This was like …Desperate Housewives.
And I LOVE Desperate Housewives. All these rich, stuck-up people live in a high-class society and have secrets they keep from everyone and everyone is sneaky and horrible behind everyone’s backs but to their faces, they are best friends.
Madeline Martha Mackenzie
She is the town gossip. She knows everything about everyone. If you know some deep gossip about someone, she is the first person you are dying to tell. She has a fourteen year old daughter named Abigail Carlson that she had with her ex husband named Nathan Carlson who is married to the perfectly zen yoga teacher named Bonnie Carlson (the relationships to these people are nuts).
She has two other kids, Chloe Mackenzie and Fred Mackenzie with her current husband Ed Mackenzie. She has an internal battle on trying to make her daughter Abigail want and love her more than her used-to-be-absent father. She has a knack of picking the damaged people to be her closest friends.
Which brings us to damaged friend Number One:
The prettiest, richest, and sweetest girl in the whole town. She has two darling twins named Max and Josh Wright and a handsome husband named Perry Wright who tells her to spend more money and doesn’t care when she drops twenty-five thousand dollars on a whim to a charity.
What he does care about is embarrassment, respect, and loyalty. He cares so much about those three things, that he will do everything in his power to break Celeste if she so much as blinks wrong at him. But she hits him back, so is she really the problem (the answer is no)? I mean, she did embarrass him that one time and didn’t pick up the legos the other time and she really should have invited him to Disney on Ice and not have been so thoughtless to think he would be away on business (which he is 75% of the time). She can only hide so many bruises and marks from the twins and her friends.
Damaged friend Number Two:
The new, young, single mother of a son named Ziggy Chapman.
She moved to this town with a lot of baggage and looking for answers to a horrible event that happened to her a few years back that gave her the most precious thing in her whole world: her son.
Her whole soul-searching and new beginning take a turn for the worst on Orientation Day when Ziggy is accused of choking Renata Klein’s (a working mother) daughter Amabella (that’s her name, that’s not a typo) Klein. When kids get involved, grown-ups get feisty and mean to each other.
Differences between the book and the show (so far):
01. Not set in Australia
02. Madeline doesn’t have a son named Fred
03. Madeline has a bigger role in the town’s theatre than she does in the book
04. Ed and Madeline don’t have a strained marriage in the book
05. Obviously a lot of the way characters are suppose to look changed as well
I absolutely loved this book, and I started reading it because I loved the show so far. The characters are so well rounded, they are flawed, there are a thousand twists, and it touches on things that not a lot of people want to talk about. Like domestic abuse, rape, infidelity, the affects your actions have on your kids… I just loved everything about this book and I completely and utterly WISH more books were written with this goal in mind.
The show is different enough to keep you interested but a like enough to keep a book reader happy.