Are There Lesbians? No
Abby’s best friend Gretchen is possessed by a Demon.
It’s spooky, it’s scary, it’s got skeletons (in closets). My Best Friend’s Exorcism is some real spooky fun. I was expecting it to be closer to something like Jennifers Body in tone so it wasn’t as divinely cheesy as I was expecting, but it’s still definitely worth the read even if you’re not a die-hard horror fan. Designed like a yearbook, the detailed cover and flyleaf alone should be enough to suck you in!
At its heart, this is a book about the power of female friendships. Am I disappointed that Gretchen and Abby didn’t get married and live together as old women? Yes! But there is something wonderful about this book being completely devoid of romance and simply being about friends. It was wonderful to watch the friendship between Abby and Gretchen grows in the first part of the book, and to see how they remained friends throughout their lives. Sometimes, friendship really can save the day.
If you’re not a super horror person and you want to read this there are a few things out need to consider, and I’m going to warn everyone because I wasn’t expecting it and also because I forgot to properly warn The GF as I was too excited about her reading it! My Best Friend’s Exorcism is creepy, like actually creepy, it has frikken demon possession in it for goodness sake, although I did find that sometimes that wasn’t the truly creepy part (thought sometimes also it was). It’s also pretty gross in parts which, for the most part, tended to be what got to both The GF and myself more than anything. I say for the most part because it did keep both of us awake in some parts and also because there was one section involving parasites towards the middle of the book which gave me a panic attack. I want to stress that I don’t say this lightly, and I was very close to booking a doctors appointment my paranoia was so great.
That’s another thing, this book should come with a list of trigger warnings. Don’t get me wrong, My Best Friend’s Exorcism is a brilliant book and I absolutely loved it, but a little warning wouldn’t have gone astray. It has some serious hardcore themes including child abuse, potential rape, bullying and attempted suicide, to name a few. It doesn’t make it any better, although perhaps more realistic, that many of these issues aren’t really solved within the context of the book. After all, part of the primary plot revolves around the fact that the main characters are children in a town where the wealthy (particularly, wealthy and male) are infallible and, of course, no one really listens to children anyway. If they did, then the entire story probably could have been avoided.
I know it looks like I’ve spent a lot of this review talking about what I didn’t like about My Best Friend’s Exorcism, and usually reviews for books I love are super glowing. I feel I should emphasise that I really did like this book, it was a lot of fun and I think Grady Hendrix did a really good job at capturing female friendships, especially because male authors so often get the littlest things wrong. Because of how much I liked it, I even had one of his other books, Horrorstör
, on my radar for a while, before I remembered that I’m terrible with anything that has ghosts and that it would ruin IKEA for me forever. Considering how much The GF loves IKEA that would be a very big problem.Mostly I just wish that I’d been warned, and so am trying to do that for everyone else (except, apparently, for The GF – I’m so sorry).