The Girlfriend Request is my first Jodi Andrefski book, but the blurb and cover had me anxious to read this story! I had no idea what to expect, but I knew that there was a lot of potential for a great story here. While I did have some things that bothered me here, this one was a cute quick and light read that I did enjoy. Emma and Eli were adorable and I was rooting for them right from the start.
Emma and Eli have been best friends since she moved in next door to him when they were kids. She has no idea how to tell him that she wants more though, so she creates a fake online profile in order to get to know him as more than just a friend. All the details are her, but the picture is one she finds online. But Eli knows something is off with her right away, and begins to suspect that "Kelli" and Emma are the same person. Just when he thinks that he is making progress with her, a new guy enters the picture and Eli is left wondering just what is going on. Can Emma and Eli get on the same page, or are there too many things standing in their way?
I really loved these two together and their friendship was so strong. It was easy to see just how much these two meant to one another and their connection was undeniable. I did think that Eli's switch from one chapter just being completely friends and not wanting more to suddenly seeing her as more was a bit unbelievable. It was as if a switch flipped and things instantly changed. I would have liked to have seen a bit more of a transition there as he started to realize that they were more and his feelings were evolving. While I did like both Eli and Emma, I must admit that they both frustrated me a ton. Most of that was Emma though I did feel like Eli did some things wrong as well. This entire story could have been so much different had these two just spoken to one another. For friends who told each other everything, they had an extremely hard time actually talking to one another. I figured some of that would change once it was confirmed that Emma was Kelli, but it actually got worse after that with Eli not saying anything.
The other thing that really bothered me here was the Jake situation. Not to spoil anything, but I felt like that got completely out of hand and seemed to be added just for additional drama. I understood his original purpose, but once things started to change it was something that I disliked and ruined things for me a bit. I think had the Jake situation not turned out like it did and this book not feeling so rushed, that this would have been such a great book. I think things were a bit too melodramatic at times, though part of that is the age group here, and that things just seemed to move forward too rapidly to really seem completely believable. I wanted more of these two talking and making that transition rather than a ton of drama with them just coming together right at the end. I would read more from Jodie Andrefski in the future, and I did really like Eli and Emma together. They had some really sweet moments and I think that this one is worth the shot, especially for YA fans.
**ARC Provided by Publisher**