Cover Image: The War of the Roses

The War of the Roses

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Member Reviews

Oliver and Barbara have been married for quite a long time and seemingly have a perfect relationship. He’s a lawyer, she’s a wonderful mother and they own a gorgeous home they have both worked on with their own hands. But divorce can bring out the ugly in some people. 

I’ve seen this movie dozens of times and always found it entertaining. This book was also enjoyable if you take it at face value. Spouses at war during a divorce trying to hold on to what they feel they are entitled to. Each party slowly descends into madness at a pace that doesn’t make the reader question the characters actions the same way it would if the character behaved that way at the beginning of the book. 

Overall, a great quick read but I did think the movie was more entertaining.
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3.5 stars
This is one of those rare times where I can honestly say I liked the movie more than the book!  The tale of a so-called perfect couple who lose all sense of reality when battling each other during a divorce.  The story showcases hate and spite at a whole new level, and I have to say is a bit depressing.  At least with the movie there was a sense of some comic relief at times.  The book, however, was more of a public service announcement over the dangers of coveting possessions over people.  Overall I did like it, but I found the preachy aspect of one character to be a bit annoying...and don't get me started on the very final scene as a potential sequel set-up!
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A deliciously engrossing darkly comic story of the bitter disintegration of the Rose's marriage and the lengths people will go to for revenge and justice when they feel maligned. I have to watch the film again as i loved the book very much
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I was excited when I got an E-ARC from NetGalley since I enjoyed the movie a bit and did not realize that there was a book that inspired the film. Although this was a moment where I enjoyed the movie a lot more than the book when I normally love the book more. 

This novel looks at the bitter battle between a husband and wife while getting divorced, which can be a very traumatic experience. This novel shows the selfishness of people especially in times of hatred. These two people who once loved one another show how far they will go for revenge against their significant other. This novel (and the movie) is marked as comical, but I just felt more uncomfortable about how these people acted towards one another.  I enjoy dark humor, but this book missed its mark for me. I got about a hundred pages in and was ready to DNF but I pushed through to finish. 

I can see why some people may enjoy this book, but it personally showed too much of the dark side of people and made me want to cry and not laugh for how hateful and malicious they were to one another over the most materialistic things. This book may be for some people but does not hold up for me in 2021. 

Thank you to NetGalley and Stonehouse Press for the E-ARC for a review!
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This was an interesting read that was hilarious to experience. War of the Roses may be a well known title but you haven't seen it like this!
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I am always a fan of dark comedy and this definitely did not disappoint in that vein.  I knew that the book was based on an awful divorce, but never saw the movie and knew nothing going into this book.  It starts out slowly and builds up into such and unbelievable frenzy of craziness.  This is one of those books that I could not stop reading once I got invested because I had to know what happens next.  The sheer level of creativity in the exploits was genius, however I wish the characters would have been more developed.  It was hard to take any side which was good for propelling the plotline.  I did not end up understanding the character of Ann and why she was so invested.  I felt that her character was unnecessary in the grand scheme of things.  The ending left me just spellbound.  I could not stop thinking about resolution.  I thought this was a thrill ride of a book that really did have some valid points about relationships and marriage.  Thanks for the ARC, NetGalley.
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This is not a book where you can fall in love with the characters.  The War of the Roses begins with marital bliss that quickly disintegrates into the divorce from hell. The venomous consequences (hilariously) destroy not only Jonathan and Barbara Rose but also their home, antiques, pets and family.  

Warren Alder pulls us deep into the snowball effect of psychological warfare, leaving this reader wanting to shake sense into the combatants. The tense storyline will keep you cringing as the Roses both refuse to leave the family home, each finding more and more destructive ways force the other out. Now I want to find the 1989 film version to watch.  Highly recommended.

Thanks to NetGalley and Stonehouse Press for the advance reader copy.
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Thank you to Netgalley for an ARC of the 4th edition in return for an honest review.

Prior to reading this novel, I was unfamiliar with the work of this author and had also not seen the film. I previewed, and was attracted to, the first chapter of the War of the Roses before requesting this book. From there, my enthusiasm waned rapidly and I could find very little humor or interest in this crazy tale. The story begins with the uniting of two Staffordshire boxer figurines, by creating a human couple. This sets the scene for the novel: the pugnacious breakup of this selfsame couple many years later in a hostile contested divorce that disregards everything other than material possessions.  Finishing this novel was an endeavor of sheer determination for me. I found the protagonists empty and soul-less, the insane, spiteful escalation of war between two former lovers, parents, and best friends distasteful and bizarre. For me, the label 'dark comedy' does not fit this novel, but I would not know what else to call it.
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This book delves into the depth of psychosis and how hatred and revenge can turn a person into whom he or she can no longer recognize. At the start of the novel, Jonathan and Barbara appeared to be the couple one envied as they had the beautiful children, house and careers. It was the lack of empathy during a time of illness that made them turn against each other in such a way that I reacted in horror with each page as to what a person is capable of doing to prove themselves right. Truly gripping.
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I loved this book! The story follows the breakdown of Jonathon and Barbara Rose's marriage and their bitter fight for divorce. The lengths the two go to to win custody of their house and possessions were extreme and hilarious. I felt fully engrossed in the story and loved every second of it!
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I LOVED this book. I read it in one afternoon as I just couldn't put it down. 

The Roses start off as a seemingly normal, if a little bonkers, couple who appear to have everything. The inevitable spiral into self-destruction is tantalising. It is cringey, far-fetched but wonderfully voyeuristic to watch - there is a touch of the 'real housewives' or 'Made in Chelsea' about it as you watch the unravelling insanity as the Roses try to take each other down no matter the damage they cause to themselves or others. 

I felt sympathy for both of the Roses and could understand the initial drive to cling onto the home they had made together, and each decision they made - despite the inevitable destruction, in some ways seemed ration and forgivable... 

I thought the ending was wonderfully written, and still had an element of surprise. 

This was not what I expected, and not the type of book that I would usually read, but I absolutely loved it!
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I absolutely love this movie and wanted to read the book for awhile.  I definitely wasn’t disappointed and neither will you be.  Amazing book.
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This is a cautionary tale about the things that destroy families and individual lives: materialism, selfishness, and pride. Warren Adler weaves the details so elegantly. You experience the snowball effect of the characters' foolishness. you want to scream at them. His skill at characterization causes you to reflect on your own life and priorities. This is a very insightful, thought provoking book. (A content note: There is profanity, drunkenness, a sex scene, and violence, including against animals.)
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A ferocious, fiendish and utterly compelling portrait of a dysfunctional couple descent into hell, The war of the Roses kept me in stitches all night long! I couldn't believe how nasty those two dimwitted idiots were to each other and how determined they were to destroy each other. A marvellous and truculent tapestry of marital bliss gone absolutely bonkers and an unflinching look  and vitriolic description of the venomous and almost murderous consequences that brings about the total destruction of a marriage.
Very hilarious & peppered with  some unforgettable verbal pyrotechnics, this delightful psychological novel is also a terrific slice of late 70s-early 80s American life! Now I need to watch the 1989 film version once again! 
Highly recommended and to be enjoyed without any moderation👍

Many thanks to Netgalley and Stonehouse Press for this fantastic ARC
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