106. ‘Nine Perfect Strangers’ by Liane Moriarty.

Picked up on a whim in a recent charity shopping spree searching for costume jewellery for BeckyandVince, and thoroughly enjoyed in an afternoon sitting! This is an entertaining and quite cleverly put together novel, using a similar methodology to Agatha Christie’s ‘And Then There Were None’ – put a group of strangers with hidden pasts together in isolation and away we go, although (spoiler) Ms Moriarty doesn’t kill them all off one by one as Agatha did.

It’s a little hard to go into any detail reviewing this without giving too much away – but I will say that the plot does keep twisting and turning in a lively manner all the way through to the end. And some of those nine strangers, who aren’t all actually strangers, have some quite startling issues they are dealing with and which have driven them to Tranquillum House.

Tranquillum House is a health and well being retreat in the Australian countryside, and the Nine Perfect Strangers, who are not all in fact strangers, have all signed up for varying reasons which will gradually become apparent. Meanwhile, the Director is altogether surprising and possibly a little over the top weird! There’s a big twist halfway through the book which I did not see coming, some further complete surprises, nice snappy dialogue, and overall it rolls along in a fairly satisfying and entertaining manner – what I and Mum always referred to as ‘a jolly good beach read’. And I do like the cover illustration very much!

Not the greatest book I have read recently but certainly not the worst; ‘Neanderthal’ wins that contest easily. Overall, I’d recommend as light reading, and I wouldn’t be averse to reading some of Liane Moriarty’s other books should I come across one, although I probably won’t actively seek one out to be honest. I prefer a ‘meatier’ book most of the time, personally. Although there’s always a beach to be read on somewhere here in South East Queensland!

Thanks for reading, and have a beautiful day! I’ll be gifting this book forward as always, but probably from the market stall I have been doing with my BeckyandVince goodies – I’m always happy to post a book that belonged to my dear Mum in the spirit of sharing her glorious library anywhere, but an op shop copy doesn’t really warrant the postage costs, very high from here to an overseas destination sadly. Easy to find a copy if you fancy a read though!

Becky X