Annie's Reviews > Best Friends Forever

Best Friends Forever by Jennifer Weiner
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's review
Sep 24, 2011

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bookshelves: fiction
Read in June, 2011 , read count: Once

A frothy, light, entertaining beach read, Best Friends Forever has some heart, although the pulse doesn’t thud strongly throughout. Jennifer Weiners strongest quality as a writer is her ability to craft characters. There were many times when the plot twisted towards the implausible (the bank scene!) and absurd. At these moments, while rolling my eyes, I’d think, “Oh, but that is so how Val would react.” And unlike some equally unbelievable scenes in chick flicks or comedies, the book presented enough of a backstory to understand why these two women, Val and Addie responded and handled life the way they did.
Addie Downes, formerly large, endured heaps of abuse in high school after the betrayal of her friend Valerie involving, what else, a boy. Addie subsequent weight struggles, unlucky-in-love experiences, and nursing her mother through illness while talking care of her brain injured brother was tragic. Her father died of a brain aneurysm. Living alone, she now paints greeting cards. However, I often wished she would develop more of a backbone and stand up to Valerie, the blond, perk weather woman who uses her sexuality for attention and hoped-for fame.
When Addie and Valerie were kids, they grew up across from the street together. Addie worshiped Valerie and helped her feel like Val had a home, since Valerie’s parents were divorced and her mother didn’t provide much stability. After the brutal behavior in high school towards Addie, Addie and Val stopped being friends. Now, suddenly, Val has shown up begging Addie for not only her forgiveness, but also for her help. Val needs Addie to stick out her neck for Val (again!) on her revenge-gone-too-far situation that has sparked a police investigation.
The book was likable and pretty humorous. It strikes some emotional cords and had an relatively satisfying ending in a fictional world with little consequences. The story raises the theme of friendship; two women illustrating what friendship is, opposites balancing each other out, working in harmony, bringing companionship, truth and memories.

Some language: f-word, drinking, adult-situations (cop with his show), sexual content.

Favorite Quotes
You broke my heart were the words that had risen to my mouth, but I couldn’t say them. That was what you said to a boyfriend, a lover, not your best friend.

It was okay if boys liked Val better. Someone would love me someday. Even if I wasn’t an obvious choice, I’d be somebody’s choice, some boy’s choice, the way I’d once been Valeries.
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