If you’ve ever been cheated on, or suspect that’s the case – this novel is for you! It’s the perfect “revenge” story.
But even singles or readers in a happy relationship will find Rose Game to be a deliciously dark but fun read, with lots of twists and turns. Author Gitta Becker tells the story, which is set in Germany but could play out anywhere in the world. Her main character is Susanne, a wife and mother of three, who suspects that her husband is cheating. She discovers emails from her husband to his lover (nicknamed Plus) and decides to spy on them. Then she thinks “what’s next?” There’s murder – of the husband or the lover. Or there’s divorce. But no – why not first devise a clever method of revenge to toy with their emotions and the affair itself?
She ultimately wants a divorce, but not a bitter and violent “War of the Roses”, a’la the movie with Michael Douglas and Kathleen Turner. Instead, she’ll make her revenge fun (at least for her) and call it “Game of the Roses.”
She recalls actually having met the “other one” as she refers to the lover, at a golf tournament. Suddenly the actions of that day, between husband and woman, make sense. When she sees the two together now – and she accidentally spies them twice while having lunch – she realizes it’s the same golfing woman. She schemes to pretend an innocent interest in establishing a friendship with the woman and asks her husband for her phone number so she can invite her to an Advent Coffee party. It seems her husband has the phone number of the woman and her husband. Susanne is throwing the party during the holiday season and wants to bask in the discomfort she can bring to the lovers. Her husband is trapped – he has to provide the number or look suspicious. Plus is trapped – she has to accept or look suspicious.
The Advent party opens the door to further seeking friendship with Plus. Susanne begins emailing her, using “girl talk” to say that while it went through a rough patch, her marriage is fine now…and sexy (though she knows her hubby says otherwise in his emails). Eventually, the idea is to turn the lovers on one another, planting seeds of doubt in their minds – all while keeping the secret from them that she is playing her game.
A true surprise occurs involving the Game of the Roses, and it’s a joy to see this woman scorned flourish. The only drawback is a rather abrupt ending that had this reader convinced that a page or two had been missed on the online reading device. But it’s great fun nevertheless. A few grammatical errors need to be corrected and hopefully an editor will step in next time to aid Becker. This is assuming there is a next time, and after reading Rose Game, readers will be hoping there is. This is a promising new author on the scene.