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Publisher's Summary

Sarah is a smart young lawyer living in Bondi when she falls head over heels. Daniel is handsome, passionate and is part of the kind of large, chaotically loving family Sarah longed for as an only child. 

When Daniel introduces her to a charismatic young couple, rabbi Menachem Lev and his wife, Chani, despite herself, Sarah is drawn in by the vibrant community at the beachside synagogue. By the time the couple move to the Jamison Valley, where Menachem and Chani have established a community of believers, Sarah can’t imagine life without the joy, purpose and love she’s discovered. 

Four years on, youthful passion has given way to something darker. The community will celebrate its first wedding, between the beautiful convert, Avital, and a much older divorcee, but no one seems to be able to give a clear explanation of where Rebecca, his wife, has gone. In the lead up to the wedding, a series of terrifying truths emerges that rock Sarah’s world and cause her to question everything - her faith, her marriage and her future.

©2021 Lisa Emanuel (P)2021 Bolinda Publishing

Critic Reviews

"The Covered Wife is spellbinding - a magnificent literary debut that reads like a thriller, it speaks directly to the isolating nature of modern life, and our yearning for connection." (Lex Hirst, publisher at Pantera Press)

What listeners say about The Covered Wife

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Captivating

Lisa Emanuel’s first novel drew me in at the first chapter. Beautifully and authentically read by Florette Cohen, it follows a young jewish couple trying to find meaning and belonging in a modern world, through strict, ancient religious teachings. After moving away from the city to join a new community they turn their backs on their past lives and each begin a new fraught journey.
With a slow burning intensity to the plot, “The Covered Wife” keeps the reader enthralled, revealing some of the fascinating complexities of Orthodox Judaism on the way.
Towards the conclusion the author creates an urgency and fear that has you up in the night needing to know what happens to our protagonist, Sarah.
The characters are believable and intricate, by the final chapters Emanuel has allowed you to have your own opinion of each of them.
I really encourage you to read this captivating novel by a very talented new author.

1 person found this helpful

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The Covered wife

Beautifully narrated - another eye opener of the very religious who are shomre Shabbath - good story line and a peek into the fascinating goings on with those who have returned to religion.

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The Covered Wife

For me, the ending was such a huge disappointment that I would not recommend this book to others.

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Disturbing but compelling

The voice of the reader added to the compulsion to keep listening. I emphasised strongly with Sarah, and her relationships.

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Suffocating but irresistible

Terrific story, well written and narrated with believable characters who I felt strongly about. The ending was a shock and, while not surprising, it left me feeling disappointed and a bit flat. However this did not detract from my overall appreciation of the book. I think it will take a while to throw off the suffocating feeling of it though!

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  • SW
  • 03-09-2021

Gripping!

Amazing read that grips you from the start. The author’s insight into frum practice makes this novel read like an autobiography. The love Sarah has for Daniel is ever palpable, and readers are easily drawn into her life in Bondi and the Blue Mountains with her descriptions of family, friends, daily life, religious practice and bush scape. Wonderful book. Narration was well done - the perfect choice for Sarah.

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Gripping and beautifully written story

The Covered Wife was not only culturally fascinating but absolutely gripping aswell. I literally could not stop listening. I highly recommend it.

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  • Cath6408
  • 28-04-2022

Great story. Terrible ending.

I was fascinated from the beginning with this beautifully written and gripping story. Having been exposed to the Jewish faith in recent times, I found this story captivating. Wonderful and relatable characters.
Unfortunately the story was completely spoiled by a weak ending with no resolution. I was left feeling so robbed.
A brilliant writer though I look forward to future books by this author with better endings.
The reader did a nice job.

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