The retreat promised to change their lives, but not in the way they imagined...
Liane Moriarty is one of Australia’s most popular authors internationally with her eighth novel, Nine Perfect Strangers easily upholding her reputation. Moriarty’s strength lies not only in her ability to unfold a mystery but, more so, in developing communities of nuanced characters that are as recognisable as you or me. They’re flawed, funny, neurotic at times, and each views the world in their own peculiar way.
The magnificent Caroline Lee returns as the narrator for the audiobook adaptation of Moriarty’s latest novel and is as welcomed back as the author herself. With a theatrical background and more than 90 audiobook narrations under her belt, Lee is a master storyteller who brings forth the energy and subtleties of every character. Her delivery is yet again impeccable here as she delivers on a large cast of characters, making each one unique and believable.
Nine Perfect Strangers sees that number of people arrive for a ten-day health retreat. Isolated from the world and forced to live under strict conditions for the betterment of their health, their over-zealous, unconventional resort Director pushes each to their limits, bringing out their fears and neuroses. Each is there for their own reason but the experience both bonds the group and tears them apart, particularly when someone goes missing and the obsession of the Director begins to become apparent.
The story intertwines mystery, comedy and drama, as does all of Moriarty’s novels. The books are page turners and the audiobooks, under Lee’s deft hand, are best heard on a long drive or two because they’re difficult to switch off. Running approximately 19 hours, Nine Perfect Strangers is another must-have audiobook adaptation for lovers of quality work or Liane Moriarty’s writing.
Reviewed by Rod Lewis
Rating out of 5: 5
Distributed by: Bolinda Audio
Released: September 2018