Thursday, January 23, 2020

Book Review: Husband Material by Emily Belden

Pages: 304
Genre: Adult Fiction
Pub. Date: December 30, 2019
Publisher: Graydon House
Source: Publisher for review
My Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars

Goodreads says, "Sometimes love is unpredictable…  Twenty-nine-year-old Charlotte Rosen has a secret: she’s a widow. Ever since the fateful day that leveled her world, Charlotte has worked hard to move forward. Great job at a hot social media analytics company? Check. Roommate with no knowledge of her past? Check. Adorable dog? Check. All the while, she’s faithfully data-crunched her way through life, calculating the probability of risk—so she can avoid it.  Yet Charlotte’s algorithms could never have predicted that her late husband’s ashes would land squarely on her doorstep five years later. Stunned but determined, Charlotte sets out to find meaning in this sudden twist of fate, even if that includes facing her perfectly coiffed, and perfectly difficult, ex-mother-in-law—and her husband’s best friend, who seems to become a fixture at her side whether she likes it or not. But soon a shocking secret surfaces, forcing Charlotte to answer questions she never knew to ask and to consider the possibility of forgiveness. And when a chance at new love arises, she’ll have to decide once and for all whether to follow the numbers or trust her heart."

Charlotte Rosen lives a pretty normal life in LA with her roommate.  She works at a social media firm and her work is her life.  Her passion lies in a dating app she is creating that pairs people based on their compatibility and social media profiles.  No one knows anything about her past, which is just how she likes it, because Charlotte is hiding a major secret. She is a twenty-something widow.  She may never really be over her husband's unexpected death, but just when she least expects it, a package arrives at her apartment.  It's her husband's ashes! His mausoleum burned down and now she is faced with his death all over again.  Charlotte is having a hard time dealing with this unexpected "visitor" not to mention the fact that everyone knows her secret now.  This forces Charlotte to have to deal with her grief all over again and now her controlling mother-in-law has reappeared in her life along with her husband's best friend. Charlotte is forced to face some issues she may have ran from last time and she comes across some shocking secrets as well.  Husband Material by Emily Belden is a fun romantic comedy that's perfect for snuggling up with this winter.

Charlotte is an interesting character in Husband Material. She is a control freak, but can you blame her after what she has been through? The flashbacks to her relationship with Decker, her husband, are heartbreaking, because readers can see how perfect their lives truly were and how in love they were.  Then it jumps to present day where Charlotte deals with anxiety, panic attacks, and tries to control every aspect of her life even her possible dates.  It's heartbreaking.  Readers also learn more about her relationship with Decker's best friend as well as her former mother-in-law once Decker's ashes show up on her doorstep and let's just say that both relationships are really complex.

But Husband Material is not just a tearjerker. It had me laughing out loud as well and reminded me of a Meg Ryan romantic comedy. Charlotte finds herself in situations that are cringe-worthy and readers can't help but laugh.  

I think Husband Material tackles the serious topic of grief and rebuilding your life, but it's also a light-hearted read and one that will put a smile on your face. If you love romantic comedies that tug on your heartstrings, pick up a copy of Husband Material this winter. 


  1. I like that is has a mix of tough topics and lightheartedness!

    1. Yes! It was the perfect escape - it made me laugh and tear up a little! Thanks for visiting, Angela!

  2. I like the sound of this, thanks for sharing your thoughts


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