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Please note – this review and the book touches on the topics of depression and suicide. If you are struggling or experiencing suicidal thoughts please ask for help. Call 1-800-273-8255 or go to suicidepreventionlifeline.org.
Nine Perfect Strangers’ Back-of-Book Description
Nine people gather at a remote health resort. Some are here to lose weight, some are here to get a reboot on life, some are here for reasons they can’t even admit to themselves. Amidst all of the luxury and pampering, the mindfulness and meditation, they know these ten days might involve some real work. But none of them could imagine just how challenging the next ten days are going to be.
Frances Welty, the formerly best-selling romantic novelist, arrives at Tranquillum House nursing a bad back, a broken heart, and an exquisitely painful paper cut. She’s immediately intrigued by her fellow guests. Most of them don’t look to be in need of a health resort at all. But the person that intrigues her most is the strange and charismatic owner/director of Tranquillum House. Could this person really have the answers Frances didn’t even know she was seeking? Should Frances put aside her doubts and immerse herself in everything Tranquillum House has to offer – or should she run while she still can?
It’s not long before every guest at Tranquillum House is asking exactly the same question.
I am a Liane Moriarty fan! I’ve read several of her other books, including Big Little Lies (which had a great series adaptation). She’s an Australian writer; all her books take place there, which I find enjoyable, charming even. But some people might be thrown by the oddness of particular words or seasonal descriptions.
Anyway, Nine Perfect Strangers was perhaps my favorite Liane Moriarty books yet! I breezed through it super fast and enjoyed every page. It’s laid out so that every chapter is from someone else’s point of view, which I love. It gives you a chance to learn a little bit about them, but maintains the pace and keeps you wanting to know more.
She really did such a wonderful job introducing each character and slowly acquainting the reader to them and their back story. I found myself feeling connected to each one in little ways and letting their movie versions take shape in my mind. Same with the setting description – I never struggled to imagine the locations and how the building and scenery looked.
The book touched on some really important issues that will resonate with a variety of readers; marriage issues, money, self-image, and losing a loved one to suicide, to name a few. In my opinion and from my experience, I think she handled grief really well. Suicide is an incredibly hard and tricky topic to navigate but Nine Perfect Strangers laid it out with grace and honestly, which I really appreciated.The book touched on some really important issues that will resonate with a variety of readers; marriage issues, money, self-image, and losing a loved one to suicide, to name a few. Click To Tweet
Each guest of the health resort – and some of the staff – has their own struggles and their own path for working through things. The story takes you through some wonderful character growth and emotions while also including some intrigue and suspense. A few of the situations seemed a bit weird, but given the plot, it’s all pretty plausible.
On top of all of this, she had a lot of fantastic quotes.
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Favorite Quotes from Nine Perfect Strangers
“One must placate large strange men in the middle of nowhere.”
“Don’t let your heart be a casualty of your head.”
“When you’re starved of something you should receive in abundance, you never quite trust it.”
“It was strange how something could appear so attractive and then, the very moment you committed to it, become wildly unattractive.”
“…we have to separate [him] from the way he chose to end his life. There was so much more to [him] than his suicide. One memory should not eclipse all the other memories.”
“There was no point in saying, ‘You mustn’t feel responsible’. Of course she felt responsible. Denying her regret would be like denying her loss.”
“There was no adequate English word to describe the kind of anguished longing she felt for something she could not have and did not even want.”
As you can tell, I loved Nine Perfect Strangers. 4 out of 5 stars. There were just a couple of characters that I found a little… shallow. And their story arc was a bit flat. But hey – there was a large cast and a lot of ground to cover, topic wise. There was one woman that kept making me think “shut up! get over it!” But who knows – other people might completely relate to her struggles and appreciate her expression of them.
I would recommend this for any fiction lover, especially those of the relationship drama variety. There was a bit of suspense though, too so it might appeal to a wider audience! Click one of the links above to check it out or buy it for a friend!
If you are struggling or experiencing suicidal thoughts please ask for help. Call 1-800-273-8255 or go to suicidepreventionlifeline.org.
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