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Pretty Baby
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MIRA Books 2015
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"Thrilling and illuminating."—LA Times
"A hypnotic psychological thriller." —People
A chance encounter sparks an unrelenting web of lies in this new gripping and complex psychological thriller from the New York Times bestselling author of The Good Girl.

She sees the teenage girl on the train platform, standing in the pouring rain, clutching an infant in her arms. She boards a train and is whisked away. But she can't get the girl out of her head...
Heidi Wood has always been a charitable woman: she works for a nonprofit, takes in stray cats. Still, her husband and daughter are horrified when Heidi returns home one day with a young woman named Willow and her four-month-old baby in tow. Disheveled and apparently homeless, this girl could be a criminal—or worse. But despite her family's objections, Heidi invites Willow and the baby to take refuge in their home.
Heidi spends the next few days helping Willow get back on her feet, but as clues into Willow's past begin to surface, Heidi is forced to decide how far she's willing to go to help a stranger. What starts as an act of kindness quickly spirals into a story far more twisted than anyone could have anticipated.
More Praise:
"Hypnotic and anything but predictable." —Kirkus, starred review
"A superb psychological thriller...stunning."—Publishers Weekly, starred review
Don't miss Mary Kubica's chilling upcoming novel, She's Not Sorry, where an ICU nurse accidentally uncovers a patient's frightening past...
And look for the new editions of The Good Girl, Every Last Lie, Don't You Cry and The Other Mrs. featuring brand new covers!
More edge-of-your-seat thrillers by New York Times bestselling author Mary Kubica:
  • The Good Girl
  • Every Last Lie
  • Don't You Cry
  • When the Lights Go Out
  • Local Woman Missing
  • Just The Nicest Couple
  • The Other Mrs.
  • She's not Sorry
  • Also in This Series

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    Format:
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    Street Date:
    07/28/2015
    Language:
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    ISBN:
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    ASIN:
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    APA Citation (style guide)

    Mary Kubica. (2015). Pretty Baby. MIRA Books.

    Chicago / Turabian - Author Date Citation (style guide)

    Mary Kubica. 2015. Pretty Baby. MIRA Books.

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    Mary Kubica, Pretty Baby. MIRA Books, 2015.

    MLA Citation (style guide)

    Mary Kubica. Pretty Baby. MIRA Books, 2015.

    Note! Citation formats are based on standards as of July 2022. Citations contain only title, author, edition, publisher, and year published. Citations should be used as a guideline and should be double checked for accuracy.

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        • bioText: Mary Kubica is a New York Times bestselling author of thrillers including The Good Girl, The Other Mrs., Local Woman Missing and Just the Nicest Couple. Her books have been translated into over thirty languages and have sold over two million copies worldwide. Her novels have been praised as "hypnotic" (People) and "thrilling and illuminating" (L.A. Times). She lives outside of Chicago with her husband and children.
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    "Thrilling and illuminating."—LA Times
    "A hypnotic psychological thriller." —People
    A chance encounter sparks an unrelenting web of lies in this new gripping and complex psychological thriller from the New York Times bestselling author of The Good Girl.

    She sees the teenage girl on the train platform, standing in the pouring rain, clutching an infant in her arms. She boards a train and is whisked away. But she can't get the girl out of her head...
    Heidi Wood has always been a charitable woman: she works for a nonprofit, takes in stray cats. Still, her husband and daughter are horrified when Heidi returns home one day with a young woman named Willow and her four-month-old baby in tow. Disheveled and apparently homeless, this girl could be a criminal—or worse. But despite her family's objections, Heidi invites Willow and the baby to take refuge in their home.
    Heidi spends the next few days helping Willow get back on her feet, but as clues into Willow's past begin to surface, Heidi is forced to decide how far she's willing to go to help a stranger. What starts as an act of kindness quickly spirals into a story far more twisted than anyone could have anticipated.
    More Praise:
    "Hypnotic and anything but predictable." —Kirkus, starred review
    "A superb psychological thriller...stunning."—Publishers Weekly, starred review
    Don't miss Mary Kubica's chilling upcoming novel, She's Not Sorry, where an ICU nurse accidentally uncovers a patient's frightening past...
    And look for the new editions of The Good Girl, Every Last Lie, Don't You Cry and The Other Mrs. featuring brand new covers!
    More edge-of-your-seat thrillers by New York Times bestselling author Mary Kubica:
  • The Good Girl
  • Every Last Lie
  • Don't You Cry
  • When the Lights Go Out
  • Local Woman Missing
  • Just The Nicest Couple
  • The Other Mrs.
  • She's not Sorry
  • reviews
        • premium: False
        • source: Kirkus, starred review
        • content: "Hypnotic and anything but predictable. This book will give insomniacs a compelling reason to sit up all night."
        • premium: False
        • source: Publishers Weekly, starred review, on THE GOOD GIRL
        • content: "Kubica's powerful debut...will encourage comparisons to Gone Girl. Unlike that dazzling duel between what prove to be a pair of sociopaths, this Girl has heart-which makes it all the more devastating when the author breaks it."
        • premium: False
        • source: Lisa Gardner, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Fear Nothing
        • content: "A twisty, roller coaster ride of a debut. Fans of Gone Girl will embrace this equally evocative tale of a missing woman, shattered family and the lies we tell not just to each other, but especially to ourselves."
        • premium: False
        • source: Heather Gudenkauf, bestselling author of The Weight of Silence and Little Mercies
        • content: "Psychologically rich and pulse pounding, The Good Girl had me hooked from the very first sentence and didn't let go until the final word. I can't wait to see what Mary Kubica comes up with next."
        • premium: True
        • source: Publisher's Weekly
        • content:

          Starred review from June 15, 2015
          Kubica follows her acclaimed debut, 2014’s The Good Girl, with a superb psychological thriller. Heidi Wood’s husband, Chris, and 12-year-old daughter, Zoe, are used to her rants about recycling, poverty, and literacy, as well as her endless, depressing stories about the immigrants and refugees she meets through the Chicago nonprofit for which she works. But her family didn’t expect Heidi to invite homeless teen Willow Greer and her infant, Ruby, to live with them. Heidi, whose dreams of a large family ended when she had a hysterectomy to save her life, becomes obsessed with Willow and especially Ruby, even as her marriage frays and she ignores Zoe. Afraid that Willow could be violent, Chris tries to find out her background and whether Ruby is even her baby. A series of flashbacks shift among the points of view of Heidi, Chris, and Willow as this heartbreaking tale about obsession, foster care, and the debilitating effects of unacknowledged grief builds to a stunning conclusion. 10-city author tour. Agent: Rachael Dillon Fried, Greenburger Associates.

        • premium: True
        • source: Kirkus
        • content:

          Starred review from June 1, 2015
          Things go dangerously wrong when a middle-class wife and mother impulsively opens her home to a homeless teen and her tiny baby in Kubica's sophomore novel. When Heidi Wood, a woman who can't help herself from helping others, spots a teenage girl with a small baby on the platform of Chicago's train system, her heart goes out to them. Not only is it cold and raining, but the pair is obviously in need of help. Soon, Heidi has spotted the homeless teenager again, and, being the nurturing type, she feels compelled to reach out to her. That annoys her husband, Chris, and selfish 12-year-old daughter, Zoe. But Heidi ignores her husband's misgivings-after all, he's distracted by the new girl at work, Cassidy Knudsen, a lissome blonde who always seems to be nearby when Heidi calls. So when she brings the girl, Willow, and Ruby, her baby, into their condo, it only widens the gap between Heidi and Chris. And, through some clever foreshadowing, the reader knows, almost from the outset, that this isn't going to turn out so well for the Wood family. Kubica skillfully weaves the story together, with Chris, Heidi, and Willow all narrating portions of the tale. As bits and pieces of Willow's story are revealed, the other characters keep the story moving forward toward what the reader knows will be disastrous results. Kubica's debut novel, The Good Girl (2014), also employed multiple points of view and timelines, but Kubica serves up a much more cohesive tale this time around-the story is almost hypnotic and anything but predictable. The writing is compelling, but Kubica's strong point is being able to juggle a complicated plot and holding the reader's interest without dropping any of the balls she has in the air. This book will give insomniacs a compelling reason to sit up all night.

          COPYRIGHT(2015) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

        • premium: True
        • source: Booklist
        • content:

          May 1, 2015
          Kubica's second domestic thriller (following The Good Girl, 2014) opens with Chicago literacy tutor Heidi Wood speculating about a teen mother she sees huddled at her el stop. Days later, she finally approaches the girl and offers to buy her dinner. The girl, Willow, refuses to take her baby to a shelter, so Heidi invites them back to the condo she shares with her husband and teenage daughter. Chris, an investment banker, can't believe that Heidi would bring a complete stranger into their home. He wonders if this is retribution for the frequent business trips he's been taking with an attractive colleague. Then, the plot shifts gears as Willow's story slowly unravels from inside a holding cell. What did she do to end up there? And why does she think Heidi is being held somewhere wearing her own orange jumpsuit? As the perspective shifts again, readers see Heidi's interest in Willow's baby intensify and senses family tragedy on the way. And yet, the conclusion is a genuine surprise. Recommend for fans of the psychological suspense of Suzanne Berne or Laura Kasischke.(Reprinted with permission of Booklist, copyright 2015, American Library Association.)

        • premium: True
        • source: Library Journal
        • content:

          June 15, 2015

          Heidi and Chris have been married for a while. He works hard as an investment banker to support their lifestyle. She diligently strives to help the underserved of the world. Their daughter, Zoe, is an angry preteen who locks herself into her room and doesn't eat. One day, Heidi spots Willow, a young homeless woman toting a baby, and brings her home. "Just like the stray cats," thinks Chris. With these unusual houseguests, the family's life is turned upside down. Chris and Heidi are forced to confront long-buried traumas brought to the surface by having a baby and a stranger in residence. As events unfold, the narrative alternates between the points of view of Chris and Heidi; Willow's story is told in flashbacks after most of the events of the book are finished. VERDICT Those who appreciate character-driven explorations of human emotion will enjoy Kubica's sophomore effort (after The Good Girl). The major characters are each deep in the midst of their own psychological crises based on past events. There is no notable action, but the story will stir readers just the same. [See Prepub Alert, 3/2/15.]--Elizabeth Masterson, Mecklenburg Cty. Jail Lib., Charlotte, NC

          Copyright 2015 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

        • premium: True
        • source: Library Journal
        • content:

          March 15, 2015

          After buzzing loudly at last year's BookExpo America and the American Library Association conference, Kubica's The Good Girl went on to become a national best seller and one of PW's best mystery/thrillers of the year. Her new novel opens with do-gooder Heidi Wood upsetting her husband and daughter by taking in homeless teenager Willow and her baby. As details of Willow's past begin to emerge, Heidi has reason to question her charitable act.

          Copyright 2015 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

        • premium: True
        • source: Publisher's Weekly
        • content:

          September 28, 2015
          Kubica’s psychological thriller (the follow-up to 2014’s The Good Girl) focuses on Heidi Woods, a Chicago-based social worker who espies a homeless teenage waif, Willow Geer, on a train platform, clutching a crying baby. What initially seems to be a professional interest rapidly carries over to obsession for Heidi. Much to the dismay of her husband, Chris, and her moody 12-year-old daughter, Zoe, Heidi takes the possibly psychotic Willow and tot into their home. Kubica spins her disturbing tale using three present-tense points of view, performed here by a trio of readers. Heidi is the first to speak. Her voice, thanks to reader Campbell, is somewhat academic when describing the city’s social problems, but quickly shifts to concern for the mother and child. Taylorson’s Chris starts out weary from the travel-heavy rut he’s in and annoyed by Heidi’s new insistence on meatless menus, as well as her ceaselessly downbeat tales of society’s ills. Though Heidi’s and Chris’s chapters include
          frequent flashbacks to the past, they follow a linked chronology. Reader Marie voices Willow’s sections, which take place after her stay in the Woods’ household. Sounding vaguely druggy,
          or maybe just without affect, she recalls events from her past. But she drops a
          few comments suggesting that some
          terrible fate has befallen Heidi. But as the novel’s powerful and emotionally devastating ending makes clear, she doesn’t understand what it is. A Mira hardcover.

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    "Thrilling and illuminating."—LA Times
    "A hypnotic psychological thriller." —People
    A chance encounter sparks an unrelenting web of lies in this new gripping and complex psychological thriller from the New York Times bestselling author of The Good Girl.

    She sees the teenage girl on the train platform, standing in the pouring rain, clutching an infant in her arms. She boards a train and is whisked away. But she can't get the girl out of her head...
    Heidi Wood has always been a charitable woman: she works for a nonprofit, takes in stray cats. Still, her husband and daughter are horrified when Heidi returns home one day with a young woman named Willow and her four-month-old baby in tow. Disheveled and apparently homeless, this girl could be a criminal—or worse. But despite her family's objections, Heidi invites Willow and the baby to take refuge in their home.
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