Tuesday 14 September 2021

Book Review: Apples Never Fall by Liane Moriarty

 Apples Never Fall
Liane Moriarty

The no. 1 New York Times bestselling author of Big Little Lies & Nine Perfect Strangers

Publisher: Macmillan Australia
Publication date: 14th September 2021 
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Pages: 496
RRP: $32.99AUD
Format read: Paperback
Source: Courtesy of the publisher
About the book
From the outside, the Delaneys appear to be an enviably contented family. Even after all these years, former tennis coaches Joy and Stan are still winning tournaments, and now they've sold the family business they have all the time in the world to learn how to 'relax'. Their four adult children are busy living their own lives, and while it could be argued they never quite achieved their destinies, no-one ever says that out loud.

But now Joy Delaney has disappeared and her children are re-examining their parents' marriage and their family history with fresh, frightened eyes. Is her disappearance related to their mysterious house guest from last year? Or were things never as rosy as they seemed in the Delaney household?
My review
After I thought Nine Perfect Strangers was a tad over-dramatic and unbelievable I was interested to see what road Moriarty would take next. I'm happy to say Apples Never Fall is fabulous! A superbly written family drama that has all the elements of a true page turner. 
The prologue pulls the reader straight into a mystery.
The story is told in present day where Joy Delaney is missing and then back over the previous five months that led up to Joy's disappearance.
In the present day: the four grown Delaney children are trying to sort out their own feelings and the rising fear that maybe their father has harmed their mother. As police interview each family member it's  clear everyone is holding something back and the circumstantial evidence against their father builds.
Previously: recently retired Joy and Stan Delaney find that time on their hands leads to resentments, unspoken grievances and regrets.
When a young woman arrives on their doorstep clearly distressed Joy invites her to stay. Suddenly Joy has meaning to life as she cares for Savannah.
Savannah also gives Joy the attention that has been lacking from her children. But cracks start to form and everyone starts to wonder what Savannah's true agenda is. 
Moriarty engineers a complex breaking down of each characters thoughts and dreams and we see everyone is holding something back. The mysteries are layered and compelling.
Apples Never Fall is a keenly observed family drama with finely nuanced characters. Underlying themes of domestic violence, anger and child abuse give a chilling look at parents in competitive sports.  
In Apples Never Fall Moriarty depicts marriage and family in all its love, rage, passion, grievances, regrets, dreams, resentments and splendid dysfunctionality.  Above all this is a story of the complexity of family and all things that are left unsaid.
My rating 5 / 5   ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ 

 About the author

Photo credit: Goodreads

Liane Moriarty is the Australian author of eight internationally bestselling novels, Three Wishes, The Last Anniversary, What Alice Forgot, The Hypnotist's Love Story and the number one New York Times bestsellers The Husband's Secret, Big Little Lies and Truly Madly Guilty and most recently Nine Perfect Strangers. Her books have sold over twenty million copies worldwide, including three million in Australia and New Zealand.

Liane lives in Sydney with her husband, son and daughter.

Challenges Entered: Australian Women Writers Challenge AWW2021
                                   Aussie Author Challenge #Aussieauthor21


  1. I'm so happy to hear you enjoyed the book. I have it on my TBR list. I also have Nine Perfect Strangers as I haven't read that one yet. Great review.

  2. I really enjoyed this one too! The competitive sports angle was fascinating.

  3. I have always wanted to read this author's work, but never had the opportunity. Glad you enjoyed Apples Never Fall.

  4. This isn't something I would normally pick up, but I have heard good things about Liane Moriarty!