Before She Knew Him Before She Knew Him discussion


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Something that doesn't make sense to me (Spoilers!)

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Eyre_i_breathe WARNING: SPOILERS ahead!!!!

In the book, it is mentioned several times that Mira doesn't like Matthew's brother Richard. Through the book, Mira thinks Matthew is an average guy (and she maybe has a niggling sense that something is off), but then she was completely shocked to find out who Matthew really is at the end. So what I can't figure out is if she'd met Richard and disliked him, wouldn't she already know Matthew isn't who he seems to be? Wouldn't she already know the darkness and "insanity" of Matthew? Why did she seem so blindsided?


marilyn Eyre_i_breathe wrote: "WARNING: SPOILERS ahead!!!!

In the book, it is mentioned several times that Mira doesn't like Matthew's brother Richard. Through the book, Mira thinks Matthew is an average guy (and she maybe has ..."


I was confused about Mira having met Richard in the past. It doesn't make sense that she wouldn't have been able to see what was going on with Matthew if she had "met" Richard.


Eyre_i_breathe My feelings exactly... I thought maybe I had missed something, but it looks like I'm not the only one who was confused by this.


message 4: by Carolyn (last edited Mar 24, 2019 08:31AM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Carolyn I think Mira had met Richard and knew what her husband was, but it was in her self interest to just keep silent. What a lack of integrity.

The author could have developed this thread more by connecting it to their not having children - if Mira knew what Matthew was, then she surely would not have wanted to bring a child with his genes into the world. The author missed a golden opportunity to flesh out Mira's character. But, he really did not develop any of the women characters as much as he could have - and maybe that is because he also saw them as objects, just like the men in the book did.


Nicole Carolyn wrote: "I think Mira had met Richard and knew what her husband was, but it was in her self interest to just keep silent. What a lack of integrity.

The author could have developed this thread more by conn..."


I got that feeling from the author as well, the way he wrote about women made me feel disgusted at times. Why did he choose to have a female protagonist and a story that will most likely appeal to women? He doesn't seem to think they need to be developed or very smart from the decisions the characters make. Would not pick up another one of his books.


Carolyn I totally agree with everything you said, and would add: the men's actions followed the same path. They did what they pleased and thought all the women were there for their convenience. There was no respect on the male characters' part for any of the women. There were no relationships developed in depth. Even Hen and her husband didn't have much of one, as it turned out. He was supposedly saving her, but he got really tired of the hero role and found someone else.

Since most writing advice to authors is to write what you know, I guess that says it all about this author.


Cindy Ehrenreich I think Mira always knew something wasn't right about Matthew but was in denial. She always suspected that he had killed her college boyfriend. We don't know if she ever really met Richard. She saw the blankets on the couch and assumed he spent the night. We also know that Richard only came around when Mira was out of town because he knew Mira didn't like him. But that was said from Matthew and Richard's perspective, we don't actually know he Mira ever met him.


Carolyn True, this is subject to the reader's interpretation.


Katie Topp Cindy wrote: "I think Mira always knew something wasn't right about Matthew but was in denial. She always suspected that he had killed her college boyfriend. We don't know if she ever really met Richard. She saw..."

I think this is one possibility, and like this idea. Maybe he only came around when she wasn't there and Mira got the impression he was a bad sort from Matthew. I assumed that Mira HAD met Richard, meaning she knew her husband had two personalities. She'd seem Richard come out in a bad or scary moment. It made sense to me then that she would not like Richard, or fear him. She knew he was a side of Matthew.


Carolyn I think this may have been the author's intent, to create a question about Richard's existence that could prompt interpretation and discussion. Not everything should be spelled out in black and white for the reader. Every reader brings their own thought process into what is read.


Lauren Carolyn wrote: "I think this may have been the author's intent, to create a question about Richard's existence that could prompt interpretation and discussion. Not everything should be spelled out in black and whi..."

I think you are spot on Carolyn!


Julie (JuJu) Cindy wrote: "I think Mira always knew something wasn't right about Matthew but was in denial. She always suspected that he had killed her college boyfriend. We don't know if she ever really met Richard. She saw..."

This is the impression I got as well! I think Matthew treated her much better than her previous boyfriend, so she chose to see what she wanted to see in him.


Jessica Larrabee I think Mira knew about the personalities. Her narrative mentioned a few things were strange about her husband but her thought process never went into detail. I think she knew he had a split personality but was in denial about the murderer he was. I actually got the impression at the end of the book that not only did she know about Richard but she also knew of a 3rd personality, Bear. The way it was phrased at the end "he was Bear" made me think it wasn't just a nickname. Also both times Mira referred to him as Bear, Matthew was behaving differently than his Matthew and his Richard personas behaved.


Alexa My initial thought was that Mira had never met Richard personally, especially when she said she assumed he slept on the couch (considering he wasn't a real separate human body from her husband.) I assumed that she had only heard about him from Matthew, all in a negative light, and had formed her own opinions about him/didn't want him around. Then at the very end I got confused with the whole "Bear" thing. I agree with Jessica above that it seemed like that was a whole different personality, or at least had some significance. Def want to know more!!!


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