Title: Friend Request
Author: Laura Marshall
Publish Date: April 1, 2013 by W. W. Norton & Company
# of Pages: 348
Buy it*: Amazon
(From Goodreads) Maria Weston wants to be friends. But Maria Weston is dead. Isn’t she?
1989. When Louise first notices the new girl who has mysteriously transferred late into their senior year, Maria seems to be everything the girls Louise hangs out with aren’t. Authentic. Funny. Brash. Within just a few days, Maria and Louise are on their way to becoming fast friends.
2016. Louise receives a heart-stopping email: Maria Weston wants to be friends on Facebook. Long-buried memories quickly rise to the surface: those first days of their budding friendship; cruel decisions made and dark secrets kept; the night that would change all their lives forever.
Louise has always known that if the truth ever came out, she could stand to lose everything. Her job. Her son. Her freedom. Maria’s sudden reappearance threatens it all, and forces Louise to reconnect with everyone she’d severed ties with to escape the past. But as she tries to piece together exactly what happened that night, Louise discovers there’s more to the story than she ever knew. To keep her secret, Louise must first uncover the whole truth, before what’s known to Maria–or whoever’s pretending to be her–is known to all.
Rating (1-5, 5 is exceptional)
Quality of Writing – 3
Pace – 2
Plot Development – 2
Ending – 3
Characters – 2
Enjoyability – 3
Ease of Reading – 2
Voice Acting – 2
Overall Rating – ⭐⭐
Friend Request by Laura Marshall is a thriller about mean girls, teenage pranks, and a friend request from a girl long dead.
I’ll be honest, I didn’t enjoy this book. Normally I’m a huge fan of thrillers, but this book fell woefully flat for me. The writing in the book was fine, but the book was slow. I prefer thrillers that are either a slow burn or feature rapid-fire events. This book had neither: it was just slow. And the events that did happen never felt exciting–they were just ho-hum. It was hard to stay engaged and interested in the story, because nothing interesting ever seemed to happen.
The main plot is introduced fairly early in the book, and the rest of the book slowly unfolds the layers of the plot. Some of what happens in the book felt unnecessary–filler details, people, and events. It was distracting at times. I had a hard time holding onto the “so what?” of the book when there was so much in the story that didn’t seem to matter.
The ending of the book was okay. I didn’t guess the big reveal–it’s always nice to be surprised when reading a thriller or mystery. I liked that the ending was a little gritty.
The characters in the book were hard to connect with. They felt very shallow and one-dimensional. This was yet another reason why I had a hard time getting into the book.
The voice acting was rough. Anyone who listens to audiobooks knows that the narrator can make or break a book. It’s possible that part of the reason why I didn’t care for the book is because I didn’t care for the narrator. Her voice wasn’t pleasant and was hard to listen to.
Overall, this book wasn’t for me. If this book is on your TBR, I highly recommend you pick up a physical copy or e-book as opposed to listening to the audiobook.
Have you read Friend Request? What did you think of the book? Have you watched the movie?
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