I don't think this book deserves the low ratings it has been getting. True, it is not the brilliance of BEE SEASON, but it was a solid effort at a memory novel, harking back to the tween years of girl bullying. Myla Goldberg is sort of connoisseur of memory, constantly finding a way to describe those moments when your childhood smacks you in your adult face. She doesn't quite transcend the genre in the way that Margaret Atwood does in CAT'S EYE (which a book jacket blurb makes the huge mistake of putting this book in the class of) but in a way it kept my interest better than Atwood's achievement. I finished THE FALSE FRIEND in a day (granted I had a very long doctor's appointment). I liked this one.