Secret Confessions: Sydney Housewives – Emma by Viveka Portman

In brief: A tender, heartfelt episode in the Sydney Housewives series. (Read more here).

The good: A different aspect – what if it looks like you’ve got it all, but you don’t feel like you have?

The not-so-good: The change in pace took me a little while to get used to, but it was worth it in the end.

Why I chose it: Really enjoying this series. Thanks to Escape Publishing for the eARC.

Year: 2015

Pages: 45 (eARC)

Publisher: Escape Publishing

Setting: Sydney, Australia

My rating: 8 out of 10

With Emma, Viveka Portman takes a softer, heart-warming storyline of love and sex rather than the ‘Whoa, Mama!’ reaction I’ve come to expect from this series. We also get to see the secret side of Emma, who has appeared as bubbly and confident in previous books. Emma does appear to have it all the surface, like the other women in this series. She has a gorgeous, talented husband in Rosco and a wonderfully romantic tale of how they met and fell in love. She has a beautiful house and all the things she’ll ever need at her fingertips. But Emma hides a secret heartache. She desperately wants another child, but fears that her infertility and desperation will drive Rosco away. Sex has become mechanical and now she’s suspicious of every woman that Rosco looks or speaks to. How can this once beautiful relationship be repaired?

I was pleasantly surprised at the depth of Emma’s despair that was covered in this short story – her hopes and dreams were given up in a flash years ago, and now she feels left behind and stifled. That feeling comes across very strongly that you can’t help wanting to give Emma a hug. (At first I thought she was a bit petulant until I knew the reasons why Emma was acting like she did). There’s still sex, but of different types – from mechanical to the feeling of release. The real beauty in this story is coming to understand Emma and seeing her grow in confidence over the narrative.

So while this story was a bit different to the previous ones, it definitely grew on me. After all that heat, a bit of sweetness is just what the doctor ordered.


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