Thursday, October 28, 2021

A Reliable Wife



By Joanne Tailele

Author: Robert Goolrick.

Published by Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill 2010.

He knew he was not a good man.  His life was filled with haunted memories of cruelty and deception. The town feared him, pitied him and relied on him for their sustenance.  For twenty years he lived in the loneliness among the crowd, aware of their stares behind his back and their aversion to his eyes in his presence. When he stood alone at the train station he felt them watching. They all knew. They had read the personal ad he had run in the paper; Country Businessman Seeks Reliable Wife, Reply by letter, Ralph Truitt, Truitt, Wisconsin. They all waited and watched to see her get off the train.

Catherine Land traveled alone in the opulent train car owned by Ralph Truitt. She was ready for her new life. Prepared to live the life of Mrs. Ralph Truitt, she was the chameleon. She could be anything he needed her to be.  She rehearsed her lines until she almost believed them herself.

Goolrick’s work here is electrifying, shocking and beautiful. He says “I wanted to give readers, first and foremost, a good story and a reading experience that was as sensual as it is cerebral. He has certainly accomplished his goal in “Reliable Wife.”Liking it to the Songs of Solomon, Goolrick entwines the beauty of the skillfully written word with sometimes graphic eroticism. Instead of being repulsed, you are drawn into the cynical plot of betrayal, deceit, hopelessness and redemption. Can some things be unforgivable? Are some lives too far gone for redemption? No one is who they seem, each carrying their own secrets and own agendas. There are suspenseful, dramatic plots with bold, intricate characters and erotic, graphic overtures. I couldn’t put it down.

Joanne Tailele has been a full time resident of Marco Island for two years. Born in Youngstown, her last “home” for 12 years was Columbus, Ohio. Between Joanne and her husband, she has six children and nine grandchildren. She works as a receptionist for a local real estate company.


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