Truly Madly Guilty by Liane Moriarty was a difficult book to review. Centred around a barbecue with 3 couples and their 3 children attending. Truly Madly Guilty focuses on a specific event that occurred at the barbecue, an event that affects all. As stated, I have found this a difficult book to review, mainly because what happens at the barbecue is such a small centrepiece.
The book itself could be considered a prime example of a slow-burner. It takes such a ridiculously long time to actually reach the plot point that I started making up my own imaginary barbecue happenings. Alien abductions. Cult with human sacrifice. The Muppets performing as entertainment. What actually happens at the barbecue is much more mundane and pedestrian.
This tale of suburban happenings is told from the 6 adults and the older child’s point of view. The 6 adults really did not come across as likeable characters, however their behaviours felt very realistic. It actually gave me pause to think about the flaws that we all have. The oldest child, Dakota was much more likeable. I’d like to think that Liane Moriarty did this on purpose. It shows how we all start out, and the good and bad effects those around us can have on our own personalities. The book certainly had the effect of making me very introspective whilst reading it.
You certainly need patience to read this book, if you prefer wall to wall action then Truly Madly Guilty is not the book for you. It isn’t the kind of book that I would usually pick up, as it’s not a form of escapism. However, Truly Madly Guilty is extremely well written. A true study of the human condition. At points it’s actually painful it’s accuracy. Liane Moriarty has a talent for writing the inner dialogues that we all have, highlighting the inadequacies the characters perceive in themselves.
Truly Madly Guilty could not be considered a fun read. The darkness of this book are brought out of the dark places in the characters minds. So fun, no. But delivered perfectly. A clear 4 star read.
****Disclaimer – I would like to thank the author Liane Moriarty, the publisher – Michael Joseph & Penguin UK and NetGalley for providing me with a copy of Truly Madly Guilty in exchange for my honest review. This is my honest review and all opinions expressed are my own****