Monday, September 12, 2016

The Lost and the Found ~ Cat Clarke (earc) review [@cat_clarke @randomhousekids @CrownPublishing]

The Lost and the Found
Crown Books for Young Readers
September 13, 2016
368 pages
add to Goodreads/buy from Book Depository/or Amazon

Fans of Lucy Christopher’s Stolen, Caroline B. Cooney’s The Face on the Milk Carton, and Natasha Preston’s The Cellar will be captivated by this twisty psychological thriller about an abducted girl who finally returns home to her family—but is she really who she claims to be?

When six-year-old Laurel Logan was abducted, the only witness was her younger sister, Faith. Since then, Faith’s childhood has revolved around her sister’s disappearance—from her parents’ broken marriage and the constant media attention, to dealing with so-called friends who only ever want to talk about her missing sister.

Now, thirteen years later, a young woman is found in the front yard of the Logans’ old house, disoriented and clutching the teddy bear Laurel was last seen with. Can her sister finally be back? Faith always dreamed of her sister coming home; she just never believed it would happen. But soon a disturbing series of events leaves Faith increasingly isolated from her family and paranoid about her sister’s motives. Before long, Faith begins to wonder if it’s the abduction that’s changed her sister, or if it’s something else. . . .

Sometimes you wish for something, pray for it and hope for it. Then, you get it . . . only to realize that thing you most wished for isn't quite what you were expecting, after all. For Faith, that wish comes in the form of her long missing, older sister Laurel being forund.

 The thirteen years that Laurel Logan's been missing have wrecked the Logan family. Faith's parents are divorced, her mother's a shell of her former self and Faith's childhood was nothing like it could or should have been. Laurel coming home should make everything right again, right?

Maybe not so right.

Faith wants this to be the miracle everyone else seems to see it as - and at times sehe does. She has her big sister back. Except it's not all she had hoped. Of course, she knows that Laurel and life for their family can't just go back to normal after all her sister's endured, but she also didn't expect things to be how they are.

I thought that Faith's anxiety around the return of her sister, her desire for and attempts to make things right and normal and happy were all really realistic and well done. I also liked that it was Faith whose story this was, that we got things from her perspective and not Laurel's or their mother's or even a combination. We can see her struggle with how to deal with things, statements form her mother, the way her parents act, how Laurel's return impacts her life, wanting to help her sister and be understanding. Readers are often left, along with Faith, wondering what to let pass, what to accept and what to really question.

It's great that The Lost and the Found focuses on Faith, Laurel, their family, their relationship and Faith's life beyond all that rather than the actual abduction. It's a different focus but an enjoyable one.

One of the biggest twists of the book was one I predicted really, really early on but being unsure if or when it was coming and not knowing all the details revealed once it did made that predictability not matter. I actually rather enjoyed the way it seemed to hang over the story, leaving me wondering.

The very, very end of the book did leave me questioning several things and not necessarily it a good way. I'm still not sure what I think about it or what it could - or should - mean for earlier parts of the story.

I haven't been able to find a preview of the UK version online to confirm that itw as different, but there seem to be some places where the text was changed for this US version and some where it was not (including: both dollars and pound are mentioned for money, drinking age is twenty-one, someone's coming 'up' form London, it's 'university' not college).

digital copy received for review, from publisher, via NetGalley

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