Review: The Girls Weekend by Jody Gehrman

Expected publication: June 9th 2020

Their reunion just became a crime scene . . .

June Moody, a thirty-something English professor, just wants to get away from her recent breakup and reunite with girlfriends over summer break. Her old friend and longtime nemesis, Sadie MacTavish, a mega-successful author, invites June and her college friends to a baby shower at her sprawling estate in the San Juan Islands. June is less than thrilled to spend time with Sadie–and her husband, June’s former crush–but agrees to go.

The party gets off to a shaky start when old grudges resurface, but when they wake the next morning, they find something worse: Sadie is missing, the house is in shambles, and bloodstains mar the staircase. None of them has any memory of the night before; they wonder if they were drugged. Everyone’s a suspect. Since June had a secret rendezvous with Sadie’s husband, she has plenty of reason to suspect herself. Apparently, so do the cops.

A Celtic knot of suspense and surprise, this brooding, atmospheric novel will keep you guessing as each twist reveals a new possibility. It will remind you of friendships hidden in the depths of your own past, and make you wonder how well you really know the people you’ve loved the longest.

I was so excited to start The Girls Weekend. The plot sounded really great and I’ve been super into suspense books lately. However, I felt extremely disappointed with this book. I still really liked the overall plot but there was multiple times that the writing was tone deaf.
The first thing that hit me really wrong was the main character, June, and her careless comparison of hate stalking someone’s Instagram to a person who self harms. June was also incredibly immature and spent so much of her time complaining about her life and how Sadie seemed to have it all, just based on her social media. Not an uncommon way of thinking in today’s culture but also not a compelling story line in a book with full grown adult characters.
I didn’t mind the pace of the plot. It was a little slow, the action didn’t start until 30% into the book, but I didn’t feel like it was being dragged out. I do wish there was more background on the characters, I was especially interested in knowing more about Kimi but we knew very little about her or Amy or Em.
The second tone deaf issue I noticed was when the only person of color in the book brings up how cops make her uncomfortable and another character says “Really? You’re going there?”. It was convenient that the author has a POC token character, because that’s all she seemed to be, but also, very poor choice on the author’s part to include a white character disregarding a real and legitimate concern for POC in the real world. Shortly after that, there was a brief degradation of #MeToo, which was completely unnecessary and did nothing for the plot or characters.
I also hated how mental illness was consistently downplayed and was used as a reason that someone might be a murderer. One of the worst lines in this book was, “Amy went through a cutter phase in college.” Again, so tone deaf. Self harm isn’t a phase. It’s serious and not something to dismiss as a phase. And of course, mental health issues always equal being a murderer in all the character’s eyes. That was a consistent theme throughout the book and I found it to be a disgusting, outdated, tone deaf stereotype.
The plot twist was decent but I wasn’t shocked and it didn’t spur any emotion out of me.
Overall, the potential of the plot was ruined for me by all the tone deaf stereotypes and careless disregard for serious issues in the real world.




  • the most constant

    It does have a cool cover though! It does sound good, but I find more often than not that these types of books (thriller-esque ) are such let downs :/

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