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Book Review: Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty

Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty

Hot on the heels of her last page-turning novel, The Husband’s Secret, Liane Moriarty delivers another novel that ticks all the boxes for a great read. Big Little Lies has well-drawn characters, is captivatingly warm and engaging – and even though the novel appears to be a light read at first, it goes onto tackle some very meaty and serious topics such as bullying and domestic abuse.

From the opening the reader learns that a parent has died at the Pirriwee Public’s annual school trivia night. The questions until the very end of the novel is determining whether it was murder or a tragic accident – and finding out which parent ended up dead – and these questions will keep you turning the pages as you meet the various parents at the heart of this drama. Big Little Lies is a very apt title as there is no shortage of deception in this novel. It seems everyone has some secret – but is it a secret large enough to commit murder?

There is a large cast of characters, but it is the three central female characters who shine through the most strongly. All of them have children at the same preschool. Madeleine is an outspoken and spirited mum who, despite her best efforts, is locked in continuing battles with her teenage daughter, and she has to suffer living in the same town as her ex-husband and his younger wife, with all the complications that brings. By contrast, Celeste appears to have the perfect life, she is a great beauty, she is married to a rich businessman who seems to adore her, and she has adorable twin boys. Meanwhile Jane is a painfully shy single mother who doesn’t fit in, with trauma in her past that she has never gotten over.

Liane Moriarty is an exceptional novelist and Big Little Lies is funny, intelligent and thought-provoking. Definitely recommended reading!

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