Give Me Your Hand by Megan Abbott
Kit and Diane met at running camp one summer as young teens so when Diane transfers into her school Kit befriends her anew. Diane is a good influence. Her near obsession for academic excellence awakens the drive in Kit and both girls begin to compete for academic honors. When Diane shares a secret with Kit though both girls lives are turned upside down. Kit breaks contact with Diane but Kit can’t forget what she was told as much as she wants to pretend she never heard a thing. Over a decade later Kit is steps from her dream job at a lab with a doctor working on cutting edge research when Diane walks through the lab’s door.
This is firmly in the psychological thriller category. It is an examination into a decidedly one-sided friendship where one woman, Diane, doesn’t understand that the friendship is over and can never be revived and the other woman, Kit, wants to forget the past and get far from the other person. But Kit can’t leave, she’s so close to attaining the life she’s worked so hard for since high school.
Kit is the focus of the narrative so we really get into her skin and how the secret changed her life even though she had no part in the deed. (No worries, you learn what the secret is about a quarter of the way into the book but I’m not ruining it here.) The science is also interesting, trying to discover the causes of PMDD which is basically PMS but much much worse; it shows just how little we understand about the female cycle and what a force it is in a woman’s life. And the power of secrets, how a secret shared can bond two people together forever, and eat away at them both.