Author: Ruth O'Neil
Genre(s): Fiction; Mystery; Thriller
Character rich and thrilling plot
This novel starts out with a harrowing description of a woman who lost her husband and must take on the difficult task of facing her wretched mother-in-law. Ruth makes Gemma's character come to life with artfully crafted insights into her pain and suffering from the loss of her husband and the realization that she is now alone. While reading the introduction I could feel the agony as if it were radiating off the page. It is very clear that Ruth has an expert eye for character creation as she makes it seem effortless for her readers to connect with the lives she has developed.
Another aspect of the beginning that had my own head spinning was Indiana's introduction. When Gemma started to see her throughout her husband's services I honestly thought Indiana was a hallucination brought on from the stress of her loss. However, as the story developed, readers get a first hand look into the mischievous woman and how she came to be the way she is. Throughout the entire plot Indiana maintains a mysterious persona that left me captivated and dedicated to the story until the very end.
I also really enjoyed the dynamic between Gemma and Indiana in that Gemma is an emotionally insightful individual who you want to root for, while Indiana is antisocial, yet incredibly charismatic. The two play off each other well, creating a powerful and thrilling addition to the plot. What I wished more from this novel was a greater level of care for setting details. The character development was incredibly rich and having more elaborate descriptions of the scene settings would have rounded it out for me.
I thoroughly appreciated Befriended and I think anyone looking for a captivating thriller with strong female leads will find this more than suitable.
Some secrets never leave us alone...
Gemma Peacock’s life was perfect – or at least, she thought it was. She had a home she loved, a job she enjoyed, and a husband she adored. The only cloud on the horizon was the continuing tension between Gemma and her mother-in-law, but that’s the same for everyone, right?
After the death of her beloved husband, Ritchie, everything begins to fall apart.
Indiana Manors’ life, on the other hand, is far from perfect – but she knows just what she has to do to fix it. Befriend Gemma Peacock – and destroy her.
Befriended is an exciting, contemporary thriller that will keep you on the very edge of your seat. This book will toy with your emotions time and time again – and keep you coming back for more.
Currently Reading The Outback Governess by Sarah Williams
I am a lover of the written word. This is my space to pursue my love of reading through book reviews and literary discussions with my fellow readers.