AudioBook Review : Truly Madly Guilty by Liane Moriarty

November 23, 2016 Audio Review, Book review 3 ★★★½

2016 has been the year when I devoured all the Liane Moriarty books.  So I was chewing at the bit to get my hands on her 2016 début novel.  But then on GR something awful happened.  All my friends started to drop 2 and 3 star ratings on Truly Madly Guilty by Liane Moriarty.  *groans*  Did I agree?  Not really, but  I could see where they were coming from.

AudioBook Review : Truly Madly Guilty by Liane MoriartyTruly Madly Guilty by Liane Moriarty
Published by Flatiron Books on July 26th 2016
Genres: Contemporary, Emotions & Feelings, Family Life, Love & Romance
Pages: 415
Format: Audiobook
Source: Library
Narrator: Caroline Lee
Length: 17 hours 32 minutes

Six responsible adults. Three cute kids. One small dog. It’s just a normal weekend. What could possibly go wrong?

Sam and Clementine have a wonderful, albeit, busy life: they have two little girls, Sam has just started a new dream job, and Clementine, a cellist, is busy preparing for the audition of a lifetime. If there’s anything they can count on, it’s each other.

Clementine and Erika are each other’s oldest friends. A single look between them can convey an entire conversation. But theirs is a complicated relationship, so when Erika mentions a last minute invitation to a barbecue with her neighbors, Tiffany and Vid, Clementine and Sam don’t hesitate. Having Tiffany and Vid’s larger than life personalities there will be a welcome respite.

Two months later, it won’t stop raining, and Clementine and Sam can’t stop asking themselves the question: What if we hadn’t gone?

In Truly Madly Guilty, Liane Moriarty takes on the foundations of our lives: marriage, sex, parenthood, and friendship. She shows how guilt can expose the fault lines in the most seemingly strong relationships, how what we don’t say can be more powerful than what we do, and how sometimes it is the most innocent of moments that can do the greatest harm.

addictive AUDIOBOOK Page-Turner Refreshing Well Written

My Thoughts on Truly Madly Guilty by Liane Moriarty

When it comes to Liane Moriarty books, I’m declaring myself an expert on her style!  Well I have binge read them all.  And her style is a casual breezy tone and relatable characters.  This book has in abundance.

The characters : ordinary people, ordinary lives

She showcases ordinary people, living ordinary lives in ordinary suburbs.  There is no huge plotline going on (although of course there is a plot), but for me the gloss is in the ordinary detail.  I related to the characters.  Personally I have felt some of their thoughts.  I felt myself nodding in agreement.  Maybe it’s my age but I feel there is something in her writing voice that speaks to me.

“Everyone had another sort of life up their sleeve that might have made them happy.”

I don’t find the ordinary boring.  People are wonderfully complicated and I love how that shows in her characters.  The bad ones have so much good in them, the good ones have bad thoughts and it’s all just an addictive mix of every shade of humanity for me.  I hate when books overgeneralise behaviour and complicated works so much better for me.

The Plot : Dun, dun, duuunnn!

There is a barbecue and SOMETHING happens.  You have to wait most of the book to find out what the something is.  And if all you want is the big reveal, then you have to wait and wait and wait.  I appreciated the variety of characters though and while I pondered the “something”, it wasn’t the whole story for me.  The story was the characters and their feelings and their lives.  The whiny Clementine, the needy Erika, the effusive neighbours, I savoured the details and was emotionally invested in the topics dealt with.

Final Thought

Overall it’s a thumbs up for me.  What Alice forgot is still my flat-out favourite Liane Moriarty book, followed by Big Little Lies and The Husband’s Secret.  This book comes in beneath those but I’m more than happy with the hours I spent with it.


Rating Report
Did I feel it?
Overall: three-half-stars


Who should read Truly Madly Guilty by Liane Moriarty?

If you enjoy contemporary fiction with a very character driven style, then I’d recommend this to you.  I highly recommend the audiobook format as the narrator is charming and matches the tone of the book perfectly.  Fans of Lisa Jewell and JoJo Moyes should also enjoy.


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3 Responses to “AudioBook Review : Truly Madly Guilty by Liane Moriarty”

  1. Greg

    I notced more lukewarm reviews for this one too, and while it was no Big Little Lies I still thought it was good. For me this book was about the journey, not the destination- if you’re just looking for the reveal, then yeah maybe it takes too long to get there, but if you just enjoy all the character development along the way, that’s what I think she was going for. And to be honest, some weren’t impressed by the end but I was kinda moved by the way things worked out. You know, the neighbor thing. Can’t say more- spoilery. But I agree- good book.

    And even though I’m a guy I find myself nodding at some of her characters’ observations as well. I think middle class/ suburban/ whatever life has some commonalities, and she seems to tap into or speak to those. I noticed a lot of that in Big Little Lies and Husband’s secret too.
    Greg recently posted…Favorite Imaginative Artists

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