Three young women, Evie, Amber and Lottie, have just completed their first term at different institutions of higher education. Evie has joined the local home town university. She wants to be near home because she has Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD). Amber is taking her foundation year for art school. Lottie has joined UCL in London after rejecting Cambridge. The scene of Bourne’s story is their home town where the three friends have assembled for a New Year’s Eve party. Is everything all it seems?
These friends have, as schoolgirls, become accustomed to sharing everything. They had no secrets from each other. But separation has made a difference, Now each one of them has a secret. The narrative poses the question how much will be revealed and how each of the young women will respond to the revelations of the other two. Will their confessions serve once more to unite them or to drive them further apart?
In this book as in all her other works, Bourne demonstrates her ability to identify and depict anxieties that concern young people in our time. Bourne manages a difficult authorial task with great skill: her characters do exemplify the issues she chooses to raise, such as feminism and mental health. But they also behave like real life people, doing idiotic things and having wild thoughts. Bourne ties these complex and sometimes conflicting tendencies together in her protagonists with consummate skill. Why did this reviewer give this book only four stars? She wanted the pleasure of reading the book to be extended by another hundred pages.