The New Girl

Harriet Walker. Ballantine, $17 trade paper (304p) ISBN 978-1-9848-1997-0
British author Walker’s searing debut follows the intertwined lives of three women. High-powered London fashion editor Margot Jones is headed for maternity leave, her pregnancy a few months behind her best friend Winnie Clough’s. Maggie Beecher, Margot’s handpicked temporary successor, proves far more adept at Margot’s job than either imagined. When one character suffers a personal tragedy, Margot finds herself adrift and terrified of the future, Winnie refuses to see or speak to her for reasons related to the tragedy, and Maggie emerges as the darling of the fashion world. As Margot becomes increasingly jealous and paranoid, Winnie sets her sights on revenge, and Maggie schemes to make her temporary job permanent. Each woman’s alternating narrative offers her own perspective on the unfolding events, from which no one escapes unscathed. The author, the fashion editor for The Times of London, movingly portrays the fragility of friendship and the corrosive effect of mistrust and recriminations in a wickedly funny psychological thriller that’s in turn brutal and tender. Walker is off to a fine start. Agent: Laura MacDougall, United Agents (U.K.). (May)
Reviewed on : 02/12/2020
Release date: 05/19/2020
Genre: Mystery/Thriller
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