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Book of the Month Review + Coupon: April 2024

Jeanne Sager
ByJeanne SagerApr 25, 2024 | 0 comments
a red Book of the Month logo on the side of a book

Book of the Month is a monthly book subscription box. Each month, five curators pick out their favorite new hardcover books, and you can choose which one you want to receive on the first of the month for $17.99/month. You can also add up to two additional books for only $9.99 each. (This box was named one of the best subscriptions for avid readers in the 2024 Subscription Box Awards.)

This box was sent to us at no cost for review. (Check out the editorial guidelines to learn more about how we review boxes.)

My BOTM Pick for April: The Husbands by Holly Gramazio, Hardcover Retail Value $18.70

Back of Book Summary:

When Lauren returns home to her flat in London late one night, she is greeted at the door by her husband, Michael. There’s only one problem—she’s not married. She’s never seen this man before in her life. But according to her friends, her much-improved decor, and the photos on her phone, they’ve been together for years.

As Lauren tries to puzzle out how she could be married to someone she can’t remember meeting, Michael goes to the attic to change a lightbulb and abruptly disappears. In his place, a new man emerges, and a new, slightly altered life re-forms around her. Realizing that her attic is creating an infinite supply of husbands, Lauren confronts the question: If swapping lives is as easy as changing a lightbulb, how do you know you’ve taken the right path? When do you stop trying to do better and start actually living?

My Summary

The book The Husbands by Holly Gramazio sits on a bookshelf

What if marriage was like getting a new mattress with a guarantee — don't like it, and you can send it back for a refund, no questions asked? It's the question at the heart of Holly Gramazio's fun and often funny first novel The Husbands, where she serves up a veritable relationship rollercoaster with a slight sci-fi twist.

The night Lauren comes home to find a strange man in her flat, she's a single 30-something from London with a job at the local council that she likes well enough, an ex-boyfriend she's glad to be rid of, and a best friend's wedding quickly approaching. Or maybe she just thinks she's single because this man says he's her husband, and according to the lock screen photo on her rapidly dying phone, it appears he might be right.

Convinced she might just be hallucinating after a night of drinking at her friend's hen do, Lauren settles on the couch — after propping a chair against the doorknob to keep Michael out — only to wake up to find her stranger/husband is still in the flat, and she's got no idea where he came from.

Fortunately her answer — and an even bigger shock — is soon to come. Michael heads into the attic to change a lightbulb, but a different man entirely comes back down the attic ladder and he too seems to think he's Lauren's betrothed. She quickly realizes she can simply send the men up the stairs, and each time a new husband will emerge, some short, some tall, some with accents she can't quite place.

Each time it happens, Lauren's life changes too — from her income to her job to the color of the walls of the flat she shares with sister Nat — and slowly she sees the advantage of playing house with a revolving door of husbands, testing out not just each relationship but the new lives each one brings with them.

The Verdict

When I saw that The Husbands was a Book of the Month Club pick for April 2024, I let out an (uncharacteristic) squeal. I'd only just added Holly Gramazio's novel to my "want to read" list on Goodreads. Was this kismet?

Not that the decision was easy. An early release from Sally Hepworth (a repeat Book of the Month author) called Darling Girls and a debut memoir from Simone Gorrindo called The Wives had me waffling — and running to Amazon to read more — before I finally settled on The Husbands. I'm glad I did.

In addition to her writing, Gramazio is a game designer, a role that informs her playful and intricate novel, with its "what's on the other side of that door" style plot devices. With each husband comes new questions about what makes two people compatible and what it means to form a partnership once those early days of lust have receded behind the clouds of electric bills and messy kitchens.

While The Husbands could easily have wandered into dated "let the man define" you territory, Gramazio carefully keeps Lauren's identity in the forefront. She may call out sick from work quite a few times throughout the book because she's too busy trying to suss out important bits of information about a new husband — like his name — but we see her climbing the career ladder in some iterations of her life, and relationships with neighbors, friends and her sister are threads pulled through each and every Lauren version.

Whether you're tired of a dating app full of profiles that leave you swiping left, recently out of a relationship and dreading the return to the dating scene or you're happily coupled up and simply looking for a fun read, Gramazio's The Husbands gives you plenty to sink your teeth into.

Value — Was This Box Worth It?

FThe April 2024 Book of the Month Club pick saves you a little less than a dollar overall — BOTM Club starts at $17.99, depending on your chosen subscription, and this book is listed at $18.70 over on Amazon.

Of course, the first month of a subscription is $9.99 with free shipping, so if this is your entree to a Book of the Month subscription, you come way out ahead.

The Cost: $9.99 + free shipping (This price is only for your first month).

Value Breakdown: This box costs $9.99, but the book I chose will retail as hardcover for $21.23, which works out to a discount of about $11. (Remember...this is first month only). Even if you are looking at the $17.99 cost for one of the later months of your overall subscription, you're still saving $3.

Keep Track of Your Subscriptions: Add this box to your subscription list or wishlist!

To Wrap Up:

Can you still get this book if you sign up today? Yes! But you will need to order it as an add-on.

What do you think of the Book of the Month subscription? Let us know below with your own review!

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Book of the Month is a popular online subscription service for books that helps millennial women discover the best new reads. We announce a curated selection of between 5 - 7 new and early release hardcover books every month. Members choose one on the site, and we ship it to them in a bright blue... read more.

Jeanne Sager
Jeanne Sager
Jeanne Sager has strung words together for The New York Times, The Atlantic, and more. A writer, photographer, and social media geek, she lives in upstate NY with her family and too many pets.

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