Wednesday, 28 April 2021

The Wild Girls - Phoebe Morgan

About the book… 

In a luxury lodge on Botswana’s sun-soaked plains, four friends reunite for a birthday celebration…

Has it all, but chose love over her friends…

Feels the walls of her flat and classroom closing in…

Loves her baby, but desperately needs a break…

Yearns for adventure after suffering for too long…

Arriving at the safari lodge, a feeling of unease settles over them. There’s no sign of the party that was promised. There’s no phone signal. They’re alone, in the wild.


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About the author… 

Phoebe Morgan is a bestselling author and editor. She studied English at Leeds University after growing up in the Suffolk countryside. She has previously worked as a journalist and now edits commercial fiction for a publishing house during the day, and writes her own books in the books have sold over 150,000 copies and been translated into 10 languages including French, Italian, Norwegian, Polish and Croatian. Her new thriller The Wild Girls will be published by William Morrow in the US. Her books are also on sale in Canada and Australia. Phoebe has also contributed short stories to Afraid of the Light, a 2020 crime writing anthology with proceeds going to the Samaritans, Noir from the Bar, a crime collection with proceeds going to the NHS, and Afraid of the Christmas Lights, with all profits going to domestic abuse charities. Her four thrillers can be read in any order.

Contact Links: 

Twitter @Phoebe_A_Morgan
Instagram @phoebeannmorgan
Facebook @PhoebeMorganAuthor 

My thoughts…

The Wild Girls is the nickname of four friends, Alice, Grace, Hannah and Felicity - friends since school, but they’d drifted apart for reasons unknown to the reader. The girls hadn't spoken for two years, each has gone their separate ways but why? Then one morning an invite to an all inclusive, luxury retreat lands on their doormats. Felicity has invited the girls to celebrate her birthday in Botswana of all places. Each of them are shocked yet intrigued to receive the invite and begin to ponder whether they’ve all been invited and ponder the rational. 

The author gives an insight into the lives each are living now and hints back to a friendship and shared past that was a little bit dark, very intense and ever so slightly toxic, much like the relationships each of them seem to have now. Yet the invite is like a carrot tantalisingly dangled that its difficult to ignore - each sees the invite as a way to not only reconnect, but to escape the treadmills they’re on and to find a way back to when they were friends. An uneasy tension sat on my shoulder as I read the introductory chapters.

From the moment that the girls each decide to accept Felicity’s invitation a nervous tension hung over the pages, privy to their thoughts my mind whizzed with so many questions - multiple threads tangled together just out of reach and it was clear memories weren’t the same for all! When they reconnect in the airport to fly out to Botswana its more than clear to the reader that there was a definite imbalance in the friendship. And when the girls arrive to an empty resort with no sign of Felicity or a party the tension and unease was palpable - I had that nauseous feeling of anxiety and dread - second guessing what might be to come.

Phoebe Morgan has carefully crafted the art of using half sentences, intrigue, smoke and mirrors. Fuelled more by the unspoken words than anything else. Being privy to each of the girls inner thoughts I couldn’t quieten my mind long enough to think rationally, I was beyond clueless - questions & theories about the situation and what might happen when Felicity did appear ricocheting round my brain, not slowing down enough to be coherent.

The atmosphere is tense & oppressive throughout the whole of this book, reading was like mental torture, I thought the friends needed to stick together like glue but the thread that binds them appeared too loose! Whilst reading I felt like a tightly coiled spring - as on edge as if I were in the lodge too and as the book progressed and I edged closer to finding out what happened back then and how that has been used to orchestrate what’s happening now in Botswana I felt sick with dread. At 70% into the story I was still utterly clueless. The atmosphere was like reading in a pressure cooker - I’ve rarely read a book that me ripping my hair out with anxiety like I did with The Wild Girls.

There are so many twists and turns in this book, every time I thought the gaps were being plugged and I was edging closer to finally having all the facts on the table Phoebe Morgan kept dropping more and more snippets like incendiaries - my nerves were in shreds! It really was an incredibly gripping, dark, twisted, addictive, read that had me hooked right up until the last sentence when I thought it was all over, only to find myself sat with my mouth open uttering oh no!!!

I’ve recommended The Wild Girls to so many friends already and each has felt the same as me - utterly brilliant.

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