by Carola Lovering
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Pub Date 05 Mar 2024 | Archive Date 19 Mar 2024
"Powerful, relatable and crazily addictive, Bye, Baby takes an unflinching look at the battling forces of toxicity and love which define so many female friendships. I couldn't put it down." ––Rosie Walsh, New York Times bestselling author of Ghosted and The Love of My Life
Every friendship has its shadow...
On a brisk fall night in a New York apartment, 35-year-old Billie West hears terrified screams. It's her lifelong best friend Cassie Barnwell, one floor above, and she's just realized her infant daughter has gone missing. Billie is shaken as she looks down into her own arms to see the baby, remembering—with a jolt of fear—that she is responsible for the kidnapping that has instantly shattered Cassie’s world.
Once fiercely bonded by their secrets, Cassie and Billie have drifted apart in adulthood, no longer the inseparable pair they used to be in their small Hudson Valley hometown. Cassie is married to a wealthy man, has recently become a mother, and is building a following as a lifestyle influencer. She is desperate to leave her past behind—including Billie, who is single and childless, and no longer fits into her world. But Billie knows the worst thing Cassie has ever done, and she will do whatever it takes to restore their friendship…
Told in alternating perspectives in Lovering’s signature suspenseful style, Bye, Baby confronts the myriad ways friendships change and evolve over time, the lingering echoes of childhood trauma, and the impact of women’s choices on their lifelong relationships.
Available on NetGalley
Average rating from 907 members
Carola Lovering writes multi perspective, domestic thriller like no one else. The story of Billie and Cassie and the ebbs and flows of their friendship is relatable and anxiety inducing all at once.
The best thing about Lovering’s writing is her relatability in her characters. You know these people, you’ve been there. The way she describes friendships as we take different paths is spot on.
You know the twist from the first page but seeing how the story plays out made this a five star read!
Wow. This book! Wow. I loved it. This was so good! I couldn't put it down! "Chefs Kiss"
I just reviewed Bye, Baby by Carola Lovering. #NetGalley
Bye, Baby by Carola Lovering is a propulsive, thrilling novel. Like in previous books, Lovering is a master is capturing the nuances of female friendship—particularly when they turn toxic. I don't want to give anything away, this is a book with so many twists and turns. You will not forget Cassie and Billie! Highly recommend!!
Another great twisty tale from Carola Lovering! Billie and Cassie meet as girls and swear to be best friends forever. Until they’re not. As the girls grow into adulthood, priorities change and even the closest bounds can fray. Sometimes the secrets that bind can break a friendship. Themes of sexual abuse, friendship, and loss.
Told from alternating POV, Bye Baby is a compelling read.
Bye, Baby by Carola Lovering tells the story of Billie and Cassie, two lifelong best friends. As they grow older the two women seem to be growing apart until the unthinkable brings them back together.
I loved this book! I could not put it down. The characters were so well developed and interesting. The plot was twisty and turny and did not quit. I was riveted until the very end. A must read!
I was given this book in exchange for my honest opinion. Thank you to NetGalley and St. Martin's Press for this ARC.
“But each seemingly inconsequential interaction has amounted to something valuable, forty-eight thousand followers who define me, who’ve granted me a kind of power I could never fathom abandoning.”
I try to highlight passages that stick out to me, especially when I’m reading on my kindle. This one is the only one I’d highlighted in this book, but it perfectly captures the personality of Cassie, one of two main characters in Carola Loverling’s Bye, Baby, out in early 2024. Cassie is a slave to the influencer machine and a character I loved to hate. She’s a narcissist and a new mom.
Billie is her best friend and polar opposite. They have a toxic friendship that takes center stage in the story.
Cassie and Billie are bonded together by a traumatic event from their childhoods but have grown apart since their post-university years when they shared a small apartment in NYC and life took them in different directions. Cassie, always wanting more than her middle-class upbringing, married into generational wealth, and Billie focused on her career. Once Cassie welcomes her daughter Ella, she finds she has less and less in common with Billie and the pair grow further apart. Billie makes attempts to keep their friendship alive, but Cassie is more interested in her own brand and wealthy friends until a terrifying event bonds them again.
I loved this book. It starts as a slow burn, and in Part Two, a raging fire. The first half is a lot of character building. I won’t say it’s slow, but it’s very character driven. Second half has a lot more plot.
These characters are juicy. Especially Cassie. We all know her - we all follow her - we all hate her. And Billie has so many endearing qualities, but is equally complex.
The story explores toxic relationships, messy friendship, motherhood, unaddressed trauma, toxic narcissism and more. I LOVED it. 5/5 ⭐️
I’ve read all of Carol Lovering’s books and this is by far my favorite. An incredibly well done story on women who’s v long term friendship has become toxic and takes a turn for the worst. With flashbacks of why they can’t let go and details about different paths in life I absolutely loved this take on chosen family and what happens when things aren’t working out. It was moving and relatable while also being shocking and twisty. HIGHLY recommend this read when it comes out. Thank you NetGalley for this arc in exchange for my honest review
I was hooked from the first chapter and looked forward to reading this book at the end of each workday this week. Despite the vibe the book gives off, this is less of a mystery/triller and more like a slow moving train wreck while simultaneously peeling back the layers of an onion that each reveal the complexity of a friendship. The book was such a page turner and I loved every moment of it.
One negative I noted was that there were several typos that were a bit distracting so hopefully these get fixed before publication.
I went on a spree a few months ago and read all of Carola Lovering's books and wOw are they good! I was really excited about reading Bye, Baby but it exceeded my expectations and is such an amazing book!
It's ostensibly a thriller about a baby being kidnapped but what it really is about is the dissolution of a best friendship and as a woman who's been through that it's definitely *really difficult* and Carola Lovering writes about the pain that comes from that loss and then explores how twisted that loss can make someone become.
Of course, in Bye, Baby it's cranked up for the drama which quite frankly I adored, and think we could use more of in our domestic thrillers!
I highly recommend this book -- it is absolutely amazing -- not just as a thriller but as a look at female friendships and how their loss can be utterly devastating.
Yes!! This is what I’ve been waiting for! A bit ok that I literally can’t stop reading. I tore through this book in abut 2 days. The story is told in 2 views
Pints I’m 2 different timelines. I loved the story, the writing style and the characters. One of the best books I’ve read all year.
“Bye, Baby” is almost addictive. It was literally impossible for me to put down. The main characters, Billie and Cassie, have a long relationship, but it seems to be reaching a conclusion. People grow up and change. It’s hard to imagine two characters more different than these two. But that hasn’t always been the case. The author lets each character tell parts of their story…and the ending is completely unexpected. I couldn’t recommend this book any more highly.