This book was so. freaking. good. Just go read it.
The book starts with a murder at a fundraising event for an elementary school called Pirriwee Public in Australia. Then we back up six months and meet the characters. “Glittery girl” Madeline has a teenager daughter with her ex, whose child with his new yoga-loving wife is in Madeline’s youngest (with her new husband)’s kindergarten class. Then there’s gorgeous, wealthy Celeste and her twin boys, also in the same class. And new to the area Jane, who is a good decade younger than the other mothers and raising her son, Ziggy, alone. Then there’s the Blonde Bobs, the working moms, etc. — a veritable Mean Girls of kindergarten mothers.
“Helicopter parents. Before I started at Pirriwee Public, I thought it was an exaggeration, this thing about parents being overly involved with their kids. I mean, my mum and dad loved me, they were, like, interested in me when I was growing up in the nineties, but they weren’t, like, obsessed with me.”
I loved the characters–both the sweethearts and the bitches. The various aspects of mothering are tackled head on, rather than cleaned up for a nice presentation. Celeste, in particular, becomes a much more complicated character than you would expect at first. Everything she goes through, and thinks, and believes, just really hit me hard.
Once you get past the briefly mentioned murder, you’re basically just learning about these women and their lives. Their increasingly twisted, fucked-up lives. A new revelation is dropped constantly, and most of them blew me away. Towards the end, I started formulating guesses in earnest about the murder: the victim, the killer, the circumstances. I was about 50% right, and the ending did not disappoint.
I haven’t ever read anything else by Liane Moriarty (I’d never even heard of her before my friend lent me this book), but I’m dying to know if her other novels are as consuming as this one!