Title: Mothers' Instinct
Author: Barbara Abel
Translator: Susan Pickford
Release Date: May 16, 2023
Soon to be a major US motion picture starring Anne Hathaway and Jessica Chastain, Mothers' Instinct is a dark, twisty domestic thriller in which the bond between two couples--best friends and next-door neighbors--mutates in dangerous and deadly ways in the wake of a tragic accident.
David and Laetitia Brunelle and Sylvain and Tiphaine Geniot are inseparable friends and next-door neighbors in a pretty, tranquil suburb. Their sons Milo and Maxime, born in the same year, grow up together as close as brothers. But when Maxime is killed in an accident, their idyllic world shatters. Maxime's parents, Sylvain and Tiphaine, are consumed by grief and bitterness, while David and Laetitia are wracked with guilt for their role in the tragedy. Soon the couples are barely speaking, although they maintain a polite facade.
Then a mysterious series of "accidents" begins to happen to Milo, raising Laetitia's suspicions. Are their former best friends trying to punish them by threatening their son? As an increasingly paranoid Laetitia frantically tries to protect Milo from harm, the little civility left between the two families curdles into outward hostility. Is Laetitia just imagining things? Or are Sylvain and Tiphaine secretly conspiring to exact their revenge . . . and if so, who will pay?
In her American debut, blockbuster Belgian author Barbara Abel plunges into the deepest, darkest corners of her characters' hearts and minds to explore the limits of friendship, the overwhelming power of maternal love, and how far hate, fear, and vengeance can drive us. Tense and blood-chilling, with a surprising final twist, Mothers' Instinct will keep you on edge until the final page.
Translated from the French by Susan Pickford
David and Laetitia Brunelle and Sylvain and Tiphaine Geniot are the best of neighbors. Over the years, they have become best friends.
When Laetitia and Tiphaine become pregnant in the same year, their kids, Milo and Maxime grow up like brothers.
Everything is going so well for these couples until after a terrible accident. Maxime dies.
Could Laetitia have done something more to prevent the death? Is Tiphaine to blame for the accident? Or was it David's reluctance to connect their properties the real culprit?
This is a dark, chilling, shocking novel. I suggest going in blind (like I did) to get the maximum enjoyment. There is no way I can forget this book. Is not an easy one to forget.
I hear this is becoming a movie with Anne Hathaway and Jessica Chastain. My dog-mom's instinct is telling me it's going to be a good one.
A complimentary copy was provided by HarperVia via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.