KEEP YOUR FRIENDS CLOSE by June Taylor

KEEP YOUR FRIENDS CLOSE … and your enemies closer. Leeds writer June Taylor returns to the psychological thriller scene with her second book, published by HarperCollins Killer Reads and it’s set in Leeds! We tracked her down to ask her a few questions about it.

BBE: So, June, is it true that Leeds features in this next book?

Yes! Leeds is the main setting for KEEP YOUR FRIENDS CLOSE. I wanted my hometown to be the backdrop this time. So I’ve used locations like Headingley, Hyde Park and the city centre. I couldn’t use Leeds in my first book because of the time frames. As I’ve lived here most of my life, it would have become a character in itself. In KEEP YOUR FRIENDS CLOSE we’re in the present day so it provides a good backdrop.

BBE: You mention your first book, Losing Juliet. That was about friendship, exploring truth and betrayal, and the way our lives can change in a matter of seconds. The title KEEP YOUR FRIENDS CLOSE suggests these are recurring themes?

I think all books explore these to some extent, but I really love delving deep into characters’ minds. I think it stems from me wanting to understand people in real life, giving people the benefit of the doubt even if they’ve done bad things. I believe we’re all born good but it depends on our circumstances as to how we shape our own moral code. So I like to push ordinary people to the edge of themselves and see what they’re capable of.

BBE: Sounds intriguing. Tell us more.

Well the nature of friendship, and any relationship for that matter, is actually very complex. Until the day comes when we have the capacity to read each others’ minds (heaven forbid!), there is no way of knowing what a person is really thinking or feeling. Or doing. We can only go on instinct. Sometimes our instincts are wrong.

BBE: And tell us more about the book.

It’s about a young woman, Karin, who is beginning to put her life back together after struggling for many years to come to terms with her past. We first meet her on her twenty-second birthday. She’s settled in Leeds, renting a house, doing a job she enjoys, and the man she loves is possibly going to ask her to marry him. But … has she told him everything? What if her ex-partner decides to make life difficult? And where is Aaron taking her for her secret birthday weekend treat?

BBE: We can’t wait to read it!

Thank you. Hope you enjoy it.

BBE: PLUS … we’ve been promised an extract EXCLUSIVE to Big Bookend. So watch this space.


KEEP YOUR FRIENDS CLOSE is available to pre-order on Amazon: eBook is published on 26th October and currently only 99p! Paperback is out on 10th January 2019.

KEEP YOUR FRIENDS CLOSE has been described as “an addictive and shocking psychological thriller.”

A friend who won’t let you escape.
When Karin is taken on a romantic break by her loving partner Aaron, she can’t wait for him to propose. But her surprise weekend quickly becomes a nightmare from which she may never escape.
Who wants everything you have?
They are staying by the beach at the Midland – a grand hotel where Karin used to work. And where Karin’s dangerous and obsessive ex, whom she has been trying to leave behind for years, is waiting patiently for her to return.
Who won’t stop until your life is in ruins?
Now all of Karin’s darkest secrets are being dragged into the light and her friends are turning against her. When one of them is murdered, Karin begins to realise just how treacherous relationships can be.

About the author

June Taylor is a UK psychological thriller writer. For many years she was a TV promos writer/producer before turning to writing plays and fiction. She was runner-up in the 2011 Times/Chicken House Children’s Fiction competition with her YA novel. Her debut Adult psychological thriller Losing Juliet was nominated for the Not the Booker Prize 2017.

June is active in her local writing scene, including serving on the Board of Script Yorkshire and taking part in the Leeds Big Bookend. When she’s not writing she likes to shrink her life down into a camper van and take off on some adventure with her husband. She lives in Leeds.

You can also find June at her website. On Twitter and Facebook and occasionally on Instagram too.

Fiona Gell

Fiona is a lifelong reading enthusiast and book lover. Her career started as a bookseller and has never really veered away from the written and spoken word. It was a dream for her to be a founder member of The Leeds Big Bookend. Fiona is its Coordinator and Marketing Director of the Northern Short Story Festival.

You may also like...