Liane Moriarty, an Australian author celebrated for her captivating storytelling and intricate character development, has left an indelible mark on the global literary scene. With a knack for weaving compelling domestic narratives that resonate with readers, Moriarty’s work bridges the gap between mystery, drama, and humor.
This blog post aims to guide you through the world of Moriarty’s masterpieces, arranged chronologically, offering insights into each novel’s nuanced plot and characters. From her debut novel to her most recent work, let’s embark on a literary journey through Moriarty’s impressive oeuvre.
About Liane Moriarty
Born in Sydney in 1966, Liane Moriarty is an acclaimed Australian author known for her complex and thought-provoking novels. She began her writing career in the advertising industry before deciding to pursue her passion for storytelling full-time.
Moriarty has a distinct style of writing that intertwines elements of mystery, humor, and real-life drama, creating compelling narratives that hook readers from the first page. She gained international recognition with her novel “Big Little Lies,” which was adapted into an award-winning HBO series.
Liane Moriarty Books in Order:
- “Three Wishes” (2003)
- “The Last Anniversary” (2005)
- “What Alice Forgot” (2009)
- “The Hypnotist’s Love Story” (2011)
- “The Husband’s Secret” (2013)
- “Big Little Lies” (2014)
- “Truly Madly Guilty” (2016)
- “Nine Perfect Strangers” (2018)
- “Apples Never Fall” (2021)
1. “Three Wishes” (2003)
“Three Wishes” introduces us to Lyn, Cat, and Gemma Kettle, charming triplets who are celebrating their 33rd year in the chaos of a noisy Sydney restaurant. Despite their sibling bond, they couldn’t be more different. Lyn has a Stepford-perfect family and struggles to balance motherhood with her successful career.
Cat has recently learned some startling news about her marriage and fears for her future, while carefree, bohemian Gemma dodges commitment and is starting to feel the strain of her non-attached lifestyle.
Quick Fact: As the year progresses, these three women find their lives intertwined in ways they never could have imagined, proving that love, laughter, and tears are never too far away.
2. “The Last Anniversary” (2005)
Sophie Honeywell is startled to learn that she has inherited a house on Scribbly Gum Island from an ex-boyfriend’s aunt. The island is famous for the unsolved Munro Baby mystery, but the eccentric members of the island community have some secrets of their own.
As Sophie settles into her new life, she learns about the real story behind the baby mystery, experiences the trials and tribulations of motherhood, and finds love in unexpected places. Moriarty weaves a compelling tale of mystery, love, and the power of family in the backdrop of an extraordinary setting.
3. “What Alice Forgot” (2009)
Alice Love, 29, believes she’s blissfully married and pregnant with her first child. She is shocked to discover she’s actually 39, a mother of three, and on the verge of divorce. Ten years of her life have disappeared, and she is left to piece together what happened, using clues from her past and the perspectives of those around her.
As she explores her life over the past decade and tries to figure out what caused her memory loss, Alice is forced to confront the reality of how much her life has changed and how she’s changed along with it.
4. “The Hypnotist’s Love Story” (2011)
Ellen O’Farrell is a professional hypnotherapist who falls in love with a man who makes an unusual confession: an ex-girlfriend is stalking him. Instead of being scared away, Ellen is intrigued. She doesn’t expect to cross paths with the stalker, Saskia, and when she does, she finds herself empathizing with her.
As the story unfolds, it becomes a complex tangle of relationships, and Ellen begins to question the lines between right and wrong, love and obsession.
5. “The Husband’s Secret” (2013)
Cecilia Fitzpatrick’s life is shattered when she stumbles upon a letter written by her husband, meant to be opened after his death. But he’s not dead yet. The letter contains a life-changing secret with far-reaching consequences. As Cecilia grapples with the secret, it affects not just her and her family, but also Tess and Rachel, two women with their own struggles.
The three lives intersect in a profound and unexpected way, raising questions about the nature of truth and forgiveness.
6. “Big Little Lies” (2014)
This is a brilliant take on ex-husbands and second wives, mothers and daughters, schoolyard scandal, and the dangerous little lies we tell ourselves just to survive.
The story revolves around three women, each at a crossroads: Madeline, a force to be reckoned with, who’s confronting her ex-husband and his yogi new wife Celeste, beautiful and wealthy, who seems to have it all but is hiding a secret; and Jane, a young single mother harboring doubts about her son.
A murder at a school trivia night unravels their lives, exposing deceptions and truths that have significant consequences for each of them. Moriarty deftly navigates through the veneer of an idyllic coastal town, showing us that nothing is as perfect as it seems.
7. “Truly Madly Guilty” (2016)
This novel portrays the lives of three couples, who were at a backyard barbecue when a tragic accident occurred, shattering their lives. In the aftermath, they find their relationships strained and their lives changed in ways they never expected. As the narrative unfolds, it delves into the nature of marriage, the power of friendship, and the challenges of parenthood.
Quick Fact: Through a series of flashbacks and present-day narratives, the characters grapple with guilt, regret, and the complex dynamics of their relationships, leading to a tense climax that forces them to confront their darkest fears and secrets.
8. “Nine Perfect Strangers” (2018)
This book takes us to a remote health-and-wellness resort where nine stressed city dwellers are looking to get on a path to a better way of living. Watching over them during this 10-day retreat is the resort’s director, a woman on a mission to reinvigorate their tired minds and bodies.
However, these nine “perfect” strangers have no idea what is about to hit them. As the days of the retreat tick by, all the guests at the resort find themselves experiencing unexpected transformations. Moriarty masterfully explores the depth of human emotions and the desire for transformation and rejuvenation.
9. “Apples Never Fall” (2021)
The Delaney family, once united by their love for tennis, finds their bond tested when Joy Delaney, the matriarch, goes missing without a trace. The four grown Delaney children are left reeling, burdened by the suspicion that their father, a former tennis star, might be involved in their mother’s disappearance.
As the police investigation unfolds, long-held family secrets emerge, threatening to shatter their perceptions of their parents. Through the lens of the Delaney family, Moriarty crafts a poignant narrative about family dynamics, aging, and the different ways people cope with life’s disappointments.
In what order should I read Liane Moriarty’s books?
Liane Moriarty’s books are standalone novels, meaning that they aren’t part of a series and can be read in any order. However, some readers prefer to read an author’s works chronologically to observe the evolution of their writing style and themes over time.
Starting with Moriarty’s debut novel, “Three Wishes,” and continuing in the order of publication may provide you with an understanding of her growth as a writer.
Her works, in order of publication, are “Three Wishes,” “The Last Anniversary,” “What Alice Forgot,” “The Hypnotist’s Love Story,” “The Husband’s Secret,” “Big Little Lies,” “Truly Madly Guilty,” “Nine Perfect Strangers,” and “Apples Never Fall.”
Regardless of the order you choose, you’ll appreciate Moriarty’s skillful character development, intricate plots, and insightful exploration of human relationships and societal issues.
What is Liane Moriarty’s best-selling book?
As of my knowledge cutoff in September 2021, Liane Moriarty’s best-selling book is “Big Little Lies.” This novel has sold millions of copies worldwide and has been translated into multiple languages.
Expert Tip: The book’s popularity skyrocketed when it was adapted into an award-winning television series by HBO, featuring an ensemble cast including Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman, and Shailene Woodley.
The story, with its compelling characters and gripping narrative, combined with the themes of domestic violence, friendship, and the facades we maintain in society, resonated with a broad audience, making it a massive success both commercially and critically.
Is “Apples Never Fall” part of a series?
“Apples Never Fall” is not part of a series. Like all of Liane Moriarty’s books, it is a standalone novel. The book tells the story of the Delaney family and the upheaval they face when the matriarch, Joy Delaney, mysteriously disappears. The narrative delves into the complexities of familial relationships, secrets, and the past’s impact on the present.
It’s a testament to Moriarty’s skill as a writer that she can create such rich, complex worlds within each standalone novel, immersing readers in the lives of her characters.
Is the “Big Little Lies” book a series?
“Big Little Lies” is a standalone novel, but it was adapted into a television series by HBO. The TV series, like the book, focuses on three women living in the seemingly perfect town of Monterey, California, and the unraveling of their lives following a murder at a school trivia night.
The show was initially conceived as a miniseries, but due to its immense popularity, it was extended for a second season. The novel itself, however, does not have a sequel or prequel, and the second season of the TV series extends beyond the plot of the original book.
How does Liane Moriarty develop her characters?
Liane Moriarty is renowned for her complex and multifaceted characters, who are as flawed as they are relatable. She excels at capturing the nuances of their personalities, their innermost thoughts, and the mundane details of their lives, which make them feel real and relatable.
Moriarty also explores the dynamics between her characters, carefully building their relationships with each other. Whether it’s the bond of sisterhood in “Three Wishes,” the tangled love triangle in “The Hypnotist’s Love Story,” or the friendships in “Big Little Lies,” the interactions between her characters are as compelling as the individuals themselves.
This depth of character development enables readers to empathize with her characters, regardless of their circumstances, making her stories engaging and memorable.
What themes are commonly found in Liane Moriarty’s books?
Liane Moriarty’s books often tackle intricate themes that resonate with a wide array of readers. She explores the complexities of interpersonal relationships, whether familial, platonic, or romantic. Her stories frequently delve into the dynamics of marriages, friendships, and family ties, revealing both the beauty and the challenges inherent in these bonds.
Another recurring theme is the exploration of societal pressures and the facades that people maintain to appear perfect. She also touches on darker issues such as domestic abuse, infidelity, and mental health. Despite these heavy themes, her narratives are often infused with humor, providing a balance that enhances the appeal of her stories.
Is Liane Moriarty’s writing style easy to understand?
Liane Moriarty’s writing style is known for its accessibility and appeal to a broad audience. She writes in a conversational tone that’s easy to understand, but this simplicity doesn’t detract from the depth and complexity of her stories. Moriarty has a knack for weaving intricate plots filled with suspense and unexpected twists, keeping readers engaged from start to finish.
Quick Fact: She also excels at creating vivid, relatable characters, making her books easy to connect with. Despite the complexity of the themes she tackles, Moriarty’s clear and compelling writing ensures that her stories are both entertaining and thought-provoking.
What is the setting of most of Liane Moriarty’s books?
The majority of Liane Moriarty’s books are set in Australia, often in suburban or coastal areas. This setting plays a significant role in her narratives, contributing to the atmosphere and mood of her stories. The seemingly perfect communities serve as a backdrop to the intricate dramas unfolding in her characters’ lives.
The setting also provides a unique cultural context to her narratives, adding another layer of depth to her stories. Moriarty’s vivid descriptions of these locales make them come alive, adding to the immersive experience of reading her books.
Have any other books by Liane Moriarty been adapted for the screen?
Apart from “Big Little Lies,” Liane Moriarty’s “Nine Perfect Strangers” has also been adapted into a television series. The show, like the novel, follows nine individuals attending a wellness retreat, where their quest for transformation takes a strange and unexpected turn.
The series features a star-studded cast including Nicole Kidman and Melissa McCarthy, and like “Big Little Lies,” it captures the intrigue, humor, and emotional depth of Moriarty’s novel.
How has Liane Moriarty influenced the literary world?
Liane Moriarty has made a significant impact on the literary world, particularly in the genre of contemporary fiction. Her ability to weave complex, relatable characters and gripping narratives has won her a large and dedicated readership.
Moriarty’s exploration of intricate themes, her insightful commentary on societal norms, and her knack for balancing humor with darker elements have set her apart as a unique voice in literature. Her success has paved the way.
In conclusion, Liane Moriarty’s books offer a unique blend of relatable characters, intricate plots, and exploration of complex themes. Whether you’re new to her work or a long-time fan, her books provide a captivating reading experience.
They’re more than just tales of family, friendship, and love, they’re a mirror reflecting the complexities of human nature and the society we live in. With books like “Big Little Lies” and “Nine Perfect Strangers” adapted into successful TV series, Moriarty’s influence extends beyond the literary world, impacting the realm of television as well.
Whichever order you choose to read her books, you’re sure to be drawn into Moriarty’s vividly painted worlds, rich with intrigue, humor, and raw human emotion. Each novel stands alone, but together, they form an impressive testament to Moriarty’s storytelling prowess and keen understanding of the human condition.