Cover Image: Take My Husband

Take My Husband

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Member Reviews

What a weirdly delightful story about marital unbliss. As a recent divorcee, I can empathize with the struggle of feeling like this is all there is. The reader may feel the same frustration I did...  Just leave him, I kept telling her. She, however, lives complete fantasies in her head. Twisty!
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This one was a DNF for me. I will not be posting a review of it but thank you for sending I think people would like this one it just wasn't for me. Thank you again for the copy.
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This book claims to be a dark comedy about a middle-aged couple. Unfortunately, I didn't see anything remotely funny in the characters. 

The main character, Laurel, dreams of a different life - one without her husband, Doug. It would seem that divorce would be too easy. Instead, she plots all the ways in her mind for him to die. On accident of course. 

Disliking Laurel is an understatement because I really despised her. To me, she seemed selfish, two-dimensional, and spineless. I get it, you want your hubby dead. You want his life insurance so you can live out the many fantasies you've created in your head and go see your son and a new granddaughter. That's wonderful. I completely understand the feeling to want something different than what we have, "the grass is always greener" as they say.

But what I can't get over is the way she couldn't just tell her whiny jobless husband to take care of himself. Why not just divorce? Why not just say, "set out your own medication," or "cook your own food"? 

While the book was billed as a dark comedy, I could not find the funny. With each page, I found myself hating Laurel even more. 
Needless to say, I disliked this so much, I couldn't finish it.
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Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team


Ruthie – ☆☆☆☆
3.5 stars rounded up – because I completely understood why 😀

This was really a very dark story. I have a feeling many people may be reluctant to admit they have had some of her thoughts, because... well, one just couldn't admit to thinking how much easier it’s to live without one's rather boring spouse. Let alone how the life insurance may help...

It would seem to me that the author had a lot of fun creating a really mad collection of characters, which offset some of the darkness of the subject. Fundamentally, we all know it is wrong to feel this way and that there will be people who have experienced loss and be devastated. But sometimes reading about those dark thoughts can release the guilt through humour, and certainly I could appreciate the mixture of shock and amusement.

You need to be in the right mood and place to enjoy this book, but if you are, then it will hook you in and you will just have to know how it all works out!


Angie – ☆☆☆
I am on the fence about this book. I was in a similar situation and recently got divorced. I understand some of the feelings in this book. I get it. I lived it. But then I also wanted to reach through my e-reader and say, “Snap out of and grow a pair!” This definitely isn't your average book, so keep that in mind when reading. I think I'll reread this again once I've just got over my own issues.


Shelby – ☆☆
TAKE MY HUSBAND is a "dark" comedy about a middle-aged married couple. I had to remind myself of this, constantly, while reading it. As I've gained maturity (aka gotten older), I've realized my idea of comedy differs greatly from the majority and this book is a great example.

I'm just going to come out and say I absolutely hated the main character, Laurel. I can absolutely empathize with her in a few aspects, but overall, I cannot like her. She's a glorified doormat with absolutely NO backbone. She's unhappy in her marriage, she resents her husband, but refuses to communicate or leave. Oh no, instead, she fantasizes about her husband dying, because well, the backbone thing I mentioned.

In an effort to not spoil the story, I will say that her husband isn't much better (he is very two-dimensional).

I didn't enjoy this, I disliked the characters and have no respect for them. I found nothing humorous but did have to stick it out to see what happened, only for that to seem rushed.
This book just wasn't for me.
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Twisted, dark and comedic.  I couldn't decide if I loved the MC or hated her.  It definitely takes a certain sense of humor to enjoy this one.
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3.5 stars rounded up to 4.

When I first started reading, I was horrified at how dark this story went. I was thinking, comedic domestic suspense, my foot. I wasn’t sure I’d finish. But I kept reading.

Laurel and Doug’s marriage is a mess. No intimacy, no passion, no love, no humor, just a whole lot of apathy on her part and a whole lot of “I need you (to do everything for me), Laurel” on his. I get it. Life happens. The new and shiny wears off a relationship. Laurel had put herself second to Doug for years, thinking that doing for him and catering to him was the way to avoid the unhappy marriage she saw her parents as having. She was wrong, and now she’s reaping the bitter fruit of what she’d sown. But instead of taking constructive steps to get things back on track – like, oh, maybe an honest conversation with Doug about how she’s feeling – Laurel starts taking steps to make that little fantasy of Life without Doug a reality. Her co-worker, Charlie, helps her figure out ways to try to hasten Doug’s demise.

Is there hope? Maybe. As Laurel starts to stand up for herself, figuring she’s going to kill Doug off soon anyway, Doug notices. His attention, missing for so long, feeds something in Laurel that she thought was dead forever, and she begins doing the occasional kindness for him. There are flashes of emotion that might move them from the rut they’ve been in, might motivate someone to do the right thing. But even with that, Laurel still actively looks for ways to kill her husband. She flirts with another man and contemplates hooking up with him. She still doesn’t do much to work to repair her marriage, or even end it by more conventional means. That made me want to pull my hair out. If she was unhappy in her marriage, she could have done something less illegal and morally wrong than trying to kill Doug.

This book was billed as a “comedic domestic suspense.” I didn’t see much comedic about it, myself. There were moments that made me chuckle, but I didn’t feel it was really a comedy. One thing I found interesting is the fact that, in a book not explicitly billed as Christian fiction, Laurel prayed. Doug’s sister Abby prayed. That caught my attention, and I hoped for a redemptive turn to the story.

Alas, while I found good in the story, and while there was a positive resolution, it wasn’t redemptive in the way I had hoped. It might have played better with me had it been billed as women’s fiction, because Laurel’s story is relatable. Any woman who’s ever been in a marriage where she felt like she was raising an extra child with her husband understands the feeling of overwhelming frustration, the desire to run away. But to me, comedic it wasn’t.

I did appreciate the arc with Laurel’s mother Joan. Joan’s agoraphobia limits her to the confines of her home, and Laurel treats her with respect and care. She tries to help Joan overcome her fears, but doesn’t force her beyond what Joan is comfortable doing, and she’s willing to see that others may be able to offer help better than she can herself. Joan also shows Laurel that we may view things wrongly when seen through the lens of youth and what we think we remember.

I also loved how absolutely gaga Laurel was over her new granddaughter. Her desire to travel across the country for her grandbaby was absolutely believable, and their interactions were very sweet.

If you don’t mind your stories walking a dark path before you see the light, if you appreciate a woman who can work through her issues and ultimately stand on her own two feet, Take My Husband may resonate with you.
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Eh. I enjoyed parts of it but other parts I found to be pretty obnoxious. I really didn't like the way Laurel didn't stand up for herself at all and let her husband walk all over her and then fantasized about killing him. The book also had a lot of tense moments but it never really got to the point I thought it would. Overall it wasn't a bad read but it didn't really work for me.
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Take My Husband is a twisted, darkly comedic look at marriage and the expectations we place on our spouses. After receiving a phone call that her husband has been in a car accident, Laurel immediately begins to dream of a  life that doesn't include her husband. Instead of grief and sadness, Laurel finds herself feeling relief, and even joy, at the thought of her new life. But her dreams are quickly dashed when she discovers her husband is fine and sadly, alive. 
Take My Husband is an engrossing and twisted tale full of dark humor and madcap adventures. 

Thank you to Netgalley for the opportunity to read and review this title. All opinions and mistakes are my own.
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An interesting premise of a woman plotting to kill her husband, mostly by neglect. The author walked a fine line between making the protagonist a sympathetic character yet one evil enough to commit murder. I went back and forth between sympathy and frustration and couldn't understand why she just wouldn't divorce him.  Suspend your disbelief when reading.
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I think I'm over reading about women who blame their husbands for their unhappiness.  I mean he is a jerk. but she isn't doing anything to help their situation either.  I found nothing funny about this.  Even dark comedies have some humor.  I DN'f about 30% in.  This is the second book I have DNF'd by this author.  Maybe she just isn't for me.
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OK.... so, my fault for not reading the synopsis and assuming this was a thriller, which meant I kept waiting for something to happen but um, yeah, nothing actually ever really did. When I realize this is actually a contemporary dark comedy about a woman fantasizing about the death of her husband... ok. Unfortunately, still didn't quite work for me in that capacity either.

I did stick through it though I seriously contemplated DNFing it at the 50% mark. I had to know which way this book was going to turn and it took many a turn, with she and he and they and then he and then she and then they again. And while lessons may have been learned, I still felt that the storyline basically went nowhere or took wayyyyyy too long to get to a point just for the characters to go... meep.

AH well, win some, lose some.
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Laurel gets a phone call at work that her husband Doug is in the hospital after an accident.  As she heads there her feelings morph into relief and happiness as she imagines a world without Doug, financed by his life insurance payout.  When she arrives to find him doing fine, she is mightily disappointed and starts to think about finding a way to off him.  I wasn't really as invested in this as I expected to be.  I can certainly related to your partner driving you crazy and fantasizing about a life without him, but if you are so miserable you start to plot murder, it's time to reconsider your options.  Therapy or worst case, divorce.  Instead, Laurel waits on her husband hand and foot and lets herself be treated like a doormat.  It's hard to sympathize.
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Take My Husband is one of those stories that takes a certain sense of humor to appreciate it. It's definitely dark comedy, and it's pretty safe to say that I have the right kind of sense of humor for this one because I had a blast reading it. I can't say that I liked Laurel all that well, but I didn't have to like her to enjoy the story. She did start to grow on me, though, and there's also a lesson in there as Laurel's story progresses, but most of all, I'd have to say it's a fun bit of escapism. Ellen Meister and I don't always see eye to eye, but she's certainly talented, and this one ended up being just what I needed for an entertaining weekend read.
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darker comedy themed they said, well it didn't feel like that to me 
I had mixed feelings for this book as I thought I would like it by the blurb but I just couldn't get into it. 
The main character aka wife, Laurel was kinda annoying. 
it took mee an extremely long time to finish this book. 
I do not have much to say about this book as it was not my cup of tea 

Thank u NetGalley for the ARC so I could have a chance to read this book. THe above thoughts and comments are my own, honest and voluntary.
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Take My Husband by Ellen Meister is a dark comedy that really had me anticipating every next move. There were funny parts but this definitely leaned more towards the darker side. I enjoyed most aspects of Laurel, especially her relationship with her mom. This was a good read for a lazy day.
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In Take My Husband, Ellen Meister gave her readers a twisted, unconventional and strangely humorous tale. Despite the craziness of the situation, the story held me captive from start to finish.

Laurel Applebaum has been married for thirty years. However, it was not thirty years of wedded bliss. Therefore, when she received a call from the hospital informing her that her husband had met in an accident, she was on cloud nine. Yes! You read right. She began imagining what her life would be like without Doug in the picture. Access to the funds from his insurance policy, and all the things she could not have in the thirty-year marriage. Most importantly, she would not constantly be at his beck and call. However, upon her arrival at the hospital, she would be in for a big disappointment, as Doug was very much alive. Disappointed, she began plotting, with the aid of a coworker, a myriad of ways to get rid of her husband. She feels justified in her reasons for wanting her gone forever. 

I may not have been able to relate to Laurel, but I found her character quite interesting. For thirty years, she fell prey to Doug’s manipulations. He never seems able to do anything for himself. Making his coffee, fetching the newspaper, making his own coffee and setting his appointments were all done by Laurell. Then, to make matters worse, his jealousy over the years has grown intolerable. She’s had enough, but a divorce would mean no insurance payout, so he had to die. The question is, how will she accomplish her goal?

Honestly, Laurel’s attempts to off her husband cracked me up. Not only did I laugh at her attempts, I cheered her on. The author did a wonderful job of portraying Laurel’s unhappiness in her marriage. In doing so, she nudged the reader in the position of feeling sympathetic towards her situation. For her to be harboring these thoughts to the point of putting them into action shows how far down the rabbit hole she ventured. Laurel’s journey towards self- discovery was fascinating despite the many wrong turns she made. Fortunately, she found her way in the end.

The secondary characters added another dimension to the story. One in particular had my alarm bells ringing like crazy. The story ended on an interesting note, with both parties receiving what they richly deserved.

I enjoyed the Narration. Stacy Glemboski delivered a solid performance, bringing the characters’ personalities to life.

Overall, Take My Husband delivered an entertaining tale. If you enjoy dark humour blended with women’s fiction, then this makes a great addition to your reading list.
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Laurel had me from the get go. I liked her immediately which allowed me to dive into her story and her relationship with Doug with ease. I laughed and cried at this book and I tihnk that I would highly suggest for anyone looking for a women's fiction full of heart!
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Disclaimer: I received this e-arc from the publisher. Thanks! All opinions are my own!

Book: Take My Husband

Author: Ellen Meister

Book Series: Standalone

Rating: 4/5

Diversity: Jewish characters, Black character

Recommended For...: dark comedy, women’s fiction, contemporary, thriller, fiction

Publication Date: August 30, 2022

Genre: Dark Comedy Women’s Fiction

Age Relevance: 18+ (fatphobia, death, violence, gore, weaponized incompetence, sexual content, grief, cursing, suicidal ideation, depression, gaslighting, emotional abuse, pregnancy, childbirth, illness, animal death, alcoholism)

Explanation of Above: There are some fatphobic comments made in the book. Death, grief, and murder are mentioned and discussed throughout the book, along with varying degrees of violence mentioned and some very slight gore shown via blood. The book showcases weaponized incompetence and has some sexual content. There is some cursing in the book. There are scenes where suicidal ideation are shown and suicide is mentioned. There is some depression shown in the book and the book focuses on gaslighting and emotional abuse. There are mentions of pregnancy and childbirth in the book. There is some illness shown in the book. There are animal deaths mentioned with mice and turtles. There is some alcoholism mentioned once in the book.

Publisher: MIRA

Pages: 400

Synopsis: In this darkly comic novel about a wife whose rope is so frayed it's about to snap, Laurel gets a call that her husband has been in an accident. She imagines the worst. But as she is on the way to the ER, another emotion seizes her. Relief. Doug's death could solve all her problems. No more catering to his incessant demands. Then there's the insurance money. Laurel's dreams seem so close. There's just one problem: Doug is very much alive. Now Laurel has to decide if she is going to do something about it.

Subversive, irreverent and surprisingly poignant, Take My Husband probes the deep corners of a marriage and emerges to find the light. For anyone who's spent a little too much time with a significant other and thought, One of us has got to go.

Review: This was a hilarious read about a woman who, after hearing some unfortunate news about her husband and thinking that he died only to realize he didn’t and also being persuaded by a recent widower, is determined to off her husband to better her life. I thought that the book, while hilarious, also did so well to talk about weaponized incompetence and emotional abuse. The book is honest about how hard women work in a relationship for the statistical majority of the time and how the division of labor and division of emotional stress rests majorly on them. The book was interesting and you switch between rooting for the MC to hating her to rooting for her again as you explore your own emotional roller coaster. The writing was well done and the character development was great, as I enjoyed the non-linear sometimes fluxuating manner the characters developed. The book also had great pacing.

The only issue I had with the book is that I wished that some of the outside players were a bit better developed and I wished that some of the twists had a bit more room to fully play out in the book.

Verdict: It was well done!
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A 3.5 stars read.

It's a women's fiction, not my go-to genre so I don't know what to expect and it's a darkly comic novel, a dark humor read, so I'm pretty intrigued. The more I read the more it's a slice of life of a marriage woman than dark humor for me, the "If only my husband die" does have the premise of dark humor, but then it's getting heavier and the humor is kinda lost for me. It's kinda dragging in the middle, although I love how the author keeping me curious wether the murder will happen or not, wether the husband or someone else will found out, will Laurel finally get what she wants. Also there's a lot of things I can learn about life in this book, so yeah it's pretty entertaining for me.

As for characters, I understand why Laurel wished her husband dead, her husband is not a nice person, and there's so much going on in Laurel's life with her mom, with her economy situation, that if only her husband a bit nicer it wouldn't be that bad, but Laurel is not perfect too, she's a good wife but if only she just brave enough to just say what she wants and what she's feeling, her marriage would be okay and she won't be under pressure all the time, well it's easy for me to make a judgement because it's not me, but maybe this happen in someone else's life.

If you're looking for a women's fiction, try this one.
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Thank you so much to Netgalley and the publisher. 

This book missed the mark for me,  I expected a dark quirky thriller but this didn't really live up to the expectation.  I This was a miss for me.
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