Book Review – Saving Phoebe Murrow by Herts Feely

This was a book I have had on my shelf for YEARS, and never got round to it. It always sounded interesting but I just never picked it up. So as one of the prompts for Ghost of Bookmas Present is a book you haven’t read yet, I thought of this one. Now I know why it has been on the shelf gathering dust


A story about the timeless struggle between mothers and their teen daughters with a razor-sharp 21st century twist. This heart-wrenching, harrowing debut novel for fans of Big Little Lies (Liane Moriarty) and Reconstructing Amelia (Kimberly McCreight) will make you question what’s needed to keep your children from harm.

Phoebe’s mother, Isabel, is precariously balancing her career and her family. Hard-working and caring, worried but supportive, all Isabel wants, in a world of bullies and temptations, is to keep her daughter Phoebe safe. With her busy schedule, though, she fails to recognize another mother’s mounting fury and the danger Phoebe faces by flirting with a mysterious boy on Facebook. A cyber-bullying episode aimed at Phoebe pushes her to the edge with horrific consequences. In her search for justice, Isabel, a DC lawyer, sets out to find the culprit behind this cruel incident.

Saving Phoebe Murrow, set amidst the complicated web of adolescent relationships, tells a story of miscommunication and malice, drugs and Facebook, prejudice and revenge

This blurb is actually better than the one on the back of the book, which basically tells you the whole story with a few inaccuracies, sigh. But also drugs came into it very little so once again blurb just doesn’t cut it.

TRIGGER WARNING- First of all, big trigger warning on this book for attempted suicide and self harm. Especially the self harm as it gets graphic so please avoid if this is something which affects you. This is one of the things I really disliked about the book, it was too graphic in the self harming scenes almost to the point of glorifying it. I would have liked to have read more about the feelings preceeding it both from mother and daughters perspective. I feel like more time was spent describing the action than the build up to why she did it or the feelings after the actions.

I didn’t like the character development as I felt it was rushed and it was just your generic full time working career mother and hormonal, difficult teen girl. There was nothing particularly unique about this book and I really hoped for more.

The first 2/3 of the book is also quite slow as it is merely the build up and back story to what happens right near the start.

With these kinds of topics it can be very easy to step over the line and I feel like she was toeing the line and going into very dangerous territory. Of course there was the usual support numbers in the back but I feel the mental health angle should have been focused on much more than just the actions.

I really wanted to enjoy this book but unfortunately it is the worst book for me I have read this year.

⭐⭐ – too graphic and not enough focus on the mental health side to make it a good story.

Have you read this book? What did you think?

Let me know in the comments below.

Much love 💘

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