Jump to ratings and reviews
Rate this book

My Best Friend's Exorcism

Rate this book
Goodreads Choice Award
Nominee for Best Horror (2016)
The year is 1988. High school sophomores Abby and Gretchen have been best friends since fourth grade. But after an evening of skinny-dipping goes disastrously wrong, Gretchen begins to act ... different. She's moody. She's irritable. And bizarre incidents keep happening whenever she's nearby.

Abby's investigation leads her to some startling discoveries — and by the time their story reaches its terrifying conclusion, the fate of Abby and Gretchen will be determined by a single question: Is their friendship powerful enough to beat the devil?

332 pages, Paperback

First published May 17, 2016

Loading interface...
Loading interface...

About the author

Grady Hendrix is the author of the novels Horrorstör, about a haunted IKEA, and My Best Friend's Exorcism, which is like Beaches meets The Exorcist, only it's set in the Eighties. He's also the author of We Sold Our Souls, The Southern Book Club's Guide to Slaying Vampires, and the upcoming (July 13!) Final Girl Support Group!

He's also the jerk behind the Stoker award-winning Paperbacks from Hell, a history of the 70's and 80's horror paperback boom, which contains more information about Nazi leprechauns, killer babies, and evil cats than you probably need.

And he's the screenwriter behind Mohawk, which is probably the only horror movie about the War of 1812 and Satanic Panic.

You can listen to free, amazing, and did I mention free podcasts of his fiction on Pseudopod. He also does a podcast called Super Scary Haunted Homeschool.

If you're not already sick of him, you can learn all his secrets at his website.

Ratings & Reviews

What do you think?
Rate this book

Friends & Following

Create a free account to discover what your friends think of this book!

Community Reviews

5 stars
23,389 (29%)
4 stars
35,889 (44%)
3 stars
17,033 (21%)
2 stars
3,429 (4%)
1 star
848 (1%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 12,748 reviews
Profile Image for Wil Wheaton.
Author 98 books195k followers
April 28, 2018
It's very very very good, but falls just short of being great and I can't say exactly why.
I loved the characters and the metaphor of possession (which is not just a metaphor in this story). I loved the references to 1988, and how seamlessly they were dropped into the narrative.

It's a supernatural horror story, and the third act drives that home without mercy, but at its core, this is a story about friendship, and I'm glad I read it. I think it would make a great 6 episode series.
Profile Image for Sadie Hartmann.
Author 23 books3,911 followers
October 19, 2021
Updating review on 9/20/19
I read a one-star review basically calling the author out for "queerbaiting" in this book by using the phrase "Love ya dearly but not queerly." I have to say that the 1980s were so homophobic and ignorant. Especially with language and phrases. It has taken a long time for me to stop saying, "That's gay" for something I think is lame and I'm not homophobic. It's a phrase that was used before I had any idea what it even meant (my kids have corrected this behavior and I know better and do better)
We also said the "R" word synonymously for "lame" which is also not OK. But if an author writes a book set in 1980s, it's relevant to reflect this ignorant attitude, in my humble opinion. It's the way it was; the way we talked. I know that the usage of these words is triggering for readers TODAY because these ignorant attitudes and words are still in use--but I think the accusations against the author are misguided in this context. Just my .02

I'm not really sure why anyone would rate this book anything lower than five stars, unless of course, they didn't understand the premise of the book. I think it helps that I was born in 1976, so I'm the target audience and I buddy read it with a friend who was also in middle school in the late 80s-high school in the 90s, so you know--the E.T. themed birthday party at the roller skating rink? Yeah. Nailed it.
What you're signing up for when you read this book is the general plot of The Exorcist paired with Carrie vibes but lightened up with Hendrix's unique brand of iconic cultural identification/nostalgia that looks a lot like a blender smoothie of Stranger Things, My So Called Life and every 80s sitcom I ever watched---that's what this book *feels* like when you're reading it.
If you were born after 1985, you're probably going to miss out on reliving stuff like the scene where Abby and Gretchen get in trouble for singing the lyrics to Like a Virgin and wearing Gretchen's mom's cross necklaces. That was a scene from my own life--I mean, I *am* the MTV generation. I was scandalized by Madonna. I Stayed up late with my parents to watch the premiere video for Micheal Jackson's Thriller when it was an event on network television, I crimped my hair, had a Swatch Watch, wore Esprit Jeans and sprayed myself with Exclamation perfume every morning of eighth grade. But you'll get the basic idea of it if you swap Madonna with Britney Spears or something.
So of course, Grady Hendrix was speaking my language this entire book-not one pop culture reference was wasted on me. I especially loved the song title chapter headings and the songs would immediately get locked in my head,
"How can we dance when our earth is turning
How do we sleep while our beds are burning
How can we dance when our earth is turning
How do we sleep while our beds are burning"

I had no clue what these lyrics by Midnight Oil was even about when I was a kid, but I knew every, single word and it was a treasure to recall that when I got to this chapter-and the way the lyrics actually fit so well with what was happening in the story? I mean, it's genius level storytelling in my opinion. However, I don't think this book will alienate any of the younger generation of readers because 80s pop culture is super celebrated and people who can't relate on a personal level, will at least get it on the same level that they get what's going on in Stranger Things, which is wildly popular for all ages, you know? Sure, my 12 year old isn't going to feel it like my husband and I do, but he relates as a kid--kids don't change. All the characters in this book were well developed and easy to relate to for anyone who remembers what it is like to be a pre-teen/teenager.
The humor and horror seem in perfect balance. Yes, there are some cringe-worthy moments and yes, they are less scary because of the humor that's blended through out, but for me, that didn't make it any less entertaining. I enjoyed every moment--stand out moments being the climax towards the end and the exorcism stuff--there were some laugh out loud moments (love the Phil Collins mentions in that scene) Ha!
Overall, I recommend this book for anyone--not just fans of 80s pop culture (although they would love this!) and not just fans of horror books, but everyone who likes a good story with witty dialog, great characters and a well crafted horror plot, with few laughs. How does that *not* sound like a good time?
Profile Image for karen.
3,976 reviews170k followers
October 31, 2021

a reverse-mullet review: GIF-party in the front, long tendrils of ruminating “business” in the back.

in short, this book is


"DBNQ," and largely because “we got the beat” is used as a plot point in this book and “heaven is a place on earth” is used in that episode,

so it's six degrees of belinda carlisle

and then you throw in some



i need to use the rest of this space to untangle some thoughts and reactions i have about this book. you can come with me or you can go on your merry way to read a more review-shaped review, but you cannot bitch at me for not writing a review in whatever manner you find most useful or appropriate, because i'm telling you right now - if you are the kind of person who has bullet points for how goodreads reviews "should" be, this ain't your review.

i’d intended to only read horror books for october, despite the temptation of several non-horror books side-eyeing me wantonly from the stacks. and yet i feel like i have already inadvertently failed in this goal by reading this one, because i wouldn’t really classify it as “horror.” unless you are extraordinarily spooked out by teengirl squabbles. which is probably a legit phobia with a fancy name, but i don’t know what it is.

and i’m okay with this not slotting neatly into the horror category. i like genre blends, i like ambiguity and metafiction (when it is purposeful and not just gimmicky), and i like it very much when the reader is invited to take a step back and examine a situation through a slightly different lens before returning them to the narrative a little off-balance; out of alignment with their former expectations or beliefs or even comfort level.

this book both does and doesn’t do these things. see, i can be ambiguous, too!

this is a possession novel that offers several different “outs” along the way before committing to a stance on the “demon or no demon?” question. the problem is, i’ve already read a perfectly-done example of this: A Head Full of Ghosts, which sustains its ambiguity throughout, essentially presenting two books at the same time; one in which the possession is real, one in which it is not. this one kinda bats around the idea of that ambiguity in a half-hearted way, but it’s more a case of “presenting logical alternatives” than “maintaining two possible storylines simultaneously.” which is less ambitious and less fun, but it certainly does its due diligence in checklisting all of the possible explanations for erratic teen behavior that aren’t demon-based, with especial focus on two of the big baddy blamealots of the 80’s: satanic cults and drugs. it’s all part of that “just say no,” medical misinformation, satanic panic zeitgeist of the 80’s where urban legends are presented as factual, where teenage characters fully believe that subterranean tunnels under preschools host molestation parties, AIDS is a weapon in a psychopath’s arsenal, and that any family moving out of town is really covering up the satanically-motivated dismemberment-murder of one of their peers.

but as far as the

parade of alternate explanations go, it’s actually an interesting experiment to see how long you can make a possession novel read like a teen-problem novel - how long you can hold off before you must choose. because there is a lot of overlap in how they present to the outside world, and in this book, the potential problem/excuse for gretchen changing itself changes with breathtaking frequency, depending on who’s diagnosing her, but they are all valid; textually supported and confidently asserted:

page 128 - blamed on drugs and life stress (boys, school, parents)

”I don’t know what’s going on with Gretchen…But if you care about your friend, you need to get her off whatever she’s on.”

“What?” Abby asked.

“What?” Mr. Barlow mimicked. “I’m not an idiot. I know what drugs are. If you’re really her friend, get her to stop.”


Abby realized that no one was going to do anything. For five years, Gretchen had been the perfect Albermarle student, and the faculty still saw what they were used to seeing - not what was really happening. Maybe they chalked it up to PSAT stress or problems at home. Maybe they figured that tenth grade was a tough transition. Maybe they were caught up in their own divorces and career dramas and problem kids, and if she still wasn’t turning things around on Monday they’d say something. Or maybe the following Monday. Or the Monday after that.

Something was changing inside Gretchen. Maybe it was the acid, maybe it was Andy, maybe it was her parents, maybe it was something worse. Whatever it was, Abby had to keep trying. She couldn’t abandon her friend because soon Gretchen would be ready to talk. Any minute now she’d look up from her daybook and say, “I have to tell you something serious.”

pages 138-9 - blamed on rape, trauma manifesting in cutting

So it was true. Someone had been in the woods and attacked Gretchen, and now she was hurting herself again and again as she relived the trauma, punishing herself just like Seventeen said. It all made so much sense that, insanely, Abby felt proud for having figured it out.

144 - blamed on unspecified adolescent psychology

”What Gretchen is going through is very scary, and I don’t blame you for backing off from your friendship a little. But we’ve talked to doctors and they tell us that what’s happening is an unfortunate sickness of the mind and spirit that happens sometimes as girls grow up.”


”It’s terrible when a young person hurts herself. But it can be a reaction to a lot of things. We’ve found someone in the church who Gretchen can speak to, and that’s how she’s going to start getting better.

and the biggest opportunity for an “out” from a supernatural explanation comes from a source who should be above reproach:

”Abby,” Father Morgan said, “I know how it is to be a young person. There are all these reports of satanic cults everywhere, sacrificing babies. Geraldo Rivera’s doing a two-hour special on them next week. Of course you feel these things deeply, and they upset and influence you. But they’re not real.”

“Then what are they?” Abby asked.

“They’re…” Father Morgan waved one hand around in the air. “…metaphors. Ways of dealing with information and emotions. Adolescence is a complicated time, and some really bright people think that when the adult emerges, it’s like you’re being taken over by a different person. Almost like being possessed. Sometimes parents, or friends, get hurt when a loved one changes. They look around for something to blame. Music, movies, satanism.”

He leaned back and flashed a smile.

“So you think Gretchen is possessed?” Abby asked. “Like she has a demon inside of her?”

His smile flicked off.

“What?” he said. “No, it’s a metaphor.”

oh, where was this authoritative voice of reason in the wayback? or was tipper gore just so loud in castigating ozzy osbourne, cyndi lauper and jello biafra that no one could hear? or is it, as poor father morgan later tries to explain to the very stubborn abby, that society needs a scapegoat to explain the bad things that happen, we need someone to be sick so we don’t have to address ourselves, and a media circus is a wonderful distraction.

so, that was all a lot of words going nowhere, i know - but again - this is pretty much just for me to figure some shit out. and here’s more of that.

hand in hand with the panoply of reasonable natural-world explanations in terms of how it serves the author and manipulates the reader is what i’m calling the stepback. usually, this happens in a first-person narrative, when you have gone along with the narrator for the bulk of the story, and whether or not you agree with/approve of their choices and actions, you are nonetheless firmly lodged in that perspective and then suddenly the book takes a giant step back into third person, showing you the scene in a more objective way, and it’s all “hey now!” the two i can think of right now are American Psycho and And the Ass Saw the Angel, but i know there are more.

this one has two stepbacks, of a sort, where the choice easily could have been made to move away from the demonic angle and go down an equally creepy but more real-world path. OR to kinda juggle both. they both revolve the exorcist character, and again - A Head Full of Ghosts does a wicked thorough job examining the problematic, gendered and highly sexualized nature of exorcism rituals, but this book seems to be satisfied with setting up and calling attention to a sinister possibility without taking it any further.

abby and the exorcist meet at the mall, and after a candid and unvarnished discussion about ghb as a means of knocking out and then kidnapping her best friend, for her own good, of course - praise jesus, this enormous bodybuilder of a man, no more than a stranger to abby, says: ”Come on…I want to show you something in my car.”

abby’s no dummy, and she’s cautious enough to work out an escape route as she follows him to his white van (natch), where he triumphantly shows off his nylon straps, handcuffs, a straitjacket, duct tape, ball gags, chains, collars, a leash and muzzle, a leather hood, shackles followed by this not at all indicative of a crazy person scene:

”It’s for our safety, of course,” he said. And then he laughed and clapped his hands. “Hot darn, I’m excited,” he said, hopping from one foot to the other.”

in a different book, this goes a different way, right? and i kind of wanted to read that book - a sharp twist away from my expectations, rattling reader-me from my ridealong absorption of abby’s belief in demonic possession back onto firmer ground with a turn of events equally “earned” by events thus far. the second stepback, or opportunity to switch gears, comes during the ritual itself, as it should during any physical torture of a teenage girl “for her own good.” you should take a moment - preferably before you administer the ghb, just to entertain the possibility that you’re reading the signs wrong. just half a mo.

i’m not sure what i’m trying to understand by identifying these moments, other than reiterating that this is barely a horror novel, that it goes 3/4 of the way before it is any different from a contemporary YA problem novel, and that i think that’s interesting. you may not. “you” are probably just an echo of me right now, because i doubt anyone has come this far down the babble spiral with me, but i’m okay with that. and now i will babble some positive responses.

i liked so many things in this book - it gets a hundred stars for design. i love the cover of the paperback, but unfortunately it does not include all the yearbook signatures of the hardcover, of which i particularly like abby’s, whose P.S. means one thing before you read the book and one much more specific thing after, and is the part that made me get as close to emotional as i can when reading.

and although the 80s music references i was promised were of the #notMY80s variety - all pop music instead of new wave, i have to admit i thoroughly enjoyed the girls’ new lyrics to "against all odds" and "we got the beat."

and i especially-especially enjoyed the code of the south - that genteel looking away from the inelegant shames of others:

In Charleston, the day you become an adult is the day you learn to ignore your neighbor’s drunk driving and focus instead on whether he submitted a paint-color change proposal to the Board of Architectural Review. The day you become an adult is the day you learn that in Charleston, the worse something is, the less attention it receives.

this is, by the way, the complete opposite of how we do in new england, which is pretty much exactly like The Scarlet Letter and The Crucible.

that ending, tho.

completely unexpected and yet absolutely perfect.

3.5 rounded up for ending. word-thoughts to come.

come to my blog!
Profile Image for Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin.
3,399 reviews9,525 followers
August 12, 2017
Well hell, the end of this book made me cry a little bit! I didn't see that coming!

I loved the front and back pages of this book. I took a couple of pictures so you guys could see. It's awesome, like a yearbook =)

I loved Abby and Gretchen's friendship. It lasted the test of time.

I think something in the book might have went over my head but I'm just going to pretend it didn't.

I loved, loved, loved the 80's music references and other stuff. It makes me think of the good ole days. Well, mostly good ole days.

This book is about high school, friends and weirdos, demonic stuff, exorcisms ish, troubled families and kids, and probably several more things that I have forgotten.

I enjoyed this coming of age story - not your typical coming of age story - but I still enjoyed it. And like I said, the end was both sweet and sad =(


Profile Image for Anne.
3,858 reviews69.2k followers
March 23, 2023
If you lived through the 1980s then you'll probably remember the rash of Satanism that struck middle-class America during those harrowing times.
Thank God for Geraldo Rivera and his timely news pieces.


As children, we were being sucked into the service of the Dark One through Dungeons and Dragons, heavy metal rock bands, ouija boards, and copious amounts of hairspray.
It was a good time to be alive.


Ok, so Hendrix takes all of the nonsense and paranoia of that era and tells a story of two girls from very different walks of life who become best friends. Like, real ride or die bitches.
And then throws a real demonic possession in there.


It's funny, but more in a hahaha! I remember that! way than in a belly laugh sort of way. It's also touching and sweet and scary and sad and surprisingly realistic when it comes to how things would probably go down in a situation like that.
And the ending made me wish I had a friendship like those two.


I've read a couple of Hendrix's books now and this one is definitely my favorite so far.
So, if you're one of the millions of folks in the market for an 80s exorcism story, I think you'll really enjoy this.
Profile Image for Matthew.
1,219 reviews8,736 followers
November 7, 2020
Part 80s nostalgia

Part tongue-in-cheek comedy

Part gory demonic horror story

Are you a fan of the darker 80s comedy movies? (i.e. Heathers) Is one of your favorite parts of Stranger Things the 80s references? Do you enjoy that part in The Exorcist when her head spins around and she spits pea soup? Well, then look no further - your next read is here!

I enjoyed this one a lot for the bit of escapism it gave me. I didn't find it laugh out loud funny or skin crawling-ly scary. But, there were enough chuckles and minor shocks that, at the end of the day, I was satisfied.

This is my second Grady Hendrix and I have found them so far to be the perfect palate cleansers. So, the next time I finish a heavy book and need a break, a Hendrix title I shall choose!
Profile Image for Gabby.
1,198 reviews26k followers
August 28, 2020
This book was so much fun. This is my second book from Grady Hendrix and I just love his writing so much. This book screams 80's horror movie vibes and I love that about it. We follow this young teenage girl and her best friend begins acting super strange, and then we find out her best friend is possessed. This book is strange and gory and it has one of the most disturbing scenes I've read in a book since The Troop which is pretty surprising and hardcore for a YA book. There's also a Spotify playlist for this book that is absolutely incredible and enhances the reading experience x1000000.

I also read it for Summerween, you can see my reactions to this book here: https://youtu.be/FO2wJTXJIYA
Profile Image for Dan Schwent.
2,891 reviews10.5k followers
May 10, 2018
Abby and Gretchen were best friends until they dropped acid at a party. Now, Gretchen's been acting strangely, letting her appearance going to shit, and Abby's worried. But Gretchen will soon give her something to really worry about...

After the nirvana that was Paperbacks from Hell: The Twisted History of '70s and '80s Horror Fiction, I had to give Grady Hendrix's fiction a shot.

Set during the satanic panic of the 1980s, My Best Friend's Exorcism is the story of the friendship between two girls and the possessing demon that drove a wedge between them. I don't know what I was expecting but it wasn't precisely this. It feels more like a Megan Abbott book, a window into the lives of teenage girls than a horror novel.

While it's set in the 80s, My Best Friend's Exorcism doesn't beat you over the head with nostalgia. There are musical references but the culture of the time is the main 80s feature imported into the novel. Satanists are everywhere and they'll stop at nothing to take over the world!

The inter-girl politics between Abby, Gretchen, and their friends was very well done and believable. I was never at a moment when I thought "There's clearly a dude writing this." The book is compulsively readable. I wolfed it down in four sittings. I would have gotten it in two but people kept wanting to talk to me during my lunch breaks. Fuckers.

It felt more like a suspense novel a lot of the time but there were still some horrific moments that I won't go into here. I was telling my wife about one particular incident and she was pretty impressed.

It wasn't perfect, however. The editing was a little sloppy. I noticed one character called the wrong name and one instance of someone's wrists and ankles tied to a bed post but with her hands at her sides. Did she suddenly have four arms?

Anyway, those minor quibbles aside, I enjoyed My Best Friend's Exorcism quite a bit. I'll be reading more of Grady Hendrix's fiction. Four out of five stars.
Profile Image for Lyn.
1,851 reviews16.4k followers
November 7, 2017
I’ll admit that I first picked up Grady Hendrix’ 2016 novel My Best Friend’s Exorcism because of the title and the cover art, but his personable writing and fresh ideas kept me reading until the end.

This is about what you would think: a snarky and fun pseudo spoof of an exorcist themed horror / black comedy. BUT – author Hendrix makes this work because he tells the story with personality and better than average characterization and dialogue. The reader gets to know characters like Abby and Gretchen and we can understand their unique relationship (even when you consider the demon possession and subsequent exorcism).

His horror themed speculative fiction is also quite good. Hendrix fills in the gaps with some good backstory and demonology. Devilishly mean HS girls and cliques are elements that most of us can relate to and the “faith and fitness” show was classic.

Also fun is the 80s theme. Yes, I graduated HS in 1987 and so this 1989 graduation story was nostalgic good times. Like Ernest Clines’ brilliant Ready Player One, we can also kick back with some 80s trivia as all of the chapter headings are 80s songs.

Better than I expected, this was a lot of fun.

Profile Image for Char .
1,613 reviews1,463 followers
January 17, 2018
Steeped in 80's nostalgia, I thought this book was a blast!

It was never really scary, and I'm not sure that it was meant to be. My instincts tell me this book was written as an homage to the 80's and the silly fun that the horror genre provided at that time. Sure, there were crazy Satanism scares, Geraldo and diet fads but there were also great music videos, Blockbuster stores and a horror book boom to beat all booms. A lot of them were just like this...about young people, influenced by culture and cliques, just trying to fit in. Carrie, Audrina, and all those kids from the covers of John Saul novels know what I'm talking about it.

If YOU know what I'm talking about and if you're smiling at those memories as I am, then I recommend this book. It was made for you!

*I bought MY BEST FRIEND'S EXORCISM with my own hard earned money. It's the enhanced version and it's a lot fun, especially those flies crawling on the cover!*
Profile Image for Ashleigh (a frolic through fiction).
444 reviews6,733 followers
September 20, 2021
To say I’ve been waiting to read this for so long and have heard everyone’s rave reviews of it in the meantime…I literally couldn’t care less. Grady Hendrix’s writing on this one at times felt like a to-do list, simply listing what happened with barely any description besides the bare basics. I know this is on the lighter side of horror but there was zero atmosphere to indicate danger, and I can’t say I cared for the retro vibe everyone loves. The plot itself was standard exorcism story. Honestly the only reason I finished it was because it’s a quick read and I could at least get the satisfaction of finishing a book out of it.
Profile Image for Larry.
76 reviews8,782 followers
July 16, 2020
Solid story, a quick read - didn’t care for the exorcism portion of the story, but that was really my only quarrel with the book. Knew all of the cultural references, brought back some memories. Overall, enjoyed it.
Profile Image for Taylor.
454 reviews134 followers
July 8, 2020

"Demons are ideas made flesh," Brother Lemon said. "Bad ideas. The one inside your friend is discord, anger, and rage. He is the bringer of storms with a smile like lightning, brother of owls and giver of nightborn intelligence. He is the cleaving that can never be healed."


I really wanted to like this book.

I mean, look at that cover! It's bloody gorgeous. Trust me, I wanted a fun, Halloween romp with demonic possession and loveable characters. But did I get that?

No. I didn't.

My Best Friend's Exorcism was...not good. At all. It was a chore to slosh through a majority of this book, and by the time I got to the end, I was vastly disappointed. Here's why:

This book is supposed to be about two girls, Abby and Gretchen. The year is 1988. Abby and Gretchen have been best friends since the third grade, and one night during the summer, they go skinny dipping. Something goes wrong, however, and the next day, Gretchen starts to act really weird. After some bizarre incidents in their friend group, Abby comes to the conclusion that Gretchen is being possessed by a demon. Time to hire an exorcist to send the demon back to hell!

Sounds fun, right?


First of all: why was this book set in 1988? Oh, I know why!! For cheap 80's references for the sake of nostalgia. No other reason. Oh, and also so the author can say some pretty offensive shit and get away with it because, ya know, those were the times, amiright???

Here's a quote from the fifth chapter of this book:

"Promise me you'll always be my friend," she said
"DBNQ," Abby replied.
It was their shorthand for "I love you." Dearly But Not Queerly.

...are you kidding me? Was that really necessary? NOPE. Ughhhhhhhhh I'm probably overreacting but shit like this pisses me off. During Abby and Gretchen's high school's spirit week, there's also a day called "slave day." During "slave day," people are bought by other students and have to follow their "master" around and do whatever is commanded of them.

WHAT THE FUCK?! Who in their right mind thought this was okay? This didn't serve any purpose in the story other than to be extremely offensive. It there was commentary to go along with the content, sure yeah that's fine, but this shit was put in here merely for shock factor.


Let's also talk about the characters for a second.

I disliked pretty much everyone. I didn't care about Gretchen and Abby's friendship, despite the author spending the first 50 pages of the book building the foundation of their relationship. I just didn't care. That's due in part to the fact that every single character is a walking stereotype.

Gretchen is the rich, goody-two-shoes. Margaret is the good-looking, bratty cheerleader with severe body-image issues. Glee is the brain. And Abby is the stupid teenage horror movie main character that doesn't have a FREAKING BRAIN.

Abby was so stupid. We're told by the author that she's smart, and got into this private religious school all on scholarship because of her grades. She's the sensible, hard-working one, right?

Haha. HaHAHAHAHA. NOPE. Abby is a complete moron. She makes some of the stupidest decisions, and dear god, she's written so poorly. What was her personality? Acting dumb and constantly acting like the victim? Because there's nothing more to her character besides that. It's so apparent that all of these young girls are being written by a middle-aged white dude. It's so obvious it hurts.

The only character I actually liked was Abby's mom. Everything she said to Abby was 100% the truth. She warned Abby about hanging out with those horrible people. She told her daughter how idiotic she was acting. She kept it real, and I appreciated it.

Nothing exciting happened until the last third of the book, and there wasn't even a body count. Sure, some messed up shit happened, but I didn't care because I wasn't invested in the characters. I was yawning for a majority of this book and waiting for it to just end already.

Merciful God, this book was a chore. The only reason I'm not rating this book any lower is because some parts of it were pretty entertaining. I enjoyed the ending of this book...in theory. In the hands of a better author, this book could've been so much better. I liked the author's ideas, and I appreciated what he was trying to do at parts. But man, did the execution fall flat.

My Best Friend's Exorcism was a waste of my time. I wanted to have fun with this, but the poor writing, horrible characters, and boring story line really hindered my overall enjoyment of this book. Maybe this book wasn't for me. Maybe you'll enjoy it. But come on, there has to be better horror out there.

If you're looking for a scary, fun time, just watch The Exorcist and skip past this boring mess.
Profile Image for Gabriel.
441 reviews585 followers
December 28, 2022
Me he demorado bastante en hacer una reseña sobre esto porque no tenía mucha idea de qué decir sobre esto en su momento.

2.5 en realidad

Ahora que ha pasado algún tiempo ya me he alejado de este relato y puedo decir con seguridad que el título como principio es un punto muy en contra para la historia. Primero, porque desde el primer instante nos enteramos cual será el núcleo de la historia y eso le resta tensión narrativa para conectar el misterio con el lector sobre lo que le puede estar pasando a Gretchen, la amiga de Abby, así que allí ya pierde peso argumental. Y el segundo motivo es que al ser uno de los temas que más ronda por la literatura y el cine obviamente es de lo más manoseado que hay por lo que es muy poco posible que sorprenda o innove de alguna manera. Y definitivamente es así, de no ser porque es un relato que juega mucho con el humor negro que alcanza a salvarlo un poco.

Ahora, ¿qué más pasa con esta historia? Pues que sencillamente ha sido encasillado en un género de muy mala manera. De terror tiene muy poco ya que es más un libro juvenil que perfectamente puede conquistar a un público más joven, si hablamos de manera objetiva. El terror es una excusa para desarrollar una historia de fuerza ante la adversidad de dos mejores amigas ante un demonio y no me malinterpren, de hecho me gustaron bastante los capítulos finales porque pude conectar con ellas pero aún así, si alguien se acerca esto creyendo que va a encontrar una historia para pasarlo mal pues se va a sentir evidentemente estafado, decepcionado y molesto.

Así que sí, recomiendo sinceramente que si alguien lee esta novela no vaya a esperarse una trama de terror, ni siquiera al uso porque básicamente es una novela sobre amistad y lealtad entre dos chicas y sobre si su unión será mucho más fuerte que el mal. Solo hay que ver que en un 70% casi que no pasa nada y solo en el último 30% es que hay escenas perturbadoras y terroríficas. Como las que este autor escribe, aderezadas con sus buenas dosis de humor que te hacen pasar un buen rato entre sus líneas. Tampoco hay que descartar que sabe hacer un relato atmosférico cuando desea y que es bastante rápido de leer. Eso sí, está repleto de referencias de los años ochenta con la música, los libros, las series y películas transmitidas en ese momento así que si te gusta eso también es un buen aliciente para leerla.

Por cierto, como apunte final vi la película de este libro cuando salió y me pareció malilla pero entretenida hasta cierto punto. Con el libro pasa casi exactamente lo mismo de no ser porque hay más profundidad en los pensamientos de la protagonista y me ha gustado muchísimo más.
Profile Image for Ginger.
735 reviews337 followers
March 16, 2019
4.5 STARS!!
My Best Friend’s Exorcism was great! This was a wonderful tale about friendship and staying connected through it all, even involving demon possession.

Does it seem like a hokey idea, maybe? But it wasn't because it's written so well by Grady Hendrix that it just works. The creepy moments with the demon were well done. The book had moments of grossness that was fantastic. I was never terrified while reading this but I was definitely entertained!

The transformation of Gretchen made me feel vile and sad. The moments in high school during the 80s took me down memory lane. The nasty rich kids made me realize why I'm glad I'm not in high school anymore. All the 80s references were just excellent!! I really loved this part of the book.

This is the first book that I’ve read of Grady Hendrix and it won’t be the last. I loved his writing, storytelling and characterization of Abby & Gretchen. Even the secondary characters in My Best Friend’s Exorcism are well done.

The exorcism scene was a bit cheesy in the beginning with Brother Lemon, but the ending of it with Abby saved it. The ending of the book was just fantastic!

Do you think you would like this?
Well, do you like the 80s or books set up during this time?
How about awesome tales about everlasting friendship?
Do you like creepy books that have you binge reading past your bedtime?

Look no further then checking out My Best Friend’s Exorcism!! I think you’ll love it!
Profile Image for Michael || TheNeverendingTBR.
448 reviews149 followers
October 9, 2021
I really enjoyed this one, it was unique, i like his writing style, its quirky, I also found certain bits horrible - like the tapeworm bit. Wtf! Lol.

Abby, Gretchen and Brother Lemon were likeable characters.

I'd have preferred a different ending though with Halley's comet, if you've read it you'll know what I mean.

A book I'd read again.

I also love the VHS cover, we need more books like this!!

I'm looking forward to reading more from this author! :)
Profile Image for Johann (jobis89).
628 reviews4,255 followers
September 6, 2017
"She and Gretchen spent hours ranking their friendships, trying to determine who was a best friend and who was an everyday friend, debating whether anyone could have two best friends at the same time."

Abby and Gretchen have been best friends since fifth grade, but things change when they start high school. After getting lost and spending a night in the woods, Gretchen becomes slightly... different. Abby knows that something is wrong, coming to the conclusion that her best friend must be possessed. Nothing will stand in her way as Abby tries to save her friend from the devil, but will their friendship be strong enough to overcome such forces of evil?

When I started this book, I honestly didn't know what to expect. A throwback to the 80s? A horror spoof? A young adult book disguised as horror? Thankfully, it was a pleasant surprise. Yes, it feels spoofy at times and has its own sense of humour, but overall it's a really wonderfully touching book. I signed up for an exorcism, but what I really got and loved most about this book was the friendship between Gretchen and Abby. Not only do you get nostalgic for the 80s (an era that I didn't live in - 1989 baby here - and yet I still feel nostalgic for - explain that!), but mostly I felt nostalgic for those childhood friendships you form. There's really nothing like it. They're so pure and honest and you honestly feel like you're gonna be best friends forever.

The usual themes and tropes of possession stories are all accounted for and present in this book, but I still feel like Hendrix brings something different and unique to the story. It's a demon possession story, but with heart. I loved that each chapter was named after a song from the 80s, I loved all the cultural references, I loved that Gretchen went through a stage of crimping her hair... we've all been there, even growing up in the 90s - I've been there. There isn't much in terms of horror - some parts are squeamish and unsettling, but it's not going to keep you up at night. But that's not the point of this book.

It's a fun read ultimately, but also really sweet. It's heartwarming to see the lengths that Abby will go to in order to save her best friend - she's admirable, courageous, brave, resilient. And I cried at the end. I was not expecting tears, but they came anyway! Throughout the entirety of this book, I was thinking to myself "Yeah, this is a solid 4 stars" but that ending... I gotta give the book 4.5 stars out of 5. I loved this one, and would recommend it to anyone looking for a fun, quick read with a lot of heart (and demonic possession)!
Profile Image for destiny ♡ howling libraries.
1,622 reviews5,059 followers
June 27, 2022
“By the power of Phil Collins, I rebuke you!”

Sometimes, I read a book and I think to myself, "I can see how this wouldn't work for everyone, but wow, does it work for me!" — and honestly, that seems to have been my experience with all of the Grady Hendrix books I've read so far. I can get why his stories might not be everyone's cup of tea, but damn, his writing just hits the spot for me every time! I'd had this book on my TBR for years and never read it, so when Kay picked up a copy, I immediately asked if we could buddy read it and I'm so glad that we did.

“Corn dogs,” the exorcist said, “are all the proof I need that there is a God.”

Grady Hendrix's writing is so entertaining to me. He has this way of weaving genuinely creepy scenes with lovable characters, pop culture references, and cheeky one-liners that always make me smile. While We Sold Our Souls is still my favorite book of his to date, this one came incredibly close to matching it because I had so much fun with these characters and the entire premise.

It's April 1988 and the world belongs to them.

I loved how heartwarming Abby's love for Gretchen was and I connected deeply with these characters (at one point, Kay and I were even discussing how amazed we were that Grady had nailed the teen girl personalities so well). The creepy scenes were spot-on, but most of all, I adored the friendship theme that played out through the entire book. At its core, this story is a love letter to those thick-as-thieves childhood friendships and the lengths we'll go to for the people we care most about, and I found it so charming and wonderful. If you're a horror fan who likes possession themes and lovable characters, I highly recommend picking this one up!

Content warnings for:

Buddy read with Kay! ♥

twitter | booktok | bookstagram | blog
Profile Image for Kelly (and the Book Boar).
2,414 reviews7,407 followers
October 30, 2017
Find all of my reviews at: http://52bookminimum.blogspot.com/

Abby and Gretchen have been friends ever since Abby’s 10th birthday party. Let’s just talk about that party for a minute. Who in their right mind would (1) plan their party after someone has already sent out invitations for another party? Margaret, that’s who . . . .

And (2) who would attend some lame ass horse party when they could do this instead . . . .

Apparently everyone #sadface. But seriously, what was with the stereotype all girls loving all things horsey back in the ‘80s???

(Countdown to girl from elementary school who was obsessed with horses discovering this review and trolling me for life in 3, 2, . . . . )

Anyway, poor little Abby. It didn’t even matter that Gretchen brought a stupid children’s bible as a gift, they were BFFs as soon as they skated under the sparkling lights of the disco ball on that roller rink.

Fastforward to high school and two girls who really only argue about one thing . . . . .

That is until a seriously strange acid trip that leaves Gretchen a little different than before . . . .

Now Abby will have to do whatever it takes to save her . . . . .

I picked this up because . . . well, duh, it’s almost Halloween, but mainly because of the cover. Look at the majesty which is the cheesy VHS horror rental at your local Blockbuster (#ripblockbuster). It was exactly what I was looking for while I counted down the seconds until the premier of the new season of the best 1980s deliciousness since the actual 1980s . . . .

If you are actually looking for “unspeakable horrors” like the blurb states, you need to look somewhere else. On the other hand, if you want to feel a little nostalgic in the form of chapter titles that are also well-known ‘80s hits, references to Chi-Chi’s fried ice cream, The Thorn Birds, Flowers in the Attic, puka shell necklaces, and on and on while you experience some campy good times, this one might be a winner. The story does drag a bit when it comes to the teen angst and nonsense in lieu of the barfing of pea soup, but eventually readers do get the scene they’ve been waiting the whole book for . . . .

This also appears to be marketed as general fiction. Maybe because it’s set in the olde days of yore??? Be forewarned that this is NOT going to scare you and should probably have been cross-marketed for both teens and geezers.
Profile Image for La loca de los libros .
281 reviews92 followers
October 31, 2022
Este mes del terror Devoradora de libros ha vuelto a escoger una gran lectura con la que hemos disfrutado enormemente.
Es la segunda novela que leo de Grady Hendrix después de Horrorstör y la experiencia ha vuelto a ser muy divertida y aterradora a la vez.
Con esos toques de humor que caracterizan su escritura aderezado con momentos de terror que siento que en este caso se dilatan demasiado en el tiempo. Y es que Hendrix se reserva lo mejor para el final y eso puede hacer que los más impacientes desesperen.

Esta historia es sin ninguna duda un canto a la amistad, donde iremos conociendo el día a día de dos grandes amigas, las mejores amigas; Abby y Gretchen, todo ello con una ambientación ideal en torno a los años 80', no hay más que ver la portada tal carátula de VHS 😍
Todo va sobre ruedas hasta que hace su aparición el otoño de 1988, cuando todo se tuerce y ya nada volverá a ser igual.
Tras una fiesta con algunos excesos, Gretchen desaparece toda una noche en el bosque cercano a la casa de Margaret, otra de las amigas del grupo, cuando aparece a la mañana siguiente no parece ser la misma persona, está como ida, irritable, físicamente cambiada, un cambio que irá oscureciendo cada vez más su carácter a la vez que se irán sucediendo perturbadores hechos en los cuales Abby está convencida que Gretchen está involucrada.

La narrativa es muy ágil y abarca muchos temas desde la adolescencia, con todos los cambios que ello acarrea, las malas decisiones, las locuras típicas de la edad, hasta las diferencias entre las capas sociales, porque gran parte de la trama se enmarca en un instituto de niños pijos donde Abby puede estudiar gracias a una beca, de este modo lo tendrá más difícil que sus compañeros adinerados que todo lo pueden con ayuda de sus padres a golpe de talonario, para que crean su versión de los extraños hechos que se están sucediendo y quién se encuentra detrás de ellos.
Los personajes son muy fuertes, destacando sobre los demás las dos protas por excelencia, nuestras particulares heroínas que harán todo lo posible por salvar su amistad, ¿lo lograrán?.
Aunque nadie se los pondrá fácil, ni siquiera sus progenitores, que estarán demasiado ocupados con sus vidas como para prestarles la más mínima atención a sus hijas adolescentes.
Esta historia como ven, esconde mucho más de lo que aparenta.

Personalmente, llegó un punto que estaba deseando que pasara algo, que explotara por algún lado, y de hecho lo hace pero se demora mucho, todo el tema de la amistad y el día a día en el instituto llegó a hacerse un poco pesado.
Pasan cosas claro, pero muy leves hasta que aparece en acción el exorcista, que menudo exorcista 😂 también es verdad que en este tipo de historias es difícil innovar tras haber visto y leído mucho del género. Ya intuyes, o eso crees, por donde van a ir los tiros. Hasta que no llegas al último tercio de la novela no se anima de verdad, es entonces cuando empieza a encogerse tu estómago con lo que vas leyendo, un cóctel de emociones que van desde el puro asco a la sorpresa e impotencia.

🔝 En definitiva, me ha faltado más terror y explicaciones de algunos hechos, pero aún así es una lectura muy buena, sobre la amistad y su perdurabilidad en el tiempo con sus buenas dosis de terror y humor, tal como nos tiene acostumbrados el estilo de Hendrix.
Además, cada capítulo está encabezado por títulos míticos de la década de los 80', desde la emotiva Domingo sangriento de U2, pasando por Pink Floyd, Bonnie Tyler o algunos temas más cañeros como The number of the beast del grupo rockero Iron Maiden, y muchas más que no conocía. Toda una delicia para los sentidos y ha sido el acompañamiento perfecto ♪♪♪
Muy recomendable 👌💀

📖 Próxima lectura:
"El árbol de las brujas" - Ray Bradbury.

📚 https://www.facebook.com/LaLocadelosL... 📚
Profile Image for myo (myonna reads).
698 reviews6,238 followers
October 28, 2021
Abby was very annoying and yet i can relate to her and her need to put makeup on because of her acne because i was the same way in high school until i finally stopped caring LOL. really love how grady hendrix sometimes will intertwine other topics in his horror books, for example this book that focuses on horror but friendship at the same time.
Profile Image for Dave Schaafsma.
Author 6 books31.3k followers
October 13, 2022
I read this with my Fall 2017 YAL class.

The year is 1988. Geraldo Rivera’s sensational special on a country in the grip of Satanism has (especially) religious teens and their parents in a frenzy:


Grady Hendrix’s My Best Friend’s Exorcism, I think a YA horror text, is an eighties pop culture feast, in which hardly a sentence can slide by without refs to Phil Collins and Madonna and crimping irons and TCBY. If you lived through the eighties, then you will appreciate that each chapter title is taken from a Top 40 Pop song (“Harden my Heart,” “I Would Die For U,” “And She Was”). It’s a book (I think, possibly) meant to be read with a window to google in order to gleefully monitor every reference to the eighties, and 1988 in particular, and horror movies, generally. The cover of my edition of the book has references to Hitchcock’s Vertigo, and The Birds, as if you needed the reminders with all the dead birds (Owls, in particular, are in league with Satan, we hear) throughout the book.

The story is of besties Abby and Gretchen. In fourth grade, Abby, a(n economic) class lower than Gretchen (and indeed all of the girls at her school that we encounter) throws a birthday party (ET theme) and only Gretchen attends (AND her mother makes her give Abby a Bible for her birthday), and they in time grow to be friends. They get so close that Hendrix almost seems to suggest they might be gay (some characters accuse them of this, and “I love you dearly, I love you queerly,” Abby even suggests at one point), but they’re not, it seems, they are just closer to each other than anyone else, inseparable. Except when that pesky little demon possession happens, which creates problems for them, but hey, only temporarily! They’ll work through any problems, because they are BESTEST friends!

In its worst/best moments, it feels like it is just so bad it is good (and isn’t that the case, with midnight movie kitsch, that the references can be so bad they are good?). Hendrix’s first book, Paperbacks from Hell: The Twisted History of ‘70s and ‘80s Horror Fiction, sets the table for his second book, Horrorstör (with a bloodbath in an Ikea-like store), and now this YA Horror fiction that recalls Carrie and so many other similar tales from that era.

But are any of them as joyfully full of pop culture as Exorcism? The original that we all—including Hendrix—bow down to, The Exorcist (the film, anyway) veers in places toward farce, but then it takes a turn for the truly horrific, and you must believe it, all you cynical failed believers. There IS demon Possession, damn it, and Linda Blair will hold your paralyzed face to the screen and make you believe it! But in the key exorcism scene in Hendrix’s book that you waited the whole book for, Hendrix can’t resist making fun of how tying Gretchen down is a little s/m, and so on. His is pulp fiction that veers more into comedy and kitsch than true horror, imo:

• “As Jesus Christ once said: By any means necessary”—The Exorcist, Brother Lemon
• We find 23 pounds of tapeworm in Margaret’s stomach (is this horror, or farce, or both?) (Both!)
• “Sometimes, you know, you have to break a few eggs”—Lemon, when torturing the Devil out of Gretchen before the protesting Abby
• In the middle of crisis moments, Abby tends to want to take Seventeen magazine quizzes such as “How to Tell if Your Best Friend Really Likes You”
• Abby performs the actual exorcism when Brother Lemon is gone by invoking Phil Collins and Madonna, not Jesus Christ (this IS interesting, and reminds me of a comics demon possession series I am reading, Outcast, where a preacher wants to cast out the devil, and a non-believing friend just wants to expunge negative vibes/spirits from the general population)

There’s some pop culture theorizing re: girls about the adolescent hormonal turn to boys and against parents and religion as a kind of “possession” that gets cured with the onset of adulthood:

”What Gretchen is going through is very scary, and I don’t blame you for backing off from your friendship a little. But we’ve talked to doctors and they tell us that what’s happening is an unfortunate sickness of the mind and spirit that happens sometimes as girls grow up.”

What is it that happens for a few years to these girls (and then of course goes away with adulthood! No more lust for devout Christian parents, as we know)!? And why is it horror usually depicts possession/madness in young girls?

I didn’t always love the writing (but hey, Hendrix rebuts, this is pulp fiction, just relax and have fun!), but I have to admit My Best Friend’s Exorcism has its entertaining moments. It takes 1/3 of the book before we even see things go wrong for Gretchen, so it takes its time to turn to horror, and this is good. Bad things happen to “normal” good kids! And as with most of these stories, it all becomes about friendship and gross jerky boys like Wallace and sexual exploration and revenge.

You can get a Spotify soundtrack, just designed for this book, to listen to while you read it. But here’s a couple songs to bring you back to that mall-hair era:

“We Got the Beat,” from the GoGos:


Phil Collins’s “Take Me Home” from No Jacket Required:


Oh, in case you are nostalgic for even bloodier horror, here’s the Scary Priest scene from the original Exorcist film (1973):


3.5 stars, maybe 3.75, which means I mostly liked it and bump it up to a 4 rating.
Profile Image for Larry H.
2,481 reviews29.4k followers
November 19, 2020
Grady Hendrix's My Best Friend's Exorcism might just be what you expect looking at the book: it's campy, crazy, and chock full of 80s references!

Can a friendship be powerful enough to beat the devil?

Abby and Gretchen have been inseparable best friends since 4th grade. They have private jokes and countless memories together, and they’ve remained close through high school.

But one boring night, after some warm beer and some drugs, the girls and their friends decide to go skinny-dipping. Something strange happens, though, something inexplicable, and it changes Gretchen drastically.

Suddenly Gretchen is acting erratically, complaining of being touched by invisible beings, her personal hygiene deteriorates, and strange and troubling things happen and appear when she’s around. But while others give up on her, Abby is determined to figure out what happened to her friend, and save her at any cost—even though there are great risks to her own future. And she's not even sure if anyone takes her seriously, or if they think she's on drugs like they suspect Gretchen is.

As you might imagine, this book is a little silly, a little scary (at least for cowards like me who usually steer clear of books like this), and more than a little bit gross at times. But that being said, it has some surprising emotional heft I didn’t see coming given the subject matter.

If you’re a child of the 80s like me, you’ll love the pop culture references sprinkled throughout and this nostalgic cover design. There is a bunch of gore—blood and guts and some mentions of animal harm and animal death—so be forewarned if those trouble you. They’re easily skimmed over.

Hendrix really is quite the storyteller. Exorcism and friends...they go together?

Check out my list of the best books I read in 2019 at https://itseithersadnessoreuphoria.blogspot.com/2020/01/the-best-books-i-read-in-2019.html.

Check out my list of the best books of the decade at https://itseithersadnessoreuphoria.blogspot.com/2020/01/my-favorite-books-of-decade.html.

See all of my reviews at itseithersadnessoreuphoria.blogspot.com.

Follow me on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/the.bookishworld.of.yrralh/.
Profile Image for Carole (Carole's Random Life).
1,678 reviews456 followers
May 16, 2016
This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life

I had really high hopes for this book. Like really high. I was a bit disappointed in the end. I wasn't a bad story but it didn't even come close to living up to my expectations. When I first saw this book, I knew that I would have to read it. Demonic possession with heavy dose of 80's references were enough to really grab the attention of this old lady. Unfortunately, despite the wonderful premise I found the book rather underwhelming.

Abby and Gretchen have been best friends since grade school. Things go wrong at a high school party when the girls were doing a few drugs. Gretchen gets lost in the woods and is gone for a night and her personality starts to changes. She becomes very mean especially to her friend, Abby. Abby knows that something is wrong but she can't seem to get anyone to listen to her in order to get her friend the help that she needs.

I love the 80's. I was a teen in the late 80's and I really was looking forward to a story set in this time period. Unfortunately, the 80's references in this book became a little too much for me. It felt a little forced in some ways and I think it actually ended up being a bit distracting.

The characters felt a little flat to me. I never felt any kind of connection to Abby or Gretchen. I also thought that the story dragged at points. There were some really exciting moments but nothing truly scary as I had hoped to find. In the end, this story just never really grabbed me and was just okay. I do think that a lot of readers will enjoy this one a lot. This is the first book by Grady Hendrix that I have read and I would be willing to read his work again in the future.

I received an advance reader edition of this book from Quirk Books via NetGalley for the purpose of providing an honest review.

Initial Thoughts
This book wasn't quite what I thought it would be. I really enjoyed all the 80's references as the book got started but eventually it became a little too much...even for someone who loves to walk down memory lane like myself. The story was okay and it did have its exciting moments but there was nothing here that blew me away. I need to think about this one for bit before I decide on a rating but right now it is sitting at about 3 stars.
Profile Image for Overhaul.
226 reviews551 followers
September 17, 2022
Dos jóvenes estudiantes de Secundaria, llamadas Abby y Gretchen, se tienen la una a la otra como mejores amigas desde los tiempos de la infancia. Pero en una noche de juerga en la que se bañan desnudas todo les sale espantosamente mal y Gretchen, a partir de entonces... cambia.

Está siempre de mal humor. Irritable. Y empiezan a sucederse extraños incidentes en los que, invariablemente, Gretchen está implicada. Abby empieza a investigar y se adentra en un misterio sobrecogedor...

Cuando la historia llegue a su momento culminante, el destino de Abby y Grechen girará en torno a una única pregunta: ¿La amistad entre ambas será lo bastante fuerte como para derrotar al Diablo?

Novela ambientada durante un auge y pánico satánico en la década de 1980, "El exorcismo de mi mejor amiga", es básicamente una historia de amistad con no los suficientes toques y guiños ochenteros entre dos chicas, la cosa se tuerce, no es todo del color de rosas y la trama termina marcandose un exorcista tardío.

No sé qué me esperaba, la verdad, pero no era precisamente esto. La trama es lo que vemos en la sinopsis, hay muchos "peros".

Si bien está ambientado en los años 80, no te alcanza esa nostalgia o te sumerges en ella de una manera completa. Tenemos las referencias musicales, alguna película pero la cultura de la época es mucho más y el principal rasgo de los 80. Me faltaron cosas en esa ambientación.

Los personajes me parecieron un poco planos. No sentí en ningún momento ningún tipo de conexión hacia las protagonistas.

Me importaban muy poco. La historia además se me arrastró en algunos puntos. Hubo momentos que fueron buenos, medio emocionantes. Pero nada realmente aterrador, memorable, digno de mencionar o que me enganchase.

Cosas que esperaba encontrar y experimentar a través de su lectura. Una historia que nunca me atrapó pese a tener buenas ideas. También desde mi punto de vista a este libro le pasó factura la comparación con otros.

Las escenas por las que lees este tipo de libros, inquietantes, sencillamente hubo pocas para mi. Llegaron tarde y no llegaron a lograr sostener la tensión o crear ningún tipo de sensación como lector. Me dejaron sin más.

Un drama de instituto a través de una amistad que necesita decirse unas cuantas cosas. Mucho tiempo para que surja la posesión demoníaca, y hasta entonces tenemos que pasar por un largo repaso de todas las cosas que van mal con las protagonistas y los que las rodean.

El exorcismo por mi parte tampoco se lleva el aprobado. Careció del brillo necesario para de ser destacable hasta cerca del final. Muy poca sangre y poco emocionante. Se centra en ellas y su amistad. Lo fuerte que pueden ser y lo que juntas pueden superar. Muy bien, me alegro por ellas, maravilloso. Pero el aspecto de terror no tanto. Rozando lo inexistente. Y carente de...

La verdad es que cuando llegué al exorcismo, estaba planteándome si seguir y meditando sobre si realmente estaba disfrutando o no.

En este tipo de libros (y películas) ya tengo un largo recorrido y gustos concretos. Tiene que haber un par de cosas para que me guste. Aquí no están. No siempre es facir llevar estos tipos de libros y hacerlos interesantes.

No me enganchó, aún con sus buenos momentos se me hicieron insípidos y no lo disfruté en su totalidad. Pesa más en la balanza lo malo que lo bueno.

La historia fue un poco deprimente y tampoco entiendo las motivaciones de los padres, algo que me llamó la atención. Partes buenas pero otras fueron algo raras e insipidas.

Lectura que gustará a muchos, no lo dudo, pero no ha encajado conmigo. Cosas que no me han terminado ni de interesar, enganchar y falta de otros aspectos importantísimos en este tipo de libros. Una lectura que me dejó insatisfecho.
Profile Image for Provin Martin.
221 reviews31 followers
June 25, 2021
Five totally rad stars!!!! 🌟 🌟 🌟 🌟 🌟

To enjoy this book, you must love the 1980’s, gore, horror and the sickly sweet friendship teenage girls have!

This is my second read written by Grady Hendrix – – I just can’t get over his easy-going writing style and realistic characters. I adored the southern book clubs guide to slaying vampires, so I hoped I was in for a real treat with the selection. I was not let down!

Abby is having a birthday party at the local rollerskating rink. But the only person who showed up was Gretchen and she doesn’t know Gretchen. Gretchen‘s gift is a children’s Bible, Abby is appalled!.
But as her sad birthday party goes on, she learns Gretchen can’t skate and that gives her the opportunity to share her hobby with someone else. This is when Gretchen and Abby form a bond that is unbreakable.

The twosome turns into an unstoppable foursome when they are in high school. Margaret and Glee join Abby and Gretchen for the summer of 1988- and they plan to make it the best summer ever! When the foursome takes a trip to the creek to celebrate their summer, things get a little wild. Gretchen goes missing and the search is on. When the girls finally find her she’s not the Gretchen that they lost. And so begins Abbys journey to exercise Gretchen’s demons.

This book started me off with magical trip down memory lane. I grew up in the 80s and remembered every song, book and magazine mentioned. The story took me back to my childhood room, brought up similar memories I shared with my friends and made me long for mixtapes, jelly shoes and a teen beat magazine to read. Ah,yes, the 80s!
Profile Image for Gary .
200 reviews183 followers
October 7, 2019
I saw this book on the list by Goodreads for new authors. I thought "Why not?" I was at a point in my reading career where I was choosing authors that were familiar for lack of willingness to take a risk with my time, and I hadn't had the best of luck getting outside the box. I'm glad I picked this up.
The beginning of the book was a long introduction to the characters, and if not for the author's wit, it would've made me sleepy. It did give me a clear picture of the characters, rounding them nicely and making them seem like actual people. For a long time, this book left me wondering if it was a story about mental illness or whether there would be an exorcism, and even if there was one would this still be a story about mental illness? It was a slow build with a purpose. It ended in a satisfying manner, leaving me feel sad that the characters were gone. There haven't been many books that made me miss the characters, but Abby and Gretchen were two of I will remember for a long time.
I think there should be a name coined for the emerging genre of kid-horror (maybe there is and I have missed it), which contains horror that pits kids against evil. King's It and the Netflix Stranger Things are stand out examples.
5 stars because I really like these characters.
Profile Image for Trudi.
615 reviews1,404 followers
July 21, 2016
"What an excellent day for an exorcism."
~The Exorcist (1973)
This is an okay book. Fair. Acceptable. But it takes too long to really get humming (I'm all in for foreplay, but Hendrix really pushes the limits to impatience here). More than three-quarters of the novel is essentially an angsty teen, coming-of-age high school drama about a group of girls and their growing pains with each other and with the world around them. It could very well be Gossip Girl or One Tree Hill -- except that one of the main characters might be demonically possessed (instead of merely being a catty bitch). Sometimes it's nigh on impossible to tell the difference.

Here's the thing -- this book suffers by comparison to a lot of other things. Nobody writes the mysterious, dark and turbulent interior lives of teenage girls better than Megan Abbott. Seeing Hendrix attempt to do the same thing here as he explores the iron bonds of friendship forged by Abby and Gretchen when they were children pales in execution and gravitas to Ms. Abbott's vast talents with her mighty quill.

The demonic possession and exorcism angle is adequately covered -- but again suffers by comparison to 2015's Bram Stoker Award winning A Head Full of Ghosts. And no matter who you are, if you're writing about this subject, your book is always going to be compared to Blatty's classic horror novel The Exorcist and Friedkin's enduring film adaptation of the same name.

Hendrix might have thought he was doing something new and clever here by mashing-up a coming-of-age teen drama with the horror tropes of demonic possession stories, but he doesn't quite make it. Some scenes are definitely creepy and unsettling, there just weren't enough of them (too few of them coming too late in the story) to sustain any kind of coiled tension and impending sense of doom in the reader. And boy, is it really hard to write an exorcism scene that chills, rather than have it feel like a spoof out of a Scary Movie sequel, or a daytime soap opera.

Who's old enough to remember Marlena Evans? Me!

Profile Image for Maxwell.
1,110 reviews8,029 followers
May 13, 2022
What a ride! This was such an unexpected delight. I figured it would be entertaining and fun, a little different from what I normally read. But I ended up really loving this!

If you are looking for a cheeky, darkly funny, irreverent horror-ish novel, this is it. It's totally lambasting 80's culture and the ridiculousness of so many fads, while telling a story of friendship and growing up through the lens of a horror story. Imagine Mean Girls meets Fear Street.

Abby is a lonely kid, one of the poorer kids at her school, who becomes fast friends with Gretchen when she's the only one to show up to Abby's rollerskating birthday party when they are little. From then on, they are inseparable. One summer in high school, they go skinning dipping at their friend Margaret's house on the waterfront and Gretchen comes back changed...potentially possessed. The problem is, Abby seems to be the only one who notices or cares. Abby will do whatever it takes to stop the evil force potentially ruining Gretchen's life, even if it comes at a cost to Abby's own welfare.

This is a story packed with 80s references, hilariously ridiculous commentary on American fads from that period, a playful rip on the supernatural horror genre, and just an overall good time. Grady Hendrix really committed to the playfulness in this book, while still developing the heart of the story which is Abby and Gretchen's friendship. He captured teenagers really well, better than many adults are able to often. And that quality, paired with some really creepy stuff made for a pageturner that had me laughing, cringing, and saying "aw" at the end.
Displaying 1 - 30 of 12,748 reviews

Can't find what you're looking for?

Get help and learn more about the design.