Aussie Author Challenge Book Reviews

Book Review: Truly, Madly, Guilty

Liane Moriarty’s latest book hit the shelves back in August. Being the fan that I am, I had to rush and buy it. I also had to read it quickly as I was going to see the author speak and definitely wanted to know what the book was about before I did that. But after that, I slacked off on writing the review.

The inciting incident in Truly Madly Guilty is a Sunday afternoon barbecue in a posh Sydney suburb {possibly the north shore!} where something really bad happens. What is it? We are not told at the start. All we know is that the three couples who attended the barbecue question their role that day and each one of them wishes they never went in the first place.

There is Clementine, a cellist who wakes early every morning to prepare for an audition but following the incident, gives up on her music and instead, prefers to give talks at public libraries about the incident and how one can’t be too careful. On the other hand, her husband Sam wants to do anything but talk about the incident. Instead, he becomes anxious and depressed. Their friends, Erika and Oliver, review their lives after being shaken by the incident. And then there are the hosts of the barbecue — Vid, a loud, materialistic but cheerful electrician, and his wife Tiffany, a former pole dancer but now a successful property developer. Clementine and Sam have two young daughters, Vid and Tiffany have one introverted and mature daughter with a love for reading while Erika and Oliver have no kids.

Apart from the incident, there are other issues Moriarty looks at in the book. The unusual friendship between Clementine and Erika where the former constantly wonders why they are friends. Erika’s own anxieties and her mother’s mental illness. And of course, the relationships between all the couples and the kids.

As I mentioned, I read the book pretty quickly. It’s partly because Moriarty is a master of suspense. She manages to keep you wondering about the incident until two-thirds of the way into the book. And because of that, you can’t put it down. She doesn’t disappoint either. She does a great job with her characters. Their little nuances, their quirks, their idiosyncrasies all play out realistically. I empathised the most with Erika and felt I could be friends with her. Her backstory and current situation really did tug at my heartstrings.

Seeing Moriarty speak live didn’t disappoint either. She’s such a down-to-earth author and undoubtedly one of my favourites. I can’t wait for what else she has in store!

My rating:

***This has been read and reviewed for the Aussie Author Challenge***

Until next time,


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