Review: The Model Wife by Tricia Stringer

 

Title: The Model Wife

Author: Tricia Stringer

Published: 24th September 2019, HQ Fiction

Status: Read September 2019, courtesy HQ Fiction

++++++

My Thoughts:

The Model Wife is a wise, warm, and wonderful story of a woman in search of herself from Australian author, Tricia Stringer.

“The model wife spends her time taking care of her family and putting them before her own needs.” – The Model Wife by Mrs Gladys Norman, London, 1928

When Natalie King is confronted with a potentially life threatening health crisis, the busy 58 year old wife, mother and teacher, is left reeling. Reflecting on her past, and contemplating the direction of her future, she finds she desperately needs a break and, ignoring the century old wisdom of ‘The Model Wife’, flees north to Broome, leaving her family to fend for themselves.

“Everyone had a piece of Natalie and somehow she’d lost herself in the process. She’d never done anything outside anyone else’s expectations of her.”

Stringer’s portrayal of Natalie’s ‘paradigm shift’ is thoughtful and realistic, and likely one every wife and mother can relate to. After years of tirelessly working to ensure the needs of her family and community are met, Natalie realises that she has largely ignored her own. Away from the constant demands on her time and energy she has the space to consider what she wants moving forward.

“Don’t let anyone should you.”

Natalie’s timing couldn’t be worse though, it’s tailing season on the farm keeping her husband, Milt and middle daughter, Bree, busy; both her youngest and eldest daughter’s, Laura and Kate who seem to have something on their mind, are visiting; and her sister-in-law is demanding an increased share of the farm’s income. Stringer thoughtfully explores the individual issues at hand, as well as the change Natalie’s absence makes to the family dynamics. I appreciated the authenticity with which the author both portrayed and developed the multi-generational characters. I also liked the way in which issues specific to a farming lifestyle, like property succession, are explored.

“Natalie had simply had to lose herself to find her way home.”

A well written, engaging story of the everyday challenges of life and love, I enjoyed The Model Wife, and am happy to recommend it.

xxxxxx

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Also by Tricia Stringer reviewed at Book’d Out