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Wednesday, July 20, 2011

What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty

Title: What Alice Forgot
Author: Liane Moriarty
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Publisher: Pan Macmillan, 2009
ISBN: 9781405038577

Rating: 4.5 Crowns

Can you imagine..............waking up from a strange dream and finding yourself lying injured on the floor of a gym? That's what happened to Alice Love and her first concern is for her unborn child followed by a desperate need to see her beloved husband, Nick.

But Alice isn't pregnant. And Nick is in the process of divorcing her. Alice has lost ten years of her life.

When Alice returns home from the hospital everything in her life is unrecognizable and during the days that follow and small bubbles of the past start to surface she begins to realize that it's not only her her home , her family and friends that are unfamiliar . She struggles to find herself in the person she has become and even worse , to like that woman.

My thoughts:  Surprise, surprise! A book of which I had no great expectations turned out to be one of the most compelling and thought-provoking reads of this year. I think it's a great pity that What Alice Forgot is constantly being  labelled as chicklit because it has a depth and intensity that books of that genre don't usually have.

It's a book about life and the changes that time brings to ourselves and our relationships. Not the big earth-shattering events but the small, everyday, inevitable occurrences we're barely aware of. Liane Moriarty has created wonderful characters encompassing all ages - the happy and optimistic young Alice, her children and Nick, her sister Elizabeth battling infertility problems, her once mousy Mum turned salsa dancer and Frannie, the honorary 'grandmother' who blogs from the retirement home. Their individual stories draw the reader right in at the emotional level but the true brilliance of the book lies in it's ability to make you look at and think about your own life . Which is why I think What Alice Forgot will be enjoyed by younger readers but older readers will truly connect and appreciate it more.
"She had always thought that exquisitely happy time at the beginning of her relationship with Nick was the ultimate, the feeling they's always be trying to replicate, to get back, but now she realised she was wrong. That was like comparing sparkling mineral water to champagne. Early love is exciting and exhilarating. It's light and bubbly. Anyone can love like that. But love after three children, after a separation and a near divorce, after you've hurt one another and forgiven each other, bored each other and surprised each other, after you've seen the worst and the best - well, that sort of love is ineffable. It deserves its own word."
I loved it! It's filled with all the drama of life and I laughed and I cried - for Alice and myself!
Highly recommended!

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Marce said...

I have heard great things about this one recently, have added to my Wishlist.

Can't believe she fell in spinning though :-0

Constance Reader said...

This is a new cover, but when I saw it, I thought it was a new book and got all excited! D'oh!

I highly recommend Moriarty's other books, especially Three Wishes.

Beth(bookaholicmom) said...

A friend just finished this and recommended it to me. She said it would be one of her favorite reads this year. If not for the great reviews, I probably would have passed this by. Thanks for the great review.

Cat said...

Marce - it wasn't spinning - she fell during a step aerobics class.

Constance - has been in my library for a while but the cover always put me off.

Beth - I hope you'll enjoy it as much as I did.