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The Man Who Forgot His Wife by John…

The Man Who Forgot His Wife (edition 2012)

by John O'Farrell

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925131,245 (3.27)18
Title:The Man Who Forgot His Wife
Authors:John O'Farrell
Info:Black Swan (2012), Paperback
Collections:Read but unowned

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The Man Who Forgot His Wife by John O'Farrell



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What happens if you suddenly realise that you have no idea who you are or anything about yourself? This is the situation our protagonist Vaughn on an underground train! He gets himself to hospital where all tests show there is no physical reason so what has happened to make him completely forget his life?

The answer is found when he remembers a phone number and his friend tells him he is going through a divorce.

This was a short and light read which covers an important question, who are we if we don't have a past to give us reference.

This was very funny in places although highly implausible in others. It seems strange for instance that he would remember a mobile number when we use our phones memory when calling others. The scenes in the divorce court were very good.

All in all if you are looking for something to pass a few hours this may be the one.

( )
  Northern_Light | Dec 20, 2016 |
Imagine my disappointment when I found this book was not in fact a self-help book...but I read it anyway.

A man finds himself on The Tube with no recollection of who he is, how he got there, or where in fact he should be...in what is a very comical, yet somewhat distressing set of circumstances he spends a week at a hospital awaiting, almost hoping, that someone will come and retrieve him. When by chance he remembers a number his best mate (who this guy doesn't know from a bar of soap) takes him home and slowly fills in some details of his former life including his name, Vaughan (which is in fact his surname).

Slowly he recalls some memories, albeit somewhat scratchy, and with help from his mate finds out he is married with two kids, however in the same breath learns he is to be in court in a few days time to file for divorce.

What follows is a very witty account of Vaughan getting back to some sense of normality when he is diagnosed with a rare mental disorder wiping his entire existence prior to the day on the train which includes him falling in love with his wife/ex again, meeting his kids for the first time, and, with some accurate depiction, losing his virginity to a fellow teacher...sort of.

I had high hopes for this book and it did not disappoint excepting some predictable conclusions straight form a Love Actually-esque film, but O'Farrell has a quick wit which does not detract from telling an actual story.

There are some real highlights in the book: Vaughan's students at the low-decile school he teaches at wanting to know more about his mental state; his discovery that while the saying "its like riding a bike' applies to, well, bikes, it doesn't necessarily transpose that well to cars; his sudden superstar status as a 40-year old 'virgin'...

Yep, worth a looksy for anyone after an easy read which, despite some moral questions being thrown about, does not require too much grey matter. ( )
  scuzzy | Jan 6, 2013 |
Not laugh out loud but still very witty. An easy and enjoyable read. ( )
  Carolinejyoung | Dec 16, 2012 |
Man suffers amnesia on his way home form work; isolation of amnesia well portrayed (I think); slowly pieces bits of life together - is amazed at his lovely wife and children; then discovers he was an idiot who didn't value what he had. Hilarity ensues. This is a funny book with a pretty convincing story line. Lesson in appreciating what you have. ( )
1 vote triscuit | Sep 13, 2012 |
During a journey on the tube, Vaughan slowly realises that he doesn't know where his, or where he had come from. So begins, a hazardous mental and physical journey to reaquaint himself with his friends and family. This was a laugh out loud story with plenty of charm and pathos. ( )
  gogglemiss | Jul 6, 2012 |
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Lots of husbands forget things: they forget that their wife had an important meeting that morning, they forget to pick up the dry cleaning; some of them even forget their wedding anniversary. But Vaughan has forgotten he even has a wife. Her name, her face, their history together, everything he has said to her - it has all gone, mysteriously wiped in one catastrophic moment of memory loss. And now he has redisovered her - only to find out that they are getting divorced.
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When forty-something Vaughan suffers total memory loss, he is told that his breakdown has probably been triggered by his marital problems. But then he comes face to face with the stranger he's supposed to be divorcing - and promptly falls head over heels in love with her.… (more)

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