Thursday, June 24, 2021

Truly Madly Guilty by Liane Moriarty

Truly Madly Guilty
by Liane Moriarty
Read by Caroline Lee
Published July 2016 by Flatiron Books
Source: audiobook checked out from my local library

Publisher's Summary:
Six responsible adults. Three cute kids. One small dog. It’s just a normal weekend. What could possibly go wrong?

In Truly Madly Guilty, Liane Moriarty turns her unique, razor-sharp eye towards three seemingly happy families.

Sam and Clementine have a wonderful, albeit busy, life: they have two little girls, Sam has just started a new dream job, and Clementine, a cellist, is busy preparing for the audition of a lifetime. If there’s anything they can count on, it’s each other.

Clementine and Erika are each other’s oldest friends. A single look between them can convey an entire conversation. But theirs is a complicated relationship, so when Erika mentions a last-minute invitation to a barbecue with her neighbors, Tiffany and Vid, Clementine and Sam don’t hesitate. Having Tiffany and Vid’s larger-than-life personalities there will be a welcome respite.

Two months later, it won’t stop raining, and Clementine and Sam can’t stop asking themselves the question: What if we hadn’t gone?

My Thoughts:
Finally! I have had this book on my Nook almost since it came out. I may even have a physical copy somewhere (one day I'll really and truly get my books organized!). This is the second time I've check the audiobook out. Some months ago I started the audiobook,  had to return it before I finished and figured I'd finish it on my Nook. But I didn't even pick up my Nook. It just wasn't calling to me, not the way Moriarty's other books have done. When I needed an audiobook, though, I decided to give it another chance. 

Even on its second chance, it felt like I was having to force myself to listen to it. I didn't care much for either Clementine or Erika and I wasn't buying into their friendship. But this is one of those books that makes it almost impossible for me to give up on a book. Throughout the book, Moriary moves back and forth between the peeks into the women's pasts, the present and The Day of The Picnic. When we finally got to what happened the day of the picnic, everything changed for me. The fallout from what happened and the gradual revealing of the truth of what happened pulled me into Clementine's and Erika's stories. 

Moriarty's strength is in telling stories that combine humor with the minutiae of life while tackling heavy themes. Here she explores marriage, parenting, friendship as well as hoarding, anxiety, infertility, addiction, secrets, troubled pasts, and lies. As always, Moriarty shines when examining marriages - the three couples here all have different marriages but each marriage contains the everyday things that irritate each partner, life complications and secrets. 

Unfortunately, even as much as I ended up enjoying the book, the relationship between Clementine and Erika was not as strong as strong as Moriarty usually is at friendships and that kept me from liking this book as much as I did The Husband's Secret and Big Little Lies. I do think this would make, as all of Moriarty's books would, a good choice for a book club. 

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