Synopsis: When a fourteen-year-old runs away, her parents turn to social media to find her—launching a public campaign that will expose their darkest secrets and change their family forever, in this suspenseful and gripping debut for fans of Reconstructing Amelia and Gone Girl.
Don’t try to find me. Though the message on the kitchen white board is written in Marley’s hand, her mother Rachel knows there has to be some other explanation. Marley would never run away.
As the days pass and it sinks in that the impossible has occurred, Rachel and her husband Paul are informed that the police have “limited resources.” If they want their fourteen-year-old daughter back, they will have to find her themselves. Desperation becomes determination when Paul turns to Facebook and Twitter, and launches FindMarley.com.
But Marley isn’t the only one with secrets.
With public exposure comes scrutiny, and when Rachel blows a television interview, the dirty speculation begins. Now, the blogosphere is convinced Rachel is hiding something. It’s not what they think; Rachel would never hurt Marley. Not intentionally, anyway. But when it’s discovered that she’s lied, even to the police, the devoted mother becomes a suspect in Marley’s disappearance.
Is Marley out there somewhere, watching it all happen, or is the truth something far worse?
Books like Holly Brown's Don't Try To Find Me reassure my love of reading. I've been rather fortunate the last few months -- I've liked almost every new book and/or new author (that is, new to me -- not new releases, per se) I have tried, thus letting me write positive reviews here on a fairly regular basis. There have been a few clunkers here and there, but on the whole the last few months of my reading life have been pretty dandy.
And then there are books like this one. Books that keep me glued to the pages (or screen -- I read this one on my Kindle), hungrily reading, ravenous to see how the whole thing turns out while not wanting the journey to ever end. I'm not one for hyperbole, but Don't Try To Find Me lit a fire in my heart and soul. It is one I won't forget for a long time.
So, what's this book even about? Well . . . I really don't want to give too much away, but the gist is a fourteen-year-old girl runs away from home and goes cross-country to move in with her boyfriend whom she met on Facebook. Said boyfriend is much older than her (even older than she is led to believe at first -- spoiler?) and, as it turns out, not such a nice guy. Her parents -- two people not so happy in the marriage they're in -- are left grappling and turn to social media, creating a campaign in a desperate effort to find their daughter. In the midst of the media blitz, secrets are revealed and the family dynamic risks permanent destruction. It's a tense situation, making for riveting reading. With alternating chapters between daughter and mother, the reader gets an interesting perspective into the characters and what makes them tick. Alternating chapters, while around for ages and ages (Faulkner, anyone?), have really become popular recently due to Gillian Flynn using it to her advantage in her smash hit Gone Girl. While I love that novel, I must say this book takes what works in that one to another level, creating a reading experience similar to that one but a good deal more rewarding.
This is the good stuff, guys. Intriguing plot developments, interesting and sympathetic characters, believable dialogue, an impressive ending, stellar character development . . . This book checks all the boxes. And to think this is the author's debut novel! While I'm not sure if this is my favorite read of 2015, it is certainly up there. As soon as I finished this novel I downloaded Brown's next book, Necessary Endings, to my Kindle as quickly as I could. I'll be giving that one a read ASAP.
Note: This is my 100th novel read in 2015, so I have reached my reading goal! Go me!