Member Reviews

A haunting and suspenseful novel!
When Joni comes to Bess's door 10 years after high school, Bess is reticent to allow her entry. Joni had hurt her badly that last school year, and Bess has never really moved forward. Slowly and surely, Joni gains entry into Bess's secluded life and asks her for a favor. Should Bess grant it?

Via flashbacks we learn what happened that fateful year . Ella Berman masterfully builds suspense as she slowly tells a tale of three best friends who equally love each other and are jealous of one another. I loved this tale! If you like a slow burn, tales of childhood wrongs, or just want to read a suspenseful novel that will surely haunt you, Before We Were Innocent is for you!

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If you’ve ever been a teenage girl before, the nuanced toxicity of the friendships in Before We Were Innocent will likely hit close to home.

Following the lives of two women after tragedy and scandal hit them like tsunami in their teenage years, they now find themselves embroiled in another scandal that threatens to unravel their already precarious lives.

With themes of first loves, control, privilege, this is a fantastic thriller with ample twists to keep you going!

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Friendship is a weird thing, it can be passionate, full of life and make you feel like you are on top of the world or it can be destructive, shattering and break you in half.

Let me introduce you to Joni, Bess and Ev. These three best friends could not be more different but have found refuge in one another’s embrace. They are 19 and tremble on a fine line of youth and the first steps into adulthood. After graduating they embark on a trip of a lifetime to Greece for one last summer together without responsibilities. Unfortunately, one fateful night will change two of their lives forever, and end anothers.

I’m extremely emotional after concluding Before We Were Innocent. The nostalgia that plagued me while reading had me reflecting on both old and new friendships.

How far would you go to protect your love ones yet selfishly doing it for your own reasons as well?

Take a dive into Before We Were Innocent

Teaser :

Ten years ago, after a sun-soaked summer spent in Greece, best friends Bess and Joni were cleared of having any involvement in their friend Evangeline’s death. But that didn’t stop the media from ripping apart their teenage lives like vultures.

While the girls were never convicted, Joni, ever the opportunist, capitalized on her newfound infamy to become a motivational speaker. Bess, on the other hand, resolved to make her life as small and controlled as possible so she wouldn’t risk losing everything all over again. And it almost worked. . . .

Except now Joni is tangled up in a crime eerily similar to that one fateful night in Greece. And when she asks Bess to come back to LA to support her, Bess has a decision to make.

Is it finally time to face up to what happened that night, exposing herself as the young woman she once was and maybe still is? And what happens if she doesn’t like what she finds?

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2.5 rounded up for effort

I really wanted to like this book. But to be honest I did not finish it. It was difficult to read because of the looong run on sentences. By the time I finished a sentence I had already forgotten what I read. It was too much going back and re-reading for me. It became a chore.
Maybe in the future I will try again, but for now, it’s a no from me.

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