Don’t let the blurb fool you – this book is an intense examination of a marriage on the rocks.
Title: Listen to Me
Author: Hannah Pittard
Source: Raincoast Books for review
Description from Goodreads:
Mark and Maggie’s annual drive east to visit family has gotten off to a rocky start. By the time they’re on the road, it’s late, a storm is brewing, and they are no longer speaking to one another. Adding to the stress, Maggie — recently mugged at gunpoint — is lately not herself, and Mark is at a loss about what to make of the stranger he calls his wife. When they are forced to stop for the night at a remote inn, completely without power, Maggie’s paranoia reaches an all-time and terrifying high. But when Mark finds himself threatened in a dark parking lot, it’s Maggie who takes control.
What I Thought:
The blurb on this book is a fair bit misleading. But also not. While it does relay the events that take place during the book, it makes it seem as though this book is more of a thriller than an examination of human relationships. I still enjoyed the story, it just wasn’t what I was expecting.
As a chronic worrier I could really empathize with Maggie. While I’ve never been mugged or had PTSD, I still am hyper-vigilant about safety and am a little too worried I’m going to get kidnapped or that my children will be taken. (I still have to jump from the floor into bed if the lights are off. Just in case. You know. Bad guys.)
Mark was kind of a giant tool. But in an interesting way. It was fascinating to see his disdain for technology and his disgust at his wife for using it to look at maps, all while he was using it himself for actually inappropriate ways. The fact that he doesn’t see or acknowledge his hypocrisy, despite his assertions of his superiority, was actually quite amusing.
There was a lot of Mark and Maggie’s relationship that was very real. Knowing exactly what the other person needs, knowing how they are going to react to a certain situation, knowing every little thing about them, it all felt quite realistic. Although some of the circumstances Mark puts Maggie in I don’t believe would have ever happened. I was never mugged, and yet my husband knows he would NEVER leave me in a situation like Mark did. Ever. They were plot devices rather than realistic reflections of their characters. And Maggie definitely deserves better. He’s a butt.
I actually liked the ending. I know some people haven’t loved it, but I thought it was a natural outcome to how the book was moving along. If you’re looking for a thriller, you’ll want a different ending, but for a book about a relationship this suits it just fine.
Check out www.roadtrippers.com for a super awesome site to plan road trips! (Obviously.)
Non-thrilly thriller road trip extravaganza.