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A Simple Favor

3.16  ·  Rating details ·  3,928 Ratings  ·  659 Reviews
She’s your best friend.
She knows all your secrets.
That’s why she’s so dangerous.
A single mother's life is turned upside down when her best friend vanishes in this chilling debut thriller in the vein of Gone Girl and The Girl on the Train.

It starts with a simple favor—an ordinary kindness mothers do for one another. When her best friend, Emily, asks Stephanie to pick up he
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published March 21st 2017 by Harper
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GJ Alberando I thought so. I was expecting an ending wherein Stephanie turned out to be the one framing Emily. But I guess, the ending did not really tell us that…moreI thought so. I was expecting an ending wherein Stephanie turned out to be the one framing Emily. But I guess, the ending did not really tell us that Emily has gotten away with it nor that the police absolutely believed her. It left us hanging asking on "what's next" which the author probably succeeded.(less)

Community Reviews

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j e w e l s [Books Bejeweled]
The only nice thing I can say about this convoluted, ridiculous and BORING hella long novel is that the author, Darcey Bell, is one lucky person. How she managed to get this stinker of a book sold for movie rights is beyond me. Maybe to the Lifetime channel, but MAJOR MOTION PICTURE starring Blake Lively, Anna Kendrick and Rupert Friend?


Maybe the movie will be done right, but if this is the story they are working from...I just don't know. Stay tuned in September 2018.

In the meant
Jul 01, 2016 rated it it was ok
After the movie ended, I asked Emily, “Do you think real people would ever do things like that?”
Emily laughed. “Sweet Stephanie. You’d be amazed by what people will do. Things they’d never admit to anyone - not even to themselves.”

It all begins with a simple favor. You are asked to pick up your best friend's son from school when an emergency at work arises. It all makes sense anyway because your sons are best friends too. It'll be fine because she says she'll need to see her son after such a h
Michele Jacobsen
Okay....unreliable narrators (three of them, variously 1st POV throughout the novel), faked deaths, crappy marriages, incest, hidden siblings, etc should have made this book better than it actually was. In a nutshell, the story is about two best friends and one (or both?) of them is ala Gone Girl treacherous. It's got a very fast-moving plot and lots of "revelations" in which the reader is constantly presented with new information that is meant to change your mind about who is good and who is ba ...more
Ειρήνη Βαρδάκη
Ένα δυνατό ψυχογράφημα. Σκοτεινό και διαστροφικό. Πολλές φορές οι δαίμονες είναι άνθρωποι της διπλανής πόρτας. Σίγουρα σοκάρει.
Elizabeth of Silver's Reviews

Mothers, Friends, Secrets....Stephanie and Emily were mothers, they were friends, and they both had secrets even though they thought they knew each other better than they knew themselves.

A SIMPLE FAVOR begins when Stephanie keeps Emily's son, Nicky, after school because Emily is going to be late. But...after school turns into overnight, then after school turns into another day and another night, and then yet another day and another night with no Emily.

Stephanie didn't know where to turn except t
”’Do you think real people would ever do things like that?’

‘Sweet Stephanie. You’d be amazed by what people will do. Things they’d never admit to anyone- not even themselves.’”

Synopsis:A mommy blogger with an obsession with veggie burgers decides to half-heartedly play Nancy Drew when her best friend goes missing, and chaos ensues.

We Are What We Blog… Or Are We?- The one lone positive thing I can say about this book is that it does such a wickedly good job at satirizing the blogger life
Amanda McGill
May 02, 2017 rated it did not like it
Shelves: 2017
I'm surprised by my 1 star rating, but reflecting upon the plot this morning, I realized that I didn't like the book at all. It was filled with unlikable characters and the plot was pretty weak if you remove all the fluff surrounding it.

Stephanie and Emily are best friends. Emily asked Stephanie one day to pick up her son after school, but then Stephanie doesn't hear anything else from Emily. A search is underway, but Emily is found to be dead. What could of made Emily go missing? Does Stephani
I would like to thank Edelweiss, Harper Collins, and Darcy Bell for the advanced digital copy in exchange for an honest review. Stephanie, a widow with a sordid past, and Emily, a seemingly happily married woman, each have 5 year old sons who happen to be best friends. The two women appear to be best friends as well. One day, Emily asks Stephanie for a simple favor. From that moment on this story flip flops back and forth and in and out every possible psychological thriller scenario. You can not ...more
Feb 12, 2017 rated it did not like it
Shelves: galley-copy
Enough of a knock-off of "Gone Girl" to be annoying, and with enough additional, bizarre elements (incest? Really?) to also be annoying. Pass.
1 star.

The only reason I read this was because I wanted to see the movie starring Anna Kendrick, which is coming out this fall, but after reading this I'm not quite sure I want to watch it anymore.

First off, I HATED ALL OF THESE CHARACTERS. Sure, I'm fine with some likeable characters, but with a story that's as big of high stakes as this, you need to be able to root for someone, but I was honestly rooting for the "villain" of the story because I wanted to scream every time Stephanie had page t
Chrissa Vasileiou
Jul 23, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thriller
Η άποψή μου για το βιβλίο στο site "Book City": Μια μικρή χάρη
Vera Brandão
Jul 29, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: leituras-2017

Vale pelo ritmo frenético da história e as personagens f***ed up que tanto admiro
May 03, 2017 rated it did not like it
I really need to not read books that are described as good for fans of Gone Girl, since I was not a fan of Gone Girl.
A nasty woman disappears after asking her weak-willed "best friend" to take care of her child after school. A body is later found, the nasty woman is declared and thought by all to be dead, but then the friend starts to have her suspicions.
I was so annoyed with Stephanie- the way she talked about moms and to moms like if you are a mother you are a different species. Her blog was
I liked how this was written with blog posts. I wish we had a bit more of that. I found that to be quite clever. The plot demands that you suspend a major amount of disbelief, but I think it's worth it. It was fresh and fast and very readable. A strong 3 star book.
Lisa Houston
Apr 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
Enjoyed this book. But found it quite long winded at times and because of that it seemed to take forever to read. Definately not a book you could sit and read for ages. Good plot and interesting characters, just felt seeing from everyones points of view dragged it on to much

Γιώτα Παπαδημακοπούλου
Μια μικρή χάρη... Πόσα πράγματα, άραγε, σ' αυτή τη ζωή, μικρά ή μεγάλα, δεν ξεκινάνε απ' αυτή τη μικρή φράση, συνοδευόμενη πάντοτε από μια παράκληση, που αν και μπορεί να φαντάζει αθώα με μια πρώτη ματιά, στην πραγματικότητα ίσως να κρύβει μέσα της αλήθειες που δεν μπορούμε, ή και δεν τολμάμε, ν' αναλογιστούμε. Μια τέτοια μικρή, απλή, αθώα, συνηθισμένη, καθημερινή χάρη, είναι που ενέπνευσε την Darcey Bell και που την οδήγησε στο να γράψει ένα άκρως ενδιαφέρον βιβλίο, όπου το κοινωνικό δράμα συν ...more
Jun 18, 2017 rated it did not like it
Shelves: incomplete
I wouldn't recommend this book to a flea, if a flea could read. I hated the blog chapters. They came across as phony and like Stephanie was talking to herself instead of her supposedly loyal followers, and if she had said moms one more time...

The other chapters featuring Stephanie were a little better but not much. I thought a lot of the material was tacky and not something I wanted to continue reading.

Sep 01, 2016 rated it it was ok
I'm all over about this book. Ultimately, I thought the plot was intriguing, but I hated everyone in it. These people are crazy! If you don't care if you have empathy for anyone, but you really like good twists and turns and slowly learning characters' motivations, this one's for you.
Leah Craig
May 06, 2018 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nov 16, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Δε με ενθουσιασε...το βρηκα καπως προβλεψιμο και οτι σε ορισμενα σημεια εκανε "κοιλια"...
Apr 07, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition

The first character you get to know in this book is - Stephanie, she is a widow, a mother, and a blogger, she blogs about 'mom' things. She befriends the mother of her sons friend, Emily. Emily has a high flying job in fashion and is married to Sean who works away.

The pair spend time together, and because Stephanie doesn't work she cares for Emily's son after school. Then one day, Emily doesn't return to collect her son. Sean comes on to the scene and he and Stephanie try to work out where Emily
Aug 24, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Que livro fantástico! Sempre com reviravoltas espetaculares! Gostei muito!
Ângela Costa
Jul 09, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5* Este livro não um thriller arrebatador daqueles que nos fica na memória, mas é um livro que agarra. Comecei por achá-lo bizarro, o que foi o suficiente para querer lê-lo com urgência. Dei comigo a ler com um só olho aberto, foi "sono vs curiosidade". É um thriller simples, uma leitura leve, uma partilha de emoções e segredos das personagens com o leitor. Aconselho a leitura a quem tem gosto pela exploração da mente humana.
Judy Collins
Review to follow. 3.5 Stars
Feb 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Lidi, tohle byla pecka.
Tak skvěle vymyšlený, zpracovaný a působivý psychothriller jsem nějakou dobu nečetla. Autorka si vás skvěle omotá kolem prstu a zamotá s vámi tak, že i po dočtení se nebudete moci rozhodnout, kdo byl vlastně zlý a kdo dobrý... PERFEKTNÍ, rozhodně doporučuji! ♥
Hodnocení: 4,5/5*
Mar 29, 2017 added it
A roller coaster ride of psychological drama, secrets, and lies...

Stephanie, a single mom, a widow, has befriended the mother of her son's best friend. Emily asks Stephanie to keep her son Nicky while she goes off on a business trip. It's not unusual for Stephanie to keep Nicky overnight and he and Miles have a good time. The problem begins when Emily doesn't return for Nicky. Stephanie, a blogger, turns to Emily's husband, Sean, for answers. No one in this tale is quite the person they portray
Jul 07, 2017 rated it did not like it
Please do yourself a favor and don't waste your time on this. I can only describe it as a hot mess.
Georgia Retetakou
Jun 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
Μια Μικρή Χάρη ζητάει η Έμιλι απο την Φίλη της Στέφανι. Μια μικρή "Αθώα " Χάρη που θα αλλάξει κάθε ισορροπία και θα ξεβράσει κάθε κρυφό συναίσθημα με έναν τρόπο που μόνο το μυαλό και η γραφή ενός ευρηματικού συγγραφέα μπορεί να επιλέξει.
Η Έμιλι και οι Στέφανι γίνονται κολλητές φίλες καθώς τα παιδιά τους πάνε στο ίδιο σχολείο και είναι επίσης φίλοι. Οι δυο γυναίκες μοιράζονται μικρά ή μεγάλα μυστικά, σκέψεις και στιγμές της καθημερινότητας τους. Η Έμιλι εργαζόμενη με πετυχημένη και στρωμένη καρ
I like a good psychological thriller and A Simple Favor came along at a good time for me, having just read a spate of World War II fiction--for review and for pleasure, I wanted something less sad and where I wasn't personally invested in the welfare happiness of the characters. In this book, similar to Gone Girl and The Girl on the Train that the blurb compares it to, the characters are of the unlikable kind, making it easy for me to not worry overly much about them and just go along for the bu ...more
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Darcey Bell was born in 1981 and raised on a dairy farm in western Iowa. She is a preschool teacher in Chicago. A Simple Favor is her first novel.
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“But if there were some version of luminol, the stuff they use to find blood at crime scenes, to detect the presence of grief, half the people we pass on the street would light up like Christmas trees. I” 0 likes
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