Rector's Wife
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating

Rector's Wife

3.69 of 5 stars 3.69  ·  rating details  ·  1,502 ratings  ·  95 reviews
Anna Bouverie is the rector's wife. She irons his surplices (badly), delivers the parish newsletter, and scrimps to get by on a pittance, all the while keeping up appearances. She rarely complains and rarely rebels. But now-as she watches her children do without, as her husband withdraws further into his work, and her frustration mounts into fury-Anna realizes that she's w...more
Paperback, 368 pages
Published October 15th 1999 by Berkley Trade (first published 1991)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Rector's Wife, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Rector's Wife

The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey NiffeneggerThe Memory Keeper's Daughter by Kim EdwardsThe Bonesetter's Daughter by Amy TanThe Kitchen God's Wife by Amy TanThe French Lieutenant's Woman by John Fowles
The Female Relative Phenomenon
20th out of 173 books — 87 voters
The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins GilmanThe Stepford Wives by Ira LevinAnna Karenina by Leo TolstoyLadder of Years by Anne TylerRevolutionary Road by Richard Yates
Desperate Housewives
25th out of 104 books — 53 voters


More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,168)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Colleen
This novel was well-written, a good study of the woman's predicament, but it was depressing because I could see where it was headed. She needed a savior, a real experience with God, but that never happened. I didn't like the two deus ex machina interventions where sudden things happened out of the blue to change the story in ways I won't disclose (don't want to spoil the story, in the event someone would want to read it after this review!).
Sally
Lovely book filled with housewifely angst and emotional growth, while her rector-husband seems to be going the other way. Very well written and lively, a real page-turner, but the ending seemed a bit predictable and manipulated. Overall, a good read!
Dana
I am reading every book Trollope has ever written, as if i were taking a class studying her works from early to late. LOVE her, though some of her books are stronger than others. This one was good, not great. It was loosely based on Madame Bovary, by Flaubert. There was a shocking event towards the end, which I thought was unnecessary and a bit far fetched, and led to too tidy and ending, but I am not sorry I read the book. It seemed dated to me, not because it was written 20 years ago, but beca...more
Sheri
I actually got the movie first and something was wrong so I couldn't see the end so I got the book. Lovely English countryside setting and the rector's wife is not very content with her domineering husband and the disapproval of most of the women of the church congregation for one reason or another.
It was a character filled book and the story was interesting. Good writing and I'd read another book by this author.
Sherry
This was the first book I read by Joanna Trollope and I immediately became a fan. She writes clear, beautifully drawn characters in believable situations.
Dana
The Rector's Wife, by Joanna Trollope:I am reading every book Trollope has ever written, as if i were taking a class studying her works from early to late. LOVE her, though some of her books are stronger than others. This one was good, not great. It was loosely based on Madame Bovary, by Flaubert. There was a shocking event towards the end, which I thought was unnecessary and a bit far fetched, and led to too tidy and ending, but I am not sorry I read the book. It seemed dated to me, not because...more
Louis
I read this book in paperback format for a book club.

I had read one other book, "Other people's children", by this author. I found that book to be intriguing. What I appreciated was the unflinching way that the author made her characters face obstacles for which sometimes there were no happy-ever-after endings.

In this book, Anna is the wife of Peter, the rector, in a small English village. As a rector's wife, she is supposed to be beyond reproach and dedicated to her husband. Anna finds herself...more
Julia
British Lit, written in 1991. Anna Bouverie is the Rector's wife. She's a resourceful woman, but in truth, they are barely gettng by on the pittance that the church pays her husband. She is not normally a complainer, but recently she is becoming more dissatisfied as she sees her children doing without things they really want in order to fit in. At the same time Anna's husband is retreating further into his work. Sounds like midlife crisis for both of them. Anna takes a job at the local grocer to...more
Mary
Jun 30, 2012 Mary rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Anyone who likes contemporary fiction
Recommended to Mary by: Bookmooch
Anna Bouverie is the rector's wife. She has organized suppers at the deanery, has made cakes for the Brownies' Easter bake sales, delivers the parish newsletters, and scrimps to get by on a pittance, all the while keeping up appearances for the sake of the parishioners. She rarely complains and rarely rebels and for twenty years it has worked quite well for her. That is until her husband doesn't receive the promotion to the archdeaconship that he wishes and he retreats into isolated bitterness....more
Lisa Hayes
Excellent. I can truly feel Anna's life. The satirical aspects are dead on. Wow!! This book resonated with me!!! Anna Bouverie is the frustrated wife of the local Rector of small parish church in rural England. It is a modern-day story (well, 1990s or so--no cell phones!!) and one that I imagine pastor's wives the world over would find familiar. When the continual giving and smiling and sacrificing begins to way like a huge stone on her chest, when her once beloved husband seems to see her only...more
Linda
This is the story of Anna Bouverie’s rebellion against her life of trying to be all things to all people in her husband’s small rural parish in England. The family ekes out a living on Peter Bouverie’s pitiful salary while Anna feels unfulfilled as a wife and mother and also assumes many duties that the parish women seem to expect of her. Things come to a head when Peter is overlooked for a promotion to archdeacon and he becomes increasingly depressed and bitter. Their daughter Flora hates her...more
Ivy Weston
My mom recommended this book, which made me nervous ... my mom sometimes likes really cozy women's fiction books, which is fine, but sometimes they veer from the cozy into another word that begins with c -- cheesy. But I must say I really liked this book. Trollope, a distant relative of the esteemed author Anthony Trollope (long dead), writes engagingly and has a great sense of humor and irony, somewhat like Jane Austen. But another classic author comes to mind when reading this book: Gustave Fl...more
Michelle
Young women today have access to feminist role models who help them challenge their life and career choices at earlier and earlier ages. When I read this book I was 31 and happy with my then-career choice, at home in a traditionally configured family raising two small children. I had made this choice after post-secondary education and with a plethora of options available to me. But I couldn't help wondering about the priest's wife in this book, Anna Bouverie, who was only beginning to question h...more
Donna
This book reminded me of an old movie The Bishops Wife starring Loretta Young, and also the one starring Whitney Houston and Denzel Washington. The book was based in England and being unfamiliar with the Church of England and other phrases used in the book I had to think in our language. It was a very good book. Anna had a lot of hardships and a very domineering husband but it all ended to her advantage only through sadness.
Psmith
I really enjoyed reading this book though it took me more than two months, as I read it only during meal times, and then I was constantly misplacing it somewhere or the other. This is a really gripping story about a rector, who has become disillusioned with life, love and his duties and his lively wife, who wants to enjoy the little pleasures of life and who is striving to regain her husband's love and affection and is trying to change him from the pessimistic, passive man he has turned into ove...more
Sue
'The Rector's Wife' is one of the most thought-provoking and best-written of Joanna Trollope's books, in my view. It focusses on Anna who has been married for twenty years to Peter, an Anglican Vicar. She has been constantly supportive, and has mostly coped with raising the children, looking after the home, and entertaining - often at short notice - a variety of people. But she's beginning to feel trapped. She isn't always sure of her own faith, and she's quite certain that her purpose in life i...more
Hazel
Well this novel was just "Blah". It reminded me a lot of The Casual Vacancy by JK Rowling (see review Here). It was quite a dull story, full of dull characters that did not give me any enjoyment whatsoever! Why did I finish it then? Well, I kept thinking that there was going to be great, big twist that would make it worthwhile to read. Sadly, I got to the end without anything worthwhile happening.

I am also struggling to give a lot of praise to the author. Her style was also "Blah" and had no rea...more
Donna Girouard
The story takes an unexpected turn. One thing that is typical though, is how Peter blames his wife's affair for the deterioration of their marriage instead of acknowledging that the deterioration of the marriage (chiefly due to his stubbornness and emotional abandonment of his wife) caused the affair.
Jae
Liked this a lot - enjoyed all the petty battles between the rector's wife and the members of the hutch, as well as her husband, and the scandal of her going out to work. The ending was a bit too unbelievable for me but I enjoyed the details of her village life.
Alison Clayton-smith
Another one lent to me by my mum, so not my usual read, but really enjoyed it. I do seem to find Trollope's main female characters rather annoying, and I'm not sure I felt as empathetic as I was meant to. I also felt the rector needed a little more depth. However, loved reading it and was hooked from very early on.
Tamara
Hmmm, thumbs down from me. I picked this book as a summer read after reading loads of positive reviews. I'm usually into heavier literature but with 3 small kids I wasn't keen to take on a booker prize-type book right now. I wanted a page turner and thought this would be it. Sadly I found this slow, dull and concerned with daily drudgery. It seemed dead obvious from the first few pages that her marriage was over yet it took the whole novel for her to realise. I also found the characters quite on...more
Michelle
The Rector's Wife

Joanna Trollope

Fiction

355 pages

copyright: 1991

isbn: 0-425-17055-1

Anna Bouverie is the rector's wife. She irons his surplices (badly), delivers the parish newsletter, and scrimps to get by on a pittance, all the while keeping up appearances. She rarely complains and rarely rebels. But now-as she watches her children do without, as her husband withdraws further into his work, and her frustration mounts into fury-Anna realizes that she's willing to do whatever it takes to save her...more
Leslie
A pleasure to read, like most of Joanna Trollope's books, filled with insight into family and marriage and how people interact with each other. The plot is yanked into place at some crucial points in ways that feel rather convenient and manipulative; people arrive and things happen because the plot needs them to arrive and happen. Having painted Anna into a corner, Trollope is not too sure how to get her out, and she's really not sure what to do with Peter, because his corner is even more tightl...more
Jonnie Comet
Oct 29, 2011 Jonnie Comet rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: everyone, anglophiles, Christians, spouses, mothers, clergy
Recommended to Jonnie by: BBC TV
Excellent slice of middle-class British life; good view of village life the way it 'really' is; sad plotline but really is probably for the best. The villains are not whom you think they'll be; nor are the heroes. Recalling the A&E video, which I experienced first, it was dead to the book; but the book is a rewarding experience all its own and I'd recommend the book before the video.

Watch for the absolutely correct Anglican teachings of David and the way poor Anna has to learn it all the har...more
Holly
Better than I thought it would be. Starts off a bit dull...but that's just on the surface.
Antoinette Buchanan
Dear heaven what a hideous bunch. Wanted to smack the lot of them.
Barbara
Very good coming of age/awareness as an individual book.
Christel
Ziet er van buiten uit als een chicklit maar is het niet. Het verhaal van een domineesvrouw die zich verloren voelt door haar opgelegde rol. Haar man koos voor het leven in het teken van God maar zij niet maar zij moet wel. Ze probeert zich vrij te wrikken zonder mensen pijn te doen. Een boek over geloven in God of geloven in vrijheid, of allebei tesamen.Een boek ook over kerken als instituut en hoe je je daarin kan verliezen. En dat alles overgoten met een toch luchtig sausje van hoe het er in...more
Carolyn
Enjoyable would recommed
Margery Walshaw
For anyone who has spent time in small English villages or small towns anywhere for that matter, The Rector's Wife is a great look at what happens when everyone knows everyone else's business and then they are given new fodder when the Rector's wife shows up and does everything differently.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 72 73 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • A Sensible Life
  • Whispers
  • A Woman of Cairo
  • The Empty House
  • Guilt by Association
  • An Act of Love
  • The Tin Can Tree
  • The Soldier's Return
  • Happy Endings Are All Alike
  • Paradise Postponed
  • Bed & Breakfast
  • All the Numbers
67820
Joanna Trollope Potter Curteis (aka Caroline Harvey)

Joanna Trollope was born on 9 December 1943 in her grandfather's rectory in Minchinhampton, Gloucestershire, England, daughter of Rosemary Hodson and Arthur George Cecil Trollope. She is the eldest of three siblings. She is a fifth-generation niece of the Victorian novelist Anthony Trollope and is a cousin of the writer and broadcaster James Trol...more
More about Joanna Trollope...
Sense & Sensibility (The Austen Project) Daughters-in-Law The Other Family Marrying the Mistress Other People's Children

Share This Book