A warm, witty and relatable story of life on the front line of parenting, perfect for fans of Motherland and Catastrophe.
Their school is about to be taught a lesson...
If there's one thing Beverly Franklin knows, it's that if you don't at least try to get your kid into Glass Lake Primary, you're basically negligent.
Determined to hang on to her crown as Queen Bee of the 'Lakers', Beverley will do whatever it takes to protect the school's reputation.
So when a scandal involving her own 12-year-old daughter threatens to derail the annual school musical's appearance on national television, Beverley goes into overdrive.
But in her efforts to protect her daughter and keep the musical on track, she misses what's really going, both in her own house and in the insular Glass Lake community, with dramatic consequences...
'This novel knocked me for six ... carefully and beautifully written ... I couldn't have liked it more.' - Daily Mail on Three Little Truths
'Funny... relatable, contemporary and exceptionally witty' - Irish Times on Three Little Truths
'Liane Moriarty meets Maeve Binchy meets Marian Keyes' - Jo Spain on Three Little Truths
'Funny, endearing, mysterious and outrageous, this book is wildly entertaining and hugely enjoyable.' - Liz Nugent on Three Little Truths
Available on NetGalley
Average rating from 41 members
Oooh I loved it - small-town primary school politics and a mysterious death as well, sign me up! It Could Never Happen Here starts with the police investigating an unexplained death (you don't find out any details for a long time which I liked) - but its almost a backstory to the main event which is what happens when a group of school friends grow up, stay in the same town, and their children go to school together. The years of history and secrets between them all, the unspoken but seething rivalries over tiny issues - it was wonderfully conveyed, shimmering with resentments and misunderstandings. And all the way through, the actual pupils are just trying to put on a school play and have a good time. If you enjoyed Sarah Storey's Other Parents - this is definitely one for you
It could happen here and it did. I loved all the characters even the nasty horrible self-righteous and weak ones, of which there are many. This book is happy, funny and very sad and will suit both young and old and would make a wonderful TV series. Can’t wait to see what else Eithne Shortall writes.
Such a fun book nearly every chapter gave me a wry smile. Definitely "big little lies meets west cork". All of those silly little interactions that seem to happen when parents get over invested in their children's schooling are so keenly observed and crafted into a cracking read. Highly recommended.
If Big Little Lies based was based in Ireland then this would be it. No secrets are safe with the Grass Lake parents ….. Competitive mothers, how far would they go to protect their children and ensure their child gets the best! Really enjoyed reading this book, was engrossed with the dramas of the Grass Lake parents. The author has a magnificent way of engrossing you straight from the start. Highly recommend
What an enjoyable book, it has everything: schoolyard politics, families with secrets, scandal, tragedy, brilliantly written characters, (one) obnoxious character, mystery, relationships - I was hooked and sorry when it finished
Irish author Eithne Shortall’s novel has a title very similar to a 1935 bestseller by US-American writer Sinclair Lewis that charts the rise of Buzz Windrip, a determined political agitator who runs for President of the USA. Initially I did not think there could be any similarities between the two books, but it soon becomes clear that Shortall’s fictional protagonist, Beverley Franklin, who lives in a fictitious Irish small town called Glass Lake, shares big city dweller Windrip’s fierce determination as she embarks on a quest to ensure her daughter’s performance in the annual school music will go ahead at all cost. As in previous Shortall books, the main themes of this novel are playground politics and toxic competitive parenting, and Shortall does well in her characterisations of fierce mother Beverley, vexed school principal Nuala, and ambitious handyman Arlo. The frequent timeline switches make demands on the reader but the tension and parenting truisms that are revealed are shot through with healthy doses of humour. Overall, I highly recommend this novel and would like to express my thanks to NetGalley and to the publishers for granting me an ARC to complete this honest, unbiased review.