The Unwitting by Ellen Feldman

The Unwitting

Ellen Feldman

Set during the Cold War this is both a story about marriage as well as political journalism. Whilst Nell tells her side of the marriage in a way that manages to be both witty and tragic, Charlie's point of view brings an entirely new light to everything we had believed to be true. Themes of betrayal and guilt add to the tension in the story and although I didn’t always care for the historical aspects, I found the love story very compelling.

Extract

We drove through mile after mile of crumbling church steeples, buildings with gaping holes where windows and doors used to be, steps leading to nowhere, and apartments torn open and bared to the world. Here and there, shadows moved about the exposed rooms in the light of a single candle or small fire.
'It’s like living on a stage set,' Woody said.
'The perfect metaphor for a society where everyone is under surveillance.'
'Don’t forget to put that in one of your articles,' he said, and I couldn’t tell if he was teasing me or being serious.

Parallels
  • The American Wife by Curtis Sittenfeld
  • On Green Dolphin Street by Sebastian Faulks

Books with similar mood

Girl in Translation

Jean Kwok

Y

Marjorie Celona

Hold

Michael Donkor

Normal People

Sally Rooney

The Rest of Us Just Live Here

Patrick Ness

The Fault in our Stars

John Green

Vaclav and Lena

Haley Tanner

Hand in the Fire

Hugo Hamilton

Wolfy and the Strudelbakers

Zvi Jagendorf

The Hoarder

Jess Kidd

The View on the Way Down

Rebecca Wait

Chasing Jordan

Heidi W Boehringer

The Easy Way Out

Steven Amsterdam

The Night Rainbow

Claire King

The Ballad of John Clare

Hugh Lupton

Heliopolis

James Scudamore

The Polyglot Lovers

Lina Wolff

The Rules of Seeing

Joe Heap

Don't Let Go

Michel Bussi

The Art of Being Normal

Lisa Williamson

Tiny Sunbirds Far Away

Christie Watson

Bar Balto

Faiza Guene

The Last Patriarch

Najat El Hachmi

Spitting Off Tall Buildings

Dan Fante

The Dope Priest

Nicholas Blincoe

The Old Child

Jenny Erpenbeck

Carry Me Down

M J Hyland

Tregian's Ground

Anne Cuneo

The Death of Bees

Lisa O'Donnell

State of Wonder

Ann Patchett

Ape House

Sara Gruen

Good Kings, Bad Kings

Susan Nussbaum

The Loft

Marlen Haushofer

Cham

Jonathan Trigell

Drinking Coffee Elsewhere

ZZ Packer

Let the Northern Lights Erase Your Name

Vendela Vida

Viper Wine

Hermoine Eyre

The Incomers

Moira McPartlin

Lodgers

Nenad Velickovic

Bliss Street

Kris Kenway

How to Breathe Underwater

Julie Orringer

The Book of Fred

Abby Bardi

Big City Eyes

Delia Ephron

Family Life

Akhil Sharma

Wolf Border

Sarah Hall

The Friday Gospels

Jenn Ashworth

The Hope Factory

Lavanya Sankaran

The Misfortunates

Dimitri Verhulst

Electricity

Ray Robinson