Reviewed by Jessa L.

Celia and Djuna were the leaders of an exclusive little clique. The girls they allowed the privilege of their company followed their every command just to stay in the “cool” club, even if it meant being subjected to all kinds of torment and ridicule. One day, everything changed. Celia and Djuna led the rest down the road to the “forbidden” forest. Both Celia and Djuna ran in, but only Celia ever came out. Everyone assumed that Djuna was abducted by a stranger…

Twenty years have passed and Celia has since moved away. She has a successful career and a wonderful boyfriend, but something feels off to her. Celia’s memories of that day in the forest start returning to her and the overwhelming sense of guilt and responibility lead her to take a trip back home and confront the past. Her family and friends want to be supportive and help, but everything that Celia confesses to them seems to contradict the facts that they were told the day Djuna disappeared.

The False Friend is an interesting story, if only in a way that made me spend the entire book trying to decide whether or not I actually liked it. I’ve finished the book, and I am still not sure. The storyline had really good potential. It started out in an intriguing manner and I got sucked in right away. Then it just seemed to go nowhere for the last 100 pages, but in a manner that kept me reading.

Goldberg’s writing seemed a bit hectic and disorganized, but I can only wonder if it was done that way on purpose. What I would typically consider terrible writing was done in such a subtle way that it wasn’t until the very end, when the story just dropped off with no pages left to go, that I finally recognized it. I’m half tempted to read Myla Goldberg’s other books, but I’m going to have to put more thought into that before I decide. All in all, The False Friend really just left me a bit confused as to why I had read the entire thing…

Rating: 3/5

Jessa lives in Utah with her husband, 2 sons, 2 cats, and 2 dogs. She is a full time mom and likes to blog, write short stories, and poems in her spare time. She also likes anime, reading books, and playing video games.

Review and giveaway copies were provided free of any obligation by Doubleday. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.