If Not Love
Dunne, Feb 2008, $23.95
Sarah considers an affair with Harry, her husband Michael’s best friend. Kate thinks her husband Harry no longer desires her and is sniffing elsewhere so she turns to her mother for guidance. A widow Isobel explains to her despondent daughter that her marriage had issues of infidelity too as her husband Kate’s dad Robert had an affair with Martha. Isobel visits Martha at her nursing home where Robert’s mistress tells her that her four years as the other woman were the highlight of her life. Night nurse Shelia notices the sudden vim in her patient Martha and ponders her own virginal chaste marriage as she wed for convenience not love. Finally there is migraine sufferer Judith, whose husband Tom is kind and caring, but she has never let go giving up her son for adoption.
The six women have their own chapter with a final seventh denouement tying up their individual but somewhat connected entries. All six women seem genuine while the support family members enhance the deep look at each of the stars as readers learn why each one committed to a relationship especially IF NOT LOVE. To learn the Judith link requires reading this fine female British version of Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon.