Monday, April 8, 2013

Review: 17 & Gone by Nova Ren Suma

Publisher: Dutton Juvenile
Publishing Date: March 21st, 2013
Genre: YA, Mystery, Contemporary
Pages: 354 pgs
ISBN: 9780525423409
Source: Borrowed ARC from a fellow blogger

**This review may contain spoilers- read at your own risk!***

Summary from Goodreads:
Seventeen-year-old Lauren is having visions of girls who have gone missing. And all these girls have just one thing in common—they are 17 and gone without a trace. As Lauren struggles to shake these waking nightmares, impossible questions demand urgent answers: Why are the girls speaking to Lauren? How can she help them? And… is she next? As Lauren searches for clues, everything begins to unravel, and when a brush with death lands her in the hospital, a shocking truth emerges, changing everything.

With complexity and richness, Nova Ren Suma serves up a beautiful, visual, fresh interpretation of what it means to be lost.

My Review: 

I was very excited for this book and when I got my hands on it, it took me no less than a day to complete it.  This is my first Nova Ren Suma book and I have to say I quite enjoyed it.  This book is about a girl who has just turned 17 and begins seeing ghosts of the people who have gone missing during their 18th year of life.  The book starts out with the focus on one ghost and Lauren is trying to piece together what happened to this young woman.  She feels like she can't tell anyone about what she is seeing and therefore keeps everything a secret.  
At first I really enjoyed the ghost story and the mystery behind the disappearance of a young girl from her summer camp.  Then things began to get really jumbled really quickly.  Lauren begins seeing more and more ghosts and their stories begin to get more and more vague.  I started to suspect that this novel wasn't quite what it was made out to be.  I began to suspect schizophrenia and my suspicions were confirmed.  
I love that Suma writes through the mind of LaurenThe deeper and deeper Lauren gets into her schizophrenia the more frantic and confused the writing becomes.  It gets a little difficult to follow but I don't think this is a bad thing. I think that it reflects the feelings of the main character and I really applaud her for trying to write something so difficult.  
I love that Suma is bringing light something that is often swept under the rug.  She tries to make you feel for someone with a mental illness and I think she gets is bang on.  
I also like the way that the book ties things up.  It ties up the mystery behind the first ghost that we are shown and I really like that we weren't just left in the lurch.  So while Lauren has schizophrenia, we are left wondering if some of it has some truth to it because she figured out the mystery of the ghost.  Overall I quite enjoyed this book and I think that many of you will too.  Pick it up if you get a chance.  

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