Three Wishes by Liane Moriarty

This past year, I've come to discover some truly unforgettable Australian authors. Many due to the influence (and enthusiastic reviews) of Nomes who recently gushed about Liane Moriarty's latest What Alice Forgot. Well, discovering that Liane is sister to the incomparable Jaclyn Moriarty, I was more than ready to give her books a go on that point alone. Since Alice isn't available in my neck of the woods yet, I set about tracking down her backlist pronto and first up was the infinitely funny yet poignant novel about three sisters, Three Wishes.

Attracting attention wherever they go, the triplets Gemma, Cat and Lyn Kettle couldn't be more different - or closer. Gemma is the flighty one and can't seem to hold onto a job, or a boyfriend to save her life. While sarcastic Cat has always been in control and ready to take charge especially when it comes to her job and her marriage. And organized Lyn seems to have it all: the career, the loving husband, and the kids. As these three independent yet devoted sisters get ready to celebrate their thirty-fourth birthday, each will deal with heartaches and joys aplenty. From rocky marriages to unexpected pregnancies and even long-secret revelations brought to light, these three women manage to conquer each new obstacle in the trademark Kettle way - together.

I suppose I should go ahead and say that Liane Moriarty will now be added to my auto-buy list of chick lit authors. Up there with Jennifer Cruise and Julie James, Moriarty manages to capture the distinct personalities of these three dynamic women in such an endearing way without ever glossing over their less than savory attributes. Cat, Gemma, and Lyn are human. They make mistakes. But they each love deeply and are fiercely loyal to each other which makes me love them that much more. I adored their constant banter, which never fails to highlight their individual temperaments and how they continually poke fun at their infamous triplet status.
The birthday dinners had started in their mid-twenties. They were Lyn's ideas. "No partners," she had said. "Just the three of us. Seeing as we never give each other presents, it could be our present to ourselves."

"How very sisterly," said Cat. "How very triplety."

"It's a wonderful idea. I second it!" Gemma interrupted, as Lyn began to pinch her nose. "I know! We can each have our own birthday cake!"

And so the annual drunken Birthday Bash became an institution.

So you could say it was all Lyn's fault really.

This year they went to a new seafood restaurant in Cockle Bay, with shiny wooden floorboards, disdainful white walls, and sleek chrome hairs. The kitchen was a square box in the center of the room with narrow, horizontal windows revealing bobbing chefs' hats and occasional, rather alarming, fiery explosions.

"I hate it when you can see the kitchen staff," said Lyn. "It makes me feel stressed."

"You love feeling stressed," said Cat.

"You don't know me at all."

"Oh no. You're just a casual acquaintance."

A waitress with a blue-and-white-striped apron and a distressing row of silver studs under her bottom lip appeared at their table, her arms stretched wide around a giant blackboard. "Tonight's specials," she said, plunking down the board and flexing her fingers. "We're out of oysters and scallops, blue-eyed cod, and trout."

"Why don't you just rub out what you don't have?" asked Cat. "Is it just to torture us?"

The waitress shrugged, and her eyes flickered. "Ha-ha."

"Let's share the seafood fondue," interrupted Gemma.

"Could we get this opened soon, do you think?" asked Lyn pointedly, nodding her head at Michael's contribution to the evening -- a bottle of Bollinger.

"What's the occasion, ladies?" sighed the waitress, sounding like a jaded hooker, as she lifted an expert elbow, popped the cork, and began to pour their glasses.

"It's our birthday," said Gemma. "We're triplets!"

"Yeah? Oh, yeah?" The hand holding the bottle hovered precariously off course as she looked at them. Lyn reached over and navigated the glass under the liquid.

"How cool!" The waitress grinned. "Hey! You two are the same, right!"

"Five bucks and you can get your photo taken with us," said Cat.
Never a dull moment with these three around I say.

Cleverly added to the sisters' narrative, Liane Moriarty randomly included various accounts of strangers memories of meeting the triplets. As odd as it may seem, these vignettes (often hilarious) though from an outsiders point of view, often helped me to get a better handle on certain events and made each sister that much more understandable and accessible. Very clever Ms. Moriarty.

Three Wishes is an utter winner all about the highs and lows of being part of a close-knit family of sisters. I simply cannot wait to see what I discover from this fabulous author next.

Because Everyone Likes a Second Opinion:
The Last Book I Read review

book source: purchased


Melissa said...

I'll have to keep my eye out for this one when I go to the bookstore. I really hesitate to read books about sisters because they all seem the same but this one seems promising.

Thanks for the review.

Chachic said...

You reviewed it! Sigh, your review makes me want to read it more. Maybe I should order it already even before What Alice Forgot gets here? I really want to read Liane Moriarty's books already. The triplets in this one sound like they're a lot of fun.

Nomes said...

awesome review :)

and i love the excerpt.

i am SO glad you enjoyed it.

those moriarty girls are amazing (another one of them has written a book too ~ but i'm not sure whether it's YA or adult?)

x Nomes

Janicu said...

I thought I just saw a review for this but it looks like I was thinking of Chachic's Want Books featuring it. I am eying it now.

Holly said...

Ditto to Janicu's comment. Does it have a little romance in it as well or is it mostly about the sisters?

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