Cover Image: Our Little Cruelties

Our Little Cruelties

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Member Reviews

This is my first Liz Nugent novel and I would definitely read another of her books. I wouldn't class this as a psychological thriller - more a complex family drama with an unexplained death firing the plot. The 3 brothers were brilliantly written, each voice unique and the structure reminded me a little of 'The Affair - the same story told from different perspectives. Two of the brothers were truly awful human beings so the fact that you stay with the story and spend the page-time with them is a testament to the quality of the writing. Recommended.
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Three brothers – William, Brian and Luke – take turns in narrating the story of their childhood, their careers and love lives. Nugent does a good job of telling the same story from three different viewpoints and, because of this, the story becomes fully fleshed out with many small twists and turns.
The brothers co-exist uneasily and, at times, bitterly dislike and resent one another. As they grow older, they betray each other in many ways – socially, morally, financially and in the bedroom. In short, they are unpleasant and unlikeable characters. As is their mother who is vain, prideful and selfish.
The book is a slow burner, teasing out the story in flashbacks which were a little hard to comprehend sometimes. Within each brother’s story the timeline ricocheted alarmingly back and forth between their childhood and later years. This meant that, having learnt of one of the betrayals, we were then taken back to the events leading up to it, sometimes more than once as each brother gave their version of it.
The book began with the funeral of one of the brothers (as yet unnamed) and the conclusion was the revelation of which one it was. By then, I didn’t really care anymore. There wasn’t a single redeeming feature among the three of them.
I felt the book leant too heavily on the terrible things the brothers did to each other; I wanted some light moments here and there to show that they weren’t complete monsters. There isn’t even a ray of hope for future generations at the end.
I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
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Dark and dangerous, the story of three brothers - one dead, two alive, all unpleasant. 

You start the story wondering which one has been killed and end up wishing for it to be each one of them at one point or another. 

I didn’t love this book, purely because absolutely everyone in it is an awful human being, so it’s hard to root for any of them. 

The descent of Luke’s mental well-being is well-drawn, but the constant lows where he struggles and fails are tough to read. 

William is one of the most truly despicable and unpleasant characters I’ve ever read and Brian isn’t much better. 

It’s certainly gripping and will keep you guessing, but you can’t help wishing that more people got what they deserved in the end. 

It is also really well-written so definitely worth a read, and I found it fairly unusual to have three male ‘protagonists’ in a thriller, which was interesting. 

Not my favorite, but I think a lot of people will enjoy.
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Exquisite storytelling from a masterful author. Liz Nugent knows how to take readers to some dark and disturbing places with some at-times foul characters while compelling us to keep turning the pages.

Irish author Nugent has racked up #1 bestseller accolades and several awards for her compulsive standalones that centre on rather horrendous people. Whether it’s a man who ‘snaps’ and beats his wife, a rich couple happy to cover up a horrible crime, or an aging socialite willing to do anything to maintain her fantasy life, Nugent’s characters are often the worst in the room, yet strangely engaging.

Our Little Cruelties continues Nugent’s magic for making rather revolting folk rather riveting. It’s the tale of three brothers who take sibling rivalry to toxic levels, and opens with all three at a funeral: one brother is in the coffin, has one of the other two put him there? The novel is divided into thirds, with readers taken through the perspectives of each of the three Drumm brothers on key moments of their lives over the past decades.

Will, the eldest, is a womanising ‘family man’ and film producer. The youngest, Luke, shines bright as a young pop star before burning out in a haze of addictions and mental health issues. Middle child Brian seems the boring one, devoted to niece Daisy and shifting from teaching into celebrity management. All three are the offspring of a self-absorbed showbiz mother. A family of grudges and jealousies, damaging each other’s lives (and those of others) whether they mean to or not. As events unfold we come to some pretty horrible realisations about many things. Is redemption possible? 

Nugent has penned a riveting story that blends whodunnit with shades of Greek tragedy.
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Thank you to NetGalley and Penguin Books to an opportunity to read and review Our Little Cruelties.

The book starts with three brothers at a funeral - one of them is in the coffin ! Then we are taken back in time - and hear from each of the brothers as they tell their own version of the story of how they ended up here . 

If you enjoy a book filled with unlikable characters,  - which I actually do -  this is the book for you . I found the book quite difficult to get into at first place as the author goes back and forth in time and not in chronological order. Although I did enjoy hearing the same events from three different POVs and how the author tied everything together .

And that ending ! 

3.5 ⭐️
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This was a book I was really looking forward to reading.  Liz Nugent is a brilliant writer and draws the reader in completely.  However, this one is not for me, I much prefer her other books.  I couldn’t relate to any of the brothers, disliked them and their mother, so didn’t care what happened to them.  The start of the book with the funeral was intriguing as the reader wasn’t aware which brother had died, but honestly it could have been anyone of them, they all deserved their comeuppance!  I didn’t like the flitting between years in the chapters devoted to each brother, and the stories there weren’t very interesting.  The story is well written, but the subject matter did appeal, sorry.  Thank you NetGalley.
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I read this from beginning to end, but to be honest found it quite depressing, the charecters were awful, the storyline was depressing, I think I need something uplifting to read now
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A very dark and disturbing story of decipt and betrayal. This book is very clever as it makes you not want to like any of the three main characters yet is absolutely riveting at the same time. I genuinely felt sorry for Luke, one of the three brothers that book is based on. A lot of the book is based around mental health issues and the damage it can cause to relationships. Deffinatly worth a read.
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Wow, wow, wow! What a book. A dramatic, twisty exploration of some serious family drama. Everyone in this book is awful but in the absolute best way. 

Told from the perspective of three brothers from a seriously messed up family, we learn at the beginning that one of the brothers has died but we don’t know which one. What follows is the telling of their stories, flitting back and forth between them being children to more recently (which is done super well by the author!), with SO MANY twists and turns along the way. Seriously, if you think your family has drama, it doesn’t have a patch on the Drumm family!

This was the first book I’ve read by Liz Nugent but I have all of her others on order now! 

A big thanks to Netgalley & Penguin for the ARC in return for an honest review, which will be posted on social media around the pub date.
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Well written story told from the perspective of three brothers.  I enjoyed the book, but felt that some of 
the chapters were too long and repetitive.  I found myself skipping several pages without much  of the story moving on..
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Liz has created a wonderful book and it was a gripping book and a must read. Thanks you Netgallery for giving me the opportunity to red this.
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The book starts with a funeral and we soon know that one of 3 brothers is being buried. What we don't know is which one. There follows the life stories of the Drumm brothers, Will, Brian and Luke, told from their own perspectives, starting from early memories and jumping around in time. It was quite a good read, but the 3 brothers are not very sympathetic characters, and their lives not especially interesting. I found I didn't really care who was in that coffin by the time it was revealed! Thanks to NetGalley for a preview copy.
Copied to Goodreads.
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No one does unlikable characters like Liz Nugent! Three brothers, all on paths to destruction, some of their own making but much down to the cruelties of each other. Of course there’s no happy ending, but it’s a better book without! Thank you to netgalley for the advance copy of this book.
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As always Liz is a master at drawing us in and keeping us Turing the pages. This is again a wonderful read and one to recommend to all.
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Absolutely adored this book. Seriously funny, cringe, poignant and just compelling. You’ll love and hate Will, Luke and Brian in equal measure. (Or Willy as Bono said) A very strong 5/5.
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This is the first book I have read by Liz Nugent - I had heard such great things of her other books that I was excited to read this.

However, I was disappointed!  

I think it was beacuse ALL three characters are so UNLIKEABLE.... I just didnt really care what each one was doing.

Trying to think of positives - the book was told in three parts, one for each brother, which was an interesting look at how the same situation can be seen so differently by different people.

Thanks to NetGalley for the ARC in return for an honest review :-)
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Liz Nugent strikes again! I didn’t think she could do better than her last book Skin Deep but I actually preferred this one! I very much like the way her books are character driven and this is a not a fast paced thriller, but a psychological story based on two brothers. Most of the characters are horrible! But just so interesting and compelling to read about. As in Unravelling Oliver we see the wicked and ugly side of people as we read through Liz nugent’s masterful story telling, I really enjoyed this book. Thank you NetGalley and publishers for the book. Congratulations to the author on a wonderful book.
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I really enjoyed the unique spin of this thriller which focuses on the three different brothers perspectives and which zooms in on intimate moments and memories the brothers shared from each of their different perspectives. 

This novel follows three brothers: Will, Brian and Luke and the secrets that they share and also hide from one another and how it leads to all of their downfalls. Will the eldest is a professional producer of movies. Brian the middle child is a English teacher that spends some time in Paris working before becoming the family manager. And finally there is Luke the youngest who becomes an Irish pop sensation before eventually winding up washed up. 

I previously read Skin Deep by Liz Nugent and loved it and was expecting that dark and brooding vibe that I found so propulsive in her precious thrillers. But this book is much more of a slow read and if I am being honest it was drawn out for a little bit too long. The last third reinforced each brothers deplorable behaviour and resulted in the reader remaining indifferent to the final plot twist which was unfortunate. If that was the purpose from the author I think it was a shame as I have found in previous thrillers  dark characters very multifaceted and layered. Which has allowed me to both hate their behaviour but be shocked or sad about their sufferings. In this book I did not feel any connection to the main characters and so found the last third became more of a drag than pleasurable. 

This book has some very strong elements to it. I loved the family dramas and the microscopic look this book takes into events and memories. I also enjoyed how this book tied well into its cultural landscape with the references to the #MeToo movement and current affairs. I liked the character development of the brothers and the intensity of our relationship as a reader to their most vulnerable moments. 

But I unfortunately think this isn’t the book I was expecting from the blurb and from the author. A good read but not as enjoyable as Skin Deep. However I love this author and will continue to read this authors other books.

Thanks to the author Liz Nugent, Penguin UK and Netgalley for a review copy in exchange for an honest review.
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Once I got my head around the fact that this book is written in the style of an autobiographical family drama, I enjoyed reading it. Even though there was no plot and the whole book was pretty much useless information, the author's skill in making me care about the characters and their outcome was second to none. Every chapter was interesting and each character's nuanced side of the story was woven so expertly in with the others that I could have read a thousand pages of the book and not become bored. 
Ultimately, the disappointing fizzle-out of the ending and the silly, pointless reveal at the very end that had no impact on the rest of the book, along with just a little too much focus on SJW tripe landed the rating squarely on 3 stars for me.

I'd read another book by this author because her prose is awesome, but only if I wasn't in the mood for an actual thriller.
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I confess I don’t usually read this type of book, which is a family history not really a mystery, so apologies if this review seems a bit naïve.  The ‘same’ history is recounted three times by three Irish brothers who have very different personalities.  We know from the start that one of the brothers has died because two of them, plus the daughter of one of them, are at the third’s funeral.  What we don’t know is which brother is dead and how he met his end, a classic murder (or is it) mystery situation.    
Inevitably, the three versions are told in flashback, so it is possible to compare the different memories coloured by personal opinions, which provides an interesting slant and can be challenging when trying to hold a single reality in one’s head.  One feature which I didn’t like was the lack of linearity, as the flashbacks leap forward and back in time.  You do, however, discover quite a lot about the whole family and its motivations and the final resolution is surprising but sensible.
I would like to thank NetGalley, the publishers and the author for providing me with an advanced proof copy for the purpose of this review.
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