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Three Wishes: A Novel

Three Wishes: A Novel

4.1 125
by Liane Moriarty

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A New York Times bestseller, Three Wishes is the funny, heartwarming and completely charming first novel from Liane Moriarty, also the author of #1 New York Times bestsellers The Husband’s Secret and Big Little Lies.

Lyn, Cat, and Gemma Kettle, beautiful thirty-three-year-old triplets, seem


A New York Times bestseller, Three Wishes is the funny, heartwarming and completely charming first novel from Liane Moriarty, also the author of #1 New York Times bestsellers The Husband’s Secret and Big Little Lies.

Lyn, Cat, and Gemma Kettle, beautiful thirty-three-year-old triplets, seem to attract attention everywhere they go. Together, laughter, drama, and mayhem seem to follow them. But apart, each is dealing with her own share of ups and downs. Lyn has organized her life into one big checklist, Cat has just learned a startling secret about her marriage, and Gemma, who bolts every time a relationship hits the six-month mark, holds out hope for lasting love. In this wise, witty, and hilarious novel, we follow the Kettle sisters through their tumultuous thirty-third year as they deal with sibling rivalry and secrets, revelations and relationships, unfaithful husbands and unthinkable decisions, and the fabulous, frustrating life of forever being part of a trio.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Three chick-lit heroines are better than one in Moriarty's witty debut starring Sydney-based triplets Cat, Gemma and Lyn Kettle. Borrowing a convention from mystery novels, Moriarty opens with a prologue whose events must be explained through subsequent chapters: in this case, what led one sis to imbed a fondue fork in another sis's pregnant belly at their 34th birthday celebration dinner? Moriarty gleefully describes the triplets' turbulent previous year, which forces them to abandon the roles they've played since childhood. Sarcastic and abrasive marketing executive Cat must grapple with her husband Dan's affair, a miscarriage and a drinking problem, while flighty Gemma, a full-time house sitter, probes her fears of commitment when she meets charming locksmith Charlie. Lyn, a successful entrepreneur, wife and mother, has perfected the art of time management ("Sex with husband. Check"), but she's quietly seized by bouts of panic. Despite such unoriginal problems, Moriarty's novel is a winning combination of smart-alecky fun and feel-good mush (mostly the former). Her writing is smart and playful ("Death was the hot bath you promised yourself while you endured small talk and uncomfortable shoes"), her characters are quirky and lovable and her clever plot turns-like the rekindled love between the triplets' divorced parents-are fun. Convenient coincidences and a general predictability don't distract too much from the sassy pleasures. Agent, Faye Bender. (June) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Meet the Kettle sisters: 33-year-old triplets. Gemma, Cat, and Lynne had the childhood from hell, thanks to their battling parents, and they still haven't decided what they want to be when they grow up-if they grow up. They haven't forgiven Mum and Dad and they can't forget, for example, their sixth birthday party, when their father lit a firecracker and blew his finger off (it was preserved in Formaldehyde as a gruesome memento of the occasion). How ironic: it was his ring finger-an apt symbol of an explosive marriage. Some years later, after their parents' divorce, the sisters leave home to confront hard truths about life and love. Family secrets and garden-variety troubles are trotted out in no particular order: Mum's miscarriage. Frail but feisty granny. Unfaithful husbands and useless boyfriends. Happy ending? Oh, why not. Sneering tone and choppy style mar this first novel, set in Sydney, from Australian author Moriarty. Agent: Faye Bender/Anderson Grinberg Literary Management

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Read an Excerpt

Three Wishes

By Moriarty, Liane

HarperCollins Publishers

ISBN: 0060586125

Chapter One

You could argue that it started thirty-four years ago when twenty-year-old Frank Kettle, a tall, fair, hyperactive ex-altar boy, fell madly in lust with Maxine Leonard, a long-legged languid redhead just a few days short of her nineteenth birthday.

He was pumping with fresh testosterone. She knew better but did it anyway. In the backseat of Frank's dad's Holden. Twice. The first time involved a lot of head-bumping and grunting and breathless shifts of position, while Johnny O'Keefe bellowed at them from the car radio. The second time was slower and gentler and rather nice. Elvis soothingly suggested they love him tender. In each case, however, the terrible result was the same. One of Frank's exuberant little sperm cells slammed head-on with one of Maxine's rather less thrilled eggs, interrupting what should have been an uneventful journey to nonexistence.

Over the following days, while Maxine was chastely dating more suitable boys and Frank was pursuing a curvy brunette, two freshly fertilized eggs were busily bumping their way along Maxine's fallopian tubes toward the haven of her horrified young uterus.

At the exact moment Maxine allowed the very suitable Charlie Edwards to hold back her long red hair while she puffed out her cheeks and blew out nineteen candles, one egg fizzed with so much friction it split right in two. The other single egg burrowed its way comfortably in between the two new identical eggs.

Guests at Maxine's birthday party thought they'd never seen her look so beautiful -- slender, glowing, almost incandescent! Who could have guessed she'd been impregnated with some Catholic boy's triplets?

Frank and Maxine were married, of course. In their wedding photos, they both have the blank-eyed, sedated look of recent trauma victims.

Seven months later, their triplet daughters came kicking and howling into the world. Maxine, who had never even held a baby before, was presented with three; it was the most despair-filled moment of her young life.

Well, that would be Gemma's preference for how it started. Cat would argue that if she was going to begin with their conception, then why not go back through their entire family tree? Why not go back to the apes? Why not start with the Big Bang? I guess I did really, Gemma would chortle, Mum and Dad's big bang. Oh funn-y, Cat would say. Let's look at it logically, Lyn would interrupt. Quite clearly, it started the night of the spaghetti.

And Lyn, quite naturally, would be right.

It was a Wednesday night six weeks before Christmas. A nothing sort of night. An unassuming midweek night that should have vanished from their memories by Friday. "What did we do Wednesday?" "I don't know. Watch TV?"

That's what they were doing. They were eating spaghetti and drinking red wine in front of the television. Cat was sitting crosslegged on the floor, with her back up against the sofa, her plate on her lap. Her husband, Dan, was sitting on the edge of the sofa, hunched over his dinner on the coffee table. It was the way they always ate dinner.

Dan had cooked the spaghetti, so it was hearty and bland. Cat was the more accomplished cook. Dan's approach to cooking was somehow too functional. He stirred his ingredients like concrete mix, one arm wrapped around the bowl, the other stirring the gluggy mix so vigorously you could see his biceps working. "So what? Gets the job done."

That Wednesday night Cat was feeling no specific emotion; not especially happy, not especially sad. It was strange afterward, remembering how she sat there, shoveling Dan's pasta into her mouth, so foolishly trusting of her life. She wanted to yell back at herself through time, Concentrate!

They were watching a show called Med School. It was a soap about a group of very beautiful young medical students with shiny white teeth and complex love lives. Each episode featured a lot of blood and sex and anguish.

Cat and Dan shared a mild addiction to Med School. Whenever the plot took a new twist, they responded with loud enthusiasm, yelling at the television like children watching a pantomime: "Bastard!" "Dump him!" "It's the wrong medication!"

This week Ellie (blond, cutesy, cropped T-shirt) was in a state. She didn't know whether to tell her boyfriend, Pete (dark, brooding, abnormal abs), about her drunken infidelity with a guest-starring troublemaker.

"Tell him, Ellie!" said Cat to the television. "Pete will forgive you. He'll understand!"

The ad break came on, and a manic man in a yellow jacket bounced around a department store pointing an incredulous finger at the Christmas specials.

"I booked that health and beauty thing today," said Cat, using Dan's knee as a lever to help her reach over him for the pepper. "The woman had one of those gooey, spiritual voices. I felt like I was getting a massage just making a booking."

For Christmas, she was giving her sisters (and herself) a weekend away at a health retreat in the Blue Mountains. The three of them would share an "exquisite experience" of "indulgent pampering." They would be wrapped in seaweed, dunked in mud, and slathered in vitamin-enriched creams. It would be extremely amusing.

She was pleased with herself for thinking of it. "What a clever idea!" everyone would say on Christmas Day. Lyn definitely needed the stress relief. Gemma didn't need it but she'd be right into pretending that she did. Cat herself wasn't especially stressed either, but perhaps she was, because she wasn't pregnant and she'd been off the Pill now for nearly a year. "Don't get stressed about it," everybody said wisely, as if they were the first to pass on that hot little tip. Apparently, the moment your ovaries noticed you were worried about becoming pregnant, they refused to cooperate. Oh well, if you're going to get all huffy about it, we'll just close down ...


Excerpted from Three Wishes by Moriarty, Liane Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Meet the Author

Liane Moriarty is the number-one New York Times bestselling author of Big Little Lies, The Husband's Secret, and What Alice Forgot, as well as The Hypnotist's Love StoryThree WishesThe Last Anniversary, and the Nicola Berry series for children. Liane lives in Sydney, Australia, with her husband and two children. www.lianemoriarty.com.au

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Three Wishes 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 125 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Witty and heart wrenching at the same time. Laughed out loud and shed bitter tears all in one read. Fantastic book. I love the writing style. Its so detailed you feel as if you are living in the moment without the descriptives becoming long winded mood breakers.
Ash5 More than 1 year ago
Three Wishes is a remarkable book. It finds a way to be both funny and heart touching at the same time. At times I found myself laughing out loud. Five Stars
beh88 More than 1 year ago
This is my third book of hers, all equally awesome! Two more wating on my nightstand....they're that good!
Guest More than 1 year ago
The Kettle family is quite a trip. There¿s Nana Kettle, mother of Frank Kettle, ex-husband of Maxine (Max) Kettle, mother of the wackiest triplets on the planet, Lynnette (Lyn), Catriona (Cat), and Gemma Kettle. The girls are long-legged and beautiful, but that¿s where the similarity ends. Author Moriarty grew up in a family with six children, she being the eldest, so she probably has an excellent concept of what chaos in a family means. The scene is Sydney, Australia, and the story is about the triplets as they approach their thirty-fourth birthday. There are snippets of their lives from birth, including the divorce of their parents when they were six, the death of the fiancé of one of the girls; marriages, childbirth, miscarriage, unfaithful husbands, etc. There are happy events, too, but mostly these three girls and their family members try, like most of us, to survive one another. It¿s quite a hoot. However, there is one aspect of this story I found very disturbing. Since art imitates life, we all know of situations like the one portrayed in the book. All I can say is ¿Get out!¿ Ms. Moriarty not only used prose to tell her story, she included emails between these very modern sisters, which I thought was very clever. In addition, she included vignettes by people who had been ¿exposed¿ to the sisters over the course of their lives. These vignettes were presented in italicized text. I liked the feature as it gave the unusual view of the story¿s characters from people outside the story line. Carolyn Rowe Hill
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is told from many different perspectives. It is a story about a set of female triplets, clebrating their 34 birthday, reflecting on their past and contemplating their future. It is about 300 pages long. I had a really had a hard time getting into this book. I found the first few chapters hard to get into. This book is chick lit. There are many reviews which are plot spoilers, so I am not going to add my three cents worth. It was well edited, sometimes sad, sometimes funny and has one of the most disfunctional families, I have ever read about. Not a mystery, romance, adventure or paranormal story. It is chick lit, about a family with a lot of problems. For ages 18 and up. AD
Lois515 More than 1 year ago
I really enjoy her books and was able to totally relate to the characters being an identical twin... Liane was so accurate with twin details, i.e. when they "steal" the others memories as their own... That happens all the time! Interesting and unpredictable and very enjoyable!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Quick read, very entertaining
SGMomma More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed every word and page of this book.  Without revealing too much of the story, the beginning had my mind moving in one direction.  I could not put this down until I read the entire story.   You don't have to be a multiple to relate to the relationship between the sisters, the parents and spouses.  I believe everyone can find a little piece of the self in this story.  Satisfying story and especially satisfying ending.  I am a true fan of this author after this delightful read!  I am going to buy as many of her books as I can find.
Lovemydog7 More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed this story of triplet sisters. It is told in a unique way. I was caught up in their lives and relationship in the first chapter. The sister' relationship with their mother is also examined. Those who enjoy stories about the complex relationships within families will enjoy this one.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed these triplets! Read it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I bought this book because it was on sale and sitting in the middle of the bookstore. It makes you laugh (OUT LOUD!), cry, sad, happy--all of the above. Great GREAT book. I would recommend it to anyone with sisters or best friends, or anyone who wants a great read!!
Anonymous 18 days ago
I'm rereading all her books.
Anonymous 6 months ago
Her other books have been better
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I do love her novels. I have read all but two of them at this point. Each one is special in its own way. I am not big on reading romance novels but her books go way above and beyond romance. This one in particular is more about family. ~*~LEB~*~
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is my favorite book of hers
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was an easy reading and great book about handling yourself when life comes at you! I found myself going through the same emotions as each of the characters! Even though it did not end as I thought it would, it was very entertaining and I plan on getting the next one!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Carrie took off my shirt then took off hers. I felt unusual. After that carrie slowly ran her hands up my sides an her head followed. After her hands reached my bo.obs she played with them before su.cking them. I started moaning, she was then biting my nip.ples an milk came rushing out of them. I cried out in pleasure. I didnt know why or how i liked it but i did. "Come on new girl! This is your test too!" Said my master. I took carries head off my bo.ob after she was done an removed her skirt. Carrie removed mine and i swichted places with her. I ran my hands down her body up her arms an made her shiver. After grasping her shoulders i pushed her on the bed an she layed on it. Carrie parted her legs wide apart like the red sea. I crawled slow on the bed like a panther stalking its prey. I reached her pus.sy an i held out my tounge as i crawled by it making her shudder vivshusly. I licked her whole body up to her face an upon reaching her mouth i stuck my toungue inside it. She played with it for a while before pushing hers in my mouth. I thrusted myself onto her. Causing me rack her body of pleasure. After that carrie lifted up my legs an speard them by her mouth with me facing the inside of her legs we both licked the inside of an su.cked our pu.ssys. "Thats enough lovers! Your excused." We got dressed but before i was chained agian master said. "New girl whats your name." "Kate." I replied. "Well kate keep off your chains an send two more girls here." I nodded.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Very different. I've got to read more of her books.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I both laughed and cried! Cannot wait to read another of her novels.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read a couple of her books and loved them. This book started out good but the second half of this book seemed like the author gave up. Disappointing to say the least!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I don't have much time for myself, this book forced me to make that me time just so I could get to the next chapter!