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Publisher's Summary

Why did the founder of a glamorous coworking space for women disappear? Her best friends will risk everything to uncover the truth.

"Perfect for fans of Big Little Lies." (The Washington Post)

Named one of the Best Books of the Year by Real SimpleMarie ClaireGood HousekeepingCrimeReads

The name of the elite women-only coworking space stretches across the wall behind the check-in desk: THE HERD, the H-E-R always purple. In-the-know New Yorkers crawl over one another to apply for membership to this community that prides itself on mentorship and empowerment. Among the hopefuls is Katie Bradley, who’s just returned from the Midwest after a stint of book research blew up in her face. Luckily, Katie has an in, thanks to her sister, Hana, an original Herder and the best friend of Eleanor Walsh, the Herd’s charismatic founder.

Eleanor is a queen among the Herd’s sun-filled rooms, admired and quietly feared even as she strives to be warm and approachable. As head of PR, Hana is working around the clock to prepare for a huge announcement from Eleanor - one that will change the trajectory of the Herd forever. Though Katie loves her sister’s crew, she secretly hopes that she’s found her next book subject in Eleanor, who’s brilliant, trailblazing - and extremely private.

Then, on the night of the glitzy Herd news conference, Eleanor vanishes without a trace. Everybody has a theory about what made Eleanor run, but when the police suggest foul play, everyone is a suspect: Eleanor’s husband, other Herders, the men’s rights groups that have had it out for the Herd since its launch - even Eleanor’s closest friends. As Hana struggles to figure out what her friend was hiding and Katie chases the story of her life, the sisters must face the secrets they’ve been keeping from each other - and confront just how dangerous it can be when women’s perfect veneers start to crack, crumble, and then fall away altogether.

©2020 Andrea Bartz (P)2020 Random House Audio

Critic Reviews

"[A] propulsive thriller.... Through every twist, these enterprising ladies will have you breathlessly trying to keep up with them." (Marie Claire)

"This thriller offers a nonstop plot and layers of mystery - not to mention smart commentary on female friendships and social media." (Real Simple

"As she did in her debut The Lost Night, Andrea Bartz constructed a complex cast of female characters who will make 'feminist thriller' your new favorite genre. Read The Herd ASAP - but maybe not at a coworking space." (HelloGiggles)

What listeners say about The Herd

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  • Overall
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Terrible wandering storyline

I know this book made a few lists I think it is terribly overrated. It has a really boring if not predictable storyline. Too many characters that don’t serve a purpose to the main plot.

1 person found this helpful

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Completely surprising and stunning

This book started out a little slow for me, but quickly grabbed my interest and carried me on a crazy roller coaster ride until the very end, literally. The four main characters, each different, complex, carrying various baggage and secrets, are like no other. Bartz had me guessing and wondering the entire way through as to what really happened to Eleanor and who was responsible. She threw curve balls in to keep me wondering who exactly was responsible as she had a way of making several characters suspicious. I didn’t guess how it would all wrap up and I love being thrown off. Then, in the epilogue, one more secret tidbit was thrown in to make me gasp as I finished the last words. I greatly enjoyed the creativity of Bartz and her eloquent way of writing. She truly has a way with words, even evident in her acknowledgments. I enjoyed reading as she described her gratefulness to the reader that gave me pause in her insightfulness, then to others and her flowing words together like I haven’t seen in acknowledgements before. Color me impressed by Andrea Bartz.
The narration, also, was top-notch!!!

1 person found this helpful

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A Bad Soap Opera

This book was a very overly dramatic soap opera. The actresses were not good at male voices, so that was off putting. Every description had so many adjectives it was comical.
I would not recommend this book.

1 person found this helpful

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Disappointing

A book about a female founder seemed promising but the plot got too convoluted and not believable and frankly all the characters were obnoxious stereotypes. I kept hoping it would get better but it didn't. The only amusing part of the whole book was the fake satire one of the characters wrote about Steve Jobs-what if Steve Jobs had been Eve Jobs. That was actually funny. If the author had used that type of imagination on the rest of the book it might have been a good read.

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Incredible Performance and Great Mystery

This book kept me on the edge of my seat nearly the entire time. Very tightly paced with characters that seem very real and vibrant and believable. The phenomenal writing is elevated by great vocal performances.
A definite recommend for mystery fans!

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Edge Of My Seat

This wonderful modern feminist thriller had me in suspense the entire time. What a book! the performance was fantastic too! MORE PLEASE.

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Good thriller fun

This was a lot of fun! I enjoyed the writing style and the narrators were both good.

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Great!

Finally a truly original story...I loved it every minute of it! The performance was great, too!

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Questionable narration choices; okay story`

Doubling up the narrators doubles the chances that you're going to get a weird choice that causes problems for the audiobook as a whole. That happened here: the two narrators sound like they're reading different books entirely--Katie's narrator is bright and somewhat cheerful; Hana's narrator delivers everything but dialogue in a dramatic whisper. It's whiplash-inducing, especially because the chapters often go back and forth with each narrator reading dialogue from the other's character in a voice totally unlike the other narrator.

The story was ... fine, with some nice touches making it feel very contemporary (though that may mean it doesn't age super well). The stakes never felt very high. Bartz is a pretty solid writer, though that makes her occasional head-scratching word choices grate that much more--like the inane, inapt analogy in the first minute of narration wherein black fingernail polish on a corpse's hand makes the fingernails "stand out like a sore thumb." Huh?

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Frustratingly mediocre

Even excruciating at times. I kept waiting for the other shoe to drop. None of the characters were likable .

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  • Hannah
  • 04-01-20

Some good ideas, but...

There is a lot good in here. The people of The Herd are well observed, and it’s a compelling setting, but then then it starts to zag, and it feels as though about three different stories are being told, each ultimately unsatisfying.