This post is a review of a wonderfully gripping book called Girl, Missing by Sophie McKenzie, a highly credited author of mostly teen fiction books, an author who has won several awards for her novels, including the amazing Blood Ties and its sequel Blood Ransom, The Setup and its following books, including The Hostage. She also has several other well-loved novels, and I am able to say that I have read most but unfortunately not all of them, though I am currently reading her newest book, Split Second. Reviews for these books will appear on this blog at some point in the future.
Girl, Missing is about a sixteen year old girl called Lauren who, when one day she is looking through her computer and flicking through the internet, comes across a missing person’s website where she makes a discovery that will change the way she looks at her life with her family, and spirals her into a world of adventure and hopeless betrayal, leading her to seek out her birth mother and leaving her hungry for more information about the place she comes from. She sets out to America and the trip reveals a discovery of a woman called Sonia Holtwood and an adoption company that seems to be nothing like it is described in the brochures.
I genuinely adored this book. I am a huge fan of Sophie McKenzie’s work, but this novel is the first of hers that I came across. The writing itself is well-crafted, with compelling and gripping characters and a relatable protagonist. Lauren’s curiosity is something that can be recognised by many people, and her and ability to dive into ruthless, often dangerous situations with such an agile and brave nature is something that many wish they could say they possess. McKenzie has the wonderful skill of being able to throw her main characters into dangerous, tricky situations and to have them coming out of them with immense bravery and skill.
Her characters are always extremely well-rounded, with their own issues and insecurities; dangerous pasts, discoveries to be made about themselves that will shake their whole worlds and turn them upside down and inside out, and this is something that I would love to be able to do in my own writing. When it comes to Lauren, I was gripped immediately as she was so relatable; with her ‘annoying’ but adored little brother, her Mum and Dad who she missed only when she found herself separated from them in America, though she knew she loved them but had perhaps taken them for granted when they were around her.
I cannot recommend this book enough. I found hardly any fault in it, it gripped me from the first page and had me there for the rest of the time I spent reading it. You will pick it up and not want to let it go.
I will be reviewing more of her books, too, including Blood Ties, its sequel Blood Ransom, the sequel to Girl, Missing which is called Sister, Missing, and the third book in the series, Missing Me, as well as The Setup, the books that follow on in this series and her adult novel, Close My Eyes.
Look out for more book reviews soon, and Happy Reading.