Friday, October 24, 2014
Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty
Big Little Lies
by Liane Moriarty
source: borrowed from the library
Summary (from goodreads):
A murder… . . . a tragic accident… . . . or just parents behaving badly?
What’s indisputable is that someone is dead. But who did what?
Big Little Lies follows three women, each at a crossroads: Madeline 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?).
Celeste 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. New 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.
Big 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.
This is a book I never would have picked up without a little push from my blogging friends. Liane Moriarty is everywhere these days, but this is the first time I've read her. Why all the fuss? It's because Moriarty gets it.
In many ways, Big Little Lies is almost too real. You learn right up front something has gone terribly wrong at a school function. Someone is dead. But who? And why? Was it murder? An accident? The story immediately backs up to kindergarten orientation at the beginning of the school year. As it moves forward, the reader gradually gets to know the players and key events before finally arriving at that fateful evening.
The characters, the dialog, and the kids are all captured perfectly. You might not like these people, maybe you'll sympathize with one or two of them, and maybe it will remind you of parental shenanigans at your own kid's school. It mostly made me glad I'm beyond this point in life.
I was expecting a light, frivolous novel and was caught off guard by the unexpected substance of Big Little Lies. Book clubs will find plenty to discussion here.
If you haven't read Liane Moriarty yet, what are you waiting for?