Author: Liane Moriarty
Here is my first read for the New Year. It was a lovely Christmas present that was very exciting to receive - like any book that I get put in my hand. I also found myself landed in hospital, followed by a week of doing little but reading. Thank goodness I am a reader. Thank goodness I have Christmas presents to read.
So, what did I think of my first read of 2022?
Let's start by commenting that typing 2022 feels really weird!
Anyway, 'Apples Never Fall' is a gentle read. I really appreciated the angle which author took and that it wasn't the 'usual' outcome. There were the twists that accompany any missing person novel. There was the complexity of the mysterious house guest. There was the husband, who of course had to have been hiding something. Then there were the adult children, that could go through every emotion and argument to leave you questioning.
It became more than a missing person mystery to solve. But for those of you who have followed my blog/reviews, you will know that I like to dig deeper than the plot and you will not be surprised. In this novel we are given, a mother, father (husband and wife), four adult children with different personalities and hang ups, a mysterious house guest, and a tennis profession that plays into every dimension of the story. The way in which the life of each character is interwoven to their personalities via the connections of each individual (made prior to the present) is interesting, dynamic and important. It grabbed my interest. Especially when the details of the mysterious house guest came to light. I could say "I saw it all coming" but did I? I don't think I did. I should have!
Every character influenced the final outcome. Every one of us influence final outcomes without realising it. Most of the time we never see the connections. We don't stop to think what influence today has made on any minor human being in our presence that day. But this novel connected this very idea and bundled it up into a really good read.
Then the ending was brilliant! I was left satisfied with an outcome and impressed by the weaving together of an ending in which, I closed the book feeling it was complete.
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?