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The Confession

3.97  ·  Rating details ·  10,684 ratings  ·  1,112 reviews
One winter's afternoon on Hampstead Heath in 1980, Elise Morceau meets Constance Holden and quickly falls under her spell. Connie is bold and alluring, a successful writer whose novel is being turned into a major Hollywood film. Elise follows Connie to LA, a city of strange dreams and swimming pools and late-night gatherings of glamorous people. But whilst Connie thrives o ...more
Hardcover, 455 pages
Published September 24th 2019 by Picador (first published September 19th 2019)
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Stephanie I wonder if the ending is part of the story or if it is just a message to the readers. Alternatively, it could belong to whichever character you feel …moreI wonder if the ending is part of the story or if it is just a message to the readers. Alternatively, it could belong to whichever character you feel needs it the most. I know this isn't the clearest answer, but it's all I could give when I feel confused about it too(less)

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Average rating 3.97  · 
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 ·  10,684 ratings  ·  1,112 reviews

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Jessie Burton's latest offering is an intimate, intelligent exploration of the complexity of women's lives and the depth nature of relationships in a narrative that goes back and forth in time as the lives of the three central protagonists are laid bare. In the 1980s, a young, beautiful and naive Elise Morceau meets the much older Constance Holden on Hampstead Heath. She falls for the confident and charismatic Constance, a writer whose novel is being turned into a big Hollywood movie, and follow ...more
Mar 30, 2020 rated it liked it
"I have known happiness – but I feel as if I can taste other people’s happiness much more strongly than I can my own."

I suspect I’ve read Jessie Burton’s books in the wrong order. Although, I guess I’ve read them in the most ordinary way – beginning with her first and ending with her most recent. Unfortunately, I’ve found my interest in these stories waning with each consecutive one. Maybe it’s not fair to do so, but having really admired her debut, The Miniaturist, I walked into the next two wi
Éimhear (A Little Haze)
The Confession is such a powerful novel. Not only does it have an incredible plot and interesting story...
But the women.
These three main characters of Elise, Connie and Rose...
I am floored!
These women are so incredibly authentic. They are each so unique and so vital. Their stories are incredibly relatable to any reader. They speak to the spiritual autonomy of women. These women each in their own ways are on the same path, that of learning to trust yourself first and foremost. Learning to
I was glued to this. At over 400 pages, it's not quite a 'read it in one sitting' book, but I tore through it within a day. (Lovers of reading cliches will be delighted to hear I actually burned something I was cooking on the hob because I couldn't tear myself away from it.) The Confession is utterly engrossing; it took me on an emotional journey; at the end, I was sorry to leave its characters behind – but I also felt entirely satisfied with the endings they were given.

It's about two women: Eli
Britta Böhler
Nope. Not for me. The writing made me cringe, the characters were flimsy and the story was... well, just 'meh'. ...more
★★★✰✰ 2.5 stars (rounded up to 3)

Although The Confession had a very promising start...I think I liked the book's cover more than its actual contents.

“It came smoothly to me, this loosening the threads of my own identity, weaving a new one. How had it become this easy to let go of myself, to pour words and fantasy into these gaping holes?”

The premise of The Confession is one that has been done time and again. A young-ish woman forms a bond with an older woman, the latter is often famous (she
Dec 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
I’m not sure how I found out about this author, but I’m so glad that I did. A beautiful and powerful story one in which I found I could not bare to put down. A truly moving tale of friendship, secrets, motherhood and so much more.

I throughly enjoyed this book and I also love the cover. This was the first book I’ve read by this author, but it definitely won’t be my last. Highly recommended.
Louise Wilson
Sep 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
Rose Simmons has a dead end job and a relationship that's floundering. She's never k own her mother, Elise Morceau s she had disappeared when Rose was just a baby. He father gives her a book and tells Rose that the author knew her mother and might have some knowledge about what had happened to her. Intrigued, Rose secures herself as a companion to the now famous author, Constance Holden. Rose changes her name to "Laura Brown". She is desperate to find answers and she hope that Constance will hel ...more
Jan 22, 2021 rated it liked it

Rose Simmons has always felt the loss of her mother deeply. All her life she wanted to know who Elise Morceau was and through her, wanted to discover herself. Rose, now in her mid thirties is lost in her life, trapped in an unhappy relationship without any children. Her questions about her mother has always been unanswered and she feels that any information about her mother would fill the gap in her life.

One day, her dad tells her that the last person to see her mother alive is the famous wr
Jan 22, 2021 rated it it was amazing
This is a book that has a cover I adore -- I saw it and fell in love with it. I didn't really care what the book was about, I just wanted it! I love it even more that I have read the book --- it's so perfectly suited to the story.

This is the second book by Jessie Burton that I have read (the other being The Miniaturist) and I really seem to click with her way of writing. I hadn't expected to connect so deeply with the characters in this novel, but I did, especially Rose. I loved the balance of p
Caroline Middleton
Aug 02, 2019 rated it it was ok
I feel really icky about this book.

The things I liked: the writing is absolutely gorgeous, very distinctive and evocative. Burton has a visual writing style that showcases her drama background and I loved how easy it was to read. She also writes very convincing characters - it felt real.

The things I didn’t: the characters are not likeable at all and the bad choices they made really triggered me because Burton is THAT GOOD with creating characters, but also, I wasn’t rooting for any of them. Eli
Aug 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is an absolutely superb book which is so well written. This story is told from the perspectives of Elise, Connie and Rosie and goes backwards and forwards fluidly from 1980-83 and 2017. Elise and Connie meet in London in 1980 and begin a relationship which is a very deep one. Elise believes that Connie ‘lured her in’ but thinks she doesn’t give her as much back as she gives to Connie. Connie can be silent and dismissive, perhaps partly due to age difference (Elise is much younger) and partl ...more
Aug 06, 2019 marked it as to-read
how am i just hearing about this now? i feel very out of the loop, people!
Abbie | ab_reads
Sep 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
4.5 stars

Thank you so much @picadorbooks for my free copy of Jessie Burton’s The Confession! Once again I was spellbound by Burton’s masterful storytelling, this time focusing on books, what it means to be a mother and plenty of secrets.
Burton makes great use of the dual narrative in this one, jumping back and forth through time between the 80s and 2017/18. Usually I tend to prefer one narrative and find myself speeding through the other to get back to my favourite, but that wasn’t the case he
Dannii Elle
Elise Morceau is young and impressionable and enamoured with the suave and effortless grace of Constance Holden. Connie's allure allows Elise to find herself uprooted to hectic LA, the city of dreams. But it also proves one of nightmares when those same dreams fail to find their purchase.

Three decades later Rose Simmons is on a dogged hunt to unearth the secrets of her mother's disappearance, when she was a baby. Her close-lipped father has finally divulged some closely-guarded secrets and her s
Oct 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
In 1980 Elsie meets Constance on Hampstead Heath, she is a writer who is older and very charismatic, they begin a meaningful and intense relationship. When Constance takes them to L.A as her book is going to be turned into a film, Elsie feels like she has been abandoned, as Constance is too busy for her and expects her to wait on the sidelines.

The story jumps to 2017, Rosie has never known her mother,as she left when she was a child and was raised by her dad Matt. Matt gives her some books and s
Emily B
Aug 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
Thank you to netgalley, the author and the publishers for an advanced copy of this book.

I’ve read another book by the author and found this one very different. So don’t expect it to be similar.

I really enjoyed the characters, and felt my feelings towards them change all the time.
Yes some parts weren’t as interesting as others and it’s not a short book but the story is an interesting one without being too complicated.

The ending was a little frustrating as I like clear answers but that doesn’t a
Jx PinkLady Reviews ♡ bookwormthoughts
When I read a novel and it leaves me thinking about the themes, the characters and their life it's clear that the reading experience was totally worthwhile. I have been mulling over my thoughts and there is no doubt that this author writes a beautiful and compelling narrative.

The trajectory of the story toggles between the 1980s and three decades later where we see Rose drawn to the lady who influenced the life of her mother, Elise, a mother who mysteriously has not been any part of her life. Th
Nov 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Ever since author Jessie Burton hit the big time in 2014 with the million-selling debut, The Miniaturist there has been an expectation from her fans with every future release. With her 2016 follow up The Muse we seen a story with Burton in a much happier place and fed my supposition of continued success. Thankfully this is something that has been proven right in what is a subtle masterpiece.

The story focusses on Rose Simmons who learns in her 30's that her mother abandoned her as a child and the
Ieva Andriuskeviciene
This is the first Jessie Burton’s book I have read and I definitely want more!
Intimate and powerfully written family story. Rose is looking for answers where is her mother and what has happened. As the last person who saw her before disappearing is a famous writer Constance Holden. She just becomes her assistant and hopes to find out what has happened.
It is a beautiful story of love, depression, fame and loss.
I was walking in Hampstead Heath where books is set listening to it and crossing path
Brooke - One Woman's Brief Book Reviews

**3.5 stars**

The Confession by Jessie Burton. (2019).

In 1980 Elise meets the alluring Constance, quickly falls under her spell and they head to L.A. where Constance's book is being turned into a movie. Connie thrives on the heat and electricity but Elise finds herself floundering. When she overhears a conversation at a party that devastates her, Elise makes an impulsive decision that will change her life forever.
Over 30 years later,
Roman Clodia
Jul 19, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
So, did I enjoy this audio-book? The proof is that I cleaned the kitchen, the bathroom and sorted out my wardrobe just so that I could carry on listening to it!

I can't say, hand on heart, that this book is 'literary': for me, it's very superior soap opera that uses some well-worn premises (the daughter searching for her lost mother, the switched timelines, the acolyte and the older woman), requires an outrageous swallow-your-disbelief attitude (view spoiler)
Amanda - Mrs B's Book Reviews
With a million copies of The Miniaturist sold, Jessie Burton returns with her highly anticipated third novel, The Confession. A book punctuated by poised and powerful storytelling, The Confession is a rich examination of motherhood, friendship, love betrayal, secrets and identity.

By chance, in the year 1980, Elise Morceau falls into the company of Constance Holden, a highly regarded author. Sparks fly between the two women and this fateful meeting sets in mo
Tracey Allen at Carpe Librum
The Confession by Jessie Burton is a dual narrative story about three women, Elise, Constance and Rose. Elise and Constance are lovers in the 1980s and in the present day, Rose seeks answers about her mother Elise, who left when she was a baby.

Constance is a successful author, and the reader is given an insight into her career during the 1980s and her life as a reclusive writer in the present day. Rose devises a ruse to meet Constance and drill her for answers about her mother.

The Confession is
ETA: [Dieses Buch haben wir auch im Papierstau Podcast besprochen (Folge 91: Frischfleisch)] /ETA

This book was a treat: A well told story with two timelines and wonderfully varied female characters.

One storyline is set in the early 80s. Together with Elise, a young woman in her early twenties, we meet Connie, an about 15 years older writer. Elise and Connie fall in love and become an item. Cut to two years later: Elise and Connie travel from London to L.A. where Connie's novel is being turned in
Sep 02, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
This is the most emotionally engaging book I’ve read for a long time, chock full with strong female characters, not all particularly likeable, told in parallel timelines between the 1980s and the present day. I did like Rose and hoped throughout that she would come through and find resolution to her lifelong yearning for her mother. (view spoiler) ...more
A cut above Burton’s two previous novels, The Miniaturist and The Muse, and my favorite book cover* of the year. I just wish that she / her publisher hadn’t tried to stick to the pattern of a two-word title starting with ‘The’, as this title feels meaninglessly generic. Yes, there are a couple of important confessions in the book – one is about three-quarters of the way through, when Rose Simmons admits that she’s been masquerading as Laura Brown, an experienced personal assistant, to gain acces ...more
Nov 09, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

A conflicting read. I'm rounding up my rating of this book mainly because I really couldn't put it down (which is apt in lockdown with little else to do). Where Jessie Burton excelled the most, I think, is the feeling of intrigue throughout the novel. I found it extremely absorbing, and I really enjoyed the musings about motherhood and identity throughout both narratives.

I found that many sentences in this book were beautifully crafted and some passages spoke to me deeply. There were also par
Apr 19, 2020 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I admit that this kept me turning the pages....however, there wasn't one character that I liked. In fact, I strongly disliked the two main characters. I was really disappointed that every male character was a wet noodle too. It came off as having a "man-hating" feel to it which bothered me. I really enjoyed The Miniaturist so was looking forward to this. It wasn't nearly as good. The atmosphere and uniqueness were missing here. Connie was the most interesting character and fairly believable but ...more
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Jessie Burton studied at Oxford University and the Central School of Speech and Drama, where she appeared in productions of The House of Bernarda Alba, Othello, Play and Macbeth. In April 2013 her first novel, The Miniaturist, was sold at an 11-publisher auction at the London Book Fair, and went on to sell in 29 other countries around the world. It was published by Picador in the UK and Holland in ...more

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“[...] And women are always like that.'
'What do you mean?'
'Well, all the women I know who've left long-term relationships in their thirties checked out of it long before they actually did. They went through all the grief when they were still together with the guy. Played through all the scenarios, processed their feelings - so when the split actually happened, they just felt light and free. Men take it worse. They pretend not to, but they do. They haven't laid any preparations.'
'Right. [...].”
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