The Sunday Wife

Reviewed by Catie Hayes


It is inevitable that over the course of time, we change. Within a relationship, we thrive or suffocate as we grow. If the relationship remains flexible, it adapts to accommodate both parties' needs. If the relationship is rigid, there is no room for personal growth and either the relationship ends or an individual stagnates within it.

"The Sunday Wife" examines a relationship of rigidly defined roles clashing with a woman coming into her own power. Dean Lynch met her husband, the ambitious Reverend Benjamin Lynch, at a time when her sense of self was lost. An orphan of a poor Appalachian family, Dean longed to belong somewhere...anywhere. In Rev. Lynch, Dean thought she found a purpose. The rigid demands and expectations of being a minister's wife, however, prove more isolating than she ever imagined. All that she is, all she values, is dismissed by her husband. He sees her humble roots as an embarrassment, her opinions as juvenile and her love of the dulcimer as childish. Dean is necessary to his advancement within the Church; a minister will not advance without a wife. Only when her husband is reassigned to a congregation in the Florida panhandle, does Dean realize what her life could be . In meeting the congregations' most desired and most elusive recruit, Augusta Holderfield, Dean forms a fast friendship and a glimpse into a new world.

"The Sunday Wife" follows well-developed characters, some quirky, some struggling through personal evolutions. It is an engaging chronicle of individual needs vs. relationship obligations.

© Copyright 2004

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