The Favour by internationally bestselling British writing duo, Nicci French is a stand-alone psychological thriller fiction with an interesting plot.
Jude Winter has worked hard for her career as a doctor, engaged to Nat she was happy, and she felt settled…that was until her ex-boyfriend Liam Birch turned up unexpectedly at her work. Eleven years had passed since they parted ways, he was a big part of her younger years and they had shared a lot, but life for both had moved on.
Liam, now a father to Alfie asks Jude for a favour. She is shocked he would ask for such a thing after not seeing him for such a long time. But, when she remembered the car crash they were both involved in she feels as though she needs to help. He asks her to pick him up from a country train station and he will explain all when he sees her later, Liam gives her strict instructions not to tell anyone.
Uncomfortable about lying to her fiancé, Jude makes her way to Norfolk and waits for Liam’s arrival but he never shows. When the police turn up and announce Liam has been found murdered, Jude finds herself caught in an entanglement of secrets and lies. Feared of being a suspect she must find the truth especially after finding out Liam had made her an executor of his will.
Nicci is skilled at letting characters reveal themselves through dialogue and reflection, and never slows down the pace of the action through too much description. It was also very authentic, had depth, and did not embellish the flawed nature of human beings.
Jude’s character is well-developed, robust, and easy to relate to although I did question her actions at times. Her situation did remind me not to push away people that you care about, past or present. When you have been through something so significant it would be impossible to say no.
Liam’s character was very mysterious and there was an oddity in his actions, the supporting cast of housemates, Liam’s girlfriend and detective, Leila Fox were very unconventional but somehow, they all fit. I find these quirks in characters help connect readers to the story.
The Favour is far from straightforward, with plenty of twists and turns in a unique plot that keeps you interested and firmly invested in the outcome. This is not one of those stories where you can guess the ending early on. The author has done a wonderful job of building up the story and hooking the reader – it’s packed with suspense, and it keeps you reading as you delve into what happened.
This is the first time I have read a Nicci French novel, a pseudonym used by husband-and-wife Sean French and Nicci Gerrard. Together they conceive and write together psychological thrillers. I will definitely invest in more of their books.
If you like a good psychological mystery, then this one is for you.
Thank you, Beauty and Lace and Simon & Schuster Australia for the opportunity to read and review.
A selection of our Beauty and Lace Club members are reading The Favour by Nicci French. Read their comments below, or add your own review.
My love of books started at a very young age. My mum has always been a reader and encouraged me to read, buying me endless book from classic fairy tales advancing to the world of Enid Blyton, CS Lewis, Louisa May Alcott, Kathryn Kenny, Carolyn Keene, Francine Pascal. In my adult years the list of authors is endless and every room in my house is filled with books.
One of my favourite novels is Narnia which has always has a special place in my heart. I was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes in 1978 and when I was given this book to read it let me escape to another world where I felt like I was in the book with all the characters, it wasfun and exciting to escape from reality and eased the ups and downs of the disease at such a young age.
In books nothing is impossible and there is endless potential and hundreds of places to explore or being taken to places that are only made up from the authors’ great minds, the past and future to navigate, characters lives you step into taking you on an emotional rollercoaster ride or being scared out of your wits. I can experience things that I can’t in real life because they’re not possible or real. It challenges my perspective and mindset expanding my worldview.
I find joy, comfort and peace with books, many people may not get it, but I know bookworms like me truly understand. Reading makes my heart happy.