What Is Nine Perfect Strangers About?

Photo: Stefanie Keenan/Getty Images.
Whether season 3 of Big Little Lies is on its way has yet to be revealed, but for fans of author Liane Moriarty, another show full of secrets, deception, and fabulously dressed women is already on its way. In May of 2019, Hulu ordered a limited series based on Moriarty’s 2018 novel Nine Perfect Strangers from Big Little Lies creator David E. Kelly, with a cast that boasts Nicole Kidman and the just-announced Melissa McCarthy. So, what is Nine Perfect Strangers actually about? It may make you reconsider your new year commitment to total wellness. 
Moriarty’s Nine Perfect Strangers follows nine stressed-out strangers as they embark on a journey of wellness at Tranquillum House, a remote health retreat. Each person has their unique reasons for coming to Tranquillum House, be it losing weight to getting over heartbreak. The guests are instructed to give up some of their worldly favorites — like caffeine, sugar, and technology — in order to stay on the path of healing, under the direction of Tranquillum House's charismatic Russian leader Masha.
Frances Welty, a former author, arrives at Tranquillum House in order to nurse the wounds of a bad breakup, and becomes transfixed by the wellness retreat’s mysterious host. Is Masha really going to heal all those who walk into her house, or is there something more sinister going on here? 
You’ll have to read the book to learn exactly what is going on with Masha and the rest of the strangers — or maybe not, lest you spoil the Hulu series prematurely. Kidman, who is also producing the drama, will portray Masha, while McCarthy is slated to portray Francis. 
Without Kidman, there would be no show — and possibly no book either. Moriarty pitched Nine Perfect Strangers to Kidman and producing partner Per Saari, and they decided to work on the adaptation prior to the book being written.
“Although we knew what the concept was, [Nine Perfect Strangers] was acquired more or less sight unseen,” Saari said of the novel in an October 2019 interview with ELLE. “Liane was talking to Nicole about the seeds of a character and she embraced it instantly, so Liane ended up writing this extraordinary character for her.”

Hulu may be the latest place for all your book adaptation needs. In addition to making Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale as modern as ever and giving John Green fans the Looking For Alaska adaptation they’ve waited so long for, the streamer is also set to debut Little Fires Everywhere, based on the book by Celeste Ng. The show stars Reese Witherspoon and Kerry Washington as very different mothers whose paths overlap.
So far, a release date has not yet been announced for the Nine Perfect Strangers adaptation, but we're sure this show will be as invigorating as a trip to a health spa...or at least a night curled up reading a really juicy book.

More from TV

R29 Original Series