Cover Image: The Friend

The Friend

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Member Reviews

I haven't read anything by this author before. And I'm mightily impressed. The Friend has an excellent plot and some really meaty characters. However, my heart sank right into the heels of my shoes when I discovered it's written in the present-tense narrative. A fantastic book spoilt by this odious trend. It just doesn't work. I got over it, eventually, but my irritation ran at low ebb throughout. 


Some reviews have likened this to Big Little Lies. I have no idea why, it's nothing like it. 

Cece and her family move to Brighton with her husband's promotion, only to find that the new posh school her children are attending is in the wake of a tragedy: a prominent parent, Yvonne, is fighting for her life after being found battered in the school grounds. New town, new school and Cece has to try and find new friends in a very undesirable atmosphere. But three mums welcome her into their 'circle'. Just when she thinks the upheaval was worth it, one of detectives on the case…who also happens to be an old flame…suspect one of the trio and puts Cece into an intolerable position, asking her to 'spy' on the three. 

This is very well written and ticks all the boxes for suspense and mystery. It really is a page turner. I certainly read this through movie eyes: this has to hit the big screen. The main characters are gritty, interesting, multi-dimensional and very well portrayed. 

Will I read any more of this author's novels? I really, really want to…Koomson certainly knows how to write a captivating and absorbing book…but only if the present-tense narrative has been well and truly vamoosed.
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This is the first Dorothy Koomson book I have read - I know she has written a lot of books but to be honest I always assumed it was light weight 'chick lit' which isnt my thing.

However, I am so glad I gave this a try!  This was a gripping read, lots of twists and turns... with relatable, likeable characters.

I will definitely be looking out for more of Kommsons books :-)

Thanks to NetGalley for the ARC in return for an honest review.
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A thrilling and engaging plot that will keep you guessing.
Lots of good characters to get stuck into reading about and keep you trying to figure out.  Everyone seems to have a secret but does this mean they have anything to do with the death of their friend??
A great page turner full of twists and turns revealed one by one as you move through the book.
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Oh, what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive! "The Friend" is one of Dorothy Koomson's finest novels, following the lives of 5 women. The book explores various relationships and the far-reaching effects of keeping secrets. I really enjoyed it, would recommend and have bought a copy for a friend.
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Another wonderful story from Dorothy Koomson, full of mystery, romance, drama and characters that are always magically brought to life.
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I love Dorothy Koomson novels and this one did not disappoint. It was a real thriller of a page turner. I did initially struggle to keep track of the characters but I couldn't put it down!
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Another thoughtful book from this very accomplished author, with a school-gate mystery.  A new parent finds herself in the middle of tension and secrets.
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You are virtually guaranteed a quality read when you start a book by Dorothy Koomson, and this book didn't disappoint.  Highly recommended!
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Having a Dorothy Koomson book to read is such a pleasure. Part of me wants to saviour it but I could not resist and found it so difficult to put down once I started it!!

Yvonne is attacked on the school grounds and is in a coma, her closest friends should be offering support to husband Trevor and their children Maddison and Scarlett but they have their own worries and secrets!!

Cece has moved from London to Brighton as her husband Sol has been prompted at work. The children have settled into their new school and Cece have made friends with a couple of the school 
mothers the same friends that are Yvonne’s friends, who are acting rather strangely.

Loved this book. Each chapter Is about a different character and we discover what their secrets are and that Yvonne wasn’t such a perfect friend to them after all.

Why is it so satisfying when you discover the person that seems to have it all, does not have the perfect life that they portray after all!!

A must read book that will keep you hooked!! Thank you to  Netgalley for my copy in exchange for a review.
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Phew! What a great book with lots of twists and turns. Yvonne is found battered and left in a coma in the school playground. Her 3 friends all have reasons to have hurt her, which one could it be? Cece moves to Brighton with her family when husband Sol gets a new job. Life is difficult and their marriage is struggling, she befriends the 3 women and slowly through the book their stories come out. I just loved the way the story flowed, one minute you think its one person, then you think its another. Through the book I found myself liking all of the characters apart from Sol and Yvonne who is a very unhappy person who is awful to her friends. Put it this way you wouldn't want her as your best friend! It would make a great whodunnit film!
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I must say, I am really puzzled by all of the great reviews of this book. I found it slow, formulaic, with little-to-no character development. It almost read like a parody of what a thriller should be! Also, the "chick lit" cover seems particularly at odds with the content of the book. Unfortunately, only 2/5.
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I thoroughly enjoyed this book by Dorothy Koomson!  I got dragged into the story of these friends and all their secrets, wanting to find out what really happened that fateful evening!  Would recommend and give a solid 4/5 stars!
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CeCe has just moved to Brighton and is horrified to discover one of the mums  at her boys' new school has been attacked and even more so when one of the three women she now considers to be her friend could be responsible.  I struggled to get into this with the array of characters, the constant flashbacks and the extremely slow start but it was much better once everyone's secrets/stories were revealed.  It seemed quite bizarre though how everyone opened up to this stranger in their midst!  I have always enjoyed books by Ms Koomson, but this one, not so much - it was a bit disappointing.  Loved the Brighton setting and the cover.
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What a brilliant read. It reminded me of a book that was turned into a very successful tv series (and now a second series). It has mystery, intrigue, excitement. Loved it! Would love to know more about Cece, maybe a prequel?
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I really enjoyed this book by Dorothy Koomson and would highly recommend. Took a little bit of getting into I think due to the number of characters but overall a great read. Possibly a little bit unbelievable in places but none the less very enjoyable. 4*
My thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for the advance reader copy.
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It's hard enough being a newbie at your children's school gates and trying to make friends with the other mothers but when one of them is in a coma after being attacked in the playground and everyone around you is acting strange, well that's something else. 
You will feel for Cece as she gives up her job moves frm London to Brighton where she doesn't want to be, to please her husband. You will get to know each of the mothers from the school gates as they introduce themselves to Cece. When you read that one or more of them could be implicated in the murder of another mother you won't know who to trust. 
Cece also has her secrets, everyone has secrets in this story. 
I'm not going into anymore of the storyline, it's better if you unfold it for yourself. You will stay up late into the night reading this,you will not be able to put it down.
Dorothy Koomson at her best!
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This book concerns a group of mothers who meet at the school gate, each with their own secrets.
Cece has reluctantly moved from London to Brighton, with her husband Sol, daughter Harmony, and twin sons.
Her boys attend the local school, where she discovers that a mother is in a coma having been found on the school premises following a brutal attack. 
Cece becomes friends with Hazel, Maxie, and Anaya, and starts to learn about Veronica, the woman who was attacked.
I was giving this book five stars at the beginning, the characters were well developed, and their stories were being revealed in a series of flashbacks.
However, as the book progressed, things became more and more far-fetched, and the explanations of their stories became more and more drawn-out.
By the end, I was down to three stars, still a good book, worth reading, but one that didn’t fulfil its early promise.

Thanks to Random House UK, Cornerstone for the opportunity to read this book.
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Stories within a  story. Each character had their own complex story and this book wove them and their friendships together well.A very descriptive book with a twist at the end.
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I haven't read a Dorothy Koomson book in a few years but I am a big fan and 'The Friend' did not let me down. 

Newcomer Cece finds herself at the centre of a whodunnit when she moves to Brighton and befriends Maxie, Anaya and Hazel.  Centred around the Plummer Prep School Cece soon learns that the prestigious school her husband had chosen for her children has recently been in the news as the result of one of the parents,Yvonne,  being attacked and left for dead.  What makes it more surreal is the fact that Cece's new friends happen to be the best friends of Yvonne and they all appear to be hiding something.  

As the book proceeds we delve into the back stories of each of these women and this in turn gives us an inkling into why they are acting so guilty after Yvonne's attack.  It really is a thrilling read and I found the multiple narratives kept me interested and also warmed me to each of these women even though they all clearly had something to hide.  So who did attack Yvonne?

They mystery unravels towards the end and I'll admit that I was completely and utterly shocked.  I'd been playing amateur detective throughout the book and had at various points thought that it was each of the friends.  The end result does not disappoint at all.  

I'd 100% recommend The Friend to others and I cannot wait to get stuck back into some other Dorothy Koomson books in the future.
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The central plot of this book is good. Four friends find their lives thrown into turmoil when one is found badly beaten and left for dead outside their children’s school.  She is in a coma, their stories don’t quite add up. 
From there the story is pieced together  from multiple points of view. This worked very well and keeps you guessing until the end. 
What I found less convincing was the actual friendship, particularly with Yvonne. Why would anyone want to be friends with such a woman?
It’s an easy read but I don’t think one of her best. 
My thanks to Netgalley and the publishers for this copy.
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