Lucy De Bourgh and Thomas Snow's marriage appeared happy enough to Philip, the narrator of Memories of a Marriage. Philip is now a widower himself, having lost his beloved wife to cancer. He runs into Lucy one day, decades after the two had been friends and lost touch with each other. In that time period Lucy and Thomas divorced, and Thomas died. As Philip begins talking with Lucy, he hears her side of what happened in the marriage, almost all of which is negative toward Thomas. Unable to believe that he was that far off base in his own observations, Philip begins to ask questions of Lucy - who is able to recall intimate details of her marriage to Thomas- and also asks questions of others who knew Thomas and Lucy as a couple.
Begley's novel reaffirms the fact that only the people in a marriage can really know what their relationship is like, and that everyone has their own perception of reality. Memories of a Marriage is a very character driven novel, not full of action, but rather of developed and complex characters. I wouldn't call Memories of a Marriage a beach read; Begley's work is for those who enjoy reading more literary novels, but it was enjoyable and thought provoking.