by Andrea Dunlop
A smart, obsessive debut novel about a young woman studying abroad who becomes caught up in a seductive French world—and a complex web of love and lust.
When thirty-year-old Brooke Thompson unexpectedly runs into a man from her past, she’s plunged headlong into memories she’s long tried to forget about the year she spent in France following a disastrous affair with a professor.
As a newly arrived exchange student in the picturesque city of Nantes, young Brooke develops a deep and complicated friendship with Sophie, a fellow American and stunning blonde, whose golden girl façade hides a precarious emotional fragility. Sophie and Brooke soon become inseparable and find themselves intoxicated by their new surroundings—and each other.
But their lives are forever changed when they meet a sly, stylish French student, Veronique, and her impossibly sexy older cousin, Alex. The cousins draw Sophie and Brooke into an irresistible world of art, money, decadence, and ultimately, a disastrous love triangle that consumes them both. And of the two of them, only one will make it home.
A wonderfully executed debut novel! It involves Brooke remembering a year she studied abroad when she tried to leave behind the aftermath of an affair with her professor. She quickly became friends with Sophie, another American headed for France. Once there they meet Veronique and her cousin Alex. The girls experience a year that will forever change who they are.
At it's core, this novel is about friendships - how rewarding they can be, but also how disastrous. It is perfect for the France-lover (reader, you will feel transported), but it is especially well made for those individuals who know how others can very much affect how and who you are, if you allow them to.
The story is gripping, to say the least - surprising and rich. Anyone looking for an intricate tale will be happy they picked this one up.