After years of estrangement from her family, Mags receives a shocking phone call. Her rebellious brother, Abe, is in a coma, and the police suspect he tried to take his own life. But Mags isn’t so sure, and she begins to crack away at the life of the brother she once knew: the dark apartment building, the whispering tenants, and her brother’s mysterious girlfriend, the only witness to the incident, who raises more questions than answers. As Mags picks up where the police left off, she begins to unearth the secrets her brother left behind—and awakens her own talent for revenge.
⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ / 5
Mags is a corporate lawyer in Las Vegas, and when she finds out her brother Abe that she hasn’t see in years fell down a forty-foot stairwell, she immediately hightails it to London. Jody, his grieving girlfriend, is beside herself with sadness and Mags feels sorry for her… at first.
Everyone is unreliable, and the big question is did Abe fall, or was he pushed? Mags and Jody both had very rough upbringings and my heart went out to them as we learned more about their backgrounds which are told in flashbacks throughout the book. I actually ended up absolutely hating Mags at times, but in the end I liked her a lot more. I loved the depth to these characters and Naughton definitely put me through a range of emotions with this book.
I thought the writing was a tiny bit repetitive at times, but nothing crazy. More words/phrases being repeated a little than anything else. And the fact that you don’t know if Abe fell or if he was pushed, isn’t even what kept me reading this book with an inability to put it down. I was just so caught up in the character’s stories that I had to keep reading. Especially Mira, the flat neighbor of Abe and Jody from Albania. She had a small part in the book, but her character really resonated with me for whatever reason.
Final Thought: The Girlfriend had me hooked from the beginning, and I thought the beginning and end were both very clever. The ending was bomb actually, and left me feeling very satisfied. That being said, there are a couple of triggers in this book: child abuse and rape. It was a bit darker than I thought it was going to be, but very good. I can’t wait to see what Naughton releases next!
The Girlfriend in 3-ish words: Absorbing, Bold & Unpredictable
Many thanks to Sourcebooks Landmark for providing me with an advance review copy of this book via NetGalley. All opinions are my own.