by Liane Moriarty
Published July 26th 2016
Women’s Fiction/ Mystery
Six responsible adults. Three cute kids. One small dog. It’s just a normal weekend. What could possibly go wrong?
How can that not make you want to pick up the book and find out what happened?
I cannot believe how disappointed I was by this book. It makes me sad because I love Liane Moriarty and her books but this one did not do it for me. I went in blind as I usually do with her books but I struggled to complete it. I kept putting it down and focusing on other things thinking I was in a reading slump but when I opened another book and read it in one sitting, I knew it was the book. I read other books in between since I started it and almost put it down for good but I trudged on. I was not going to be a quitter.
The first chapter really gripped me, I wanted to find out what happened. But then as I kept going, it felt like the story was dragging and revealing too little. The revelations were not the gripping kind, they were just meh. I was sure at some point I would not bother reviewing the book. It was standing on one star. I kept going when I felt like giving it a shot, I was sure it would impress me at some point. It was Liane Moriarty for goodness sake!
Three couples have a barbecue. They are not that well acquainted apart from Erika and Clementine who are best friends. The hosts, Vid and Tiffany, are next door neighbors to Erika and her husband Oliver. Vid asks them to come over when he finds out Erika was having Clementine over because he enjoyed the company of Clementine and her husband Sam when they met one time. They are all welcome to the idea because of some tense issues between the two best friends.
The chapters go back and forth between the characters before and after the barbecue. Half of the book is on them regretting the barbecues and I think I yelled ‘WE GET IT!’ a little too much. It’s clear whatever happened was horrible and that’s the mystery about it. What could have happened? What the hell happened? I think that’s the only reason I kept reading the book despite it being slow. I had to find out, nosy by nature.
On top of the big reveal, the characters all seem to be dealing with their own issues. There’s a mystery surrounding each of them. Too many reveals being dragged out. Erika and her issues with her mother. Tiffany and the guy from her daughter’s new school. Sam and his new job. Oliver mad about going to the barbecue. They are all dragged out throughout the whole book with the reveals being dropped one after the other as you keep going while waiting to get the big one.
Maybe I actually enjoyed the book and what frustrated me was that I had to wait too long to find out so many things. I wanted to know it all at once! But maybe not. I absolutely loved the pace of Big Little Lies and finding out little details here and there.
The idea behind the story is brilliant but I feel the author went overboard when executing it. The back and forth chapters worked well and I quite enjoyed them. The only thing I was not loving was the congestion of the secrets throughout the book. It was a little too much for one story. By the time I got to the big reveal I felt cheated. The buildup made it seem like it would be the most epic of reveals ever. It was extremely lackluster.
I feel like I just went on a rant but I had to get this out. I wanted so much more out of this but I believe there are people who loved the book. Maybe if I went in with lower expectations I would have loved the book. I went in expecting too much and was let down. Pick it up and give it a try. You’ll probably enjoy it more because I lowered your expectation.