Book Review: Autopsy of a Boring Wife by Marie-Renee Lavoie


After 25 years of marriage, 48 year old Diane’s husband Jacques has left her for a younger woman and wants a divorce. What a cliché.

Jacques tells Diane that he’s grown bored with their life and his affair “just happened.”

Diane is a boiling cauldron of emotions-grief, shock, anger. How could her life be upended in a blink of an eye?

Thus Autopsy of a Boring Wife by Quebec novelist Marie-Renee Lavoie begins.

As Autopsy of a Boring Wife unfurls, Diane learns to cope with her life as a divorced woman.

She begins therapy, copes with her children, buys new running gear, bonds with her friend Claudine who’s also divorced, adopts a 3-legged cat, makes new friends, and gets flirtatious with a co-worker.

Diane also behaves in less than savory ways. She drinks way too much and smashes up her furniture with a crowbar.

It’s not long before Diane is soured on the institution of marriage. Til death do us part? “I solemnly swear, blah, blah, blah, until I stop loving you or fall for someone else,” claims a cynical Diane.

I wanted to like this novel but I found it, well, boring, the plot never going very deep.

Much of this has to do with Lavoie’s writing style. She’s competent but not compelling. Plus the concept is so clichéd. What if Jacques left Diane for a man or an older woman? What if Diane left Jacques for some young stud and had to deal with being an adulterous harlot?

Autopsy of a Boring Wife just ends up being an autopsy of a boring book.