State of the Union: A Marriage in Ten Parts

This short read was a delight in its simplicity of style and complexity of emotion. An honest look into the flaws of a marital relationship, and the tiny steps needed to find their way back.

 

How are new starts possible? When you’ve been together for a long time, and you have kids, and you’ve spent years and years being irritated by the other person? But if they stop being irritating, they’re not them anymore.

— Nick Hornby

Synopsis:

Tom and Louise meet at a pub for drinks each week before their marital therapy. They thought their marriage was stable until an incident forced them to face each other head on. But what if therapy helps them break apart their marriage, but not put it back together?

 

Review:

Nick Hornby delivers with another quick-witted, snarky, and real portrayal of the human spirit in the characters of Tom and Louise. Neither are particularly likable, but they’re so beautifully flawed that you can’t help feel compassion for them. The quick back-and-forth conversation between the couple is both maddening and funny, and their tendency to skirt around the real issues is so relatable.

Each chapter is a successive week just prior to their therapy session, and each one holds a little different emotion and focus. Hornby delicately portrays hurt, betrayal, isolation, resolution, and a bit of hope in turns.

This short read was a delight in its simplicity of style and complexity of emotion. An honest look into the flaws of relationships, and the tiny steps needed to find our way back.

But you can always do that.
Imagine a future that’s easier than the one you have now.

— Nick Hornby

State of the Union: A Marriage in Ten Parts
by Nick Hornby
Paperback, 132 pages
Published May 7th 2019 by Riverhead Books

Summary

This short read was a delight in its simplicity of style and complexity of emotion. An honest look into the flaws of a marital relationship, and the tiny steps needed to find their way back.

— Cassie
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