Release Date: February 25, 2014
Rating: 3 out of 5
I’ve always heard great things about Elizabeth Eulberg’s novels, and after completing Better Off Friends, I see the appeal. Better Off Friends is certainly adorable, with a light writing style and lots of feel-good moments throughout the story. However, I had a few issues here and there that prevented me from enjoying the story thoroughly.
To start off on a positive note, the friendship between Macallan and Levi is one that will make you smile from ear to ear. They click immediately, and it’s something so pure and real that I couldn’t help but feel all warm and tingly. What’s different about this story is that the friendship starts when Macallan and Levi are in middle school. I was hesitant at first, thinking that the entire book takes place in middle school, but it eventually develops into them being 16 years old. I appreciated seeing this boy-girl friendship build.
However, this is where Better Off Friends let me down. When Macallan and Levi entire high school, their lives obviously change. They begin to develop romantic feelings for each other, but neither of them want the other to know it. There are lots of back-and-forth moments in this book, to the point where it becomes repetitive and a little bit boring. I got a little annoyed at one point, like WHY CAN’T YOU GUYS JUST CONFESS YOUR LOVE FOR EACH OTHER?!?
Also, the book is told from both Macallan and Levi’s perspective. While I appreciate both genders’ POVs, I feel that Levi’s is a little weak in comparison to Macallan’s. Levi’s perspective is often dull and in general I’ve seen better male perspectives done before. Eulberg makes Levi seem like he lacks personality and profound feelings for Macallan.
Negative points aside, Better Off Friends is still a quick, light read. Its sole focus on friendship-turned-romance is sweet and fun. I can’t say that I’ll be book-pushing this book all around because of the flaws that bothered me, but I’d say give it a try if you loved Eulberg’s previous works!