by Bruce TierneyJanuary, 2006
A friend in need
I have said on numerous occasions, to anyone within earshot, that the best mystery novels are written in the first-person. In Catch Me When I Fall, author Nicci French (the nom de plume for journalists Nicci Gerrard and Sean French) adds a new spin: the first half of the book is narrated by Holly Krauss, a fast-track London advertising agency owner whose life is rapidly spiraling out of control. She plays fast and loose with her business, alienating co-workers and clients on an equal-opportunity basis. At night, she drinks herself into a stupor, ending up in the beds of more-than-willing strangers, awakening with only muddy recollections of the previous night's events. One by one, friends and loved ones desert her, and on one particularly depressing evening, Holly decides to take drastic action: swallowing a week's worth of depression medication with an orange juice chaser, she lies down to await the inevitable. Part two of Catch Me When I Fall is narrated by Holly's friend and business partner, Meg. The voice is distinctly different, as Meg is more businesslike and matter-of-fact. Together the two spin a tale of intrigue and betrayal, with the relentless, edge-of-the-seat thrills that Nicci French's readers have come to expect.