The Husband Hour by Jamie Brenner is a timely page-turner. The book deals with serious topics: widowed military wife, impacts of CTE and the toll secrets take. The following book club questions will have spoilers so if you haven’t read the novel yet, check out my preview and review first.
There is quite a bit to unravel here. In a sense, it’s a cautionary tale of not holding people up to unrealistic standards. Even the seemingly perfect can make devastating mistakes as evident by Rory. The extent people go to hurt each other—both emotionally and physically—is shocking. Therefore, it’s up to the reader to decide if Rory’s actions were the result of CTE or something else.
And Rory has a lasting impact on Lauren but, in the end, this is her story. As a result, she’s a sympathetic character. The more we learn about her, the more we want her to move forward with her life.
Let’s get into the book club questions.
- We meet Lauren at one of the lowest points in her life: Rory’s funeral. Afterwards, she chose to hid out at her family’s beach house. Four years later, she’s still there. Why do you think Lauren couldn’t leave the place behind?
- The story is told from the perspectives of Lauren, her mother Beth and Matt. Why do you think the author Jamie Brenner included all three perspectives? In addition, how did that help shape the story and your opinions of the actions of the characters?
- Matt seemingly has good intentions for his documentary. What was your first impression of Matt and did this change as the story went on?
- There’s quite a bit of flashbacks to Lauren and Rory’s relationship. With each flashback, another layer of their relationship is revealed. Did you like the usage of flashbacks within the current narrative?
- Rory was a complicated man. He became abusive to Lauren and then we find out he had an affair with Stephanie. Within the context of this story and what was revealed about CTE, do you think that it fundamentally changed Rory? Or were some of these elements inherently who he was?
- Was Stephanie’s affair with Rory simply out of jealousy of Lauren? Or was it something more?
- When did you catch on that Stephanie’s son was Rory’s? Now that the reveal is out in the open, how will this impact and change the family going forward?
- Do you think Lauren and Stephanie will ever be able to fully repair their relationship?
- Matt and Lauren’s potential love story hits road blocks. Do you think her and Matt will have a future?
- The cost of secrets is a huge theme of this novel. It seems everyone has something to hide. How does the reveal of these secrets force the characters to evolve and adapt?
- Why do you think society puts athletes and celebrities on pedestals?
- What do you hope happens for Lauren in the future?
Next on my TBR (to be read) list
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