I haven’t posted in a while, but this read was too good not to give a quick shout out. The premise of this fiction (Thank God it’s fiction!) is relatable to all parents who have taken their children on vacation and have feared the worst would happen: losing your child(ren) in an unfamiliar area. Are they dead? Alive? Trafficked? Held hostage?
The panic. The stress. The absolute loss of control. It’s terrifying.
Whether Nora and Liv’s fears were realized in the book, I’ll leave for you to discover. It won’t take you long; though the book is 342 pages, the chapters are short and the story progresses with great speed and alternate points of view.
Even though it’s a quick read, this book has heft and depth. There are a lot of complexities with the characters, both internal and external, and the reader really has an opportunity to feel as they do, and all of them are relatable, whether it’s Neomi, a South American 10 year old who is trying to make it across the US border to be with her illegal-immigrant parents in NY; Marcus, an 11-year old map enthusiast with autism; or 40-something Nora, a stay at home mom and wife of a successful actor.
The character development is what I enjoyed most. One of the book’s accomplishments is to tell the story in such a way that the reader may not realize how complex the plot is until he steps back and evaluates how the characters are responding to what is happening to them.
I still have a lot I could write about from the books that I’ve loved most this year (Exit West by Hamid and Word by Word by Stamper have been among my faves.). Maybe stay tuned for more on those and more. I’ll get back to writing more now that summer has officially begun.