A razor-sharp page-turner about female ambition and what happens when fake violence draws real blood.
by Layne Fargo
Scout Press, publication July 2019
After years of struggling in the Chicago theater scene, ambitious actress Kira Rascher finally lands the role of a lifetime. The catch? Starring in Temper means working with Malcolm Mercer, a mercurial director who’s known for pushing his performers past their limits—on stage and off. Kira’s convinced she can handle Malcolm, but the theater’s co-founder, Joanna Cuyler, is another story. Joanna sees Kira as a threat—to her own thwarted artistic ambitions, her twisted relationship with Malcolm, and the shocking secret she’s keeping about the upcoming production. But as opening night draws near, Kira and Joanna both start to realize that Malcolm’s dangerous extremes are nothing compared to what they’re capable of themselves.An edgy, addictive, and fiendishly clever tale of ambition, deceit, and power, Temper is a timely, heart-in-your-throat psychological thriller that will leave you breathless.
« Toying with the line between victim and villain, real life and fantasy, TEMPER revels in its mind games, delivering twist after twist as it races toward a Shakespearian climax. The final page will leave you gasping. » – Amy Gentry, author of Last Woman Standing.
“TEMPER alternates narrators between Kira and Johanna and builds a sense of suspense that will keep readers guessing, literally until the last page. Fargo’s first novel features complicated female characters and will be well received by fans of Gillian Flynn and Tana French.” – Booklist
With an announced first print run of 75,000 copies, TEMPER is a Publishers Marketplace Spring/Summer 2019 Buzz Book and a Lead Title for Simon & Schuster, with the support of S&S President and Publisher Jonathan Karp.