Author: Jenny Quintana
Published by Pan Macmillan on October 2, 2018
Source: Publishers Group Canada
Book Rating: 8/10
When Anna Flores’ adored older sister goes missing as a teenager, Anna copes by disappearing too, just as soon as she can: running as far away from her family as possible, and eventually building a life for herself abroad. Thirty years later, the death of her mother finally forces Anna to return home. Tasked with sorting through her mother’s possessions, she begins to confront not just her mother’s death, but also the huge hole Gabriella’s disappearance left in her life – and finds herself asking a question she’s not allowed herself to ask for years: what really happened to her sister? With that question comes the revelation that her biggest fear isn’t discovering the worst; it’s never knowing the answer. But is it too late for Anna to uncover the truth about Gabriella’s disappearance?
Atmospheric, dramatic, and intriguing!
The Missing Girl is a slow-burning, captivating mystery that takes us into the life of Anna Flores who upon returning home to settle her mother’s estate decides to probe, explore and finally piece together what actually happened to her sister Gabriella on the afternoon she disappeared thirty years prior.
The writing is crisp and precise. The characters are troubled, determined, and genuine. And the plot, using first-person narration and alternating between 1982 and present, builds nicely and creates tension as it twists, turns, and unravels all the behaviours, actions, motivations, relationships, and personalities within it.
The Missing Girl at its core is a novel about family, friendship, secrets, kidnapping, and murder that highlights the emotional and psychological devastation caused by a missing child and the resulting finger-pointing, fragility and dynamics between family members, friends, neighbours, newcomers, and the community. It is an evocative and impressive debut for Quintana, and I look forward to reading what she comes up with next.
This book is available now.
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Thank you to Publishers Group Canada for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.