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I'm Not Done with You Yet

Paperback
$18.00 US
5.18"W x 7.96"H x 0.78"D   (13.2 x 20.2 x 2.0 cm) | 10 oz (272 g) | 24 per carton
On sale Jul 16, 2024 | 368 Pages | 978-0-593-54693-2
Sales rights: US, Canada, Open Mkt
Some friends—and friendships—are worth killing for in this dark, twisty suspense novel by national bestselling author Jesse Q. Sutanto.

Jane is unhappy.  

A struggling midlist writer whose novels barely command four figures, she feels trapped in an underwhelming marriage, just scraping by to pay a crippling Bay Area mortgage for a house—a life—she's never really wanted. 

There's only ever been one person she cared about, one person who truly understood her: Thalia. Jane's best and only friend nearly a decade ago during their Creative Writing days at Oxford. It was the only good year of Jane’s life—cobblestones and books and damp English air, heady wine and sweet cider and Thalia, endless Thalia. But then one night ruined everything. The blood-soaked night that should have bound Thalia to Jane forever but instead made her lose her completely. Thalia disappeared without a trace, and Jane has been unable to find her since.

Until now. 

Because there she is, her name at the top of the New York Times bestseller list: A Most Pleasant Death by Thalia Ashcroft. When she discovers a post from Thalia on her website about attending a book convention in New York City in a week—“Can’t wait to see you there!”—Jane can’t wait either. 

She’ll go to New York City, too, credit card bill be damned. And this time, she will do things right. Jane won’t lose Thalia again.
1

TWENTY-SIX YEARS AGO

Aunt Claudette, she's the best. So everyone says. By everyone, I mean my mother. My mother loves Aunt Claudette because she is always ready to help out with "the cutie pie" (i.e., me). "Cutie pie" is the first clue that should tell you that my mother doesn't give a shit about me, because really, how fucking generic a pet name can someone get for their only child? She can't even be bothered to come up with a more unique pet name, one that's tailored to fit me. No, I remain known as "cutie pie" up until even my idiot mother can't pretend that I'm cute anymore.

But anyway. Back to Aunt Claudette. Not technically my aunt. She's just an elderly neighbor who Mom swears loves me like "her own." Her own what? Aunt Claudette never had kids. And the thing about Aunt Claudette is, she doesn't look after me out of love, no matter how much Mom would like to believe she does.

Sure, maybe she did it out of love at first, when I was little enough not to have any personality. When I really was a generic little cutie pie. But now that I'm seven, I realize she's not looking after me because she cares about me. She does so because she cares about what I would do if I wasn't being watched.

This morning, Mom made me cocoa pancakes for breakfast before rushing out the door to get to work. Cocoa pancakes, not chocolate pancakes. She'd read that unsweetened cocoa powder is full of antioxidants, so today, my pancakes come out brown as shit and tasting no better. I hate the color brown. That's what my hair is. Mom sometimes tries to call it "chestnut" or "chocolate," but we both know it's neither of those things. And here are my pancakes, the same disgusting mud-brown as my hair. I can drown the pancakes in syrup, but the only syrup allowed in the house is agave, which tastes like melted plastic. Clint Eastwood nudges my foot. The name's a joke that stuck-Clint is a loyal rescue mutt of an indeterminate age, but he looks about as old as God. I look into his trusting face and tear a tiny bit of shit pancake off. His stumpy tail wags, and he stands on his hind legs and paws my knees with a desperate whine.

But before I can give him the piece of pancake, Aunt Claudette rushes in like a hurricane and grabs my wrist, almost painfully. "What are you doing, child?"

I gaze at her. I have huge hazel eyes. Whenever people describe their eyes as "hazel," it's always brown. But mine have that warm honey hue that make people do a double take. They're also stupidly big and round. Legit Bambi eyes. I widen them now, because I know that's what people do when they're taken by surprise. "Clint is hungwy," I say.

Most people, including my own mother, would soften and say, "Aww," at that. But Aunt Claudette's mouth thins. I've miscalculated. She knows I'm too old for such mispronunciations. "Hung-ree," she says. "You know how to pronounce it properly."

I do.

"And you know Clint isn't allowed chocolate. It's bad for him."

It's not even a huge amount of cocoa. Not enough to do any permanent damage, only enough to give Clint the runs. I was going to really enjoy watching Mom clean up after Clint's diarrhea.

"I'm sorry." I cast my Bambi eyes down. All of my picture books show kids doing that when they're sorry. "I forgot." I look up at Aunt Claudette again, and this time, I've weaponized my Bambis-they're shining with tears. "Please don't be mad at me, Auntie."

That's something I'd learned from Jayden, Mom's current "special friend." Whenever they argue, Jayden looks at Mom a certain way and says, "Don't be mad at me, babe," and she sighs and her shoulders slump in defeat, and even at the age of seven, I know what a conniving asshole Jayden is, because telling someone not to be mad is putting all of the responsibility on them. Sure, I may have done something wrong, but YOU do the labor of getting over it. Jayden may be a grade A asshole, but he's taught me some really great tactics. And women fall for that shit all the time.

Even Aunt Claudette is no match for it. She flushes, her eyebrows coming together, and she quickly says, "Of course I'm not mad at you, angel," and I know for sure she's mad because she knows I'm no angel. Then she taps a palm against her fat thigh and says, "Here, Clint," and herds Clint away. Away from me. I shrug, running a finger down the edge of my butter knife. I fleetingly entertain the thought of plunging the point of that knife someplace soft and warm, someplace with a steady pulse, so the blood would come out in a rhythmic spurt. But I could never hurt Aunt Claudette. She's special. She's the only one who can always see right through my bullshit, and she loves me anyway, which just goes to show how flawed humans are.

She may as well love a cockroach.

2

PRESENT DAY

SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA

The thing about crazy bitches is there's usually some man who's pushed and prodded and gaslit her to that point.

I've never been a tidy person, but I like the idea of it; I enjoy the feeling of having tidied up, of sitting in an uncluttered room with a cup of tea and a good book. I like it enough to spend some time at the end of each day putting things away. I never get the room to "pristine," because I've been raised with clutter and never quite got the hang of cleaning, but I put in enough effort to make sure the space is livable. Ted, on the other hand, is an all-or-nothing guy. When I ask him to help declutter, he'll say, "Why bother? It's all just going to get messy again." If he can't have perfection, then we may as well live in a hovel.

This evening is no different. After dinner (in front of the TV so we won't actually have to make conversation with each other), Ted shuts himself away in his man cave for a round of Fortnite-apparently, it's not just for twelve-year-old boys; it's also for thirty-seven-year-old men-while I putter about the house putting away our daily bric-a-brac.

Normally, I wouldn't mind it, but today, our neighbor Kimiko stopped by to "borrow" some flour (I say "borrow," but Kimiko is always coming by to borrow cups of sugar or an egg or two, and not once has she returned anything), and while she waited in our foyer, Ted had said, laughingly, "Sorry about the state of the house. Jane's just really messy like that."

I'd come out of the kitchen then, carrying a Tupperware of flour, and said with more bite than I'd intended, "What? I'm not the messy one here."

Ted had raised his arms in a theatrical way, eyes wide, and laughed. "Whoa, it's okay, babe. I don't care that you're messy."

"But I'm not-" I caught it then. The shrill tone of anger in my voice that sounded like cracking glass. I stopped myself, but I could tell that Kimiko and Ted had both caught it too.

Kimiko had left pretty quickly after that, not bothering to stay around for a chitchat like she usually does. Which was just as well, because it gave me a chance to nip down to the basement and be alone. Lock myself away so I could cool down before I did something I'd regret. Something irredeemable.

Now, as I pick up Ted's half-drunk glasses of water and tea from the coffee table, my resentment mounts. Why is it always down to me to clear away all this shit? The random remnants of our daily lives-socks on the floor, pens and bits of paper everywhere, a half-eaten sandwich abandoned on, of all places, the TV cabinet. And I wouldn't mind it so much if Ted weren't such a fucking asshole about it all, if he'd at least acknowledge that I put in more effort than he does. I may be messy by nature, but I'm trying, and he's not seeing it, or maybe he's refusing to. Maybe he enjoys pushing my buttons, seeing how far he can twist the dials before I crack and show anger, like this morning, so he can say, "Geez, why're you getting so worked up over nothing?" He'd do his little incredulous snort and share a look with whoever he's talking to, and in the end, I'm always the crazy bitch who shoveled molehills into my own Mount Everest.

I can feel the old anger rising up again. I don't want to have to go down to the basement for the second time in a day, so I fling down the balled-up Fortnite T-shirt I'd picked up and stride out of the living room and into the dining room, where my laptop lives. Let Ted deal with his own mess.

Taking a deep breath, I sink into my chair and turn my laptop on. I scroll through Twitter for a while, losing myself in the usual cacophony of intense emotions. Everyone on Twitter is always either manically happy or completely enraged, and it makes me feel a bit better. More normal. When I get tired of all the virtual yelling, I switch over to check my email.

And that's when I see it. A newsletter from the New York Times with their latest bestseller list. The words scream at me through my computer screen, flashing in huge capital letters, neon bright.

Well, okay, the New York Times doesn't ever do anything that's as uncouth as screaming, and they sure as hell do not do headlines in huge caps and neon colors-what are they, the Daily Mail? But they might as well have, because there, right in front of me, is her name. Surely, it can't be written in plain black font; it's radiating with so much light. Blindingly bright, like the way she was. And just seeing those two words, that beautiful, uncommon name of hers, is enough to swallow me whole again. I'm whisked back into the common room at Pemberton, nervously skirting the edges of the crowd, biting my nails as I watch her hungrily.

Thalia Ashcroft.

In Greek mythology, Thalia was a Muse. Someone who inspired others to write. To create.

This version is no different. Even back at the program all those years ago, our classmates were drawn to her, always buzzing around her like bees swarming the queen, wanting to drink from the well of inspiration. Hands always touching her, a pat on the shoulder here, a brush on the arm there, as though she were Jesus and they were lepers desperate for a cure. I detested them all, not because I judged them for their insipid personalities, grown lazy and bland through privilege. No, I couldn't give two shits about our classmates. But I despised them their audacity. The way they felt entitled to be near her, to converse with her as though they were even close to being on the same level as she was.

No one was on the same level as Thalia the Muse, Thalia the Beautiful, Thalia the Perfect.

And now here she is again, her name right there in front of me, blasting her way back into my life in the most Thalia-esque fashion. Right at the top of the New York Times bestseller list.

New this week

A MOST PLEASANT DEATH

by Thalia Ashcroft, writing as May Pierce

The squeak of creaking plastic wrenches me out of my reverie. With a start, I see that I've been squeezing my mouse so hard that it has cracked in my hand. I peer down at the mouse. It was a bargain buy, made in China, cheap and unloved. Just like everything in my house, yours truly included.

If Ted knew I think this badly of the house his parents helped us to get, he'd have a go at me. And I suppose I should be grateful for it, thankful that his parents, unlike mine, are generous enough to help out with the down payment. But Ted's a contract data analyst and I'm a midlist writer, and the house is just a bit beyond our means. The mortgage alone is almost crippling. Almost, but not quite. Enough that each month, when we make the payment, I feel embittered that we have to pay so much for a house where I don't even have my own study. Ted's man cave doubles as his office, so he's just fine and dandy, but me? I have to make do with the communal spaces. The spaces that are dominated by his mess.

So I write at cafés. Of course, the tech boom in the Bay Area means that a cup of coffee costs me an arm and a leg and half a kidney, but it's worth it to give me a few precious hours away from the house and the mess.

I wonder if Thalia writes at cafés too. No, I reject the thought as soon as it surfaces. I can't see her at a hipster café with a mocha latte next to a rose gold laptop. No, Thalia isn't the type to soak up attention like that. Even back then, I could tell she hated it, hated that she was the sun and everyone else was a sunflower turning their wide, open faces toward her, feeding off her warmth.

She'd write in her apartment. Or maybe a house? My heart leaps to my throat, forming a lump as I open up a new tab and type down her name. Each letter a heartbreak.

T-h-a-l-i-a A-

I don't even get to finish before Google finishes the search for me. Because of course, she's the only Thalia worth Googling. My chest squeezes into a jealous fist. How many have done this search before me? I've done it so many times, but until now, I have only ever been able to find a ghost. Hits that were years old-a few blurry Facebook photos of her from college, from high school. Nothing from our master's course, certainly. After what happened in our year, Oxford had extended its powerful hand and crushed everything, scrubbed every last bit of news until all that remained were the ramblings of a couple of local tabloids. Nothing that anyone of consequence would pay attention to.

But now, oh my god. So many hits. A Goodreads page. An Amazon page. And a website. How is this possible? How have so many hits sprouted up without my knowledge? In the early days, I used to do a search for her name obsessively. She used to blog. I'd read and reread her posts in my room, devouring every word, marveling at the elegance of her writing. Then that final formal had happened, and Thalia disappeared. I often wondered if Oxford had been responsible for scrubbing her off the Internet too. And, years later, I've moved on, sort of. My search became more sporadic.
"Not since Gone Girl's Amy Dunne has a sociopath been this bewitching. Utterly brilliant, deliciously devious, and absolutely unputdownable with whiplash plotting and a twist that will make you gasp, Jesse Q. Sutanto’s I'm Not Done With You Yet is an unflinching portrait of obsession that seduces you with dazzling prose while simultaneously stabbing you in the back. With shades of Highsmith and Single White Female vibes—and a razor-sharp game of cat-and mouse—prepare to be consumed by your newest addiction."—May Cobb, author of The Hunting Wives

"Obsession and envy collide in this deliciously dark tale of two writers with more than one explosive secret between them. With I'm Not Done With You Yet, Jesse Q. Sutanto has woven a very tangled web—one that readers will gladly get caught up in. This is toxic female friendship at its most terrifying best."—Laurie Elizabeth Flynn, author of The Girls Are All So Nice Here

"Deliciously dark, wittily provocative, with twist after twist that will leave you reeling, Sutanto weaves a dangerously clever tale about friendship, rage, and the mind-games people play. Recovery won’t be easy after this roller-coaster of a thriller!"—Amanda Jayatissa, author of You’re Invited

“Alert the paparazzi and set up a velvet rope for the future fans of Sutanto, who is poised to become a top-tier thriller writer.”—Washington Post

“I blazed through Jesse Q. Sutanto’s I’m Not Done With You Yet, the sordid tale of a twisted friendship unlike any I’ve ever read about before...It’s a twisted tale that will find you switching allegiances and who you believe. The person you end up rooting for in the end will surprise you."—Glamour

“This is a wickedly enjoyable treatise on the dark sides of female friendship.”—Publishers Weekly

“…Sutanto’s renderings of Jane’s Chinese Indonesian heritage and her experience at Oxford, both autobiographically based, are strong.”—Kirkus Reviews

"Sutanto expertly manipulates time, moving between difficult childhoods to perplexing adult lives, dexterously revealing puzzle pieces that calculatingly don’t fit. Meanwhile, crazy rich Asians, the publishing industry, and fatal misogyny all crack under Sutanto’s deadly glare."—Booklist

"I'm Not Done With You Yet is deliciously brilliant and I read it in a handful of sittings. There are shocking twists and turns and they just keep unfolding right up to the end. If you enjoy thrillers about unexpected friendships that turn dark and dangerous, you'll love I'm Not Done With You Yet. Highly recommended.”—Game Vortex

"This novel is intense, a page-turner, and you need a scorecard to keep up with the twists that come fast in the second part of the novel. Easily one of the best books of the summer.”—Red Carpet Crash
© Michael Hart
Jesse Q Sutanto grew up shuttling back and forth between Indonesia, Singapore, and Oxford, and considers all three places her home. She has a Masters from Oxford University, but she has yet to figure out how to say that without sounding obnoxious. Jesse has forty-two first cousins and thirty aunties and uncles, many of whom live just down the road. She used to game but with two little ones and a husband, she no longer has time for hobbies. She aspires to one day find one (1) hobby. View titles by Jesse Q. Sutanto
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About

Some friends—and friendships—are worth killing for in this dark, twisty suspense novel by national bestselling author Jesse Q. Sutanto.

Jane is unhappy.  

A struggling midlist writer whose novels barely command four figures, she feels trapped in an underwhelming marriage, just scraping by to pay a crippling Bay Area mortgage for a house—a life—she's never really wanted. 

There's only ever been one person she cared about, one person who truly understood her: Thalia. Jane's best and only friend nearly a decade ago during their Creative Writing days at Oxford. It was the only good year of Jane’s life—cobblestones and books and damp English air, heady wine and sweet cider and Thalia, endless Thalia. But then one night ruined everything. The blood-soaked night that should have bound Thalia to Jane forever but instead made her lose her completely. Thalia disappeared without a trace, and Jane has been unable to find her since.

Until now. 

Because there she is, her name at the top of the New York Times bestseller list: A Most Pleasant Death by Thalia Ashcroft. When she discovers a post from Thalia on her website about attending a book convention in New York City in a week—“Can’t wait to see you there!”—Jane can’t wait either. 

She’ll go to New York City, too, credit card bill be damned. And this time, she will do things right. Jane won’t lose Thalia again.

Excerpt

1

TWENTY-SIX YEARS AGO

Aunt Claudette, she's the best. So everyone says. By everyone, I mean my mother. My mother loves Aunt Claudette because she is always ready to help out with "the cutie pie" (i.e., me). "Cutie pie" is the first clue that should tell you that my mother doesn't give a shit about me, because really, how fucking generic a pet name can someone get for their only child? She can't even be bothered to come up with a more unique pet name, one that's tailored to fit me. No, I remain known as "cutie pie" up until even my idiot mother can't pretend that I'm cute anymore.

But anyway. Back to Aunt Claudette. Not technically my aunt. She's just an elderly neighbor who Mom swears loves me like "her own." Her own what? Aunt Claudette never had kids. And the thing about Aunt Claudette is, she doesn't look after me out of love, no matter how much Mom would like to believe she does.

Sure, maybe she did it out of love at first, when I was little enough not to have any personality. When I really was a generic little cutie pie. But now that I'm seven, I realize she's not looking after me because she cares about me. She does so because she cares about what I would do if I wasn't being watched.

This morning, Mom made me cocoa pancakes for breakfast before rushing out the door to get to work. Cocoa pancakes, not chocolate pancakes. She'd read that unsweetened cocoa powder is full of antioxidants, so today, my pancakes come out brown as shit and tasting no better. I hate the color brown. That's what my hair is. Mom sometimes tries to call it "chestnut" or "chocolate," but we both know it's neither of those things. And here are my pancakes, the same disgusting mud-brown as my hair. I can drown the pancakes in syrup, but the only syrup allowed in the house is agave, which tastes like melted plastic. Clint Eastwood nudges my foot. The name's a joke that stuck-Clint is a loyal rescue mutt of an indeterminate age, but he looks about as old as God. I look into his trusting face and tear a tiny bit of shit pancake off. His stumpy tail wags, and he stands on his hind legs and paws my knees with a desperate whine.

But before I can give him the piece of pancake, Aunt Claudette rushes in like a hurricane and grabs my wrist, almost painfully. "What are you doing, child?"

I gaze at her. I have huge hazel eyes. Whenever people describe their eyes as "hazel," it's always brown. But mine have that warm honey hue that make people do a double take. They're also stupidly big and round. Legit Bambi eyes. I widen them now, because I know that's what people do when they're taken by surprise. "Clint is hungwy," I say.

Most people, including my own mother, would soften and say, "Aww," at that. But Aunt Claudette's mouth thins. I've miscalculated. She knows I'm too old for such mispronunciations. "Hung-ree," she says. "You know how to pronounce it properly."

I do.

"And you know Clint isn't allowed chocolate. It's bad for him."

It's not even a huge amount of cocoa. Not enough to do any permanent damage, only enough to give Clint the runs. I was going to really enjoy watching Mom clean up after Clint's diarrhea.

"I'm sorry." I cast my Bambi eyes down. All of my picture books show kids doing that when they're sorry. "I forgot." I look up at Aunt Claudette again, and this time, I've weaponized my Bambis-they're shining with tears. "Please don't be mad at me, Auntie."

That's something I'd learned from Jayden, Mom's current "special friend." Whenever they argue, Jayden looks at Mom a certain way and says, "Don't be mad at me, babe," and she sighs and her shoulders slump in defeat, and even at the age of seven, I know what a conniving asshole Jayden is, because telling someone not to be mad is putting all of the responsibility on them. Sure, I may have done something wrong, but YOU do the labor of getting over it. Jayden may be a grade A asshole, but he's taught me some really great tactics. And women fall for that shit all the time.

Even Aunt Claudette is no match for it. She flushes, her eyebrows coming together, and she quickly says, "Of course I'm not mad at you, angel," and I know for sure she's mad because she knows I'm no angel. Then she taps a palm against her fat thigh and says, "Here, Clint," and herds Clint away. Away from me. I shrug, running a finger down the edge of my butter knife. I fleetingly entertain the thought of plunging the point of that knife someplace soft and warm, someplace with a steady pulse, so the blood would come out in a rhythmic spurt. But I could never hurt Aunt Claudette. She's special. She's the only one who can always see right through my bullshit, and she loves me anyway, which just goes to show how flawed humans are.

She may as well love a cockroach.

2

PRESENT DAY

SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA

The thing about crazy bitches is there's usually some man who's pushed and prodded and gaslit her to that point.

I've never been a tidy person, but I like the idea of it; I enjoy the feeling of having tidied up, of sitting in an uncluttered room with a cup of tea and a good book. I like it enough to spend some time at the end of each day putting things away. I never get the room to "pristine," because I've been raised with clutter and never quite got the hang of cleaning, but I put in enough effort to make sure the space is livable. Ted, on the other hand, is an all-or-nothing guy. When I ask him to help declutter, he'll say, "Why bother? It's all just going to get messy again." If he can't have perfection, then we may as well live in a hovel.

This evening is no different. After dinner (in front of the TV so we won't actually have to make conversation with each other), Ted shuts himself away in his man cave for a round of Fortnite-apparently, it's not just for twelve-year-old boys; it's also for thirty-seven-year-old men-while I putter about the house putting away our daily bric-a-brac.

Normally, I wouldn't mind it, but today, our neighbor Kimiko stopped by to "borrow" some flour (I say "borrow," but Kimiko is always coming by to borrow cups of sugar or an egg or two, and not once has she returned anything), and while she waited in our foyer, Ted had said, laughingly, "Sorry about the state of the house. Jane's just really messy like that."

I'd come out of the kitchen then, carrying a Tupperware of flour, and said with more bite than I'd intended, "What? I'm not the messy one here."

Ted had raised his arms in a theatrical way, eyes wide, and laughed. "Whoa, it's okay, babe. I don't care that you're messy."

"But I'm not-" I caught it then. The shrill tone of anger in my voice that sounded like cracking glass. I stopped myself, but I could tell that Kimiko and Ted had both caught it too.

Kimiko had left pretty quickly after that, not bothering to stay around for a chitchat like she usually does. Which was just as well, because it gave me a chance to nip down to the basement and be alone. Lock myself away so I could cool down before I did something I'd regret. Something irredeemable.

Now, as I pick up Ted's half-drunk glasses of water and tea from the coffee table, my resentment mounts. Why is it always down to me to clear away all this shit? The random remnants of our daily lives-socks on the floor, pens and bits of paper everywhere, a half-eaten sandwich abandoned on, of all places, the TV cabinet. And I wouldn't mind it so much if Ted weren't such a fucking asshole about it all, if he'd at least acknowledge that I put in more effort than he does. I may be messy by nature, but I'm trying, and he's not seeing it, or maybe he's refusing to. Maybe he enjoys pushing my buttons, seeing how far he can twist the dials before I crack and show anger, like this morning, so he can say, "Geez, why're you getting so worked up over nothing?" He'd do his little incredulous snort and share a look with whoever he's talking to, and in the end, I'm always the crazy bitch who shoveled molehills into my own Mount Everest.

I can feel the old anger rising up again. I don't want to have to go down to the basement for the second time in a day, so I fling down the balled-up Fortnite T-shirt I'd picked up and stride out of the living room and into the dining room, where my laptop lives. Let Ted deal with his own mess.

Taking a deep breath, I sink into my chair and turn my laptop on. I scroll through Twitter for a while, losing myself in the usual cacophony of intense emotions. Everyone on Twitter is always either manically happy or completely enraged, and it makes me feel a bit better. More normal. When I get tired of all the virtual yelling, I switch over to check my email.

And that's when I see it. A newsletter from the New York Times with their latest bestseller list. The words scream at me through my computer screen, flashing in huge capital letters, neon bright.

Well, okay, the New York Times doesn't ever do anything that's as uncouth as screaming, and they sure as hell do not do headlines in huge caps and neon colors-what are they, the Daily Mail? But they might as well have, because there, right in front of me, is her name. Surely, it can't be written in plain black font; it's radiating with so much light. Blindingly bright, like the way she was. And just seeing those two words, that beautiful, uncommon name of hers, is enough to swallow me whole again. I'm whisked back into the common room at Pemberton, nervously skirting the edges of the crowd, biting my nails as I watch her hungrily.

Thalia Ashcroft.

In Greek mythology, Thalia was a Muse. Someone who inspired others to write. To create.

This version is no different. Even back at the program all those years ago, our classmates were drawn to her, always buzzing around her like bees swarming the queen, wanting to drink from the well of inspiration. Hands always touching her, a pat on the shoulder here, a brush on the arm there, as though she were Jesus and they were lepers desperate for a cure. I detested them all, not because I judged them for their insipid personalities, grown lazy and bland through privilege. No, I couldn't give two shits about our classmates. But I despised them their audacity. The way they felt entitled to be near her, to converse with her as though they were even close to being on the same level as she was.

No one was on the same level as Thalia the Muse, Thalia the Beautiful, Thalia the Perfect.

And now here she is again, her name right there in front of me, blasting her way back into my life in the most Thalia-esque fashion. Right at the top of the New York Times bestseller list.

New this week

A MOST PLEASANT DEATH

by Thalia Ashcroft, writing as May Pierce

The squeak of creaking plastic wrenches me out of my reverie. With a start, I see that I've been squeezing my mouse so hard that it has cracked in my hand. I peer down at the mouse. It was a bargain buy, made in China, cheap and unloved. Just like everything in my house, yours truly included.

If Ted knew I think this badly of the house his parents helped us to get, he'd have a go at me. And I suppose I should be grateful for it, thankful that his parents, unlike mine, are generous enough to help out with the down payment. But Ted's a contract data analyst and I'm a midlist writer, and the house is just a bit beyond our means. The mortgage alone is almost crippling. Almost, but not quite. Enough that each month, when we make the payment, I feel embittered that we have to pay so much for a house where I don't even have my own study. Ted's man cave doubles as his office, so he's just fine and dandy, but me? I have to make do with the communal spaces. The spaces that are dominated by his mess.

So I write at cafés. Of course, the tech boom in the Bay Area means that a cup of coffee costs me an arm and a leg and half a kidney, but it's worth it to give me a few precious hours away from the house and the mess.

I wonder if Thalia writes at cafés too. No, I reject the thought as soon as it surfaces. I can't see her at a hipster café with a mocha latte next to a rose gold laptop. No, Thalia isn't the type to soak up attention like that. Even back then, I could tell she hated it, hated that she was the sun and everyone else was a sunflower turning their wide, open faces toward her, feeding off her warmth.

She'd write in her apartment. Or maybe a house? My heart leaps to my throat, forming a lump as I open up a new tab and type down her name. Each letter a heartbreak.

T-h-a-l-i-a A-

I don't even get to finish before Google finishes the search for me. Because of course, she's the only Thalia worth Googling. My chest squeezes into a jealous fist. How many have done this search before me? I've done it so many times, but until now, I have only ever been able to find a ghost. Hits that were years old-a few blurry Facebook photos of her from college, from high school. Nothing from our master's course, certainly. After what happened in our year, Oxford had extended its powerful hand and crushed everything, scrubbed every last bit of news until all that remained were the ramblings of a couple of local tabloids. Nothing that anyone of consequence would pay attention to.

But now, oh my god. So many hits. A Goodreads page. An Amazon page. And a website. How is this possible? How have so many hits sprouted up without my knowledge? In the early days, I used to do a search for her name obsessively. She used to blog. I'd read and reread her posts in my room, devouring every word, marveling at the elegance of her writing. Then that final formal had happened, and Thalia disappeared. I often wondered if Oxford had been responsible for scrubbing her off the Internet too. And, years later, I've moved on, sort of. My search became more sporadic.

Praise

"Not since Gone Girl's Amy Dunne has a sociopath been this bewitching. Utterly brilliant, deliciously devious, and absolutely unputdownable with whiplash plotting and a twist that will make you gasp, Jesse Q. Sutanto’s I'm Not Done With You Yet is an unflinching portrait of obsession that seduces you with dazzling prose while simultaneously stabbing you in the back. With shades of Highsmith and Single White Female vibes—and a razor-sharp game of cat-and mouse—prepare to be consumed by your newest addiction."—May Cobb, author of The Hunting Wives

"Obsession and envy collide in this deliciously dark tale of two writers with more than one explosive secret between them. With I'm Not Done With You Yet, Jesse Q. Sutanto has woven a very tangled web—one that readers will gladly get caught up in. This is toxic female friendship at its most terrifying best."—Laurie Elizabeth Flynn, author of The Girls Are All So Nice Here

"Deliciously dark, wittily provocative, with twist after twist that will leave you reeling, Sutanto weaves a dangerously clever tale about friendship, rage, and the mind-games people play. Recovery won’t be easy after this roller-coaster of a thriller!"—Amanda Jayatissa, author of You’re Invited

“Alert the paparazzi and set up a velvet rope for the future fans of Sutanto, who is poised to become a top-tier thriller writer.”—Washington Post

“I blazed through Jesse Q. Sutanto’s I’m Not Done With You Yet, the sordid tale of a twisted friendship unlike any I’ve ever read about before...It’s a twisted tale that will find you switching allegiances and who you believe. The person you end up rooting for in the end will surprise you."—Glamour

“This is a wickedly enjoyable treatise on the dark sides of female friendship.”—Publishers Weekly

“…Sutanto’s renderings of Jane’s Chinese Indonesian heritage and her experience at Oxford, both autobiographically based, are strong.”—Kirkus Reviews

"Sutanto expertly manipulates time, moving between difficult childhoods to perplexing adult lives, dexterously revealing puzzle pieces that calculatingly don’t fit. Meanwhile, crazy rich Asians, the publishing industry, and fatal misogyny all crack under Sutanto’s deadly glare."—Booklist

"I'm Not Done With You Yet is deliciously brilliant and I read it in a handful of sittings. There are shocking twists and turns and they just keep unfolding right up to the end. If you enjoy thrillers about unexpected friendships that turn dark and dangerous, you'll love I'm Not Done With You Yet. Highly recommended.”—Game Vortex

"This novel is intense, a page-turner, and you need a scorecard to keep up with the twists that come fast in the second part of the novel. Easily one of the best books of the summer.”—Red Carpet Crash

Author

© Michael Hart
Jesse Q Sutanto grew up shuttling back and forth between Indonesia, Singapore, and Oxford, and considers all three places her home. She has a Masters from Oxford University, but she has yet to figure out how to say that without sounding obnoxious. Jesse has forty-two first cousins and thirty aunties and uncles, many of whom live just down the road. She used to game but with two little ones and a husband, she no longer has time for hobbies. She aspires to one day find one (1) hobby. View titles by Jesse Q. Sutanto

Rights

Available for sale exclusive:
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•     Guam
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Not available for sale:
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