The Replacement Wife by Eileen Goudge

Title: The Replacement Wife by Eileen Goudge
Publisher: Open Road Media
Genre: Contemporary, Women’s Fiction
Length: 484 pages
Book Rating: A

Review Copy Obtained from Publisher Through NetGalley


From New York Times bestselling author Eileen Goudge comes a poignant new novel that asks the question, “What would you do if you were told you had only six months to live?” For one professional matchmaker the answer is heart-wrenching: She must find her husband’s next wife.

Camille Hart, one of Manhattan’s most sought-after matchmakers, has survived more than her fair share of hardships. Her mother died when she was a young girl, leaving her and her sister with an absentee father. Now in her forties, she has already survived cancer once, though the battle revealed just how ill-equipped her husband Edward is to be a single parent. So when doctors tell Camille that her cancer is back—and this time it’s terminal—she decides to put her matchmaking expertise to the test for one final job. Seeking stability for her children and happiness for her husband, Camille sets out to find the perfect woman to replace her when she’s gone.

But what happens when a dying wish becomes a case of “be careful what you wish for”? For Edward and Camille, the stunning conclusion arrives with one last twist of fate that no one saw coming.

At once deeply felt and witty, The Replacement Wife is an unforgettable story of love and family, and a refreshing look at the unexpected paths that lead us to our own happy endings.

The Review:

The Replacement Wife by Eileen Goudge is a breathtaking story that is full of emotion and richly drawn characters that will capture your heart. When matchmaker Camille Harte receives the devastating news that her cancer has returned and it is terminal this time, she makes the unorthodox decision to find her husband Edward Constantin a new wife. Camille is unprepared for the emotions her matchmaking efforts will provoke in herself and Edward, and she sets in motion a chain of events that have a surprising and unexpected impact on their twenty year marriage.

Camille Harte and Edward Constantin are, to all appearances, a deeply in love and happily married couple. Despite their love for one another, Camille’s first bout with cancer has taken a toll on their marriage. Her determination to find a woman to step into Edward’s and their children’s lives after she is gone reveals both the unseen and unacknowledged changes their relationship has undergone.

The Replacement Wife is a well-written novel with a unique plot that is engaging and quite compelling. Told from multiple points of view, the reader gains valuable insight into the various characters’ thoughts and motivations. The characters are beautifully developed and incredibly true to life. Their reactions and emotions to the situations facing them are realistic and given the circumstances of the story, understandable.

Ms. Goudge brilliantly demonstrates the effects that a catastrophic illness has not only on a marriage but the entire family. The couple’s roles are redefined with the strengths and weaknesses of the partners quickly becoming apparent. But the key issue that The Replacement Wife raises is how far should one go to make their spouse happy? Should your partner’s desires supersede your own? And if you do give in to their wishes against your will, what effect will that have on your relationship?

The Replacement Wife is an exquisite novel that is quite captivating and thought provoking. While an emotional read, it is delightfully free of angst and heavy sorrow. Eileen Goudge takes the The Replacement Wife in an unforeseen direction that brings this beautiful story to an unanticipated yet marvelously satisfying conclusion.


Filed under Contemporary, Eileen Goudge, Open Road Media, Rated A, The Replacement Wife, Women's Fiction

7 Responses to The Replacement Wife by Eileen Goudge

  1. What an interesting plot for a story! I could not imagine facing the issues in this book, but understand (because I tend to be a control freak) that she would want things taken care of for her family before she goes.

    But at the same time, I’m not sure I’d want my husband looking for a replacement for him. My husband has a chronic illness that I know will take him from us far too soon. It’s just a fact. Would I want him to find a replacement? No way. For one, I’m not sure I would want to get married again. And two, if I do have a man in my life after him, all I want is someone to do the things hubby can’t do now. I want a handy man, trash man and a I-can-fix-the-car for you man. I’ve already got the close personal and intimate side, just need the stereotypical part after that.

    Thanks for including that this book is not full of heavy sorrow and angst. That helped me decide to put it on my TBR list. I get enough of that on my own. 🙂

    • Book Reviews & More by Kathy

      Heather, I am very sorry to hear about your husband. I cannot begin to imagine what y’all go through on a day to day basis.

      I went into the story expecting to shed a gallon of tears and use a carton of tissues, but I was pleasantly surprised to discover my expectations were waaayy off!

      I’m an Eileen Goudge fan, and The Replacement Wife is definitely one a keeper!

  2. Timitra

    The premise of this book definitely has me intrigued…so sorry to hear about your husband Heather, I can only imagine how hard that must be…sending positive thoughts and prayers your way.

    • Book Reviews & More by Kathy

      It had me intrigued too, Timitra. I am soooo glad I read it.

    • Heather E

      Thanks Timitra! I appreciate it! He is a disabled veteran and my hero. Thankful for the time I have we have together.

  3. Mel B

    What an interesting premise! I am with Heather…As a wife of someone with health issues, I am not sure I would want a replacement for him. He is too high maintanence anyway…might be a difficult find 🙂 Thanks for letting me know it is not a tear jerker, I need to be in th mood for that.

    Heather…Thank you to you and your husband for your service. There is a special place in my heart for those who serve. Keep up the positive spirit, the time we have now will make so many memories for later.


    • Heather E

      Thanks Mel. I am proud of my husband and all he had accomplished despite his disability. It makes everyday a challenge but we make it work. Our kids (4 or them) are old enough now to know what is going on and they pitch in to help and are very compassionate.

      I hope you are taking your own advice and keeping up good spirits. It does make a difference. We are making every moment count and saving lots of memories. 🙂