Big Little Lies
Liane Moriarty
Contributed by Greta Venegas
Chapter 2

The chapter brings the reader back six months before the trivia night. Madeline is driving her five-year-old daughter to her kindergarten at Pirriwee Public School. It is also Madeline’s 40th birthday, and she cannot get around the thought of turning forty. She believes that 40 is a colorless age and remembers people’s reaction when a forty-year-old woman died. Madeline states that unlike the death of a young woman that is considered a tragedy, the death of a forty-year-old woman is taken lightly because they are assumed to have enjoyed twenty more years. While driving to the school orientation, Madeline notices a young teenage girl driving while texting. She yells at the girl “put down your phone!” and mimics texting by in her palm (Moriarty 20). The girl’s ignorance compels Madeline to pull over, walks towards the girl’s car, grabs the phone and tosses it to her friend in the passenger seat. While walking back to her SUV, Madeline twists her ankle and falls to the ground. 


In this chapter, the author seems to be exploring the issues of age obsession and the societal dilemma revolving around texting while driving. It is apparent that turning forty years old gives Madeline the chills, and makes her wonder whether people will be sad once she is dead. The author sheds light on how teenagers and grown ups drive while texting, which not only endanger their lives but also the lives of their passengers, as well as other road users. 

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