Battalions of embittered women have stalked out on unfaithful husbands in American fiction over the last 15 years, craving vengeance on That Miserable Louse.
Holly Doyle, the engaging narrator of James D. Houston's novel "Love Life," is refreshingly different and not just because she doesn't immediately dash to her therapist.
She feels furious and betrayed, of course, with ample reason. On her 32nd birthday, she discovers that her husband is at a seriocomic women's conference with his 20-year-old girlfriend.
Grover and Holly have been together for 10 years, and by certain standards they have it all. They're Berkeley-educated societal-semi-dropouts, living on isolated redwood hill country in Northern California on the proceeds from Grover's solar paneling business. They have two healthy, well-adjusted children and a solid, enduring relationship. They're sometime country-and-Western musicians, though neither is committed fully to a musical career because "it was better, we agreed, to maintain the amateur status and spend your days and years on something wiser, more substantial, less precarious."