My Best Friend’s Murder

By Polly Phillips

Publisher/Year: Simon & Schuster/2021

Publisher description

You’re lying, sprawled at the bottom of the stairs, legs bent, arms wide.
If I squint, you could be playing Sleeping Bunnies. Or maybe Twister.

I wish I could tell you how the blood pooling around your head looks like a halo.
But you’re past listening.

I need to let the paramedics in. And then I have to be careful.
Because as the energy trickles out of your body it’s pumping into mine.
And while this could be a tragic accident, if anyone’s got a motive to hurt you, it’s me.

Bec and Izzy have been best friends their whole lives. They’ve been through a lot together – the death of Bec’s mother, the birth of Izzy’s daughter, Bec’s engagement.
But there’s a darker side to their friendship, too – and Bec is about to reach breaking point.

Then Izzy is found broken and bloodied at the bottom of the stairs.
It could have been an accident – perhaps she fell – but if the police decide to look for a killer, then Bec is sure to be their prime suspect.

This is The Rumour meets The Holiday, a compulsive thriller with a toxic but layered friendship at its heart that keeps you in the dark until the final few breathless pages . . .

Reviewer: Chris Rolfe

My Best Friend’s Murder is Polly Phillips’ debut novel.

The story, set in London, begins when Bec finds the bloodied, mangled body of her best friend Izzy at the bottom of the stairs then goes back in time to the lead up to the murder.

Izzy and Bec have been best friends since childhood, but their relationship is toxic, founded on one-upmanship/rich girl versus poor girl.

The story is narrated by Bec, and at times is a little one‑sided. Bec’s paranoia comes across as ‘reading too much into things’ which Izzy always has a way of explaining off when confronted. Bec plays the victim mentality card and readers could be forgiven for thinking she has much deeper issues of her own with which to contend.

At times it’s hard to build a rapport with the characters. Izzy and Bec’s competitive nature occasionally becomes a bit much – why would someone subject themselves to so much pain and discomfort. But then again, this is the crux of the plot.

Overall, the plot was okay with a surprise ending. The final pages wrapped up very quickly but leaving a few loose ends.

I wouldn’t class the book as a thriller but rather a domestic noir. It’s an easy read and one that, even if not to your taste, you would still be inclined to read it to the end to find out what happens.

I would rate it a 3 out of 5 stars, but certainly not bad for a debut novel.