Aussie Author Challenge Australian Women Writers Book Reviews Erin's Book Challenge

Book Review: Nine Perfect Strangers by Liane Moriarty #AWW2018

Frances Welty, a romance author, arrives at Tranquillum House against her better judgement for a ten-day retreat. She is nursing a bruised ego following a relationship break-up of sorts and a bad back which is possibly psychosomatic in nature. A ten-day health retreat sounds perfect. She encounters eight other guests at Tranquillum House, each with their own reasons for wanting to be there. There’s the young couple Jessica and Ben Chandler who want to save their marriage. The Marconi family – Heather, Napoleon and their twenty-year-old daughter, Zoe – don’t look like they need to be at a health retreat. The handsome and charismatic Lars Lee enjoys going to retreats every now and then. Carmel Schneider is hoping to lose weight and engage in self-care while her children travel overseas with her ex-husband and his new wife. Tony Hogburn is an ex-AFL player, sceptical about the retreat but still hoping to lose some excess weight.

But more intriguing than the guests for Frances is the founder of Tranquillum House – Masha Dmitrichenko. With the help of Yao, a paramedic in a previous life, she is focussed on helping the guests achieve their respective goals through mindfulness, yoga, meditation, massages and counselling. While some of it is luxurious, there is also work involved for the participants. But none of them is aware of just how much work they will need to do and how unorthodox some of Masha’s methods might be.

Liane Moriarty remains one of my favourite authors and once again, with this book, she proves why. She is insightful when it comes to characters and each voice is strong and unique in its own way. While I didn’t love any of the characters, I did quite like Zoe and Frances, flawed as they were. I appreciated the nuances, the flaws, the eccentricities of every character including why they are the way they are. Having said that, I was a bit disappointed with the plot this time. The twists weren’t necessarily mind-blowing and the climax for me was a bit melodramatic. In the past, Moriarty has always left me wanting to know more about what is going on but I didn’t have that urge this time around. But if you enjoy quirky characters and try not to compare this to her previous best-sellers, it’s a book you will enjoy.

My rating:

Where to find the author:

Website | Facebook |

***Read and reviewed for the 2018 Aussie Author Challenge by Jo, the 2018 Australian Women Writers’ Challenge and Erin’s book challenge 9.0***

Until next time,

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  • Rachna
    20 November 2018 at 5:23 pm

    Sounds like a mixed bag to me. Liked the review, Sanch. Let me now mull over whether I would want to read this one.

  • Obsessivemom
    20 November 2018 at 8:40 pm

    I’ve read only Big Little Lies and was totally blown away. She seems to lean towards multiple characters and parallel stories. I like that in a book. I hope the library has it. I absolutely don’t plan on buying more books but I do want to read this one.
    Obsessivemom recently posted…Fitness lesson No1 #fitnesscapsuleMy Profile

  • Shilpa Gupte
    21 November 2018 at 1:53 am

    I haven’t read this author, but have heard about Big Little Lies and so want to read that one!
    Your book reviews teach me so much each time I read them, that I make mental notes on what to include in my book review the next time I do it….but, when I do get down to writing the review, I mess it all up! πŸ™

  • Shalzmojo
    21 November 2018 at 1:35 pm

    I have read one book and watched one tele series based on her books -the latter blew me away. I wasnt too overwhelmed by her writing style. But then thats me!
    Loved the honest review Sanch!

  • Rajlakshmi
    21 November 2018 at 4:32 pm

    Haven’t read the author yet but have heard about her other title. I wonder if I should get this one or Big little lies.
    Rajlakshmi recently posted…What’s cooking!My Profile

    • Sanch @ Sanch Writes
      21 November 2018 at 4:41 pm

      If you leave Big Little Lies to the end, you won’t be disappointed by the rest πŸ˜‰

  • November 2018 Reflections - Sanch Writes
    1 December 2018 at 7:01 am

    […] quiet in November. Apart from my weekly gratitude posts, I reviewed Liane Moriarty’s Nine Perfect Strangers and I also wrote a post on how friendships are not kept just due to luck. I am going to have to […]