In this compelling, emotionally complex novel, a college friendship sparks a life-changing sacrifice that connects two women forever—even as it shatters their closeness . . .
"Let her go. I'll stay."
There are some decisions you can never unmake. You can only atone for them—or try to. During her senior year of college, Clare Michaels takes a spring break trip to Florida with three other girls, including her best friend, Lee. She's hoping for adventure and a few stories to share back at school. Instead, a string of bad choices leads to a horrific encounter, and Lee offers herself up so that Clare can escape.
In the weeks and months that follow that fateful incident, Lee, once so dynamic and ambitious, flounders and withdraws. Clare was the only person to whom she'd ever confided about her troubled past. For Clare, that role felt like an honor—until it became a burden. Now she's trying to make amends for her momentary selfishness by taking care of Lee—just as she's been taking care of her high-strung mother, whose bestselling novel has been both windfall and curse. Years pass, circumstances change, and contact between Clare and Lee ebbs and flows, but the events of that night in Florida are impossible to escape. They keep dragging Clare back—forcing her to confront what really happened, and her part in it, in hopes of untangling guilt from loyalty and earning forgiveness at last . . .
"I'll Stay is a heart-pounding, addictive portrait of how one split-second choice can twist our whole lives—and how the patterns of our lives lead us to those choices. A smart, compassionate, psychological spellbinder of a book—with one of the scariest scenes you'll read anywhere that'll stay with you forever!" —Jenna Blum, New York Times bestselling author of Those Who Save Us and The Stormchasers