Release Date: March 26 2013
Published By: St. Martin’s Griffin
Goodreads: Add it to your reading list
Rating: 5 out of 5
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.
Review: If You Find me is the story of Carey and her younger sister Jenessa who are taken away from their father at a young age by their meth addicted mother where they hide away in a makeshift home, deep in the hundred acre woods. There, over many years these two girls are subjected to a life that is unimaginable. They live on beans, their mother is often missing for weeks at a time scoring drugs and getting money any way she can, even if that means her daughters are sexually assaulted for money. This time, their mother has been missing for 5 weeks – the longest the girls have ever gone without their mother.
A social worker and the girls father find them after their mother says she can no longer look after them. Carey’s father takes both the girls in to try and provide them with a better life. But these girls have been through so much trauma – (most of which their dad has no idea about) that it’s going to be a long road ahead for them to get better.
Ugh this book tore my heart out, broke it, and then placed it back into my chest all in little bits and pieces. It was such an emotional book, and it’s effects stayed with me for a long while after I finished reading it. You know when you get that lump in your throat when you’re reading it? Right around page 244 I was right there – tears welling up in my eyes. It was a hard topic to have to read about in such detail, but my goodness – it was so well written and such an amazing story.
The difference between this book and other contemporary YA of a similar nature is that with others I am taken on the journey and I enjoy the narrative and plot but I know it’s fiction. This book – it felt real. It felt like the auto-biography of someone that had actually experienced this – it was that powerful.
This book does contain scenes that are quite disturbing in nature, so if you’re someone that is sensitive to things like that, this may not be the book for you. That being said, the story is an important one, and I felt the ending was perfect. I would HIGHLY recommend this book.