Published by Penguin May 2010
Having read and loved The Husband’s Secret by Liane Moriarty, earlier this year I decided to pack one of her previous books for my holiday onto my trusty kindle. This book was chosen for light relief on the beach after lots of murderous crimes, and I’m so grateful for my sunglasses as there were, I hate to admit, a few teary moments.
Imagine how it would feel to have lost ten years of your live, particularly if those ten years included the birth of a child that you think you are pregnant with. This is what happened to Alice Love following an accident at the gym.
When Alice comes round she soon realises that she is no longer the same person she was back in 1998. Her friends, her sister, her mother and her husband have all changed and so has she. The premise to Liane Moriarty’s book is an interesting one, which leads Alice to remember who she was and confront the woman she has become. Alice turns to her sister to fill in the missing gaps but Elizabeth has suffered in the previous ten years and the book is punctuated with her homework for Dr Hodges. The third great woman that populates these pages is Alice’s adopted Grandmother Frannie. Unmarried Frannie stepped in and helped Alice’s mother when the loss of her husband meant that she was unable to care for her two young daughters. These fantastic, yet far from saintly, women add some special layer’s to Alice’s story.
This is a light read with lots of humour on the pages disguising a book which tackles the challenge of how to grow without losing sight of who you really are and what really matters to you. There are some incredibly touching moments as Alice struggles to mend the bonds in numerous relationships that over the years have stretched out of shape. Liane Moriarty is a master at writing about the domestic details of life which might sound boring but when illuminated with her humorous take on life creates a cosy feeling of familiarity so that I was rooting for everything to work out for Alice.
“Ben told me that Tom had just spoken on the mobile to Alice and according to Tom she didn’t say anything about falling over at the gym and she sounded “Just like Mum except maybe ten to fifteen percent grumpier than usual.” I think he’s learning percentages at school right now. ”
A wonderful read which caused laughter and tears to this reader, one which I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend to others.