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Publisher's Summary

Maria Weston wants to be friends. But Maria Weston's dead. Isn't she?

Friend Request

It's 1989. When Louise first notices the new girl who has mysteriously transferred late into their senior year, Maria seems to be everything Louise's other friends aren't. Authentic. Funny. Brash. Within just a few days, Maria and Louise are on their way to becoming fast friends.

It's 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 with whom she'd severed ties in order 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 is pretending to be her - is known to all.

With her mesmerizing debut, Laura Marshall offers a timely and essential story of how who we were shapes who we become, the hidden cost of our increasingly connected world, and the dangerous shape that revenge can take in our modern era.

©2017 Laura Marshall (P)2017 Hachette Audio

Critic Reviews

"An incredible debut novel that's not to be missed! Fantastic writing that instantly drew me in. I simply couldn't put it down - such a fast-paced, exciting thriller with some unexpected twists and turns. I loved it!" (Hollie Overton, author of the international best seller Baby Doll)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

What a Great Read!

The title of this book made me want to read, and I was hooked from the first word! The story moves along at a great pace, and events are revealed slowly enough to heighten tension and create suspense. Using social media to draw the reader in was very effective. I look forward to more books by this author. She really knows how to create real characters who experience conflict and difficulties, and exhibit amazing strength and patience. I definitely recommend this book to anyone who loves psychological thrillers, suspenseful plots, and just amazing reads in general. What a great listen!!!!

9 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Very Good! Kept me wanting more.....

Any additional comments?

I liked this book a lot. It really drew me in with the premise, and the book did not disappoint. It was interesting and although I am not 100% sold on the ending (which is why i only gave the book 4 stars and not 5) it definitely surprised me. I didn't see it coming. Good book!

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

What a tangled web...

Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

Well, I almost gave up in the first few chapters....Louise is so self-loathing, and kept repeating the mantra..."after what I did"..for example "I don't deserve happiness, everyone should hate me, blah blah blah" Major drama queen stuff! BUT once you're past that, the plot takes off and it gets more interesting. I will admit I thought I had it figured out a couple times but I was fooled! Pretty intense story!

Any additional comments?

One thing I did find strange and somewhat confusing was when she talked about when they were 16 - some of the scenarios described sounded more like ten year olds, rather than teenagers. Stuff like slumber parties, and the lunchroom interactions just reminded me of grade-schoolers.

10 of 11 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Do not accept this request!

I really enjoyed this book!
The narrator did a great job, and I will listen to her again.
This is a solid story that spans a lifetime of our main character Louise.
Louise becomes best pals with Maria in high school, but Maria ends up dead.
Then, as you know from reading the description, Louise gets a friend request from Maria years after her death.
Is Maria alive, and playing tricks? Is the murder coming out of the wood work to point fingers at Louise? Is Louise the murder? Or is someone else trying to make Louise miserable, and pay for what she did ?
Honestly, It is common for me to figure o.ut the"big twist" in a lot of novels.
I will admit, I had NO clue who killed Maria, and I had NO clue who our "bad guy" was.
This is a solid physiological thriller, that I would recommend to anyone.
The characters were real, likable, and flawed.

15 of 17 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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VERY GOOD!

I really enjoyed this book, although it has me rethinking what I share on social media. The narrator was excellent!

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Don't waste your credit or $ + Spoiler Alert!

Okay, I usually write reviews under my Goodreads account for all books, but I felt compelled to share about this book.
Okay, where do I begin. Oh yes...major spoiler alerts going down here- so reader you have been warned! Actually, I've warned you twice now. The first was to not purchase this book. You're welcome.
Okay, Louise is an educated, single Mom (age 45), who runs her own business successfully, and manages her work, personal, and family life really well. Now get ready to throw all of that out of the window and watch her act like the weak willed & whiny immature prat she was in 1989, for the rest of the book.
This book alternates between 1989 & 2016, and by the time I finished, I was quite frankly ready to strangle Louise myself. Oh my?! Did I just write that? I'm just blushing. No I'm not.
Anyway, Louise receives a friend request from a "friend" that she happens to know is dead ...on Facebook. But...haha! Tra la la... it was such a traumatic event, let's just open this, nothing bad can happen ...right?
Of course immediately bad things start to happen and Louise makes every single bad decision at every single step of the story. Not only that, when she could actually make some smart mature proactive decisions, she literally EVERY SINGLE TIME, does the worst possible thing one could do. Making everything worse for herself and those around her, including her 4 year old son Henry.
She attends her 25th reunion (after getting countless threats, being followed, sent a strange package), then decides to get a room , because she needs to be able to drink of course! (Face palm), then ...THEN...shares it with a completely strange man (well her friend who has JUST NOW DISAPPEARED) kind of knows him...so that's just fine😳.
Even after her child is kidnapped, she just blindly follows along. NOPE! Not today! But follow along she does! And just when you think all is well...NOPE! Surprise, surprise, surprise...the sociopathic killer (starting back in 1989, and working all the way up to 2016!) is her beloved ex- husband Sam! Who beat her and was also verbally (and just abusive & manipulative in every way possible), however - pathetically- for their marriage to end- HE had to leave HER! 🤣Well, of course he actually tells her to be quiet, brave, and accept her fate. And it seems like she's going to! She tucks Henry in, gets some wine for them both, then politely sets about letting him strangle her. I'm serious here people. But of course at the very last minute sh decides she wants to live, so deploying the old "I'm going to hook my leg under this chair and knock it over to wake up my 4 yr old kid trick"!(which by the way - would never have woken any of my 3 children up- between the ages of 25-15), it somehow miraculously works. Henry says "Mommy", Sam stops strangling her long enough for Louise to run to Sam's bedroom and push herself up against the door - which somehow holds Henry at bay. Then (and I swear this is true), she somehow talks nicely to him and he goes away. Thus, proving my theory that British sociopaths are better mannered than US Sociopaths - obviously! Maybe it's the tea? I'm being horrible, but if you do buy the book ...you'll see what I'm talking about. At any rate, of course Sam drives out to the Lake Road where he committed his first murder, old times sake? The police find his car crashed into a tree, and of course jump to the conclusion ...he drowned ? And to tie it up in a neat little bow, Louise forgives herself for spiking her "friends" drink with Ecstasy; causing her to become disoriented, wander off into the woods, where Scott found and raped her. Of course when she took off yelling "Rapist!" And trying to tell everyone - Sam JUST HAD to kill her! But what Sophia & Louise did "was just teen girl pranks...right? NO! Nope! Not ok!

11 of 13 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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good read

interesting story... Good Pace... Great narration. I really enjoyed the book, will continue to seek out books by this writer and thus narrator. kept me guessing, great dramatic ending!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Entertaining

This was a good, solid story in which anyone who either was or endured a high school bully can relate.
The narrator provided a solid performance, but the editors neglected to mute a moment when she clears her throat and repeats a sentence over again. That is the first time I've ever heard someone neglected to edit the audio. I've probably listened to over 100 also titles. They should probably fix that.

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Ummm.. I Am Definitely Missing Something

First off- I want to get two major points out of the way.

Great debut novel and great effort on psychological thriller with twists.

Terrible editing- I listened to repeat passengers more than once, and at once point Elaine Claxton actually cleared her throat and starting reading the same passage again. Her voice was fine- but my goodness- the editing is horrible.

Our main character gets a facebook friend request from an old high school friend. The problem is, the request comes from a dead girl, and Louise (our main gal) has a secret about the dead girl that threatens to ruin her life and the lives of others if it comes out.

This book has way too much repetition and flowery filler. It could have been knocked back about 4 hours and easily been just as curious. The plot twists were decent- but the reader is left hanging or the author forgot to tell us about a character. Throughout the book there was a secret female character who was being held captive but we never find out who she is or why she is being held captive? I don't think I missed it.. Terribly odd. The rest of the book was summed up rather nicely but it wasn't very believable and her characters were extremely inconsistent with their personalities and behaviour.

I will give this a solid 3 stars because it is a great attempt at a first novel. I highly suggest this audio-book gets another listen from a professional editor, though. And I do hope that Laura Marshall will focus on better character development and conclusions in her next novel, which I will probably take the time to read as this one piqued my curiousity.

-Wendi

10 of 12 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Just ok

The story starts off slow but if you stick with it, over time it becomes interesting. Not quite sure I would recommend it to others unless you’re in a reading funk and can’t find the next best audible book to listen to.

3 of 5 people found this review helpful