Liane Moriarty isn’t an author I have come across before, however she is now an author on my to read list for past and future novels. Feeling guilty is an emotion that affects everyone in very different ways. The storyline begins with a barbecue, your average summer barbecue in a neighbours back yard. A chance invitation that brings people together for good food, laughter and socializing. So why does that barbecue weigh heavily on everyone’s minds after that afternoon? Why do all the guests and the hosts wish the barbecue had never taken place in the first place?
Clementine and Erika are childhood friends which comes with its own issues and possibilities, so when a casual afternoon tea between Sam and Clementine and Erika and Oliver turns into a barbecue with Vid and Tiffany, neighbours of Erika and Oliver, the plot line begins its journey.
Truly Madly Guilty is a little bit like a steam train, whilst we learned a lot about the characters, Sam and Clementine, Vid and Tiffany, Erika and Oliver, we are kept guessing on what actually happened at the barbecue for at least half of the book. Reading up what happened we are able to delve quite deeply into each of the characters without the read becoming heavy and overly detailed.
As the book switches between present day and the day of the barbecue, lives of the characters unfold in front of us, preparing us for the guilty feelings each and every character has. I was very impressed with the writing style of Liane Moriarty as she helped me understand the characters and also the outside characters that help knit the story together. Aside from the central six characters, we meet a neighbour, the children of the characters and also parents which all play a big part in how everyone has come to the point they are now in their lives. It has been very cleverly written if a little slow to begin with.
I wondered that when I discovered what happened that day at the barbecue, would the book fall flat towards the ending, but I was pleasantly surprised as I continued to learn new information and be able to piece the puzzle together right up until the last page which wasn’t so much of a twist reveal but a tidy end to the book which left me feeling content as I know all the answers now.
Truly Madly Deeply is published on 28th July 2016 by Penguin Books
Disclosure – I received an ARC of the book but all opinions are my own