ 11:05:52

    Thank you for your honest review.



  2. Lisa
    Sep 12, 2015 @ 00:16:58

    Great review. The premise really does sound interesting, but it’s disappointing to hear that the execution was a little off.



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