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We Were Never Here

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A perfect summer thriller with Brokedown Palace vibes. Although We Were Never Here is a bit unbelievable at times it is still compulsively readable. Andrea Bartz is the queen of writing about the toxic female friendship and this one had a twist that made me gasp out loud. 

Emily and Kristen have been best best friends, each other’s found family for 10+ years. They have a friendship of secret codes and riddles and truly know what it means when a best friend says “I’ll help you bury the body.” But how many bodies have to pile up before the deaths stop seeming so accidental? Can Emily keep their secrets before they’re caught or will the ones she discovers over time ruin both of their lives forever? 

TW: rape, sexual assault, graphic death, murder
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Thank you to NetGalley, the publisher and the author, for an ARC of this book, in exhange for an honest review.
I read The Herd" by Andrea Bartz last year & really enjoyed it so when I saw that her newest book, "We Were Never Here" was available to review I requested a copy.
I really enjoyed this book. 
I found it to be well written, fast paced, addictive & exciting. 
I couldn’t wait to see how it ended.
I'm definitely going to be on the lookout for Ms. Bartz next book.
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We Were Never Here by Andrea Bartz is an exiting rollercoaster ride that will leave you begging for more.

Best friends Emily and Kirsten vacation in Chile on their annual reunion trip. Things are going great until the last night of their trip when trouble really begins in paradise.

Emily walks into the hotel room to find broken glass and blood on the floor. Kristen tells her the backpacker she flirted with that night attacked her. She killed him in self defense. It seems history repeated itself when on a similar trip the previous year a similar even took place involving Emily.

Back home Emily is feeling guilty and paranoid about what occurred on their trip, while Kristen moves on with life as if nothing happened. Kristen inserts herself into every aspect of Emily’s life. She’s just being a good friend right? Emily can’t shake the feeling something is off. As she dives deeper into Kristen’s past, she is not prepared for the skeletons she uncovers.

I really enjoyed this book. It was fast paced and exciting. I couldn’t wait to see how it ended!

Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for this ARC.
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WOW.  So I have very mixed feelings about this book.  First of all, I almost always give at least four stars to books that were so engaging they kept me from doing something else, like sleeping, and this had that.  However, the middle was too long.  We got what was going on, and it was mostly an unreliable narrator doubting everything, which is central to the story, but there was too much of it.  I also wasn't the biggest fan of most the outcome.  It felt like a cop out, until the last few pages, where I was like, "WAIT...WHAT???" and it made me rethink the entire book.  Note to authors: these bland man stereotype boyfriends have got to go.  Referring to your girlfriend's previous sexual assault by saying things that, "Dude, that really sucks," is not good writing.  Stop that.  This man was so bland and nondescript that I didn't like him or dislike him - I was just like, "meh."  But I found it to be a very compelling book.
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Can I tell you, I was so incredibly excited to be approved to read We Were Never Here! I had read both The Herd and The Lost Night (loved!!!!!!) by Andrea Bartz, so I knew I had to stop at nothing to get my hands on We Were Never Here! 

Absolutely incredible! I will literally tell every book loving soul how much I loved this novel! 

Emily and Kristen are best friends. Every year they plan a trip to reunite. This one is in the mountains of Chile. On the last night of their trip Emily enters their hotel room to find broken glass and blood everywhere. Kristen claims it was self defense and she had no choice, she had to kill the backpacker she had been flirting with! He attacked her! But wait, how can this possibly be happening again? This is not the first time this has happened.... 

How many times will you help a friend cover something up ? 

When will the past catch up to you? 

YOU DO NOT WANT TO MISS THIS!! I finished We Were Never Here in one sitting. Andrea Bartz is a force to be reckoned with.
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This one one of the last adult books I'll be reading for  awhile. I read mostly children's, middle grade and YA for my job but every know and then I like to explore adult fiction. This was a good solid thriller that kept my interest. I think it wold be great for some summer reading and one I'd recommend to my adult fiction reader friends.
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INCREDIBLE. I'm a huge fan of Andrea Bartz's work, and this one is possibly my favorite of hers. A shocking crime, an unreliable narrator, a twisted friendship ... it's all here. I couldn't put it down!
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We Were Never Here by Andrea Bartz tells the story of Emily and Kristen, two American college best  friends in their early 30s, who  are on a vacation in Chile. Every year they go somewhere exotic with each other. On the last night in Chile,  Kristen takes a handsome backpacker back with her to their hotel room. When Emily return she finds Kristen covered in blood and the backpacker has been killed by Kristen. She claims that he attacked her and she had no choice. Emily reels and almost has a nervous break down. Something similar happened the year before when they were in Cambodia. How in the world could this happen again?What are they going to do? Should they call the police? You’ll have to read to find out what they do.
When they return home, Emily to Wisconsin and Kristen to Australia, where she lived for the past two years, things go from bad to worse. Kristen shows up in Wisconsin. What is her motive? Why is she acting so strangely? I don’t want to say too much more about the plot, but let me tell you this is one crazy story! I really enjoy narrators who can be unlikable. I don’t like when people are perfect. Kristen and Emily both have a lot of flaws but I enjoyed reading about them. The story has many twists and turns and I didn’t see where it was going but the ending was very satisfying to me. The tension in this book builds and builds to a boiling point. This was a very fast read for me because I could not put it down. I can’t wait to read more by this author! Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for the advanced copy of this book. All opinions on my own.
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Thank you to NetGalley and Ballantine Books for providing me with an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

Pub day: August 31, 2021

Well, dang... I really did enjoy most of this book. This is my first Andrea Bartz book, and The Herd is definitely getting added to my TBR pile. 

Best friends Emily and Kristen's annual trip erupts in chaos when Emily is attacked by a fellow traveler in her hotel room, and he winds up dead. With constant support from Kristen, it takes Emily months to get over the traumatic event. She finally feels ready to take on another trip with Kristen to Chile when this time Kristen is attacked and another man is dead. Can this really be happening again, two trips and two dead men?

I don't want to give too much away, but holy twists. Emily and Kristen's relationship is definitely not everything it seems to be. While I tried really hard to be sympathetic towards Emily, it was hard because she did seem unlikeable at points.

The book was beautifully written and I would definitely pick up on a lazy beach day in the summer.
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This was an awesome read. Fast-paced but still well developed. Definitely a thriller with just the right amount of twists and turns. I have already recommended to friends!
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Huge amount of thanks to NetGalley and Ballantine books for an advance copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion/review. 

Emily and Kristen are best friends, having an amazing vacation in Chile, when on the last night, it hits the fan. Emily walks into their room to find blood, broken glass, and a body. The man Kristen was flirting with earlier in the night is dead on the floor. Kristen swears it was self defense. It is also eerily similar to a situation the girls found themselves in last year. 
Emily struggles with the guilt while Kristen seems to be fine, even coming across the globe for a surprise visit. Kristen starts to become overbearing and possessive and Emily starts to question the nature of their friendship. Things come to light and Emily begins to realize that things aren’t and never have been what they appeared to be. 
Y’all!! This was really good! A well done psychological thriller that kept my attention and kept me guessing. Don’t sleep on this one! Publication date is August 3rd, so plenty of time to get it on your TBR list!
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I think the fact that I hated Kristen from the get go is why this book just didn't do it for me. Of course, the synopsis lets the reader know to be wary of Kristen but I found no redeemable characteristics in her at all. Emily just kept trying to rationalize her behavior and that infuriated me but I think she had a touch of Stockholm Syndrome. 

I had a hard time connecting to like the first 40% of this book and I'm sad to say that. I wanted more twists and turns in the first 90 percent of the book and not crammed into the last 10 percent.
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I will read every single book Andrea Bartz releases because her books and writing style is very captivating. It pulls you in from the very start and you don't want to be released until it ends. In this story, we follow two friends, Emily and Kristen, who go backpacking to various places and something goes terribly wrong. I liked how we got to see both of the girls perspectives in the book and who they are as individuals. This is one you absolutely want to go in knowing very little.
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I would give this book 3 1/2 stars. I loved the first part as the description of two young women and their travels together unfold. Bartz masterfully makes you question the reliability of the narrator while keeping you alert to the actions and behavior of her (sociopath?) best friend. Some of it was predictable. Some of it felt contrived - particularly at the end.  It felt like there were a lot of unanswered questions. And I found myself distracted by words like "wormhole" and "loamy" used repeatedly. They were used accurately but feel like they should maybe be used only once.
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Special thanks to Random House Books, Ballantine Publishing and NetGalley for my opinion of the ARC of this book!

5 stars! I don't want to ruin this book about two friends who meet to go backpacking once a year. Best friends. However, this year and last a tragedy occurs and a man winds up dead, both times, while  Kristine, one of the girls, is spending time with them. Can lightning really strike twice or is this just a strange occurrence 2 years in a row.

This book has twists and turns you will never see coming! 5 stars! Great book!
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I really liked this book, got involved right away and read it quickly.  who can you trust if you can't trust your best friend and you can't trust yourself.   a many layered plotline, that challenged our assumptions as it went along, including the last few lines that still have me thinking,  is she replicating her relationship now with her boyfriend and what is she preparing for........... would love to hear others thoughts
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While this was not my favorite book lately, it was very readable and well paced. 
We have 2 best friends, Kristen and Emily, who are very attached to each other. They love to travel and go on adventures together and on a recent one, some tragedy occurred that they had to cover up and they stuck by each other all the way. Enter the latest adventure and "situation number 2" which also gets a little ugly, again requiring their devotion and loyalty to each other to be undying - no pun intended. 
What unravels is a twisted tale of devotion, friendship, backgrounds that are not always known and the lengths that friends go to to protect each other - even when toxic. 
A great summer read - thankful for the ARC!
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I really enjoyed Andrea Bartz’s sly take on The Wing in “The Herd,” so I was very excited to read her next effort. Like “The Herd,” this is a finely written, nuanced psychological portrait of Lindsay, who reaches into her long-lost memories of a night she got blackout drunk and her best college friend committed suicide….or was she murdered?

Here we have a potentially unreliable narrator who gets blackout wasted and, oh yeah, has a propensity for violence. And yet, she’s written so well by Bartz that you can’t help but like her and want her to uncover a truth that does NOT involve her as the murderer.

This is not your “read in an hour without thinking” kind of mystery. It is more intelligent and layered than your average entry in the thriller genre. It poses some interesting questions about the reliability of memory, and the characterizations are excellent. You may not like all the characters, but it’s hard not to be drawn in by them. The book has a fantastic and surprising ending.

“The Lost Night” solidifies my belief that Andrea Bartz is a writer to watch. 4+ stars.

My thanks to NetGalley, the author and the publisher for the ARC of this solid and interesting sophomore mystery!
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Was not expecting this book to wow me, but I couldn’t put this down! Two friends travel together and each time someone ends up dead. It was fast paced and kept me on the edge of my seat wondering if they would get caught, and then the ending was just wow. 
Honestly a little confused by the last few sentences but overall I’m obsessed with this book & can’t wait to read more from this author!!
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Everything a thriller should be: twisty, superbly written, spine-tinglingly intense. Made my heart beat faster with every page. I didn't want it to be over, but I didn't want to stop reading either,
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