Adult book reviews, Book Reviews

I Give My Marriage a Year by Holly Wainwright – ARC Review


My Rating ~ Five Stars

RELEASE DATE:  25 August 2020

Format: E-Arc

Pages: 432

Publisher: Pan Macmillan




How far would you go to save your marriage?

Lou and Josh have been together for 14 years. They share two kids, a mortgage, careers and plenty of history. Now, after a particularly fraught Christmas, Lou is ready to ask herself: is this marriage worth hanging on to?

Every month for a year, Lou sets a different test for their relationship – from daily sex to brutal honesty – to help her decide if she should stay or go. Secrets are exposed, old wounds reopened and a true-to-life suburban love story unfolds.

I Give My Marriage a Year paints a sharply accurate, often hilarious picture of a modern Australian marriage. Lou and Josh are a couple on the edge, and their efforts to bring their relationship back from the brink will resonate with anyone who has ever asked themselves: is this enough?

Whose side will you take? Who deserves a second chance? And will Josh and Lou stay together or split for good?




Thank you so much to Pan Macmillan for providing me with a copy of I Give my Marriage a Year, via NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review!


Lou and Josh have been together for 14 years and Lou is starting to wonder if she can see herself with Josh for another 14 years… and another.  She decides she owes it to their marriage, and their children, to give their marriage a year.  With a growing list of trials for each month of the countdown, she will try anything she can. From sex every day for a month, couples counselling, honesty and more.  Josh isn’t really sure what’s going on.  He just knows his wife doesn’t have the same happiness inside her anymore.  There’s been a couple of big incidents in their relationship, and maybe neither of them have moved them as much as they think.  Can he save his marriage?  And, has he ever really been ready to let go of the life he thought they would have?

I have really enjoyed every one of Holly Wainwright’s books I’ve read so far, and this was no exception!  The blurb of this book sucked me in immediately, because, funnily enough, when I was deciding to leave my first husband, my own dad sat me down and said “You’ve been together 14 years, can you see yourself there for another 14 and another….?”  I was much quicker to decide the answer to that question than Lou, but, I could relate wholeheartedly to her facing such a big life decision! Told in dual points of view, it was the type of book that had you constantly picking sides (for the record, I found myself on Josh’s side a lot more than I did on Lou’s, but maybe because Lou reminded me of myself a little too much… and looking in a mirror isn’t always the best of fun 😅).  As Lou and Josh navigate the good and bad parts of their relationship, including internal struggles like money, life expectations, sharing the household/parenting load and changing intimacy levels, plus external factors such as friends, work and families, the author manages to pull the reader along for the ride, in a story you don’t want to put down.  I felt like I was completely immersed in every heartbreak, joy, fear and emotion these characters experienced.  I Give my Marriage a Year is full of incredibly well rounded characters I’m sure we could all relate to people in our own lives, for better or worse.

Whether you’re a parent, married, divorced, single or newly in love, I think this book has something for everyone.  And if you haven’t picked up a Holly Wainwright book yet, I’d highly recommend you give her a try!





Image from my Instagram account


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