Book Review | Befriended By Ruth O’Neill

eBook copy sent for the purpose of review. All thoughts and opinions are our own.

Let me preface this with a word of apology to the author – it has taken me a while to get round to reading this and is in fact only the second or third book I have read this year as I struggle to find the time to get any reading done around my freelance work, family and this blog. However once I picked up a copy of Befriended by Ruth O’Neill, I just couldn’t put it down.


Some secrets never leave us alone. . . Gemma Peacock’s life was perfect – or at least, she thought it was. She had a home she loved, a job she enjoyed, and a husband she adored. The only cloud on the horizon was the continuing tension between Gemma and her mother-in-law, but that’s the same for everyone, right? After the death of her beloved husband, Ritchie, everything begins to fall apart. Indiana Manors’ life, on the other hand, is far from perfect – but she knows just what she has to do to fix it. Befriend Gemma Peacock – and destroy her. Befriended is an exciting, contemporary thriller that will keep you on the very edge of your seat. This book will toy with your emotions time and time again – and keep you coming back for more.

My Review

Available at Amazon here {affiliate link}, Befriended tells the story of Gemma Peacock and what happens once Indiana Manors comes into her life. Grieving after the death of her beloved, perhaps even perfect husband, Ritchie and still young herself, Gemma struggles to find herself in the months after her death and Indiana comes into her life just when she needs people – little does she know Indiana is there to destroy her.

The character of Gemma is well written, you feel for her and you can’t help but root for her as she always tries to do her best by people. Indiana is extremely well written – you think you know what her intentions are and almost hate her – but you can’t quite hate her. Underneath the facade is a scared, unhappy little girl and the readers get somewhat of a sense of that – although the way she goes about things leaves you disgusted with her the majority of the time.

Every time you think Gemma has got away before Indiana completely destroys her, she somehow ends up back in the fold again and you are left wondering what is going to happen eventually. I must admit I did not see the massive twist coming and did reread those pages in shock and wonder at how the author managed to keep it from us for so long. The way the novel was resolved at the end was also pretty perfect, I thought – a great way to end the story and let some characters begin new stories of their own.

There was only one character that I was kind of indifferent to and that was Gemma’s best friend Maria. Perhaps she was written that way for a purpose but she seemed somewhat a little too overbearing when Gemma was grieving but oh so quick to believe newbie Indiana that Gemma had said certain things – before jumping into being fairly overbearing again. Whilst Gemma and Indiana’s friendship wasn’t healthy in the slightest due to the latter’s intentions to destroy the former, I can’t help but think Gemma and Maria’s friendship was too healthy either!

However, this was a fantastic read and I just couldn’t put it down. I have many friends who I know will enjoy this novel so will be recommending it to them. Have you read it yet?

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