While running through the nearby woods Julia and Liv are ambushed by a local man. Julia is able to free her friend from his grasp, but takes Liv place. Julia is abducted while Liv runs away. Our story begins with what happens after the woods.
This is considered a Young Adult mystery/thriller and while it isn’t exactly what I’d consider a thriller I reluctantly agree with the classification. The plot works backwards here- we know that Julia and Liv were ambushed. We know that Julia got abducted and we know she got away. These facts aren’t spoliers as we know these things at the start.
What we don’t know is exactly what happened to Julia and why this man targeted the girls. The book builds up to what happened in the woods and there is a mysterious connection between the man and the girls, but I found these reveals to be disappointing and overshadowed by other plot points that I didn’t see coming. I guess you would call this a twist, but I felt duped. I signed up to know about this mystery, figure out the psychology behind the abductor, what happened to Julia, and if other crimes were connected to the abduction. What I got was… something different and difficult to say without giving things away. Basically, there’s another character who might be considered the real villain.
But don’t let that hook you too much. I found most of the characters to be very shallow. Some seem important, but don’t add up to much in the end. Others are just hollow stereotypes and it is easy to see who is good and bad. I was disappointed by this read, but maybe I expected something I wasn’t supposed to or maybe I simply expected too much.