We Used to Be Friends - Review Squad

We Used to Be Friends

Amy Spalding

Ages 14+

Told in dual timelines—half of the chapters moving forward in time and half moving backward—We Used to Be Friends explores the most traumatic breakup of all: that of childhood besties. At the start of their senior year in high school, James (a girl with a boy’s name) and Kat are inseparable, but by graduation, they’re no longer friends. James prepares to head off to college as she reflects on the dissolution of her friendship with Kat while, in alternating chapters, Kat thinks about being newly in love with her first girlfriend and having a future that feels wide open. Over the course of senior year, Kat wants nothing more than James to continue to be her steady rock, as James worries that everything she believes about love and her future is a lie when her high-school sweetheart parents announce they’re getting a divorce. Funny, honest, and full of heart, We Used to Be Friends tells of the pains of growing up and growing apart.

"We Used To Be Friends by Amy Spalding - a book about friendship, family and wishing for something that you no longer have - is a great read. The events are suspenseful, the characters are described in incredible detail, and both of these factors will not make you want to put this book down. However, there is something quite unique about this novel: it is told half backwards in time and half forward. By this, it means that some of the events have happened in the past and others are what is happening in the present and future. While this is a really innovative and creative concept, I found it at times a little overwhelming and confusing. Because of the way the book is narrated, the plot was a little hard to follow - you couldn’t really tell what was the beginning, middle and end because the order of events are a little all over the place. Despite this fact, the order of events did not take away from the plot - it was still a page-turning storyline, even if it was a little hard to follow. Overall, We Used To Be Friends by Amy Spalding is a great book and those who like stories filled with drama, family, and friendship will thoroughly enjoy this book."

  • Holly, 13 

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