Wednesday, 27 February 2019

Book review : The Good Friend - Jo Baldwin

Jenny hasn't had an easy life so far. Her mum died of cancer, leaving her to be brought up by her dad, who wasn't big on public displays of affection. She did have a close friend though, called Kath, and a boyfriend, Tom, who helped her keep a smile on her face. Then her dad decides that they need to move to Australia to continue her swimming career. Even worse, Kath encourages her to go and Tom decides to call things off with her and go to work in Jordan. 

Putting on a brave face, Jenny makes a go of things as best as she can, but her heart isn't really in it and she eventually decides to come back home and try to get back together with Tom. Confiding in her best friend, she learns that things may not be quite as simple as she first thought though : not only is Tom with Kath now, she is also pregnant. So that's the end of that.

Eight years later, Jenny has had enough of swimming, even if her father still wants her to continue. She goes on holiday to the south of France to catch up with Kath and Tom, as well as their very cute little girl, Rosa. Roped in to help sort out their new gîtes over the summer, Jenny extends her stay for a few weeks, lapping up the Languedoc sunshine and reconnecting with her old friends. It doesn't take her long to realise that all is not well between the couple though - could this be a chance for her to reconnect with her lost love? And what is going on with Kath? Is she just depressed or is there more to her than meets the eye?

It's a well-written psychological drama, which takes its basis in another look at the classic love triangle. I felt ill-at-ease in the beginning, when Jenny obviously still has feelings for her ex, despite his new relationship, but Kath's vindictive and manipulative behaviour makes it hard to really feel sorry for her. I'm still not sure she really gets fair treatment though, as if she is genuinely depressed, surely she should be supported more. I felt that there was more of a backstory with her mother, but this wasn't really developed, which was a shame. I'm not sure there could actually be an ending in which everyone finds happiness, but the final chapter didn't really offer a sense of closure, which I would have preferred. It's an enjoyable read though, that I raced through in just a few days

star rating : 4.5/5

RRP : £8.99

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: RedDoor Publishing Ltd (21 Feb. 2019)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1910453668
  • ISBN-13: 978-1910453667

Disclosure : I received a review copy of the book.


  1. This looks like the sort of book I would enjoy, must look out for it

  2. I enjoy psychological drama. The plot sounds interesting. If I spot it in the shops, I might buy it.


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