A single mother's life is turned upside down when her best friend vanishes in this chilling debut thriller in the vein of Gone Girl and The Girl on the Train—now a major motion picture from Lionsgate starring Anna Kendrick, Blake Lively, and Henry Golding, and directed by Paul Feig
“Debut-novelist Darcey Bell ramps up suspense with authority in this domestic thriller, in which actions seem as inevitable as they are chilling. The audience that made Gone Girl a publishing sensation is likely to take to this one, too.”—Booklist (starred review)
It starts with a simple favor—an ordinary kindness mothers do for one another. When glamorous Emily asks Stephanie to pick up her son after school, Stephanie happily says yes. Emily has a life that would make any woman jealous. She is the perfect mother with a dazzling career working for a famous fashion designer in Manhattan. Stephanie, a widow with a son in kindergarten, lonely in their Connecticut suburb, turns to her daily blog for connection and validation. Stephanie imagines Emily to be her new confidante and is shocked when Emily suddenly disappears without a trace, leaving her son and husband with no warning.
Stephanie knows something is terribly wrong. Unable to keep away from the grieving family, she soon finds herself entangled with Sean, Emily’s handsome, reticent British husband. But she can’t ignore the nagging feeling that he’s not being honest with her about Emily’s disappearance. Is Stephanie imagining things? How well did she really know her “best” friend?
Stephanie begins to see that nothing—not friendship, love, or even an ordinary favor—is as simple as it seems.
A Simple Favor exposes the dark underbelly of female friendship in this taut, unsettling, and completely absorbing story that holds you in its grip until the final page.
About the Author
Darcey Bell was born in 1981 and raised on a dairy farm in western Iowa. She is a preschool teacher in Chicago. ASimple Favor is her first novel.
“An intense, captivating, and astonishing thriller ending in an unforeseen and surprise ending; the premise: Be careful who you trust.” — New York Journal of Books
“Bell’s edgy first novel is chock-full of dirty little secrets, lies, and manipulations. Gone Girl devotees should reserve an advance copy and carve out uninterrupted time for this juicy read.” — Library Journal
“[A] stylish and unsettling thriller…The plot stretches into increasingly dark territory, the narrative mixing familiar gimmicks in the thriller repertoire and producing an overall story that’s just mysterious and weird enough to supply maximum satisfaction.” — Toronto Star
“Sly, satirical, subversive: a deliciously poisoned cupcake of a story.” — L. S. Hilton, author of Maestra
“Debut-novelist Bell ramps up suspense with authority in this domestic thriller, in which actions seem as inevitable as they are chilling. The audience that made GONE GIRL a publishing sensation is likely to take to this one, too.” — Booklist (starred review)
“No one and nothing is what it seems in this page-turner.” — Cleveland Plain Dealer
“This is a psychological thriller that is as hip and relevant as it is gripping. Darcey Bell somehow manages to satirize, hilariously, the ghastly self-righteousness of the online ‘Mommy Bloggers’ while at the same time pulling off a suburban mystery that ends with a twist that is as horridly satisfying as it is completely unexpected. I couldn’t stop reading about these two truly terrifying moms!” — Plum Sykes, author of BERGDORF BLONDES
“What a wonderfully absorbing, unremittingly intense, endlessly surprising novel Darcey Bell has written. Her characters—in the worst way—never know what’s going to happen next and nor—in the best way—does her reader. A SIMPLE FAVOR yields very complicated pleasures.” — Margot Livesey, author of MERCURY and THE FLIGHT OF GEMMA HARDY
“A Simple Favor by Darcey Bell is a highly recommended, twisty domestic thriller…My rating kept going up as I was reading. The ending was pitch-perfect.” — She Treads Softly