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Vow: A Memoir of Marriage (and Other Affairs)
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Vow: A Memoir of Marriage (and Other Affairs)

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3.04 of 5 stars 3.04  ·  rating details  ·  384 ratings  ·  91 reviews
There are so many ways to find out. From a cell phone. From a bank statement. From some weird supermarket encounter. One morning in early January 2005, Wendy Plump’s friend came to tell her that her husband was having an affair. It was not a shock. Actually, it explained a lot. But what Wendy was not prepared for was the revelation that her husband also had another child, ...more
Hardcover, 272 pages
Published February 12th 2013 by Bloomsbury USA
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Roseanne
First off, let me say that I found this book utterly fascinating because I am happily married and really do not understand what makes anyone get to the point of an affair. I honestly couldn't put it down and not because the writing flows well, though it does. I literally needed to see what ridiculousness Wendy Plump would say next. She readily admits that she was the adulterer first in her marriage, that she had difficulty with the "forsaking all others" as part of her vows but still wanted to r ...more
Miz
Interesting book, and I can't help but think how brave the authoress is/was in writing this memoir and having her soul lay bear. She will face criticism for the book and her behaviour.

I had two thoughts that cropped out throughout the book:
1) she's completely right when she writes that you think love will stop you from infidelity. The truth is that you will be attracted to others, and vice versa, but it's about how you react to that attraction(and if you react!).

2) it is a heartrenching book m
...more
Terri Jacobson
I really struggled with rating this book. I ended up giving it 4 stars because I think the writing is exceptionally good and I think the subject is an important one. I struggled because I really disliked the author. The memoir is about her experiences with adultery in her marriage, and she tries to draw some general conclusions from this. Her marriage of 18 years ended when she found that her husband had been maintaining an extramarital affair, in which he had a child and his lover and child liv ...more
Lalitha
Vow by Wendy Plump is not an easy book to read, and I imagine it wasn't an easy one to write. Plump's memoir is rife with painfully honest introspection about the beginning and end of her marriage. Far from being an example of connubial bliss, Plump's dissection of her marriage is so illuminating...almost to the point of being uncomfortable to the reader (Plump really bares all). But I'm so glad I kept reading - there were some valuable lessons to be learned from VOW, the most important of which ...more
Angela
Part psychology, part memoir, Wendy Plump takes a look at how the laws of attraction can crucify the laws of reason. Nothing can stop a sleeper wave from drowning the promises made in marriage unless one refuses to step on the beach during high tide. A refreshingly candid look at how even intelligent people can struggle with controlling one's impulses and how anything can be rationalized in the quest for passion and fulfillment. And why being cuckold does not eliminate one from becoming the adul ...more
Felicity
Wendy Plump's honesty is refreshing. Yes, it was totally lousy of her husband to carry on a ten-year affair with another woman, knock 'er up, and then carry on his life with Wendy and their two sons whilst "the other woman" and their child lived barely a mile away. Yet, as Plump makes clear from the outset, she is hardly blameless in the destruction of their marriage. From its earliest days, the marriage she shared with her husband Bill was characterized by affairs...a pattern that she began, an ...more
Sharon
I reserved this book @ my library because a review that I had read made it sound interesting. What was I thinking???

The sub-title "and Other Affairs" is more accurate than the title "Vows". How do I feel sorry for the author (and I am not sure that she wants sympathy...sometimes yes, sometimes no) when she is every bit as guilty of affairs as her unfaithful husband? The only difference is that her many affairs did not produce a child.

This is a sad (for the children involved) story of a husband a
...more
Sally
This was a well-written yet heart-rending depiction of a world without morals. The chapters alternate between "I was devastated when I found out my husband was having a long-term affair and had a child with the other woman" and "Here is the story of another one of my deliciously pleasant adulterous relationships". When we lose a reference point for right and wrong, the only option is to appeal to relative damage done. There was no mention of the immorality or wrongness of infidelity. In fact, he ...more
Cara Fox
This book caught me by surprise because it was not what I thought it would be. I quickly grabbed it without reading the jacket on a pre-vacation library run, thinking it might be a story on the ups and downs of marriage. Instead it was a story of affairs and a horrible, disintegrating marriage. I found it pretty well-written, although the author does not at all come off as a sympathetic character. Although she does a good job of describing her feelings about the experience, she doesn't come off ...more
Helen
Mar 14, 2013 Helen rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: book clubs, fans of Elizabeth Gilbert
This is a memoir of the disintegration of the marriage of Wendy and Bill, two highly self-absorbed, somewhat self-delusional and ultimately self-destructive people who lied their way through numerous affairs. It is Wendy's story since Bill wouldn't talk to her about it. I can't blame him for not talking now, but I couldn't help but wish that years ago they'd sat down and had a truly honest discussion about their marriage and its boundaries. Maybe they and three young children wouldn't have ended ...more
Destiny Rodriguez
The vow is a great book I enjoyed reading that I wasn’t able to put down. The novel is about Wendy Plump that is married to Bill and have two son’s. They met in college when they were nineteen and married eight years later. A friend coming over one morning thought it was best to tell Wendy about Bill’s affair. Holes in their marriage Wendy couldn’t figure out now make perfect sense. Wendy also had her own affair’s She confessed to Bill. One day Wendy finds Bill’s diary in the clothset confirming ...more
Nicole Tuttle
Wendy Plump threw open the doors of her deeply personal past and invited me in. She didn't have to, and frankly I'd have been ridiculously embarrassed to be caught even taking a peek in, but she invited me, and wow... what a find.

Nearly immediately after getting married, Wendy and her husband delved into the world of betrayal and infidelity. Wendy jumped first, drunk on the high of attraction and the chemical cocktail that new love brings. An inescapable desire to be honest about her transgressi
...more
Nancy
I won this book as part of Good reads.

I could not get into this book. I think part of it was I found myself not really liking or understanding the author. She goes back and forth between being overwhelmed her husband's long term affair and child, and recalling her previous affairs as well as other issues in the marriage. At times, she seems to be waiting the reader to side with her because somehow his infidelity was more then hers at other times she seems to understand both spouses fatally woun
...more
Jaclyn Day
Personal memoirs are at their best when they are unflinchingly honest. Plump’s decision to write openly about her ex’s affair—the one that ended their marriage—and their respective numerous affairs that came before makes for an uncomfortable, revealing look at the slow unraveling of a relationship.

Are we meant to be monogamous? Plump asks this question over and over. Throughout the several affairs she had before she discovered that her husband had been seeing the same woman for years and had a 9
...more
Cara Ellison
This is a very difficult book for me to rate. On pure writing, it's five stars or more; the lady can WRITE. Her prose is drop-dead gorgeous. The problem I had was that her pretty words didn't overcome my frustration and disgust with the author and her husband. She comes across as very honest - she lays her sins out for all to see which is very admirable - but if she had been a character in a novel, I'd have HATED her. She's oblivious. She's a liar, a schemer, a cheater. I just had no sympathy fo ...more
Morgan
I WON THIS BOOK FOR FREE THROUGH GOODREADS FIRSTREADS GIVEAWAY.


I read "Vow: A Memoir of Marriage (and Other Affairs)" while in the midst of planning my own wedding. Ha! This book is an eye-opening account of what can go on behind closed doors of marriages, and probably in greater numbers than we realize.

Not only did I enjoy this book for the memoir that it is, but almost as a self-help, how-to-keep-this-from-happening in my own upcoming marriage, book. I appreciated the fact that the author, We
...more
Ana Rodriguez
~My Review.~
Vow: A Memoir of Marriage (and Other Affairs)
Author: Wendy Plump

This novel is about Wendy Plump that is married to Bill and have two son’s.
Wendy is the narrator in this novel.
Wendy takes us on her journey of her marriage to Bill.
They met in college when they were nineteen and married eight years later.
A friend coming over one morning thought it was best to tell Wendy about Bill’s affair.
As Wendy looks back and pieces things together, It all falls into place.
Wendy couldn’t figure
...more
Helen
Part memoir, part beautiful literary rambling, Vow is a cautionary tale about one woman's marriage as she and her husband both commit adultery not once or twice, but several times. (One wonders if the two did not consider a divorce much earlier on.)

Plump is a journalist, and her ability to turn a pretty phrase is a strong selling point of this work. There were pages of metaphors that I thought were sublime, and knowing that the story is nonfiction gives it an weight that a novel would not have.

T
...more
Tucker
Vow doesn't limit itself to a memoir of infidelity--which is good, since the author neither especially recommends infidelity nor considers herself an expert in how to avoid it. Instead, it branches out into philosophical topics about the fallibility of knowledge and behavior while embodying a personal, emotional tone. Plump talks about her own denial, inconsistency, and vulnerability regarding an experience that few people are willing to engage publicly to this extent. The strands of story feel ...more
Jessie
I WON THIS BOOK FOR FREE THROUGH GOODREADS FIRSTREADS GIVEAWAY.

Vow: A Memoir of Marriage, by Wendy Plump, is a beautifully written book. It begins with the different ways you find out about affairs. Wendy finds out that her husband has had an affair of epic proportions. Early in the marriage, she had a few affairs so she knows what he is feeling and where he is coming from, but it doesn't change the hurt and bitterness that she feels. Wendy explores her and her husband's affair story, and tries
...more
Anna Adams
I loved this book!

Unfortunately, I am not surprised by all of the hostile reviews. People are quick to judge others, to scold and condemn anything outside of “perfect” or their own view of a “happy marriage”. I think Wendy Plump is a very brave woman to be so honest and forward about her infidelity. The truth is we are humans, living the best life we possibly could. We all hope for happily ever after … but I believe that happily ever after comes in different forms for different people. I believe
...more
Lori Kaplan
I am torn over this book. I do think that Wendy Plump is a great writer and found the book to flow. I just don
t really like her..... Do I feel badly the way her marriage ended? Yes but she is as much to blame. I found myself not feeling sorry -for her - I feel she started the whole direction that her marriage took. I was sick of hearing about her affairs over and over again and mentioning their names throughout the book. I also felt the book could of been shorter since half of it was just repeat
...more
Amy Haydu
Vow is not the typical book that I would read. I read because I was fortunate to meet the author at a book reading before its release. I found Wendy to be fascinating - a free spirit girl next door who's clearly very intelligent and well read.

As Wendy explores her marriage from beginning to end, what comes to my mind is I hope this memoir helps her put her marriage of 18 years behind her, and allows her to move forward with a clearer view of what she'd like to experience in a marriage.

This wou
...more
Laura
I work for the publisher so read this book early. This book took a lot of guts to write.
It's a deeply personal story that opens her up to judgment (and many people will snap judge her!) but that explains so well her mindset and explores really thoroughly monogamy and committed relationships. It made me think hard about how idealistic we are when relationships first start, and how I'd handle being in her situation.
She's very sympathetic and erudite and it's a GREAT book for a book club discussi
...more
Nicky Enriquez
This was a very gritty view of marriage and infidelity. I appreciate the eloquent honesty of Wendy Plump. I've never been in love (and now after reading this, I'm not sure I want to be), but in perfect detail, she describes the ease and thrill of infatuation while still feeling an obligation to another person. What I gleaned from this book is the essence of humanity - our ability to forgive, to move forward, to live - and all the atrocious experiences of love, lust, and infatuation that come wit ...more
Emily Capeles
As a reader who doesn't usually read memoirs I enjoyed this one. I think it was very well written and it explored the subject matter thoroughly. While I do not think I would have the grace that the author showed in that situation it made me think about adultery and the effects are felt by everyone involved. I recommend this book to pretty much everyone over the age of 18 as it has very many lessons we need to learn.

*Goodreads Giveaway Book*
Jennifer Norman
Interesting topic. Apparently, it's compared to "Eat, Pray, Love" but I don't think that is fair at all. The author of this is way more honest & upfront about her faults & participation in the demise of her marriage & a far better writer. And she doesn't glamorize it at all or wrap it up in a happy ending. I am surprised they even made it through 18 years of marriage & having two kids after the confession of affairs...
Virginia
I WON THIS BOOK FOR FREE THROUGH GOODREADS FIRSTREADS GIVEAWAY.

I couldn't get into this book at all. In fact I think it was poorly written, each run on sentence seemed like an endless list.

I guess my other problem was that I couldn't feel bad for the narrator or her husband. Neither of them should have ever taken the marriage vow to begin with.

All in all...maybe this book just wasn't for me...
Jen
Feb 25, 2013 Jen rated it 2 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2013
This is a heartbreaking story of two people in a doomed relationship which slowly, inevitably crashes and burns around them. Unfortunately, the writing style - very Elizabeth Gilbert, very irritating and choppy - distracted me from the story until I finally skimmed the final few chapters just to be finished more quickly. Perhaps a movie version would be better (did I just say that?!)
Yelena
I am really confused by this book. no one forced these two people into marriage. they could have decided to have an open marriage. instead what we get is a bunch of screwing around and some very deep thoughts about screwing around.

sure, emotions, sex, it's pretty heavy stuff. but imc not sure whats new here? or even that different from a maury episode? meh
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Wendy Plump has been a newspaper and magazine reporter for over twenty years. She has written for the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times and won several New Jersey Press Association Awards. She lives in New Hope, Pennsylvania, with her sons.
More about Wendy Plump...
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“I have never cataloged what I would want in a marriage. I might as well do it now... I want an arrangement in which love and passion mingle and last. I want a rock to lean against. I want sex to pierce reality and come blazing out the other side. I want to feel that someone has my back. I want it to be us against the world. I want marriage to be cool. I want the words wife and husband to resonate with joy. I want our intimacy to be inviolate. I want it all under one roof. I want the institution to deserve my energy and my commitment and the last decades of my life.I want what Jane Cooper called "A radiance of attention/Like the candle's flame when we eat." I want to wake up next to a person who feels what I feel - that there is a constant, self-renewing joy in being with the other.” 4 likes
“As a young woman, I schooled my romantic sensibilities on the most impossible examples. "Romeo and Juliet" is one of my favorites. I once plotted out the length of time it took them to conjoin. Four days. Four days for one of the world's greatest stories of love and marriage to play out. I do not see how that is an example for the rest of us. If every marriage on record lasted only four days, then there wouldn't be a word for infidelity. There wouldn't be a word for divorce. There wouldn't be time for anything but sex and adoration. Sounds like a charming recipe. I just have trouble practicing it in extension.” 3 likes
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