Big Little Lies had me hooked by the end of the first chapter. I could not put the book down and I read it within 3 days. The book was published in July 2014 by Liane Moriarty, who is the New York Times bestselling author of The Husband’s Secret. I actually really want to read that book, now that I’ve read Big Little Lies, because it’s a bestseller book by an author who wrote this book that I think is bad ass, so yes please!
Big Little Lies is told from the POV of three mothers who’s 5 year old children are starting school at Pirriwee Public School. It is set in the Pirriwee Peninsula in Australia. Jane is the young mom, only 24, to a boy named Ziggy and she meets Madeline, a woman who just turned 40 and whose daughter is named Chloe, on the way to the Pirriwee Public School orientation. From there, Madeline introduces Jane to Celeste, who’s twin boys, Josh and Max, will be going to school with Ziggy and Chloe. The women very quickly form a friendship and their children also become friends, for the most part.
As the months pass, the characters seemingly perfect lives and their secrets begin to unravel. Ziggy is accused of bullying another child during the orientation and the parents in the class end up in conflict with each other. Fortunately, Madeline is Janes constant defender and Celeste also tries to support Jane against the other parents as things escalate. And then someone ends up dying.
Honestly, part what I loved so much about this book is that I honestly didn’t know how it would end. The character I thought was going to die didn’t die, which I am kin of grateful for because I very much liked that character (I don’t want to say who did and didn’t die because you don’t find out right away and I don’t want to ruin it for you). I also had no idea who was going to kill one of the characters, would it be an accident, and what the circumstances would be. The one thing I saw coming, that did turn out to be right, was the origin Ziggy’s parentage. Jane is a single mom and her big secret she has is who Ziggy’s father is. As the secrets begin to come free there I found Ziggy’s dad was exactly who I thought he might be.
The characters in Big Little Lies were awesome. I think that Moriarty built the characters really well wit Jane being quiet, Madeline being a real force of nature, and Celeste having way more depth to her than it would seem. Celeste, for example, was a lawyer before she got married so she’s quite bright I think, but a lot of the character’s seem to underestimate her because they only see her beauty and wealth (her husband has a lot of money). I even found the characters relatable in different ways, which isn’t common with a book where the pull is usually to one character more than others.
In addition, I really liked that Liane Moriarty found ways to talk about tough topics, such as single-parenthood, sexual assault, abuse, bullying, and divorce, by bringing up situations where the characters had to talk about it and face it with each other. I find that at least some of these things are hard for people to talk about for a lot of people. Plus, sometimes people have stereotypes of what these things should look like and it’s not always correct because, as you will read in Big Little Lies, “This Can Happen To Anyone” (Big Little Lies, 2014).
When I Googled the title to get the picture of the book cover, I also found out that HBO is making Big Little Lies into a tv series – I think it is going to be a mini-series, or at least that’s what I am pretty sure a limited series is supposed to mean. They were filming it in Monterrey, California in January. Some pretty good actresses who’s previous performances I have really liked will be in it too, Shailyn Woodley, Reese Witherspoon and Nicole Kidman, to be specific, so that’s good news.
I would like to very strongly recommend this book. It’s by far one of the best books I have read in a while, in my opinion. Plus I am a big fan of the “read it before you see it” philosophy.
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