Synopsis from Good Reads:
For Macallan and Levi, it was friends at first sight. Everyone says guys and girls can’t be just friends, but these two are. They hang out after school, share tons of inside jokes, their families are super close, and Levi even starts dating one of Macallan’s friends. They are platonic and happy that way.
Eventually they realize they’re best friends — which wouldn’t be so bad if they didn’t keep getting in each other’s way. Guys won’t ask Macallan out because they think she’s with Levi, and Levi spends too much time joking around with Macallan, and maybe not enough time with his date. They can’t help but wonder . . . are they more than friends or are they better off without making it even more complicated?
I loved this book! I was caught up with all my current books and didn’t know what to read so I started searching through all the “available now” titles at the library and this was the only one to really grab my interest. I decided to give it a try and I’m so glad that I did! It was such a well done friends-to-more story.
I really liked both Macallan and Levi. I loved their bantering and their friendship and how they were there for each other. The story was told in alternating first person POV and between each chapter there was a short passage of them bantering back and forth about what just happened in the preceding chapter. I really loved this narrative style and thought it really worked for the story. I felt a good connection to both characters and it kept me from getting overly upset at one of them when they did something stupid.
Friends-to-more is one of my favorite romance tropes and, as I mentioned above, it’s done really well here. Instead of just being told how they’ve been friends forever and are best friends, we get to experience their friendship from the start. The book starts with them in seventh grade and ends with them as juniors in high school. My only problem with it is I felt a little weird shipping middle schoolers. Back in my day (oh so long ago) when kids that age “dated” it was basically writing notes and occasionally hanging out, but here they were going on proper dates and there was never a mention of parents driving them or anything. It was kind of weird. However, in other ways the parents were a big part of the story and I really appreciated that. Levi’s parents and Macallan’s dad and uncle were all present and encouraging and loving and you don’t see that a lot in YA. The only other nagging issue I had with the story was Levi’s almost desperate need for guy friends. The phrase “my guys” was used far, far too often.
Overall, I really enjoyed Better off Friends. I loved the writing style and the characters. I loved watching Macallan and Levi’s friendship grow throughout the years, even though they had several setbacks along the way. I definitely recommend this to YA fans and Friends-to-More fans. This is the first book I’ve ever read from this author and I am definitely going to be checking out her other books.
Overall Rating (out of 5): 4 Stars