Book review: Nine Perfect Strangers — by Liane Moriarty

(Flatiron Books)
Liane Moriarty, the New York Times bestselling author of “Big Little Lies,” “Truly Madly Guilty” and “The Husband’s Secret,” continues to explore seemingly blessed lives that turn out to be anything but. In her newest thrilling novel, nine perfect strangers enter the very exclusive and decidedly posh Tranquillum House, a 19th-century mansion-turned-resort in the far reaches of Australia, hoping for the quick fix, even perhaps to shed a few kilos. When they emerge, indeed, their lives have been radically changed. Tightly run by the charismatic, handsomely leonine Masha, the retreat is well known for its spectacular results, and the new guests expect nothing less than the full spa treatment. However, when Masha decides to try a highly experimental approach, she finds herself thinking, “This is not how it was supposed to go.” Part of the joy of this book lies in the characters attempting to bridge the chasms between them — different cultures and childhoods — and find commonalities. And the delightful Frances, a once very successful but now struggling romance author, gives Moriarty a chance to reflect on her own profession as well as the state of reading in today’s age. Droll commentaries and sarcastic wits contrast earnest innocents and make for a wicked-fun read. All in the name of a good purge.
— Reviewed by Jenny Lyons of The Vermont Book Shop in Middlebury.
11 Fabulous Fall Fiction Books
The Witch Elm, by Tana French
Bitter Orange, by Claire Fuller
The Reckoning, by John Grisham
Vendetta, by Iris Johansen
The Winter Soldier, by Daniel Mason
Transcription, by Kate Atkinson
The Clockmaker’s Daughter, by Kate Morton
Killing Commendatore, by Haruki Murakami
Everything Under, by Daisy Johnson
Virgil Wander, by Leif Enger
Washington Black, by Esi Edugyan

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