All I’ve done is lost a husband, and he’s not lost forever, he’s just run off with someone else. She tried this idea out in her mind, seeing how it felt. Edward wasn’t gone forever: he had just chosen to leave her. Was that worse or better than if he died? Because if he died, and he still loved her, she’d have that comfort to help her along as she dealt with the pain of being on her own. Yes, she grinned, feeling some crazy sense of relief, in the midst of all this madness, death certainly trumped separation.
Lessons in Heartbreak by Cathy Kelly
Price: Rs 250
Pages: 454 (With permission from Harper Perennial)
A man confesses
In the sky’s distillery, the afternoon light was a weak brandy. Standing at a study window, Brian said, “She seemed like a free spirit—bold, edgy, but fun. After we’d been together awhile, I began to realise something was wrong with her.” Amy had sampled Vanessa’s e-mails. The ten-year collection was large. She got the flavour from a few, and didn’t care to read more. “I wanted to end it, but she has this magnetism.” In disgust, he repeated, “Magnetism. Truth. She was hot, totally hot, and I knew she was unstable, but I was weak. That’s the sick truth.” He had begun this account facing Amy, but even ten years after these events, shame led him to prefer to confess to the window.
She wanted to move behind him, put a hand on his waist, and let him know this changed nothing between them. But perhaps he needed his self disgust to be able to purge himself of these secrets; she sensed that her affection might weaken his resolve, that he was aware of this, that she must trust him to know when he could face her again. Fred and Ethel snoozed back to back, book-ends without a book. Nickie remained awake, more interested than she pretended to be.
The Darkest Evening of the Year by Dean Koontz
Price: Rs 195
Pages: 440 (With permission from Harper Collins India)