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The Comfort of Lies: A Novel [Anglais] [Relié]

Randy Susan Meyers
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Extrait

The Comfort of Lies

CHAPTER 1

Tia


Happiness at someone else’s expense came at a price. Tia had imagined judgment from the first kiss that she and Nathan shared. All year she’d waited to be punished for being in love, and in truth, she believed that whatever consequences came her way would be deserved.

She felt vaguely queasy from the late Sunday lunch she and Nathan had just shared. They'd ordered far too many courses; buttery appetizers, overdressed salad, and marbled meat roiled in her stomach. Black Forest cake had left her mouth pasty with sugar and chocolate. Each time Nathan patted his thickening middle with chagrin, she worried that she’d become Nathan’s accomplice in more than one sin.

Since childhood, she’d hated heavy food. Instead of sharing this lunch, she wished they could have waited until tomorrow to see each other, when they could sit on a blanket watching fireworks explode on the Esplanade and listening to the Boston Pops. The Fourth of July was a holiday without the burden of expectations; a perfect celebration for them.

Nathan squeezed her hand as they walked toward her apartment. His obvious pride delighted her. She was twenty-four, he was thirty-seven, and this was the first time she’d been loved by a man of substance. Each time they met, she discovered new love-struck traits—details she’d never admit to anyone, like the way his hands seemed more like a cowboy’s than a professor’s. Qualities that might seem ordinary to someone who’d grown up with a father, Tia added to her list of Nathan lore.

Last week, he’d seemed like Superman when he came over carrying a toolbox, planning to install a showerhead that sprayed more than a weak stream. Attached to the handle was a card where he'd written, “This is for you to keep here.”

The words made Tia feel as though he’d use it again.

No present could have pleased her more.

Mostly, she found Nathan perfect. Muscled arms. A wide back. His sardonic New York edge, delivered with a crooked smile—worlds away from the street humor of the South Boston boys of her youth—cracked her up, while his innate competence wrapped her in a thick blanket of security. Nathan’s too-rare presence oxygenated her blood. When she ran her thumb up and down each of his fingers, the universe existed in that physical connection. Her life had shrunk to being with him.

She’d spent many hours crying during this year of Nathan. A man with a family couldn’t spare a whole lot of attention.

When they reached the two-family house where she lived, Nathan circled her from behind. She leaned back and caught his kiss on the side of her neck. He ran his hands down the length of her body. “I never tire of touching you,” he said.

“I hope that never changes.”

“People always change.” A look of discomfort crossed his face as he disengaged from her. “You deserve so much.”

Did he think she deserved having him with her always? Tia put the key in the door. She comforted herself with the thought that he believed her worthy.

The moment they entered her apartment, Tia raced to the bathroom; lately she always needed the bathroom. Afterward, she spent a long time drying her hands and straightening an out-of-place antique perfume bottle he’d bought her. She was constantly rearranging things, trying to make the pink crystal fit in with her Ikea-ware and her mother’s castoffs. Tia’s apartment became a stage set when Nathan visited. She spent hours before he arrived seeing every book, decoration, and poster through his eyes.

 • • • 

Nathan offered her a glass of wine when she joined him in the living room. “Listen to this one,” he said. “I used an old Groucho line today—‘I refuse to join any club that would have me as a member’—to illustrate a point, and a student asked me who Groucho Marx was.”

Tia put out a refusing palm for the wine. “No thanks. I’m not in the mood.”

“It made me feel about a hundred years old. Now, tell me the absolute truth: You know who Groucho Marx was, right?” He pushed the glass toward her. “At least taste it. It’s probably the smoothest Merlot you’ll ever have.”

When she didn’t have wine at lunch, he hadn’t commented. “I’m in the mood for a Pepsi,” she’d said. Maybe he thought she was acting like a teenager and he found it cute. Sometimes it bothered her, the things he found cute.

“You Bet Your Life,” she said. “Duck Soup. A Night at the Opera.”

“Thank you. My faith in young people is restored.”

“There aren’t that many years between us.” She hated when he dwelled on their age difference. “God knows I’m older than your students.”

“And sharper,” he said.

“That’s right—don’t forget.”

The moment she shared her news, their romance would change forever, not that it had ever had been sustainable as it was. From the first time they slept together and he’d blurted out, “I’m crazy about you,” she’d wanted more. First she’d wanted him in her bed all the time, and then she wanted the ring on his finger to be from her. When her need for him hit full throttle, she wanted the crease in his pants to be put there by a dry cleaner she’d chosen, his shirt to smell of detergent she’d chosen.

Tia looked straight at him. “I’m pregnant.”

He stood with his hand still extended, the wine sloshing against the edge of the glass like a riptide.

Tia reached for the glass. “You’re going to drop it.” She put it next to his on the coffee table.

“So that’s why you didn’t drink with lunch,” he said.

He delivered the words slowly, so slowly it terrified Tia. Despite knowing how unlikely it was, she wanted to see a shy smile—a TV smile followed by a movie-style kiss. She put a hand over her still-flat belly, nausea welling again. She pushed away thoughts of Nathan’s wife. Much as she tried, Tia couldn’t stop thinking of Juliette—where she was, where she believed her husband had gone—but early on, he’d made it clear that topic was off-limits.

“How long have you known?” he asked.

“A few days. I wanted to tell you in person.”

He nodded, finished his wine, and then sat. He laced his fingers and leaned over until his arms rested on his legs. He glanced up at her, looking stern, like the professor he was. “You’re going to take care of it, right?”

Tia sank into the armchair across from the couch. “Take care of it?”

“Of course, take care of it.” He closed his eyes for one moment. When he opened them, he sat up straighter. “What else can we do? What else makes sense?”

“I can have it.” She wouldn’t cry. If nothing else good in this damned world happened tonight, she’d keep from crying.

“Alone? Like your mother?” Nathan ran his hand over his chin. “You of all people know what a hard road that is, right, sweetheart?”

“Where are you going to be? Are you planning to die? Disappear?” Behind her brave front, Tia shrank to walnut size. She knew where Nathan would be. He’d be in his beautiful house with Juliette. The wife. The wife she’d once spied on. The wife who looked like sun and sky, whose blonde shine had blinded Tia.

“I’ll pay for whatever you need to take care of . . . ”

“ ‘Take care of, take care of,’ ” Tia mimicked. “Take care of what?” She wanted to force him to say the word abortion.

“My sons are so young.”

Tia clutched the arm of the chair. She craved the forbidden wine.

“I can’t stretch between two families. Please. Look at what this means,” he begged.

Dry skin peeled from her cracked thumb as she wrung her hands. Already this pregnancy had changed her, somehow drying her out while also making her pee twice an hour.

Nathan came and put his arms around her. “Pregnancy makes women romanticize things. You think after seeing the baby, fatherly love will overwhelm me and I’ll change my mind. But I can’t. I’m not leaving my family. Wasn’t I always straight about that?”

Oh God. He was crying.

His family.

She’d thought she was having his family.

Stupid, stupid, stupid.

Finally she spoke. “I can’t do it, Nathan. What you’re asking—I can’t.”

Nathan drew away. “I’m sorry, but there’s no possible way we can be together, Tia. Please. Take care of this. It’s the best thing for both of us. Honestly.”

 • • • 

By her sixth month of pregnancy, discomfort had become Tia’s new normal. Once upon a time so skinny that people pressed milkshakes on her, now she lumbered. She stuck a cushion behind her as she sat on the couch, surrounded by begging letters, photos, and essays from couples hungry for her baby.

Tia had refused to “take care of this,” as Nathan wanted. St. Peter’s nuns and Tia’s mother had done...

Revue de presse

"The characters crackle with both intelligence and wit. Meyers’ women resonate as strong, complicated and conflicted, and the writing flows effortlessly in this sweet yet sassy novel about love, women and motherhood." (Kirkus Reviews)

"I devoured this big-hearted story of three women whose lives collide years after a baby is put up for adoption. Meyers' wit and wisdom shine through, even when her characters are at their most sorrowful and confused. She writes with insight and compassion, about marriage, forgiveness, work, family and the true meaning of motherhood." (J. Courtney Sullivan bestselling author of Maine)

"The intertwining and heart-wrenching stories of how three women come to terms with the decisions they’ve made and those yet to make will touch you and stay with you long after you’ve turned the last page. Beautifully written. Strong characters. The Comfort of Lies is a powerful, poignant and riveting novel." —MJ Rose, international bestselling author

“I devoured this book. Randy Susan Meyers writes with great empathy and insight about three distinct women and the unlikely intersection of their lives. The story will pull you into the uncomfortable space where truths are confronted, and lead you to the other side where the world looks brighter. A sensitive exploration of why we take refuge in the comfort of lies, and what happens when we dare to release ourselves from their power.” —Shilpi Somaya Gowda, author of New York Times bestseller Secret Daughter

"I spent many blissful, addicted hours with The Comfort of Lies, totally hooked on needing to know what happened next in the braided stories of Tia, Caroline, and Juliette. Meyers has an uncanny ability to get inside women whose circumstances dramatically divide them and show how at heart, we're all the same. Another unforgettable Meyers smash-hit." – Jenna Blum, New York Times bestselling author of Those Who Save Us


"A fast-paced multi-narrator story that gets to the heart of the trade-offs of motherhood. You will be drawn in by these characters because of the mystery at the novel's center and relate to the ways in which they each create their own loneliness while surrounded by others." —Heidi W. Durrow, New York Times bestselling author of The Girl Who Fell From the Sky



"The Comfort of Lies explores a complex and beautiful web of relationships between three very different women whose lives intersect in startling and heartrending ways. This is my favorite kind of read: a page-turner soaked in empathy with an elegant understanding of the human heart. Randy Susan Meyers is a first rate talent." —Joshilyn Jackson, New York Times bestselling author of A Grown-Up Kind of Pretty

“Insightful, unsettling, and ultimately hopeful, The Comfort of Lies is a compelling, multilayered story. Randy Susan Meyers skillfully exposes the insecurities and strengths of three women who find their lives forever reshaped in the far-reaching wake of a little girl’s adoption.” —Beth Hoffman, New York Times bestselling author of Saving CeeCee Honeycutt


“A novel about love, that explores its meaning with wise restlessness and no easy answers. Profound, clear-sighted and more than a bit slyly funny, this is a book to read, to reread and to share.” —Robin Black, author of If I loved you, I would tell you this



"Randy Susan Meyers' thoughtful, gripping new novel explores the unlikely intersection of three women in crisis. The result is a haunting exploration of the secrets we keep - and how, in the aftermath of their detonation, shattered lives can be mended. Meyers is a major talent, and her writing is a gift to readers everywhere." —Sarah Pekkanen, author of These Girls


"Meyers has crafted an absorbing and layered drama that explores the complexities of infidelity, forgiveness, and family.” (Booklist)

"A tender, yet sharp portrayal of the messy way three women stumble into each others’ worlds, Meyers explores the lies we tell each other, and maybe more importantly, the ones we tell ourselves. A whip-smart observation of the definition of family and ultimately, what it means to love." —Amy Hatvany, author of Outside the Lines


"Randy Susan Meyers' must-read new novel, The Comfort of Lies, resonates with vibrations of love in forms as varied as a symphony: the discordant notes of jealousy, the sweet harmony of soulmates connecting, the high notes of sacrifice and forgiveness—all underscored by the sweeping passion of mother love that is embedded in its heart's core."
Marianne Leone, author of Jesse, A Mother’s Story


"A roller-coaster of a ride through the world of infidelity, unwed motherhood, and adoption. Randy Susan Meyers’ The Comfort of Lies deftly explores the importance of trust, and the power of love." —Meg Waite Clayton, bestselling author of The Wednesday Sisters


"With warmth, you-are-there immediacy and impressive insight, Randy Susan Meyers explores both the destructive nature of lies and the redeeming power of hard truths. Every page in this multilayered novel of separate yet entangled lives not only illustrates the accommodations we make for love but also illuminates what it means to be a family. This book is an enormous accomplishment!" —Mameve Medwed, bestselling author of How Elizabeth Barrett Browning Saved My Life


"This meaningful novel is, at its heart, a multi-faceted love story. It's about how people do the wrong things for the right reasons and vice versa. This is the story of the ways that families-- bonded by blood and by choice-- can save or slay us. With a vision that is generous, yet unsentimental, The Comfort Of Lies is a testimony to the healing power of the truth." (Tayari Jones, author of Silver Sparrow)

“What does it mean to be a mother—are there prerequisites, and reasons a woman’s qualifications should be questioned? The Comfort of Lies is a fascinating story of three women’s claims to the same child, written with incisive wisdom, page-turning skill, and above all, deep heart. Another home-run novel of family drama from Randy Susan Meyers.” (Nichole Bernier author of The Unfinished Work of Elizabeth D.)

"Randy Susan Meyers plumbs the depth and intricacy of human entanglements, exploring them with a clear eye and compassion for each of her insightfully rendered characters. The Comfort of Lies is a riveting page-turner, conjuring the ways in which we compete with, lay claim to and ultimately love one another.” —Juliette Fay, author of Shelter Me and Deep Down True


"Meyers creates three distinct voices, with each woman speaking from a place of pain and strength while navigating complicated emotions in the aftermath of a life-changing event. The alternating perspectives maintain the intensity of the emotions and relationships, leading to the inevitable decision of which is more powerful: the harm caused by dishonesty, or the strength of forgiveness and love." (Romantic Times)

“Meyers delves into the layered facets of motherhood and how children not only shape the fate of their parents, but also manage to sometimes tinker with their emotional balance and sense of judgment." (Jewish Journal)

Détails sur le produit

  • Relié: 336 pages
  • Editeur : Atria Books (12 février 2013)
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ISBN-10: 1451673019
  • ISBN-13: 978-1451673012
  • Dimensions du produit: 23,7 x 16,5 x 3 cm
  • Moyenne des commentaires client : 4.0 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (2 commentaires client)
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: 396.838 en Livres anglais et étrangers (Voir les 100 premiers en Livres anglais et étrangers)
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Couverture | Copyright | Extrait | Quatrième de couverture
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Commentaires client les plus utiles
3.0 étoiles sur 5 compelling read 16 mai 2014
Par R. Dupuis
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
I can't say that I really liked any of the main characters, but couldn't put the book down. Certainly deals with the different facets of motherhood.
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5.0 étoiles sur 5 Excellent, really enjoyed it 20 juin 2013
Par M CABARET
Format:Relié|Achat vérifié
Great , I thouroughly enjoyed this book, three women, three lives & two of them are woven closely together by a child & a deceitful husband. Abandon, adoption & betrayal. I recommend this book.
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.0 étoiles sur 5  163 commentaires
28 internautes sur 30 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Compassionate, Witty Wisdom 12 février 2013
Par Dorothy - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Format Kindle
This a book you cannot put down in which three women's lives are braided around the conception, birth and adoption of a girl who is the product of an extra-marital affair. I have been so excited to read that and it was EVEN BETTER than I thought it would be. (I LOVED Meyers's first book The Murderer's Daughter.) What's really stunning about Meyers's work is that she works through some very heavy topics here without once stepping into a too-heavy or ponderous feel. It's a lively, smart book that tells a great story. But it does more than just tell a story - it makes you think. I absolutely inhaled this book. Lucky readers!!
22 internautes sur 24 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Highly recommend 18 février 2013
Par Catherine McKenzie - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Format Kindle
Having very much enjoyed Myers first novel, THE MURDER'S DAUGHTERS, I was glad to see her writing and story telling abilities remain strong in her 2nd novel. A complexly woven tale of the potential consequences of deceit in marriage, and in life generally, you want to know what happens with all the characters, even if you disagree with their choices. Highly recommend.
12 internautes sur 13 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 A heartfelt look at the fallout of infidelity 12 février 2013
Par BostonWriter - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié|Achat vérifié
I was fortunate to read an early copy of this book, and was riveted by this story about the fallout of infidelity -- the complexities of three women, their complicated claims to one child, and their knotty relationships with the men in their lives (two of them to the same man). Not all women approach or experience motherhood in the same way, and this book dares to ask, Does anyone "deserve" to be a mother more than another? I loved The Murderer's Daughters, and Meyers has applied her same emotional-honesty radar to this book. She writes with heart and wisdom and, most importantly, without easy judgement.
7 internautes sur 7 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 You will want to read late into the night! 22 février 2013
Par Laura Kay - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié
The lives of three women intersect, because of one man. Nathan is married to Juliette and they have two boys and a beautiful life together. For reasons he can't explain he begins an affair with Tia, a young woman from the South side of Boston. Nathan has the best of two worlds until Tia tells him she is expecting a baby. Nathan tells her to take care of it and walks out of her life. He later confesses his affair to his wife.

Tia trying to redeem herself from having an affair with a married man refuses to have an abortion. Instead Tia decides the best choice is adoption.

Caroline is a dedicated pathologist, she works long hours and hates leaving her lab. But she loves her husband very much and he's pressuring her to adopt a baby. Against her better judgement she follows through with the adoption.

Five years later, Tia can't let the idea of Nathan go. When her yearly envelope arrives with pictures of her young daughter Tia decides to send a letter to Nathan. When the letter and pictures arrive at Nathan's home, its his wife Juliette who gets the letter. Nathan never told her there was a baby, and yet there in front of her is the proof of his affair...a little girl who looks remarkably like their youngest son.

Juliette becomes obsessed with the little girl and where she is. It doesn't take long before the lives of these three women become more entangled and the outcome for all of them is uncertain.

Talk about a book you can't put down! The more I read the more I was captivated by the story. I mean I didn't even know how I wanted things to play out in the end! I kept thinking what's going to happen? Oh I don't like her or I get her, but. None of these women are perfect. You have Tia on one hand that is simply a hot mess. She needed to move on from the life that disappeared five years ago or more the life she thought she was going to have. Then Caroline, I couldn't relate to her work before everything focus. But I did like that she was trying to the best of her ability. Last, Juliette who I got. I can't imagine finding out my husband cheated. Then you work so hard to move forward to find out there was even more to the story?!? Yet, I felt for her wanting her marriage even though it was broken.

Each woman feels a connection to the child. Each woman questions what it means to be a mother. Each woman has to deal with an inner struggle.

I never knew exactly where the story was headed, I didn't know where I wanted it to go. In the end, perfect ending. Loved everything about this book. This is a perfect book for a book club! So many topics to discuss! Highly highly recommend!
9 internautes sur 10 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Complex issues...Complex characters 18 février 2013
Par mary urban - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié|Achat vérifié
Randy Susan Meyer has the capacity to make her different yet similiar characters believable. I didn't like all her characters, and that's a good thing...and at the same time I could empathize with their various struggles: Issues of adoption, mothering, working women, shame, guilt, forgiveness, and redemption are all addressed seriously while being neither moralistic nor ponderous. The fact that The Comfort of Lies was a quick read speaks to its compelling nature, not the superficiality of the story.
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