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Review: My Best Friends Exorcism by Grady Hendrix

 My Best Friends Exorcism

Grady Hendrix

Abby and Gretchen have been best friends since fifth grade, when they bonded over a shared love of E.T., roller-skating parties, and scratch-and-sniff stickers. But when they arrive at high school, things change. Gretchen begins to act…different. And as the strange coincidences and bizarre behavior start to pile up, Abby realizes there’s only one possible explanation: Gretchen, her favorite person in the world, has a demon living inside her. And Abby is not about to let anyone or anything come between her and her best friend. With help from some unlikely allies, Abby embarks on a quest to save Gretchen. But is their friendship powerful enough to beat the devil?

Grady Hendrix writes these girls perfectly, reminding me of the silly things I once did with my friends. The bonds we made, the inside jokes, and the fantasies we would make up about where we would live, what our children’s names would be, what our husbands would be like and how through it all we would be the best of friends; living next door to each other, our children playing in our front yards. But, he also manages to paint the reality. Time passes, with it comes distance, things as simple as “…the laundry, the promotions, the vacations taken, shoes bought…” somehow turn that once indispensable, unshakable friendship into something that is firmly rooted, but a thin plant stretched too thin.

The story is incredibly well developed; the friendship established quickly, with short memories, each one from a different grade year of their friendship. There are peaks into the strained and sterile parents, as well as the aloof and hardworking ones. Neither one is right, but neither one is wrong either, and the parents in this story are as important, in the background makeup of these young girls, as the teenage girls themselves. This is all managed without being overwhelming and becoming too thick and weighted. As to the horror, there are some elements in this books that are downright spooky, eerie and spine tingling. The viscous horror is slick with slime and vomit and it is a marvel to read, purely immersive and stomach churning.

This book is a perfect balance of childhood memories and ultimate horror.

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