Rural Wisconsin, 1909. In the bitter cold, Ralph Truitt, a successful businessman, stands alone on a train platform waiting for the woman who answered his newspaper advertisement for "a reliable wife." But when Catherine Land steps off the train from Chicago, she's not the "simple, honest woman" that Ralph is expecting. She is both complex and devious, haunted by a terrible past and motivated by greed. Her plan is simple: she will win this man's devotion, and then, ever so slowly, she will poison him and leave Wisconsin a wealthy widow. What she has not counted on, though, is that Truitt a passionate man with his own dark secrets has plans of his own for his new wife. Isolated on a remote estate and imprisoned by relentless snow, the story of Ralph and Catherine unfolds in unimaginable ways.
Published in hardcover: March 2009
Published in paperback: January 2010
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"This darkly nuanced psychological tale builds to a strong and satisfying close." - Publishers Weekly.
"Starred Review. After breaking through with a disquieting memoir ... Goolrick applies his storytelling talents to a debut novel, set in 1907, about icy duplicity and heated vengeance.... A sublime murder ballad that doesnt turn out at all the way one might expect." - Kirkus Reviews.
"Goolrick twists a familiar story, refashioning it into something completely original. . . . Few have permeated their narratives with gothic elements and suspense to such great effect. ... The unforeseen conclusion provides a big payoff for readers of this tension-laden debut from a promising new talent." - Booklist.
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This is Goolrick's first novel following his memoir The End of the World as We Know It: Scenes from a Life (2007). For background material including an author interview and book club discussion guide please visit www.reliablewife.net
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