Our American Friend; a brilliant spy thriller

Wow! I really love this novel. If you are a fan of political thrillers, Our American Friend is an intelligent, thought provoking spy thriller that I urge you to read. It definitely has echoes of world politics in recent years which for me made it all the more fascinating. I also found it to be emotional and heart wrenching as it is an original and powerful story of family, love and loss set against the dangerous world of espionage.

Believe me, Our American Friend is a novel not to be missed. Only published in the UK in the last few days (29 June 2023), it has been out in the US since February 2022. Quite rightly in my view (as it is brilliant), it earned a New York Times Book Review Editors’ Choice, but I can also imagine that in certain circles it caused quite a stir.

Our American Friend is the story of jaded Washington political journalist Sofie, who on the brink of leaving politics for good is invited to a private meeting with Lara Caine, the First Lady. Lara has always been a mysterious figure on the world stage with little known about her apart from that she is Russian, grew up in Paris and is a former model. With some rumours that her father was in the KGB, Lara has revealed nothing about her background to the media. So Sofie is in shock when Lara invites her to write her official biography.

As Lara welcomes Sofie into her life, intimately revealing her childhood and adolescent years as well as giving the journalist access to close family members, a relationship built on trust and friendship develops between the two women. This further surprises Sofie and in a sense also confuses her as she is so strongly opposed to Lara’s husband’s political views, values and conduct in life.

Anna Pitoniak

But then Lara tells Sofie an almighty secret about her past that no one in the First Lady’s circle knows. This is a secret that if revealed, will not only impact on Lara’s close relationships, but will also alter the global political landscape.

Our American Friend is the first novel I have read by Anna Pitoniak, and I have to say I thoroughly enjoyed her writing style as she skilfully uses different timelines to reveal Lara’s story in a captivating manner. I had to concentrate reading this novel, but I loved that as I found the twists so clever yet also very raw. It is an emotionally intelligent narrative as it is a devastating love story that explores complicity, the legacy of the Cold War, and power and integrity in modern-day politics.

Our American Friend was released by Exit Press in the UK on 29 June 2023. As I said earlier, this is a novel that I urge you to read. As well as being a great book to discuss in book groups, I believe it could be adapted into a fantastic spy film.

Thank you to Anne Cater from Random Things Tours for inviting me the blog tour of this brilliant novel. To follow the blog tour, please see below.

1 Comment

  1. July 3, 2023 / 11:00 am

    Thanks for the blog tour support x

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