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The best friend
2022
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Publishers Weekly Review
Set in England and spanning 76 years, this searing domestic noir from bestseller Fellowes (the Mitford Murders series) chronicles shy protagonist Bella's toxic relationship with narcissistic, charismatic Kate. The girls meet at age six and are inseparable until they're 17, when Kate kisses Bella's crush and then moves away without disclosing her new address. At 42, Kate--a married actor with an eight-year-old son--moves to Bella's neighborhood. Though Bella--a married painter with a nine-year-old daughter--still harbors hurt, resentment, and distrust, she's unable to resist the pull of Kate's orbit. The pair fall back into old patterns, with Kate manipulating Bella at every turn, but then Kate's actions kick off a devastating chain of events that changes the trajectory of both women's lives and causes ripple effects for decades. The tragic tale unfolds largely via revelatory snippets of conversation between the keenly drawn characters, lending a voyeuristic air. Fellowes paints an unflinching portrait of female friendship that should appeal to fans of Julie Mayhew and Leïla Slimani. Agent: Eugenie Furniss, Peters Fraser and Dunlop. (U.K.) (Sept.)
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