Friend Request by Laura Marshall

  • Title: Friend Request
  • Novelist: Laura Marshall
  • Publisher: Sphere Edition
  • Categories: Thriller, Mystery

Friend Request puts us on the dangerousness of Facebook. Louise Williams created her own interior design firm. She works at home and raises her 4-year-old son, Henry, alone since she divorced. One day, she received a friend request from Maria Weston who died in 1989. She is invited to attend the School Reunion Class of 1989. Louise wonders who is hiding behind that Facebook’s profile. Could Maria be still alive? The sea never gave back her body after all. Will Louise face the weight of the past that haunts her every day?

This thriller takes off at top speed with the reception and the acceptation of the Friend Request. Nevertheless, the rhythm slows down during the next chapters. Disturbing events happen but we know that the Reunion’ll be the most important moment of the story. The moment when something dark’ll occur. After that, the heroine will be more stressed and frightened. After the episode, I didn’t want to put the book aside. The end made me shivering because of the horror of the revelations.   

The book approaches a lot of concepts. The bullying at school. The desire to sacrifice everything to be a part of the group of popular teens. The power that makes some people feel not responsible of their acts. The effects of our school life on our future. The dangers of Facebook and the voyeurism. The children’s place in his mother’s life.  

Henry is the center of Louise’s universe. She doesn’t see her own force even though she is a single mother and a boss. She doesn’t feel confident and she is puffed up with the perfect idea of the family. In the novel, she draws on her energy and her hidden strength to prevent herself from succumbing to the urges she feels for her ex-husband. I like her evolution, her willpower and her bravery. 

The alternation between 1989 and 2016 immerses us in two eras that are different and have similar points at the same time. We learn Louise’s past and the link between that past and the present appears progressively until the final revelations. The writing of the novelist is simple and fluid.

In short, Friend Request is a novel blending a raw reality and morality. Laura Marshall used the vices of Facebook to offer us a thrilling story in which human horror is shown. 

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