TITLE: If You Find Me
AUTHOR: Emily Murdoch
GENRE: Young Adult, Contemporary, Mystery
RATING: 4.5/5 Stars
A broken-down camper hidden deep in a national forest is the only home fifteen-year-old Carey can remember. The trees keep guard over her threadbare existence, with the one bright spot being Carey's younger sister, Jenessa, who depends on Carey for her very survival. All they have is each other, as their mentally ill mother comes and goes with greater frequency. Until that one fateful day their mother disappears for good, and the girls are found by their father, a stranger, and taken to re-enter the "normal" life of school, clothes and boys.
Now, Carey must come to terms with the truth of why their mother spirited them away ten years ago, while haunted by a past that won't let her go ... a dark past that hides many a secret, including the reason Jenessa hasn't spoken a word in over a year. Carey knows she must keep her sister close, and her secrets even closer, or risk watching her new life come crashing down.
What I Liked:
- I'll begin with Murdoch's writing style, which was absolutely stunning. There are some gorgeous and inspiring quotes in this book, and Murdoch really does a great job with a very emotional tale. There are many sensitive subjects found in this book and she handles them with care, yet isn't afraid to shy away from them. This results in a beautiful tale that really wrenches the heart, and I was hooked from page one.
- The characters in this book are great! They are very complex and likeable, and it is easy to see what motivates each and every one of them. I liked the sisters, they had a lovely bond that read very well. I liked that there was more to Delaney than a sulky, spoilt teenager. Murdoch really got inside the heads of her characters, and for that I commend her. Complex characters are the best kind!
What I Disliked:
- I really think this book would have made five stars, if it weren't for the fact that I wanted to see a bit more in some areas. I felt like Carey adapted to school quite quickly for example, and would have loved to have seen her meet more characters, as well as read a bit more interaction with some of the people she meets. Pixie and Ryan were great characters, and really likeable, but I didn't see nearly enough of them.
This book was simply gorgeous. The writing was undeniably beautiful, quotable and at times very poetic. I would love to read more of Murdoch's work! The issues of abuse, mental health and drugs were handled very well and with great care on Murdoch's part. The characters were fantastic as well! I wish that the book had been longer so I could have read more from some of them, as there wasn't enough padding in some areas. A beautiful read though, and just what I needed!