Welcome to my Sunday Book Review. Today I’m reviewing Ellie Marrandette’s, Sometimes Marriage is a Real Crime. This is a clever title that doesn’t come into play until later in the book, as Kate’s story begins in her childhood, illustrating the dysfunction in her life that led to her bad habits and choices growing up, her low self-esteem, and her ultimate naivety in her own marriage.
Sometimes Marriage is a Real Crime is a memorable novel conveying how our beliefs, traditions and tragedies occurring while we are young, transform us into the people we ultimately become..
We are introduced to smart, spunky, tomboyish Katie LeVay as a seven-year old “Daddy’s girl” thriving in a typical 1950s family environment. But life becomes complicated after her father abandons the family. Divorce is rare in the early ’60s, but small town gossip is not. Comfort foods might be Kate’s antidote . . . but dietary training could be her downfall.
Beginning in nostalgic 1957, we pursue seven-year old Kate’s coming of age saga through her complicated childhood, complex marriage and aspiring public relations career. Life would finally be perfect if only her womanizing husband would change his deceiving ways. He doesn’t and Kate has just discovered the perfect untraceable crime. Determined to extract her justice, she embarks on a dangerous real life game of chess. She’s learned which moves to play. Will she prevail is the question . . .
My 5 Star Review:
I was drawn to this book because of the content of the story being about a girl Kate, who struggled in her childhood because of her home environment, and subsequently, leading to her bad eating habits due to her need for comfort food. Although, the first while of this book gives us more insight into Kate’s mother Vicki, reasons why she married and how she became a workaholic mom and wasn’t home much to raise her kids, leaving Kate and her brother Gary home much of the time alone. Kate shares her thoughts and feelings about her father, her dreams of becoming a restauranter with her best friend Julie, her dreams of meeting her ‘prince’ one day, and her low self-esteem, which caused her many weight issues along her growing up and adult life, until she learned that food was her comfort that blanketed all her inner turmoil.
Kate was also naive, no surprise as she hadn’t much guidance growing up, something I could relate to and which probably drew me into this book. Kate spent most of her life on diets, crazy ones mostly and always felt she had to be sexy for her handsome womanizing husband, yet felt that her great cooking skills were essential to keeping her marriage together because Rich loved her cooking. Bad idea.
As the decades pass, we grow with Kate who had a kind heart, and her share of heartbreak and often, I found her a little bit too forgiving. Despite her weak traits, she had ambition and goals and her career in the fashion business that took her and us to some wonderful vacations where the author did a wonderful job of inviting us along with great descriptions and details of places Kate visited.
The book centered around food, weight concerns, self esteem issues, woven through the story line leading up to an ultimate revenge once Kate finally gets the message that her husband is a cheating bastard, and until that part later in the book, I didn’t feel this was a crime mystery story at all, rather a triumph of growth for Kate who finally learned how to take her power back.