The first time, she’s fourteen, and escapes a near-fatal car accident with scars, a bum leg, and an addiction to Oxy that’ll take years to kick.
The second time, she’s seventeen, and it’s no accident. Sophie and her best friend Mina are confronted by a masked man in the woods. Sophie survives, but Mina is not so lucky. When the cops deem Mina’s murder a drug deal gone wrong, casting partial blame on Sophie, no one will believe the truth: Sophie has been clean for months, and it was Mina who led her into the woods that night for a meeting shrouded in mystery.
After a forced stint in rehab, Sophie returns home to a chilly new reality. Mina’s brother won’t speak to her, her parents fear she’ll relapse, old friends have become enemies, and Sophie has to learn how to live without her other half. To make matters worse, no one is looking in the right places and Sophie must search for Mina’s murderer on her own. But with every step, Sophie comes closer to revealing all: about herself, about Mina and about the secret they shared.
I read this for my book club. For that month’s selection, we had to read books recommended by other members – which is scary for me. I’m always afraid I’ll wind up with a romance. This one contains some romance, but it’s not the primary focus. And I’m okay with that.
My heart went out to Sophie. No one believes she’s still clean, and her parents force her back into rehab. All the while, she’s grieving deeply for her nearly lifelong best friend and counting the days until she’s released so she can find the killer. Her frustration is palpable, and she has few friends to lean on for help.
Most chapters rotate between the present and earlier in Sophie’s life, but it wasn’t difficult to keep up – and I listened to the audiobook (which is narrated by the author, who does a wonderful job). The shifts allow the gradual reveal of backstory and secrets that bring to light multiple suspects. I guessed who the culprit was, but there’s another component to the story that came as a suprise.
This isn’t my usual genre, but it’s a gripping read and emotional at times. If you’re looking for a YA mystery, this is one I recommend.