How much is an extraordinary life worth if others have to pay?
Edinburgh, Scotland: a moody city of labyrinthine alleyways, oppressive fog, and buried history; the ultimate destination for someone with something to hide. Perfect for Clare, then, who arrives utterly alone and yearning to reinvent herself. And what better place to conceal the secrets of her past than at the university in the heart of the fabled, cobblestoned Old Town?
When Clare meets Tabitha, a charismatic, beautiful, and intimidatingly rich girl from her art history class, she knows she’s destined to become friends with her and her exclusive circle: raffish Samuel, shrewd Ava, and pragmatic Imogen. Clare is immediately drawn into their libertine world of sophisticated dinner parties and summers in France. The new life she always envisioned for herself has seemingly begun.
Then Tabitha reveals a little project she’s been working on, one that she needs Clare’s help with. Even though it goes against everything Clare has tried to repent for. Even though their intimacy begins to darken into codependence. But as Clare starts to realize just what her friends are capable of, it’s already too late. Because they’ve taken the plunge. They’re so close to attaining everything they want. And there’s no going back.
The Things We Do To Our Friends is a dark story of revenge and secrets with a largely unlikeable cast of characters, and is a book that unfortunately did not blow me away.
We follow Clare, off to uni in Edinburgh, as she meets rich student Tabitha and her friends, and there begins a twisted and wholly unhealthy relationship between the students.
We know Clare had a dark past, though we’re unsure what exactly happened previously, and we know something is going to happen. The book leads up to this, at times jumping backwards and forwards in time, slowly feeding us more information. Similarly, I jumped between being quite intrigued and wanting to know more, to feeling a little bored of these spoilt, horrible students and their antics. The plot didn’t wow me enough and the climax of the present day storyline fell a little flat for me – it didn’t quite make sense to me.
Despite the issues I had with the plot, I really liked Heather Derwent’s writing so I would definitely read more by her in the future.
My rating: 3/5
Many thanks to the publisher for providing a copy of this novel on which I chose to write an honest review.