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BOOK CLUB BUNDLES

Hi, I’m Lauren. The Library will provide books for your book club. Our book club bundles include 10 copies of the same title, along with a discussion guide. Check out available bundles when visiting the Library, or fill out the form below! Patrons can reserve book club bundles up to six months in advance. Our book club bundles are stored on the second floor for the public to browse and check out. Contact us at bookclub@gpld.org or call us at 630-232-0780 if you have questions.



The Wife Between Us

by Greer Hendricks & Sarah Pekkanen

GENRE: Mainstream Fiction, Thriller

When Nellie marries Richard, a handsome and rich hedge fund manager, she will get all of the security and love she longs for and needs. The only downside is Richard’s obsessed ex-wife, Vanessa, whose younger self eerily resembles Nellie. The reader should assume nothing!

Download Discussion Guide

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author biography

GREER HENDRICKS is the coauthor of the New York Times bestseller The Wife Between Us and the forthcoming An Anonymous Girl (January 8, 2019). Prior to becoming a novelist, she spent two decades as an editor at Simon & Schuster. She obtained her master’s degree in journalism from Columbia University, and her writing has appeared in The New York Times, Allure, and Publisher’s Weekly. She lives in Manhattan with her husband and two children.

SARAH PEKKANEN is born in New York City, arriving so quickly that doctors have no time to give her mother painkillers. This is the last time Sarah ever arrives for anything earlier than expected. Her mother still harbors a slight grudge.

Sarah’s family moves to Bethesda, Maryland, where Sarah, along with a co-author, writes a book entitled “Miscellaneous Tales and Poems.” Shockingly, publishers do not leap upon this literary masterpiece. Sarah sends a sternly-worded letter to publishers asking them to respond to her manuscript. Sarah no longer favors Raggedy Ann stationery, although she is sure it impressed top New York publishers.

Sarah’s parents are hauled into her elementary school to see the shocking condition of her desk. Sarah’s parents stare, open-mouthed, at the crumpled pieces of paper, broken pencils, and old notebooks crowding Sarah’s desk. Sarah’s organization skills have since improved. Slightly.

After college and a solo backpacking trip around Europe – during which Sarah got continually lost – Sarah begins work as a journalist, covering Capitol Hill. Unfortunately, Sarah cannot understand the thick drawls of the U.S. Senators from Alabama, resulting in many unintentional misquotes. Sarah is groped by one octogenarian politician, sumo-bumped off a subway car by Ted Kennedy, and unsuccessfully sued by the chief of staff to a corrupt U.S. Congresswoman.  Sarah also works briefly as an on-air correspondent for e! Entertainment Network, until the e! producers realize that Capitol Hill isn’t, by any stretch of the imagination, what one might call sexy.

Sarah takes a job at Gannett New Service/USAToday, covering Capitol Hill. Sarah is assigned to cover the White House Correspondents Dinner and ride in the Presidential motorcade to the dinner. Sarah convinces a White House aide to let her stick her head out of the limousine moon-roof during the ride and wave to onlookers.  Later, her triumph is tempered by the fact that bouncers will not allow her into the Vanity Fair after-party. Sarah attempts entry three times in case the bouncers were just kidding.

Sarah takes a job writing features for the Baltimore Sun, and interviews the actor who played Greg Brady. She refrains from asking if he really made out with Marcia, but just barely.

Having left her journalism job to chase around after her three active sons, Sarah starts writing a column for Bethesda Magazine and begins work on a novel. She does not write it on Raggedy Ann stationery.

Sarah signs with fabulous agent Victoria Sanders, who sells her debut book, titled The Opposite of Me, to the editor Sarah has always dreamed of working with: Greer Hendricks at Atria, an imprint of Simon & Schuster (oh, if only it were that easy – but Sarah is prohibiting any mention of the times she nearly hurled her computer across the room in frustration or wrote entire chapters that were far inferior to those in Miscellaneous Tales and Poems).

Atria publishes Sarah’s subsequent novels SKIPPING A BEAT, THESE GIRLS, THE BEST OF US, CATCHING AIR, THINGS YOU WON'T SAY, THE PERFECT NEIGHBORS and THE EVER AFTER.  Rights to Sarah’s books are sold in China, Australia, Germany, Italy, Holland, Poland, Canada, Russia and Spain and her novels become international bestsellers.

More titles by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen.

reviews

Kirkus Reviews

An angry ex-wife is stalking a young, innocent fiancée who is a carbon copy of her former self…or so it seems. The use of a multiviewpoint, chronologically complex narrative to create suspense by purposely misleading the reader is a really, really popular device. Two words: Gone Girl. While we are not the fools we once were and now assume immediately that we are being played, the question is whether we still take pleasure in the twists and revelations that follow. Pekkanen (The Perfect Neighbors, 2016, etc.) and Hendricks' debut collaboration falls into the first wife/second wife subgenre of this type of story (e.g., The Girl Before, The Last Mrs. Parrish). In all of these, an unbelievably handsome, wildly successful, secretive, rigid, orderly, and controlling husband—here it's Richard, a 36-year-old hedge fund manager with "a runner's wiry build and an easy smile that belied his intense navy-blue eyes"—marries the same type of woman more than once, sometimes more than twice. Of course, he's not who he seems. Perhaps the female characters are not, either. Here, we meet Nellie, an adorable New York preschool teacher who is not quite sure she wants to give up the fun, shoestring, highly social lifestyle she shares with her roomie to move to a sterile suburb with Richard. But the wedding date—of course he hasn't even told her the location, just "buy a new bikini"—draws ever closer. Something bad happened to Nellie in Florida a long time ago that has made her anxious and hypervigilant. Meanwhile, Vanessa, the spurned wife, lives with her artist Aunt Charlotte (a great character), is boozing heavily, and is about to lose her job at Saks. She's stalking Nellie, determined to prevent the marriage at all costs. Since you know there's got to be more to it than this, the fun is in trying to figure it out before they tell you. We didn't! One of the subplots, the one about the bad thing in Florida, was fresher than the main plot—maybe Hendricks and Pekkanen should have written a whole book about that. Easy to read, smoothly put together. A good airport book. (Kirkus Reviews, October 15, 2017).

Publisher's Weekly

Hendricks, who spent more than 20 years as a book editor, joins forces with Pekkanen (The Best of Us) to create a jaw-dropping psychological thriller. Unreliable narrator Vanessa Thompson is obsessed with her ex-husband’s fiancée and on the verge of becoming unhinged. She gave up everything to have a fairy tale life in Westchester with too-good-to-be-true hedge fund manager Richard. After a series of failed fertility treatments, their marriage unraveled, and Richard leaves her for a younger woman. Hendricks and Pekkanen chronicle a marriage gone wrong through the alternating accounts of the shattered Vanessa and a vibrant, younger woman named Nellie. This is not another eye-rolling story about the jealous ex-wife stalking her replacement, as readers will discover as Vanessa’s motivations are revealed. Unforgettable twists lead to shocking revelations all the way through the epilogue. 250,000-copy announced first printing. Agent: Victoria Sanders, Victoria Sanders and Associates. (Jan.).

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The friends of a seemingly perfect socialite couple begin to see cracks in the facade when they realize that the husband and wife are never apart and that there are bars on one of their upstairs windows.

Best Day Ever

by Kaira Rouda

Paul Strom has the perfect life: a glittering career as an advertising executive, a beautiful wife, two healthy boys and a big house in a wealthy suburb. And he's the perfect husband: breadwinner, protector, provider. That's why he's planned a romantic weekend for his wife, Mia, at their lake house, just the two of them. And he's promised today will be the best day ever.

Gone Girl

by Gillian Flynn

When beautiful Amy Dunne disappears from her Missouri home, it looks as if her husband Nick is to blame. But though he protests his innocence, it's clear that he's not being entirely truthful. Gone Girl is not only the story of a disappearance, but a truly frightening glimpse of a souring marriage.