The Girlfriend by Michelle Frances
The Girlfriend is an incredible book. It’s one of those novels that I read as slowly as I possibly could because I didn’t want it to end.
I’m completely hooked on crime thrillers at the moment and for a debut novel this is wonderfully written and full of suspense.
Laura and Daniel have a close mother-son relationship. Not stifling and creepy but a lovely and open connection. Laura is a TV executive and her husband Howard works in some high flying job, meanwhile Daniel is training to be a doctor. They live in a mega bucks mansion in Kensington and Daniel has a healthy allowance.
Laura and Daniel’s relationship is threatened when he meets Cherry. Cherry is ambitious – greedy for the life she wished her mother could have provided – money, high lifestyle and showered with attention.
Cherry and Daniel become inseparable very quickly and she joins Laura and Daniel on their annual trip to St Tropez but from the off is jealous of Laura and Daniel’s relationship. Laura can see Cherry for what she is but Daniel refuses to accept it. Laura’s bikinis are mysteriously shoved in the dirt and a painting Cherry bought Daniel is oddly slashed.
Cherry takes Daniel on an adventure holiday and tradegy strikes when he hits his head on a water rapid and is in a coma for months. He is tragically given hours to live and so Laura can have those hours alone with her son she tells Cherry, Daniel has died. But Daniel miraculously recovers but Laura never informs Cherry.
Cherry gets suspicious and phones the hospital digging for information and she gets what she wants. Then it’s all out war between Cherry and Laura. Cherry and Daniel get back together and she takes everything from Laura – her marriage by forging Laura’s handwriting and writing a cruel letter to Howard’s mistress, her job by sending the lead actress of one of Laura’s TV programmes a dead puppy, which Cherry killed. And finally Daniel as the pair get engaged.
Laura begs Cherry’s Mother to see her daughter for what she is which she does and she then tells Daniel.
The climax of the novel results in Cherry trying to kill Laura at her house but Daniel gets there in the knick of time. I won’t give away the complete ending but it’s very satisfying!