- Paperback: 384 pages
- Publisher: Harper Perennial; Reprint edition (May 24, 2005)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0060586133
- ISBN-13: 978-0060586133
- Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 0.9 x 8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 2,550 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #9,614 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Three Wishes: A Novel Paperback – May 24, 2005
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From 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.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.
The Kettle sisters are a strange sight when they are together--a beautiful set of triplets, with two identical and one fraternal. Over the course of their thirty-third year, their lives all take turns no one could foresee. Lyn's perfectly scheduled and organized life begins to fray as debilitating panic attacks come on suddenly in parking lots; Cat, Lyn's identical twin, thinks her marriage is indestructible until her husband admits to having an affair with a young law student; and Gemma, who acts much younger than her sisters, goes from job to job and can't sustain a relationship with a man for longer than six months. Separately, they are strong, independent women struggling with divorce, pregnancy, parents, and jobs. Together, they are a force to be reckoned with as they fight with passion, laugh with gusto, and push each other to be their best selves. Moriarty's first novel, written with wisdom, humor, and sincerity, is an honest look at sisters who have a bond stronger than anything life throws their way. Carolyn Kubisz
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.
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Top customer reviews
Moriarty has a talent of creating some pretty unique and dramatic characters. In Three Wishes, you get a triple dose of these characters with the Kettle triplets: Cat, Lyn and Gemma. They each have their own distinct personalities that add to a close dysfunctional family. While I can appreciate their uniqueness, at times they can be a little too much for me. There are times where their quirks can be charming but more often than not, they tend to make me think they’re being a bit melodramatic while I’m rolling my eyes. And it usually happens these sisters are within a scene. There’s a certain chaos occurring in the scenes and I can’t help but think how they all need to be medicated.
When you have a favorite or go-to author whose works you’ve read it’s understandable that you won’t love them all equally and there are certain books that you like less than the others. Three Wishes is not one of Moriarty’s books that I’d put on an elevated level. While some of the plot points are a little out there (pushing the whole notion of coincidences to the limit), Moriarty’s writing and storytelling ability was able to put it all together to create a nice story about life, love and family
The novel is filled with comments that made me laugh out loud. Instead of a review, I will just list a few of them to show what I mean:
• Dan had cooked the spaghetti, so it was hearty and bland.…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.
• Gemma was dressed, as always, like an oddly beautiful bag lady.
• She was wearing jeans and a white T-shirt that looked suspiciously like it might have been ironed.
• In fact, she generally swore only in situations involving cockroaches or her sisters.
• He was always so chipper after sex.
• It was a bad habit of hers, complimenting strangers on their physical attributes. She once told a woman in an elevator that she had an especially lovely collarbone. The woman had looked panic-stricken and had begun jabbing at the elevator buttons.
• Sometimes when Gemma thought about sex, sometimes even when she was having sex, she felt a faint echo of that horror she felt as an eight-year-old. My goodness, she’d think, looking up at the ceiling as some boyfriend earnestly scrabbled around her body, what in the world is he doing now?
• “My wife is a triplet, you know,” Dan said chattily. He leaned back against the squeaky vinyl sofa and crossed his arms comfortably behind his head. Cat watched him suspiciously. He was finding marriage counseling far too enjoyable for her liking.
• The cab pulled away from the curb in a mature, sober fashion so Cat could see just how childishly she’d behaved.
• Perhaps she could just choose to stop being angry, as recommended by Lyn’s self-help gurus.
• When Lyn was in her final year at university, she had a profound, almost religious experience: She read The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People. Every page brought a new epiphany. Yes! she kept thinking, as she highlighted another paragraph in fluorescent yellow and felt herself expanding with potential.
• Next thing she knew Michael had his arms around her and they were kissing in a way that had a very distracting sexual element. Lyn had become the Other Woman—an event not listed on her five-year plan.
• It was later that night and Lyn stood at the bathroom mirror applying her moisturizer with upward patting motions.
• Most men, Gemma knew, were convinced they were extraordinarily talented lovers and simultaneously terrified that maybe they weren’t. It was important to pay them lavish compliments about their abilities. It put them in a good mood.
• He could remember rugby league grand final scores from fifteen years ago and quote whole slabs of Simpsons dialogue, but his memory of personal events was notoriously shocking.
• “There you go, my dear! All defuzzed!” The beautician patted Cat’s legs with uncalled-for intimacy.
• One of the multitudes of ex-boyfriends had been a country music fan and left Gemma with an unfortunate passion for Tammy Wynette. It was like, Cat thought, he’d given her herpes.
• He was a strange, inscrutable man, with a disconcerting habit of allowing his eyelids to droop, turtlelike, whenever any of his staff spoke. The longer they spoke, the more it seemed he was drifting into a deep, comfortable sleep.
• Cat didn’t need to see her mother’s face to know the lemony expression of distaste that would be pulling at her mouth as she said the word “counseling.” Counseling was something other people did.
• “I’m a little tense” was a deeply personal revelation for her mother. It must be something terrible. It would be just like Maxine to announce terminal cancer over Christmas lunch.
• There was a moment’s silence in the kitchen. The central characters had left the stage, leaving the supporting cast without a script.
• Lyn had even given her a book called Ten Stupid Things Women Do to Mess Up Their Lives and helpfully indicated with a Post-it note the chapter on the stupid thing she believed Gemma was doing.
• I’ve always had an interest in lepers,” Nana Kettle told Dan. “I beg your pardon?” Dan looked dazed. His paper crown was leaving a stain of red across his forehead. “Lepers!” chimed in Gemma. “Nana has always had an interest in lepers. It means your present is probably a donation on your behalf to the Leper Foundation. That’s what she gave Michael last year.
• Something about the expression on his face made Gemma think, Uh-oh, he’s about to share. It was lovely of course, but she had a terrible habit of laughing in the wrong places when boyfriends got profound.
• For starters, Hank was American. Americans were more open about this sort of thing. They liked chatting about deeply embarrassing emotions. They loved weird phobias! There was no such thing as an Aussie Oprah.
These are just a few quotes from the earlier parts of Three Wishes. If they don’t make you want to read the novel, I guess the novel isn’t for you.
The constant change of perspective really kept me from fully engaging. Especially the short chapters written from the perspective of someone other than the main characters. It was a little confusing.
I also didn't like the way the book ended. I guess the story wrapped up well enough, but ending with another of those non-chapters just felt a little off.