If You Find Me by Emily Murdoch
Author: Emily Murdoch
Published: 26th March 2013 by St. Martin's Griffin
Source: E-copy from NetGalley for an honest review
There are some things you can’t leave behind…
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 two strangers arrive. Suddenly, the girls are taken from the woods and thrust into a bright and perplexing new world of high school, clothes and boys.
Now, Carey must face the truth of why her mother abducted her 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.
I'd formed a few ideas about what I thought this book was about. What would happen, who was bad, how it would all play out... but from the beginning I was thrown into a totally different world than I'd imagined and I loved it!
Carey was great. There was so much realness to her. She was just a young girl, yet she'd been so much, so while in some ways she was very naive and helpless, she also had an amazing strength about her. I also adored her sister, because she was cute and sweet with such a great loyalty to Carey. There was a very strong connection between the two sisters and it was a joy to read such a well-written relationship.
I made a few assumptions about this book, took a guess at what was going to happen, and while some of my predictions were true most of this book was a mystery to me. I liked having to second-guess myself and my views on the characters were constantly changing. I decided that a character was 'bad' but then had to change my mind as I learnt more about them. The characters were real people, with flaws and mistakes, so I couldn't draw conclusions about them either, which I loved!
The formatting of the book sometimes made it hard to follow the time-shifts, but as I read an e-galley I think the formatting may have just been basic, or the file wasn't translated properly. It should be easier to read in the final copy.
I really enjoyed the relationships in this book and the unique-ness and real-ness of all the characters. I had fun following Carey's journey and I loved watching the transition from bush-kid to teenager. This was a great story, with fantastic characters and I am really happy I read this book.