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Portable Magic

Reading, for me, is entertainment and an escape from the real world. But it can also inform and stretch the boundaries of the life I live.

Currently reading

I Almost Forgot About You
Terry McMillan
Progress: 42 %
The Gates of the Alamo
Stephen Harrigan
I am No One You Know
Joyce Carol Oates
Progress: 17 %
The Return of the King
J.R.R. Tolkien, Rob Inglis
Progress: 35 %

The Shadow Wife ★★☆☆☆

The Shadow Wife - Dorothy Eden

This hilariously bad book gets two stars only because I was too curious about the ending to DNF it. Written in 1967, it is terribly dated in its gender roles and sexual attitudes. It takes the form of a woman’s recollection of terrible events that befell her a few years earlier when she met a rich, handsome, romantic stranger and was so desperate to avoid being a pathetic old maid at the age of 26 that she demanded he marry her rather than just engaging in a love affair. After all, she was already damaged goods from an earlier love affair where (gasp) her lover had refused to marry her after stringing her along. From all her dark hints, I expected that she’d been imprisoned and tortured in the dungeons. It turned out, however, that  

he’d pretended to marry her in a sham wedding, then acted like she had hallucinated it all when she miscarried in an accident.

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Then, to make sure you understand what a villain he really is, it turns out that he 

was a Nazi collaborator during the war, which really has nothing whatever to do with the plot.

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But not to worry, she finds hope of happiness in the end, when 

Otto commits suicide, but she realizes that she really has the hots for his brother, who is actually the marrying sort.

(show spoiler)


This book serves as a good moral lesson on the dangers of impulsive commitments, not because of the heroine’s sufferings, but because I picked it up on impulse from my library’s donation gimmie shelves. And oh boy, did I pay for it.


I read this book for Task the Second: The Silent Nights (Read a book set in one of the Nordic countries, where winter nights are long!) in the Twelve Tasks of the Festive Season challenge. Although it takes place across several countries, the bulk of the action is in Denmark, and in Otto’s home manor house castle on the island of Samsø, and is in the spring, where apparently, the days are very long instead of the long winter nights.