Tag Archives: Liane Moriarty

Review: What Alice Forgot

What Alice Forgot
By Liane Moriarty
Berkley, 9780425247440, 2012, 496pp.

The Short of It:

Took some time for me to get into this one but once I was in, I was IN. Moriarty is a storytelling queen.

The Rest of It:

Alice faints during a spin class and upon waking, realizes that she’s lost ten years of memories. She doesn’t remember having children, or that she’s in the process of divorcing her husband Nick. She has no idea why she’s at the gym at all having shunned exercise for most of her life and how can she be 39 years old when she was 29 just a little while ago? One other thing that she can’t remember is the death of her best friend Gina, who played such a large role in Alice’s life.

The first quarter of the book was bordering on silly but was also humorous and entertaining. Alice’s realizations about life as those around her continue to fill in the gaps, got some giggles out of me but can you imagine not remembering your kids or your husband?

Memory-challenged Alice finds that she’s not all that likable. She’s lost friends, alienated her husband and grown apart from her sister. She was this driven, busy person who did all the things class moms do but in total excess. Now, as she looks around at things she can’t make sense of, she wonders why? Why is she getting a divorce? What went wrong?

This turned out to be a very touching story about a woman who is given a chance to turn things around. Plus, it’s not just about Alice, it’s about her sister Elisabeth and her family and how the past few years have created a lot of tension, but perhaps the damage can be repaired.

I really ended up liking What Alice Forgot. It’s not as dishy as Big Little Lies and it didn’t center around a suburb like Truly Madly Guilty, but it was sweetly sentimental and I was satisfied when I turned the last page. It’s been optioned for a movie, actually has been for some time but I don’t see any mention of it actually being in production.

Have you read it? It does give you some food for thought and the questions in the back of my copy confirmed for me that it would make a good discussion book too.

Source: Purchased
Disclosure: This post contains Indiebound affiliate links.

Review: Truly Madly Guilty

Truly Madly Guilty

Truly Madly Guilty
By Liane Moriarty
Flatiron Books, 9781250069801, 2017, 560pp.

The Short of It:

What could go wrong at a barbecue? Plenty.

The Rest of It:

This is the second Moriarty book I’ve read, the first being Big Little Lies. As much as I liked Big Little Lies, I think I enjoyed Truly Madly Guilty a bit more.

Both books open with the knowledge that something bad has happened. In this book, this “incident” takes place at a neighborhood barbecue. Just your everyday, neighborhood barbecue with a few neighbors and a couple of mutual friends. As the story unfolds, the chapters count the reader down to the event itself. This method of storytelling creates a lot of tension in the best way possible. I could not turn those pages fast enough and the book stands at 560 pages so that’s telling you something.

The story mostly focuses on three couples, Erika and Oliver, Clementine and Sam, and Tiffany and Vid. These couples are vastly different from one another. Their views on marriage, children and social gatherings are flaunted for all to see as the tension builds between them. All presented in the most delicious, dishy way. Erika and Clementine were tossed together as kids but do they even like one another? Vid and Tiffany are over-the-top with their lifestyle and a bit flashy but what harm could a little barbecue cause? It’s just a meal among friends. Clementine and Sam have their own issues to deal with so why are they always roped into other people’s problems?

The storytelling feels so personal. Almost voyeuristic. When the details of the incident are finally revealed to the reader, you immediately wonder how they will survive it. How will each couple deal with the information they have in front of them? The not-knowing makes it even more of a page-turner.

Friends, this was a good one. Plenty of tension, good story, suspenseful without being unrealistic and characters who come full circle. This is one of those complete package reads. For me, a perfect read.

Source: Purchased
Disclosure: This post contains Indiebound affiliate links.