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Extended Audio Sample A Reliable Wife Audiobook, by Robert Goolrick Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (46,230 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Robert Goolrick Narrator: Mark Feuerstein Publisher: Recorded Books, LLC Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: January 2013 ISBN: 9781440718168
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He placed a notice in a Chicago paper, an advertisement for “a reliable wife.” She responded, saying that she was “a simple, honest woman.” She was, of course, anything but honest. The only simple thing about her was her single-minded determination to marry this man and then kill him, slowly and carefully, leaving her a wealthy widow, able to take care of the one she truly loved.

But what Catherine Land did not realize was that the enigmatic and lonely Ralph Truitt had a plan of his own. And what neither anticipated was that they would fall so completely in love.

Filled with unforgettable characters, shimmering with color and atmosphere, A Reliable Wife is an enthralling tale of love and madness, of longing and murder.

Download and start listening now!

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Quotes & Awards

  • "A gothic tale of...smoldering desire...The novel is deliciously wicked and tense...Once you’ve fallen into the miasma of A Reliable Wife, it’s intoxicating.”

    Washington Post

  • “In the kind of precise, literary prose that breathes life into his complicated characters, Goolrick, author of an acclaimed memoir, has also managed a rousing historical potboiler, an organic mystery rooted in the real social ills of turn-of-the-century America...A detailed exploration of love, despair, and the distance people can travel to reach each other that is as surprising, and as suspenseful, as any beach read.”

    Boston Globe

  • “[A] beautifully written, beautifully dark book. Goolrick is a superb writer.”

    Chicago Sun-Times

  • “A killer debut novel...Suspenseful and erotic...[A] chillingly engrossing plot...Good to the riveting end.”

    USA Today

  • “A tantalizing pace that will have you flipping faster and faster through the pages...A beautiful and haunting read, a story about all the different manifestations of love—a story that will stay with you.”

    Minneapolis Star Tribune

  • “A glittering, poisoned ice cube of a tale...A Reliable Wife is eminently readable and should delight fans of old-fashioned gothic romances...Goolrick is a solid wordsmith, and he handily manages the impressive task of making readers care about a woman bent on cold-blooded murder.”

    Christian Science Monitor

  • “A thrilling, juicy read...The writing is beautiful and the story is captivating. It’s a real page-turner.”

    Today show

  • “[An] engrossing and addictive novel [that] will leave you both chilled and satisfied.”

    NPR

  • “A weighty psychodrama laced with Hitchcockian suspense.”

    Time Out New York

  • “[A] darkly nuanced psychological tale [that] builds to a strong and satisfying close.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “Mark Feuerstein’s performance is spellbinding. His crisp delivery matches the staccato rhythm of Goolrick’s declarative sentences. Further, he brings each character’s unique voice to life with modulated tones that convey layers of personality and emotions.” 

    AudioFile

  • “[A] tension-laden debut from a promising new talent.”

    Booklist

  • “A fierce and sophisticated debut novel.”

    BookPage

  • “A sublime murder ballad that doesn’t turn out at all the way one might expect.”

    Kirkus Reviews

  • A #1 New York Times Bestseller
  • A #1 Publishers Weekly Bestseller
  • A USA Today Bestseller
  • Selected for the April 2009 Indie Next List

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Brenda Dolha | 2/9/2014

    " A beautiful portrait of life in an isolated winter landscape, where no-one and nothing is as it first appears "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Linda Robertson | 2/5/2014

    " Enjoyed this just as much the second time around! "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Punita | 2/2/2014

    " Gave it a 2 only because as horribly written as it was I still wanted to know what was going to happen next. The author over words and goes on and on about the same thing. 10 ways to say one thing throughout the whole book gets annoying. I picked it up wanting something to read after 50 shades and the reviews looked great... Not for me!! Good story idea bad execution! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lori Engel | 1/31/2014

    " I had troubled with this book. I think the overall darkness was a little too much for me. The characters were well rounded and real. The Wisconsin winter scape was a character in itself. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lindsay | 1/23/2014

    " Dark and twisty, but a good diversion read. Probably will give it away (doesn't quite merit a coveted spot on limited bookshelves), but enjoyable none-the-less. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Patricia Zashkoff | 1/23/2014

    " I loved this book! It had intrigue, jealousy, passion and murder plots - everything I like in a book. When a woman answers a mail order bride request in the old west, you know something is not what it seems. She is a beautiful schemer and he is the wealthiest man in town. What could go wrong? I would definitely recommend this book. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Cheryl | 1/18/2014

    " This book reminded me of the movie Original Sin...so much so that I was sure Robert Goolrick wrote the screenplay for the movie. I guess I didn't like this book at all because I didn't think it was original. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Scott Warrender | 1/2/2014

    " This story would make a good TV mini-series with Jane Seymour (if she was 30 years younger). A few surprising plot twists. I appreciated the writing but, ultimately, the book was not my cup of tea. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Heidi Meyer | 12/22/2013

    " Read this a few years ago...exact details do not stick in my mind but I do remember thoroughly enjoying it. Very quick read. I could not put it down :) "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Tracey | 12/14/2013

    " This book was not anything I had expected. Once I opened it I could not put it down. The twist and turns surprised me and I ended up cheering for the heroine! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Beverly | 12/9/2013

    " What a page-turner! I thoroughly enjoyed reading this with all its surprises. The cover is icing on this frosty, winter-white cake. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Frieda Perry | 12/6/2013

    " My rating says it all... you read some good books and some not-so-good books. To quote this book "such things happen!" It had possibilities but was very disappointing. I agree with most of the other readers who gave this book a 1 or 2 star rating. At the end I couldn't wait for it to be over! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sara Narrow-LaPoint | 11/22/2013

    " I'm not sure why this book has such a low rating. I didn't think it was all that bad. Did I love it? No. But it was enjoyable enough to keep me reading! "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Pamela Thorpe | 10/4/2013

    " I simply did not enjoy this book. There was quite a bit of hidden agenda and pretense. I found myself hating all the characters, none of whom were who they pretended to be. The story is fairly predictibleand has little redeeming quality. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Jennifer Ferro | 8/7/2013

    " Pretty terrible...unsympathetic characters....honestly just extremely horny people doing stupid, self-destructive things. Overly flowery language. I was not a fan. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Heather | 3/29/2013

    " The story started out promising but then it turned into a Lifetime-type movie. A little too simple for my taste but the writing was decent. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Tory | 9/5/2012

    " This book read with a quiet intensity. Plot twists are introduced with such subtlety, that you nearly miss them. I didn't see the story unfolding as it did, which I enjoyed quite a bit. A nice work of fiction. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kimberly Gray | 8/29/2012

    " I really enjoyed this book, with all of its twists and turns! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Crystal O'Leary-Davidson | 8/19/2012

    " A fun twisted old-fashioned Gothic. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Katie Hainsworth | 7/11/2012

    " a good combination of coniving, heartbreak, betrayal and lust. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Kirsti | 2/23/2012

    " The characters were despicable and the writing not up to par. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Dodey | 12/12/2011

    " Kind of eery, but good. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Amanda Lawrence | 8/9/2011

    " Dark book. Despair and forgiveness from start to finish. More despair. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Imasongbyrd | 6/8/2011

    " I don't know what to say about this book. I disliked it from the very beginning, and yet I couldn't put it down. Even though it was completely predictable, I still needed to see how it came out. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 D | 5/25/2011

    " So many people recommended this book to me, and I was really disappointed. I thought it was like an over-the-top soap opera! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kristen | 5/24/2011

    " Kept my interest, but Doom and Gloom and very far-fetched.

    Estranged "son" and lover concoct a plan to poison and kill wealthy father in early 1900's in bitter cold Wisconsin. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Pattyb | 5/24/2011

    " I guess from what I had heard about this book, I was expecting a little more. Can't give anything away, because there are some plot twists, but basically, it's about a man in Wisconsin in the early part of the century who sends for a mail-order bride. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Anna | 5/23/2011

    " I liked that the plot was unlike anything I've ever read before. Not what you would expect from a traditional romance... "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kelseyjjohnson | 5/23/2011

    " Vivid descriptions of characters and places. A quick, exciting read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Judy | 5/22/2011

    " A tale of moral turpitude. I love Goolrick's style of writing, but his characters and subject matter are too dark. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Alex | 5/20/2011

    " A little slow going in the beginning - until a good twist in the story revealed itself. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jessie | 5/19/2011

    " This was a total Love/Hate book for me. I did give it 4 stars because I couldn't wait to finish it and have the story unfold. I found it to be shallow and worthless, yet also compelling, fascinating and even passionate. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Shelly | 5/18/2011

    " The characters were great and the plot kept me hooked!! "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Kristin | 5/17/2011

    " I read this book because of the amazing reviews. I thought it was okay, but I just did not love it. Realistic characters. Decent story. But definitely NOT a page turner. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Paul | 5/17/2011

    " A pretty good story, sometimes slowed down by too much description, but I have to say I enjoyed it.
    "

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About the Author
Author Robert Goolrick

Robert Goolrick is the author of The End of the World as We Know It, a memoir, and the #1 New York Times bestselling novel A Reliable Wife, as well as another novel. He lives in Virginia.

About the Narrator

Mark Feuerstein is the star of USA Network’s Royal Pains. He has also been on such television shows as The West Wing, 3 Lbs, and Good Morning, Miami. In addition, he can be seen in such films as What Women Want, The Muse, Practical Magic, In Her Shoes, and Defiance, starring Daniel Craig, and he made his Broadway debut in Alfred Uhry’s The Last Night of Ballyhoo.