Jan 24th, 2012 by Lisa
What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty
What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty
Alice Love is twenty-nine years old, madly in love with her husband, and pregnant with their first child. So imagine her surprise when, after a fall, she comes to on the floor of a gym (a gym! she HATES the gym!) and discovers that she’s actually thirty-nine, has three children, and is in the midst of an acrimonious divorce. A knock on the head has misplaced ten years of her life, and Alice isn’t sure she likes who she’s become. It turns out, though, that forgetting might be the most memorable thing that has ever happened to Alice. from Penguin.com
Book Club Ideas
As Alice was rummaging through her unfamiliar bag after she lost her memory, she found the engagement ring she got from Nick that belonged to Nick’s grandmother. It was a big emerald set in the middle of a cluster of diamonds to look like a flower. I found some jewelry that resembled this description on Amazon.com. Click the picture to go to Amazon.com to learn more about them.
Alice’s kids give her a breakfast in bed, complete with a bouquet of sunflowers, for Mother’s day. I love this bright bouquet from 1-800-Flowers.
As Alice and the other mums made their huge lemon meringue pie (see below) Elvis played in the background.
Book Club Menu
Alice organized a group of 100 Mums to bake the world’s biggest lemon meringue pie to benefit breast cancer research. In the novel, construction equipment was used to make the pie. I decided to go the opposite direction and make mini Lemon Meringue Pies.
For an even smaller version, check out these bite sized lemon meringue pies from Skip to my Lou.
Alice’s specialty is banana muffins. I have a hearty banana muffin recipe that I add various ingredients to liven them up. You can see the blog post about the muffins here. The ones that won a neighborhood wide taste test was my Chocolate Chip Banana Muffins.
When Alice was thinking about her early dates with Nick, she recalled a wonderful evening when she had a huge creamy cocktail with curls of shaved chocolate floating on top. This reminded me of an excellent Chocolate Espresso Martini Annie made for one of our book clubs. Just use shaved chocolate instead of the chocolate sauce. Delicious…but potent!
|One dessert that I had never heard of that was mentioned in the book was lamingtons (page 305), which are little sponge cakes coated in chocolate and grated coconut. I found a great recipe on TanyaHall.com. I loved the idea of putting an Australian flag in these little cakes. Here is a link to parentingteens.about.com that shows you how to make your own Australian flag toothpicks.|
Book Club Resources
Ratings at the time this post was published
|Goodreads: 3.91 stars (3675 ratings)|
|Amazon: 4.5 stars (103 ratings)|
|LibraryThing: 4.08 stars (47 ratings)|
|My Rating: 4.5 stars. I totally get Liane Moriarty’s sense of humor and this book made me chuckle several times. It also made me think how much I had changed over the past 10 years, which was quite eye opening|
Here are some excellent questions from LianeMoriarty.com.au. Visit her site to see the full list (some of the questions on her website do contain spoilers)
- Did you like the younger Alice best? Or did you relate more to the older Alice?
- What would your younger self of ten years ago think of the person you are today?
- What would surprise your younger self most about the life you’re currently leading? What would disappoint you?
- What would you think of your children? Are they how you imagined they would be? Are you the parent you envisioned? Why or why not?
- Alice is shocked by many transformations—her gym-toned body, her clothes, her house. Are you more or less polished than you were a decade ago? And do you think there’s any deeper significance to such change?
- How did you feel about the sections written from the perspectives of Elisabeth and Frannie? Did they add to your enjoyment of the book, or would you have preferred to have it written entirely from Alice’s point of view?
- Out of all the characters in the book, who do you think had changed the most over the past decade and why?
- If you were to write a letter to your future self to be opened in ten years, what would you say?
Purchase What Alice Forgot at your favorite bookseller
|Liane is an Australian author who was born in Sydney. Her initial career was in advertising and marketing. She then ran her own (not especially successful) business called The Little Ad Agency. After that she worked as (a more successful, thankfully) freelance advertising copywriter. She also wrote short stories and many first chapters of novels that didn’t go any further. She didn’t actually believe that real people had novels published. Then one day she found out her younger sister Jaclyn Moriarty’s novel, Feeling Sorry for Celiawas about to be published. In a fever of sibling rivalry, Liane rushed to the computer and wrote a children’s book called The Animal Olympics, which went on to be enthusiastically rejected by every publisher in Australia.She calmed down and enrolled in a Masters degree at Macquarie University in Sydney. As part of that degree, she wrote her first novel, Three Wishes. It was accepted by the lovely people at Pan Macmillan and went on to be published around the world.Since then she has written two more novels for adults, The Last Anniversary (2006) and What Alice Forgot (2010) as well as a series of books for children. Liane is now a full-time author. She lives in Sydney with her husband, her new baby daughter Anna, and her son George, who likes to sit on her lap while she works, helpfully smashing his fist against the keyboard. Adapted from LianeMoriarty.com|
Personal Insights, Favorite Quotes, etc…
I love this quote because it reminds me of my little sister’s sense of humor.
Custody battle. It sounded like “custardy” battle. Alice imagined herself and Nick flinging spoonfuls of sweet yellow custard at each other, laughing and shrieking and licking it off of each other afterwards. Presumable a custody battle wasn’t as much fun as a custardy battle.
Do you have any other ideas or recipes for a book club party for What Alice Forgot? We would love to have you share them with us! You can leave a comment below and upload pictures as well.
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