The Freedom Clause by Hannah Sloane

Published: July 25, 2023

The Dial Press

Genre: Marriage & Divorce

Pages: 328

KKECReads Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

I received a copy of this book for free, and I leave my review voluntarily.

Hannah Sloane grew up in England. She read History at the University of Bristol. She has dual citizenship and lives in Brooklyn with her partner, Sam.

Dominic and Daphne met in their first week of college, and they’ve been happily married for three years. They love each other deeply but perhaps have become too comfortable, and their sex life isn’t what anyone would call thrilling. So, on New Year’s Day, Dominic blurts out a suggestion before it’s fully worked out in his mind: what if they open up their marriage?

Daphne reluctantly agrees—with conditions. They can sleep with one other person, one night a year, and the agreement has a five-year expiration date. It’s not a total free-for-all on their vows, but an amendment. They call it the Freedom Clause.

It isn’t long before Daphne and Dominic find themselves—and their marriage—altered in unexpected ways. Embracing the spirit of the Clause, Daphne pushes herself to be more assertive in asking for what she wants. She begins chronicling her journey of self-discovery in an anonymous newsletter, sharing recipes inspired by her conquests, and soon realizes that one night off a year isn’t a small change . . . it’s a seismic one.

Eventually, Daphne and Dominic are reconsidering everything—each other, their relationship, and themselves. Can they survive the Freedom Clause? Do they even want to?

“Really, what’s the worst that can happen?”

Daphne met her husband while they were at university. Neither was expecting to find there forever, but in the blink, they were married. Things have cooled, but their relationship is strong until an innocent suggestion becomes a plan.

This was an interesting storyline. I enjoyed how humor was mixed in; it helped keep the tone engaging and light. I wanted to like the main characters, but they were both problematic for me.

Daphne is intelligent. But she is also a people pleaser. She doesn’t like to say no or disappoint anyone. Dominic is emotional and needy. He lacks ambition and has minimal follow-through.

I found the communication between these characters troubling. They didn’t communicate well, and they were both naïve about how their disconnect led to more significant issues.

I love that Daphne finds her confidence and discovers a way to love and empower herself. And I saw the nod to it being absolutely fine to realize you have outgrown your partner and that pursuing yourself is alright.

I did appreciate that there were no name-calling, trash-talking, or dramatic moments. The crumble was conducted maturely.

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