Estimated read time: 2-3 minutes
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I love the premise of this book. A couple married nearly 40 years where the husband writes the wife a letter every Wednesday for the entirety of their marriage. Isn't that a lovely idea? Jack Cooper starts writing to his lovely bride Laurel on their wedding night and keeps it up, whether it's a few words written while sitting in a chair across the room or several pages penned on a road trip from across the country. The Cooper's children, the tormented one, the sensible one and the leader, discover these letters in boxes in the basement after the death of their parents - and only then do they learn who their parents really were, what they endured, and how deeply they loved each other and their children.
It's a wonderful premise, inspiring and touching, but for some reason it left me flat. I like this author so much. Jason Wright is a talented, passionate writer and I will continue to read his novels, but this compelling idea just fell short for me. I don't know if it was the malcontent son who predictably comes around or the letters themselves, more Hallmark card than real conversation between spouses. It's not that I can't imagine tenderness between a husband and wife expressed in this way - it just didn't read like real letters for me. I can't put my finger on it. It just felt forced.
I'm not telling you not to read the book. I think many of you will enjoy the sweetness of these people and the idea behind the novel. In fact, you may even find yourself picking up a pen and paper and handwriting a letter to a loved one for the first time in years. I know the author would love to see the book have this effect on all of us. I give a strong recommendation for the idea (even though I'm lukewarm on the execution) of The Wednesday Letters. On the Book Beat for KSL Newsradio, I'm Amanda Dickson.