Stephanie, a widow and active mummy blogger, has fully immersed herself in creating her own online space where she reaches out to “the sisterhood” for validation and adoration. Stephanie adores her only child, a six-year-old son, but a life occupied by endless maternal domesticity, Stephanie freely acknowledges, is not always completely satisfying. The disappearance of Stephanie’s dear friend, fellow school mother Emily, propels the mundane arrangement of an overextended playdate into the crashing together of two volatile families, both scrabbling to find out the truth.
Stephanie invites you in with a sly air, promising lots of secrets to be revealed. The FOMO world of mummy bloggers is put out for critical review; that often repulsive over sharing of a life online that invites the whole unknown world in to comment, commiserate, or just plain slag off your decisions. The sheen of Stephanie’s desperation to be liked by her audience is ever present and unsettling , serving very well to ratchet up the tension when the full time mother needs to make delicate choices about what to reveal online about her present circumstances. How will it play with her online audience that she has commenced a relationship with the husband of her missing friend?
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.