Cover image for Copycat
First edition.
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181 pages ; 22 cm
Author Traci Calloway Cole is the kind of woman Simone wants to be-- in every way possible. She begins copying her role model. She wants to be exactly like her. Traci knows Simone doesn't mean any harm and that her mimicry is only sincere admiration. Until she discovers how far Simone's obsession has gone. And that Simone has secrets that she'll do almost anything to protect....


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From the New York Times bestselling author who "writes with high-octane levels of emotion" (USA Today ).

Befriending Traci Calloway Cole is the best thing Simone Phillips has ever done. Traci is the kind of woman Simone wants to be-in every way possible. She begins copying her role model. Not because she wants to be Traci. She just wants to be exactly like Traci.

Traci doesn't worry, though. She knows Simone doesn't mean any harm and that her mimicry is only sincere admiration. Until she discovers how far Simone's obsession has gone.

It is then that Simone's entire world begins unraveling, and dreadful secrets from her past are exposed with no warning. Secrets that she'll do almost anything to protect.


Author Notes

Kimberla Lawson Roby has published about 15 novels. Her debut title, Behind Closed Doors, was originally self-published through her company, Lenox Press. Her other works include The Best of Everything, One in a Million, Sin No More, Love and Lies, Changing Faces, The Best-Kept Secret, A Taste of Reality, It's a Thin Line, and A Deep, Dark Secret. She received the Blackboard Fiction Book of the Year Award in 2001 for Casting the First Stone and the 2004 Patron Choice Award from the Central Mississippi Regional Library System for Too Much of a Good Thing. She is also the 2006 and 2007 recipient of the Author of the Year, Female award presented by the African-American Literary Award Show in New York. In 2013 she made The New York Times Best Seller List with her title A House Divided. The Prodigal Son made The New York Times Best Seller List in 2014. She also made the list in 2015 with her title, The Ultimate Betrayal.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 3

Publisher's Weekly Review

Bestseller Roby's idea to bring a copycat nightmare to life strains credibility because of too many plot holes. It's hard to believe that Traci Calloway Cole, a bestselling new author, would befriend Simone Phillips, a stranger and unpublished writer, just because they ended up at the same high-end hair salon, especially when Traci's short-lived friendship with another writer went terribly sour. Still, Traci interrupts her busy schedule to read Simone's chapters, helps her get an agent, and promises to push the book on her own website. Her husband and sisters are suspicious of Simone, who, among other peculiar things, adopts Traci's appearance-down to her eyebrow shape, hair color, and hairstyle, using extensions to complete the look. Why doesn't all this make her wary of this new person in her life? Simone blithely goes into credit card debt to duplicate Traci's expensive accessories and clothing, puts the same costly appliances and furniture in her rental condo to exactly replicate the rooms in the successful author's home, and requires her fiancé to leave his family's church so they can join Traci's place of worship, all without considering that she might be doing anything out of the ordinary. But the weakest turn occurs when Simone plagiarizes Traci's first novel and tries to pass it off as her own. Roby's Pollyannaish approach and simplistic resolution to a complicated situation unfortunately fall flat. (Jan.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Kirkus Review

Traci Calloway Cole has just published her third novel: Copycat. Isn't it a coincidence that now she has a copycat of her own?Lawson (A Sinful Calling, 2016, etc.) adds to her library of novellas documenting the soap-opera lives of the people in the Rev. Curtis Black's congregation at Deliverance Outreach Church. Fans of the series will certainly rejoice in this latest installment, and its brevity may entice new members into Rev. Black's fold. This episode focuses on two women writers whose friendship twists into a parasitic relationship. Unfortunately, Lawson wastes little time developing the complex psychology of either woman, favoring instead a quick accretion of troubling incidents. Traci's admirer, Simone Phillips, currently works as an insurance claims adjuster, although she aspires to fame as a writer of romance novels. Engaged to Chris, a handsome postal worker, she has high hopes for her future, especially now that she's escaped the clutches of her drug-addicted mother and guilt-tripping grandmother. So it's a bit like winning the lottery when she meets the famous Traci Calloway Cole at the hair salon. Eager to learn as much as she can from a successful writer, Simone quickly friends Traci through every social media channel. For her part, Traci is eager to have a friend who is also a writer, and she's happy to use her own good fortune to help Simone; after all, Rev. Black preaches the good word of generosity each Sunday. Utterly oblivious to her own pathology, Simone discovers that she and Traci have similar tastes in everything. Rather quickly, however, similar tastes evolve into copycatting: Simone begins dressing like Traci, tweeting like Traci, talking like Traci, driving the same car as Traci, and even attending the same church, much to Chris' dismay. Not surprisingly, trouble ensues. An All About Eve-style cautionary tale for successful women. Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Booklist Review

The latest from NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work (fiction) winner Roby (A Sinful Calling, 2016) diverges from, yet is loosely aligned with, her best-selling Curtis Black series. In this short but memorable tale, Simone Phillips befriends author Traci Calloway Cole in the salon, and can't believe her luck when the well-known writer agrees to help her get her book published. She can't stop thinking about Traci, and friends her through several social-media feeds. She also orders copies of Traci's clothes, purses, and shoes and even gets extensions to look like her new heroine. But Simone is not ready to commit to her fiancé, and is reluctant to join his church, preferring her new church with Reverend Curtis Black, the one Traci's family attends. Her admiration of Traci develops into an unhealthy obsession, affecting all areas of her life. Though painful at times, as Simone spirals down, this fast read evokes sympathy for a troubled woman who is trying to compensate for issues tied to her family life. Roby delivers another thought-provoking and emotionally powerful drama.--Alessio, Amy Copyright 2016 Booklist