Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty

19486412“Sometimes it’s the little lies that turn out to be the most lethal. . . .
A murder… . . . a tragic accident… . . . or just parents behaving badly?
What’s indisputable is that someone is dead.   But who did what?”
– Goodreads

Big Little Lies follows the lives of three women who are each at a very different point in their lives. Madeline is bat-shit crazy and forty—she craves drama and isn’t afraid to stir the pot to create some. She speaks her mind. She holds grudges. Her ex-husband walked out on her and her newborn daughter, Abigail, fifteen years prior, and she never lets him forget it (that’s right—her ex-husband and his new wife live in the same suburb…and their five-year-old daughter is in the same kindergarten class as Madeline’s daughter, Chloe).

Single mom Jane is sad, single, and completely closed off from the world. Her five-year-old son Ziggy is in the same kindergarten class as Chloe. Jane is new to Perriwee, and is just figuring out the politics of kindergarten.

Celeste is gorgeous, rich, and has two twin boys (also in kindergarten). She’s often flustered and in her own little world—but who wouldn’t be, with two monsters and tons of money?

The three are friends and grapple with their individual secrets and kindergarten politics.

I love this book. I didn’t think I would at first—there were so many points of view, and sprinkled throughout each chapter were snippets of interviews with parents. The book is centered around a single event—Parent Trivia Night—an annual fundraiser where the parents spend tons of money on the school and dress up. Each section of the book is in relation to this evening, where presumably, after reading the snippets, a murder takes place. Six Months Before Trivia Night, Three Weeks Before Trivia Night, One Day Before Trivia Night, etc.

Though the book is centered around Trivia Night, there is so, so much more to it. So much that I cannot do justice. Throughout the book’s 400-odd pages, I became so attached to each the characters. I love their children, hated their spouses, hated their abusers, disliked the mean mummies at school.

This book was confusing. It was hilarious—probably the funniest book about murder and domestic abuse that I will ever read. I found myself laughing at Moriarty’s wit one moment and cringing the next. The book was fabulous at addressing such a huge, pressing issue like domestic violence and turning it into a beautiful, funny, memorable story.

We all tell ourselves little lies to survive…but just how dangerous are they?



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