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  • Writer's pictureJudith D Collins

Please Join Us


Publisher: Atria Books

Publication Date: 08/23/2022

Format: Other

My Rating: 4 Stars (ARC)

Named one of 2022’s best and most-anticipated thrillers by Goodreads, CrimeReads, Motherly, Westport Magazine, and more!

A “propulsive thriller about secret organizations, hidden agendas, and the lengths one woman will go to reclaim her life” (Laura Dave, author of Reese’s Book Club Pick The Last Thing He Told Me) from USA TODAY bestselling author Catherine McKenzie.

At thirty-nine, Nicole Mueller’s life is on the rocks. Her once brilliant law career is falling apart. She and her husband, Dan, are soon to be forced out of the apartment they love. After a warning from her firm’s senior partners, she receives an invitation from an exclusive women’s networking group, Panthera Leo. Membership is anonymous, but every member is a successful professional. It sounds like the perfect solution to help Nicole revive her career. So, despite Dan’s concerns that the group might be a cult, Nicole signs up for their retreat in Colorado.

Once there, she meets the other women who will make up her Pride. A CEO, an actress, a finance whiz, a congresswoman: Nicole can’t believe her luck. The founders of Panthera Leo are equally as impressive. They explain the group’s core philosophy: they’re a girl’s club in a boy’s club world.

Nicole is all in. And when she gets home, she soon sees dividends. Her new network quickly provides her with clients that help her relaunch her career, and a great new apartment too. The favors she has to provide in return seem benign. But then she’s called to the congresswoman’s apartment late at night where she’s pressed into helping her cover up a crime. And suddenly, Dan’s concerns that something more sinister is at play seem all too relevant. Can Nicole extricate herself from the group before it’s too late? Or will joining Panthera Leo be the biggest mistake of her life?

My Review

Bestselling Author Catherine McKenzie returns with her 13th novel, a dazzling psychological suspense thriller, PLEASE JOIN US —with an exclusive invitation to a secret women's networking group that will change the course of one woman's life.

Nicole Muller once had a brilliant law career. Now at age 39, she and her husband, Dan, will be forced out of their apartment and a warning from her firm's senior partner.

Then she receives a mysterious invitation to join a group, Panthera Leo. All the members are successful women professionals; maybe this might be the thing she needs to get back on track with contacts.

They are a girls club in a boy's world. Her hubby is more concerned this may be a cult. Nicole moves forward and joins the retreat in Colorado.

All seems too good to be true, with great returns until she is asked to do things in return that turns more sinister, like covering up crimes.

Juicy REVENGE for all the women in the good old boy network! From deceit, lies, and cover-ups, a chilling roller coaster ride of women's empowerment in a man's world. They will stop at nothing to get what they want.

Wow! Directly after reading PLEASE JOIN US, I started John Grisham's ARC legal thriller (10/18) The Boys from Biloxi (the good ole' boys and all their dirty nasty deeds), and would love to see these women let loose in the man's world of Deep South in the 1950-1970s! That would be a story.

I love legal thrillers or any books with attorneys, justice, or the legal systems. McKenzie, a former attorney, knows her way around the legal world, and the characters are relatable. A fast-paced thriller of hidden agendas, deceit, dark secrets, and ferocious women who are determined to go after and even take what they feel they deserve.

A twisty ending! If you enjoy it when lines are blurred, shades of gray, morality, power imbalances between men and women in the workplace, justice, and revenge, this one is for you!

Thanks to #AtriaBooks and #NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

@JudithDCollins | #JDCMustReadBooks

My Rating: 4 Stars

Pub Date: Aug 23, 2022


Named one of 2022’s best and most-anticipated thrillers by Goodreads, CrimeReads, Motherly, Westport Magazine, and more!

"Catherine McKenzie has reached new heights with Please Join Us, her propulsive thriller about secret organizations, hidden agendas, and the lengths one woman will go to reclaim her life. You won't want to put this book down!"

—Laura Dave, New York Times bestselling author of The Last Thing He Told Me

"Catherine McKenzie's latest is a triumph. I was infatuated with this brilliant, tangled web of lies, cover ups and deception. Totally thrilling and empowering, Please Join Us shows how some people will stop at nothing to get what they want. McKenzie never fails to impress!"

—Mary Kubica, New York Times bestselling author of Local Woman Missing

“I devoured this book in one sitting! The First Wives Club meets The Firm in a chilling, serpentine ride that will leave you breathless. Please Join Us belongs at the very top of your TBR stack.”

—Liv Constantine, internationally bestselling author of The Last Mrs. Parrish

“This searing take on professional networking from Catherine McKenzie is a fast-paced, intriguing, intense read that is as smart as it is suspenseful. Original and thought-provoking, it has plenty of twists and turns to satisfy even the most seasoned thriller reader, and the women of this tour de force will haunt you long after the final page is turned.”

—Heather Gudenkauf, New York Times bestselling author of The Weight of Silence and This is How I Lied

"You can always rely on Catherine McKenzie for smart, complex, irresistible suspense. Please Join Us takes one sinister turn after the next—just when you think you have it all figured out, she turns the tables again.”

—Jessica Strawser, bestselling author of Not That I Could Tell

“With a scintillating, timely premise, and McKenzie’s signature page-turning style, Please Join Us is a winner.”

—Robyn Harding, internationally bestselling author of The Perfect Family

"Another superbly-plotted thriller from Catherine McKenzie, full of signature twists and turns, where readers are invited into the warm waters of a women's group, only to find it's not all sisterhood and solidarity... Join if you dare!”

—Roz Nay, bestselling author of Our Little Secret

“Catherine McKenzie’s Please Join Us is her best book yet. It’s a page-turning blend of corporate intrigue, secret societies, family drama, and twists galore. You won’t be able to put this one down or relax until the final series of reveals and double crosses unfold…and even then, you’ll walk away with your heart pounding. An intelligent, captivating thriller that really thrills!”

—David Bell, author of Kill All Your Darlings

“The claws come out! Please Join Us is a diabolical and fast-paced ride through a women’s networking group. This twisty, captivating book will have you reading all night.”

– Samantha Downing, internationally bestselling author of My Lovely Wife and For Your Own Good

"Stunning, propulsive, and sharp as a knife, Please Join Us is about a secret women’s group and the members determined to get ahead at all costs—just like men do. With a creeping sense of paranoia and full of surprising twists, this smart, feminist thriller explores women’s empowerment vs justice and the grey spaces we inhibit when success is on the line. This one's a knockout!"

—Christina McDonald, USA Today bestselling author

"Wholly original, utterly enthralling with gasp-worthy twist after twist, Catherine McKenzie's PLEASE JOIN US is an absolute masterpiece. This propulsive thrill-ride about an exclusive, all-female club where nothing and no one is who they seem will have you glued to its pages, bingeing until you reach the explosive conclusion. PLEASE JOIN US belongs in at the very top of your summer reading list."

—May Cobb, author of The Hunting Wives

About the Author

Catherine McKenzie was born and raised in Montreal, Canada. A graduate of McGill University in history and law, Catherine practiced law for twenty years before leaving to write full time. An avid runner, skier, and tennis player, she’s the author of numerous bestsellers including I’ll Never Tell and The Good Liar. Her works have been translated into multiple languages and Please Join Us, I’ll Never Tell, and You Can’t Catch Me have all been optioned for development into television series. Visit her at or follow her on Twitter @CEMcKenzie1 or Instagram @CatherineMcKenzieAuthor.



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