“Hmmmmm, I wouldn’t say the entire school community is grieving. That might be a stretch.”
There begins our tale. A parent has died at the local elementary’s “Audrey & Elvis” fundraising trivia night and the cops are trying to figure out if any shenanigans were afoot. A quick rewind is conducted taking the reader back to the beginning of the school year and covering the goings on up to the night of the incident . . . .
That’s how Madeline meets newcomer Jane – a woman mistaken for a nanny at new student orientation . . . .
“She’s a mother. She’s just young. You know, like we used to be.”
^^^^Those were Madeline’s words, not mine. Allow me just a moment to express my adoration for Madeline . . . .
As much as women across the interwebs claim to be the nicest people in the universe, who would never *gasp* dare talk about another female and proclaim to always fart rainbows and spread sunshine and roses amongst the land I GUAR.AN.TEE. a ginormo chunk of you will find Madeline completely relatable (and probably very much like your real self) . . . .
“Never forgive. Never forget. That’s my motto.”
Own it. It’s okay to embrace your inner asshole.
Madeline is the person you want to be within earshot of if you want to know what’s up without having to suck ass for the info . . . .
“The Blond Bobs rule the school. If you want to be on the PTA, you have to have a blond bob.”
“This must be how Jennifer Anniston feels, thought Madeline, whenever she hears about Angelina and Brad adopting another orphan or two.”
She also converses with her spouse in a similar fashion as many of us . . . .
“I thought we didn’t say ‘shut up’ in our house.”
“Fuck off, then.”
And does awesome things like create an “Erotic Book Club” that doesn’t really read erotic books but simply uses that name in order to keep the goody-goodies away.
Madeline needs a release because her little corner of Australia is full of pretty much the worst people you’ll ever meet . . . . .
“We’re doing a petition to ban parents from sending in cupcakes for the whole class on their kids’ birthdays. There’s an obesity crisis.”
Let me introduce you to these parents . . . . .
For the most part they’re all nameless to me, except for Harper . . . .
Ugh. The worst.
Harper is one of the petition pushers and the type of mother who wants your 5-year old kid expelled for “bullying” when they dared to notice her kid’s barrettes didn’t match one day. Blech. Enjoy having your speshul snowflake live in your basement until you’re dead, dipshit.
Anyway, obviously Madeline was my favorite and pretty much the only type of mom I’m willing to befriend in real life, but she actually had the least juicy storyline. Jane and Celeste each had a much more interesting arc, but I’m scurrrrred of being spoiley. Please note, even though this is shelved by many as a “mystery” the delivery is much like What Alice Forgot - someone is dead so there is a “mystery” aspect, but it’s really a character study and discovering . . . . .
“It occurred to her that there were so many levels of evil in the world. Small evils like her own malicious words. Bigger evils like walking out on your wife and newborn baby or sleeping with your child’s nanny. And then there was the sort of evil which Madeline had no experience: cruelty in hotel rooms and violence in suburban homes and little girls being sold like merchandise, shattering innocent hearts.”
And without spoiling anything, let me just say – DAT ENDING . . . . .
Also, this author writes the best kids. She’s smart that they aren’t in it enough to really be the focus, but their interactions are so real . . . .
“I love you so much, Ziggy.”
“I need that spoon pretty fast,” said Ziggy.
I think I used “real” about one hundred and twelve times too many in this review, but that’s the word that comes to mind with both of Liane Moriarty’s books I’ve read. I’m quickly becoming her number one fan . . . .
This one gets 4 Stars instead of 5 for the simple fact that it was too long and when the pacing went off the rails it was pretty noticeable to me. NOW SOMEONE GIVE ME YOUR HBO-TO-GO LOG IN AND PASSWORD STAT SO I CAN WATCH THIS MAH FAH!
Okay, now I’m going to get spoiley because I just can’t stop myself. DO NOT CLICK IF YOU DON’T WANT TO KNOW THINGS!
(view spoiler)[ I have not been so satisfied with a story’s outcome since . . . . .
And for any trolls out there who might be seeing this and wanted to tell me how I read that Colleen Hoover wife-beating piece of shit wrong, you can all fuck off and you should read this if you want to know about broken fucking women and how they wake up and deal with life every damn day after being treated like a pile of garbage . . . .
“I could actually do anything right now because he still feels so bad about what happened the last time. So right now everything is great. Better than great. That’s the problem, see. It’s so good right now, it’s almost . . . .” She stopped.
“Worth it. It’s almost worth it.”
^^^That’s some truth right there. (hide spoiler)]
EDIT: Because I'm a moron and forgot the most important thing. This was #3 in my quest to earn my new mug through the library's "Read to Reel" Winter Reading Challenge!