Book Review: Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty

Posted on 04/08/2015 in Book Review / 11 Comments

Book Review: Big Little Lies by Liane MoriartyBig Little Lies by Liane Moriarty
Published by Penguin Group on July 29, 2014
Genres: Adult, Contemporary Fiction, Mystery
Pages: 460
Source: Purchased
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Big Little Lies follows three women, each at a crossroads:\r\n\r\nMadeline is a force to be reckoned with. She’s funny and biting, passionate, she remembers everything and forgives no one. Her ex-husband and his yogi new wife have moved into her beloved beachside community, and their daughter is in the same kindergarten class as Madeline’s youngest (how is this possible?). And to top it all off, Madeline’s teenage daughter seems to be choosing Madeline’s ex-husband over her. (How. Is. This. Possible?).\r\n\r\nCeleste is the kind of beautiful woman who makes the world stop and stare. While she may seem a bit flustered at times, who wouldn’t be, with those rambunctious twin boys? Now that the boys are starting school, Celeste and her husband look set to become the king and queen of the school parent body. But royalty often comes at a price, and Celeste is grappling with how much more she is willing to pay.\r\n\r\nNew to town, single mom Jane is so young that another mother mistakes her for the nanny. Jane is sad beyond her years and harbors secret doubts about her son. But why? While Madeline and Celeste soon take Jane under their wing, none of them realizes how the arrival of Jane and her inscrutable little boy will affect them all.\r\n\r\nBig Little Lies is a brilliant take on ex-husbands and second wives, mothers and daughters, schoolyard scandal, and the dangerous little lies we tell ourselves just to survive.

So far, 2015 has been a great book year for me. With only one or two exceptions, I have really enjoyed every book I have read, and completely fallen in love with a couple of them. And now I have now discovered another author that falls into the “must read every single thing she has ever written” category. How had I previously missed reading anything by Liane Moriarty?   Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty was my book club’s selection for April, and since it had been on my TBR list for some time, I was glad to have an excuse to have to read it. I was immediately hooked, and flew through it. There’s nothing I love more than a good mystery, and this book mixes mystery and suspense with humor, but also deals with some really serious issues like domestic violence, bullying, and divorce. The story opens with a murder, but we don’t know who has died or who caused the death. We’re just given enough clues and tidbits of information to keep us guessing and anxiously turning pages.   The story alternates from the points of view of three women – Madeline, Celeste, and Jane, who are extremely different from one another, yet have a very genuine friendship. They all have children in Kindergarten, and the school is where all of the mayhem begins. I really related to Madeline, and I liked how goofy she could be, and how she never hesitated to stand up for someone. Although I’m not dramatic and girly like her, I do have an ex-husband with whom I share custody of my son, and we both have younger children who are very close in age. Unlike Madeline, though, I genuinely like (and am grateful for!) my son’s stepmom.   I liked the general theme of how not everything can be taken at face value, and I also liked the positivity of the women’s friendship. Sure, there were plenty of catty women (and I found their descriptions extremely entertaining and accurate), but these three women supported one another, even in the darkest of times.  I was also really impressed with how light the tone of the book felt, when dealing with such serious subject matter. There was humor and sarcasm throughout, but with enough suspense that I couldn’t wait to find out what was going to happen. If it’s any indication of how much I enjoyed this book, the first thing I did when I finished it was to download another of Liane Moriarty’s books, and put a couple others on hold. I’m officially a fan.

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Jessica’s addiction to books began at age 4, going on weekly trips to the library with her mom. After being a young fan of Sweet Valley High and The Baby-Sitters Club, she discovered the thrill of reading a book that made her want to leave the light on and check under the bed. Her all-time favorite author is Stephen King, but she will read just about anything! Jessica never leaves home without her e-reader, and considers it the best gift she ever received. Her other hobbies include running and going to Disney World as often as possible.

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11 responses to “Book Review: Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty

  1. I absolutely loved The Husband’s Secret; it was unpredictable and the epilogue had me reeling. I was hoping for the same level of absolute LOVE for this one, but it wasn’t AS good for me. I liked it enough and it was so interesting, but I predicted the whole ending ahead of time. If you liked this one, I HIGHLY recommend The Husband’s Secret! Hopefully it blows you away even more.

  2. Didn’t read Ms. Moriarty either, but I love the sound of this. I’m adding it. I also love your review, as it tells me everything I’d have liked to ask of someone who has read this 🙂 Funny how that works out…
    Ramona’s latest thoughts >> Clean Reader Controversy

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