Review: The Favour by Nicci French

Writing duo Nicci Gerrard and Sean French are back with a chilling story of a good deed turned back. Everything in Jude's life is falling into place. She has a good job as a doctor--the career she always wanted--and she is about to marry the man she loves. Then Liam, the bad boy she briefly dated the summer before she started university, and who was driving the car in a terrible crash that Jude survived, appears and asks her for a favour. When Jude completes the favour--keeping it secret from her fiancé--she suddenly finds her life thrown into turmoil. Liam is dead, people are pointing the finger at her and who was her ex, really. Unable to let go of recent events, Jude finds herself in increasingly dangerous circumstances, while she discovers what she really meant to Liam ...

The Favour certainly was a twisty novel. However the storytelling is let down a little by the slightly unbelievable premise, coupled with the protagonist's misplaced sense of guilt. It becomes increasingly difficult to feel sorry for Jude when many of her problems could have been resolved by simply walking away. Then again, guilt can often be a complex emotion and we see that in the way that Jude, who escaped the teenage car crash with no consequences, feels an urge to make up for something that was not her fault to Liam. Meanwhile, in Liam, we see a character whose inability to take responsibility for themselves and a desire to push the blame onto others has led to many poor outcomes in his own (short) life. Although I found this novel infuriating in places it was also relatively easy to keep turning pages and I kept reading well into the night to find out what happened.


Thank you to Simon and Schuster Australia for my ARC of The Favour.

Nicci Gerrard and Sean French are currently touring Australia and will be appearing at Adelaide Writers' Week on Saturday the 4th of March on the West Stage at 3.45pm. Nicci Gerrard will be appearing on Monday the 6th of March on the West Stage at 1.15pm.


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