Published by Pan Macmillan Australia on August 2014
Genres: Adult Fiction, Contemporary, Mystery/Thriller
Source: Bookworld Reviewer Program
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Pirriwee Public’s annual school Trivia Night has ended in a shocking riot. One parent is dead. The school principal is horrified. As police investigate what appears to have been a tragic accident, signs begin to indicate that this devastating death might have been cold-blooded murder.
In this thought-provoking novel, number-one New York Times–bestselling author Liane Moriarty deftly explores the reality of parenting and playground politics, ex-husbands and ex-wives, and fractured families. And in her pitch-perfect way, she shows us the truth about what really goes on behind closed suburban doors.
Oh what a decadent and dangerously addictive book this is! It is your every guilty pleasure between two covers. I warn you, you will not be able to put it down. Thanks to Liane Moriarty I lost hours of much needed sleep and woke up cranky but still wanting more Big Little Lies.
The story mostly focuses on three main characters: Madeline – a stylish and high-spirited mum whose ex-husband’s daughter attends the same school as her kids; Jane – a young, single mum who is new to the area; and Celeste – a beautiful and rich stay-at-home mum with rambunctious twin boys. The events and interactions between the mums of Pirriwee Public School all lead up to a dramatic drunken riot and the tragic death of one parent. Police suspect murder.
The wonderful thing about this book is that not only are you guessing ‘who-dunnit’, but also you don’t know who died til the very end either. It is a two-for-the-price-of-one mystery.
Don’t let the size of the book deter you. This is an easy and satisfying read. Moriarty is a gifted storyteller; her writing is effortless and enticing. I felt like I knew some of these characters (Oh calamity! I probably do!). The mothers of Pirriwee could represent those at any primary school, squabbling over who was invited to a party, gossiping about an unconfirmed affair and always trying to outdo each other.
While I had to laugh at the antics of the school mums (and admit, took a certain amount of glee from their petty feuds), there are some very real and serious issues that are dealt with in this book. Bullying, domestic abuse and body image issues all play an important role.
Big Little Lies is a highly entertaining, funny yet thought-provoking novel. I will be recommending it to all my friends, book club and perhaps highlighting a couple of paragraphs for a select few Kindy mums.
Thank you to Bookworld for an advanced copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review.