Remember the kitchen god's wife? She wound up as the title of a bestselling novel back in 1991. A couple of years later, Ahab's wife found similar fame, followed shortly by the pilot's wife. Then the time traveler's wife came along, and things were quiet for a while, until the zookeeper's wife and the senator's wife shook things up. Books with the word “wife” in the title seem to sell well, and this season brings a new crop of them.

The 19th Wife: A Novelby David Ebershoff (Random, Aug.) Novel About My Wifeby Emily Perkins (Bloomsbury, Aug.) American Wife: A Novelby Curtis Sittenfeld (Random, Sept.) The Professors' Wives' Clubby Joanne Rendell (NAL Accent, Sept.)
Ann Eliza Young, 19th wife of Brigham Young; and a contemporary Mormon 19th wife. Ann, an Australian in London pregnant with her first child Alice Blackwell, whose husband becomes the U.S. president Faculty wives Mary, Sofia, Ashleigh and Hanna
Publisher's pitch:
“Epic historical fiction” and “modern murder mystery.” A “gorgeous young wife's descent into madness.” “A private, self-conscious girl [is] thrust into the public glare.” “Each [woman has] a scandalous secret.”
Wives who'll identify:
Those who can't get enough of the HBO series Big Love Expats living abroad, literary thriller fans Ones who love gossip as much as high-brow lit Peyton Place fans looking for a light read