She’s Gone by David Bell #bookreview #YA #thriller

When a girl disappears, who do you suspect?

When 17-year-old Hunter Gifford wakes in the hospital on the night of homecoming, he’s shocked to learn he and his girlfriend, Chloe Summers, have been in a terrible car accident. Hunter has no memory of the crash, and his shock turns to horror when he is told Chloe’s blood has been found in the car―but she has disappeared.

Back at school, his fellow students taunt him, and his former best friend starts making a true-crime documentary about the case―one that points the finger directly at Hunter. And just when things can’t get any worse, Chloe’s mother stands in front of the entire town at a candlelight vigil and accuses Hunter of murder.

Under mounting pressure from the police, Hunter takes matters into his own hands by questioning anyone who might know the truth and posting videos to prove his innocence. When Hunter learns he and Chloe were seen arguing loudly outside the dance, he faces a sickening possibility. Was he angry enough to kill the person he loved?

I’ve read several of Bell’s adult novels and was anxious to read his young adult debut. I’m hoping this won’t be his last novel in this genre.

My heart immediately went out to Hunter. After learning he and his girlfriend were in a horrible car accident, she’s now missing, most of the night is a blank, and there’s no shortage of people who blame him for her disappearance. I was so frustrated when the detective repeatedly told him to confess, tell the truth, and they’d go easier on him. Besides handling the grief and devastation over Chloe’s disappearance, he’s taunted at school by fellow students, and then called out by Chloe’s mother at a candlelight vigil. Fortunately, he has the support of a few friends, his father, and his powerhouse of a sister, Livvy. She’s willing to take on anyone who says a negative word about her brother – and even punches a lacrosse player in the face in defense of Hunter. Hunter makes some questionable decisions during the story, but rational thought goes out the window in his desperation to find his girlfriend.

I felt pretty confident I knew who was behind Chloe’s disappearance, and I was partly correct. But then there’s an added twist that caught me by surprise. The plot moves along at a brisk pace, and the short chapters made it easy for me to say “just one more” – and then a couple hours had passed.

If you’re a fan of thrillers, mystery, suspense, or true crime, She’s Gone will keep you turning the pages long after you should have been sleeping.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

24 thoughts on “She’s Gone by David Bell #bookreview #YA #thriller

    1. It sure was, Jan. I felt back for the main character because of course everyone assumes the boyfriend is involved. It was maddening how many people treated him as if he was automatically guilty – even the detective.

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