The Favor by Nora Murphy

Nora Murphy’s first novel is intense as she delicately tackles domestic violence and all its horror. It emphasizes the difficulty some women find themselves in, unable to leave the abuser as well as showing the unsuspecting progression which takes place as the woman is slowly manipulated into feeling a horrible sense of self-worth.

This is the story of two women who have never met, but unfortunately have so very much in common.

Leah was a successful real estate lawyer happily married to Liam, a trial lawyer. At first glance her life was good, they were happy. Yes, Liam could be quirky, not wanting her to meet with friends or go away for weekends, but they had a pretty stable relationship. Until things gradually began to change. Liam became very possessive of Leah’s time even suggesting she quit her job and stay home and cook and clean explaining he made enough money to continue the lifestyle they had.

But Leah loved her job and continued to ignore Liam’s request. Until she was fired for something she insists she did not do. That is when Liam’s true colors began to show. Leah was unable to get money out of their accounts, had to have dinner prepared when Liam got home, even though he never gave her a specific time, and worst of all he began to verbally abuse her and threatened physical abuse. Trapped in a house she now hates with no money to leave; Leah begins to excessively drink having to squander money away which Liam will not be able to trace. Until one day…

McKenna, a pediatric doctor is married to Zack. They are a happily married professional couple. When McKenna gets pregnant, they are overjoyed! Until she loses the baby and Zack decides it’s because of McKenna’s work as a doctor working with children who are sick. He insists she quit her job and stay home and relax until she gets pregnant again. She reluctantly agrees. And that is when Zack begins to show his true colors to McKenna. As she begins to feel isolated as he tracks her every move, she is afraid to tell anyone for fear he will say she is crazy. She now lives in a house she feels confined in in fear of a husband she now hates. Until one day…

Leah sees McKenna in a store. She feels drawn to her. She wonders what her life is like, envious of her put together look. She decides to follow her home to see the house she lives in. But what she sees horrifies her. And that sets off a series of events neither of them will ever see coming and will change their lives.

Two abused women who don’t know each other but have so much in common live in daily fear of dying at the hands of someone they use to love. How will they survive? How can they continue this way?

This unique thriller sheds light on what abuse looks and feels like and how powerless women can be in these types of situations. It chronicles the process of the abuse and how the abuser is able to gradually trap their prey under a glass where they will have nowhere to go and unable to move. An absolute must read.

Thank you #NetGalley #MinotaurBooks #TheFavor #NoraMurphy for the advanced copy.

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