Friday, March 30, 2012

Review: The Night She Disappeared

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The Night She Disappeared
April Henry
Release date: March 13th, 2012
by Henry Holt and Co.

Goodreads / Purchase

Gabie drives a Mini Cooper. She also works part time as a delivery girl at Pete’s Pizza. One night, Kayla—another delivery girl—goes missing. To her horror, Gabie learns that the supposed kidnapper had asked if the girl in the Mini Cooper was working that night. Gabie can’t move beyond the fact that Kayla’s fate was really meant for her, and she becomes obsessed with finding Kayla. She teams up with Drew, who also works at Pete’s. Together, they set out to prove that Kayla isn’t dead—and to find her before she is.

*A copy was provided by Raincoast Books for review purposes*
The Night She Disappeared, with only 240 pages, is a short but intense mystery. Kayla was only going out to deliver a pizza… but she never came back.

As some of you may know, mysteries, thrillers, horrors of all kinds are my favorite genre. I was enticed by this synopsis as soon as I read it, and I found myself absorbed in the story from the start. Told in multiple perspectives, we get to walk into the lives of the people directly affected by Kayla’s disappearance, all the while trying to figure out what exactly happened to her. We even get glimpses of the kidnapper’s point-of-view, which is especially disturbing. Mostly, though, we get to see what Kayla’s friends and co-workers are going through; guilt, blame, and terror all make an appearance. There’s also bonds that form between the characters which I found realistic to dire situations such as this. The psychological consequences are clearly not overlooked as April did a great job going into the minds of these teenagers, having it all feel real, while keeping an overall sinister vibe.

My favorite part of reading this novel was the way it was actually told. Its format includes paper clippings, evidence pieces, interviews, and other memorabilia. For lovers of detective work, this is a sure way to keep you glued into not only the characters lives, but the investigation as well. Along with its short chapters, it’s a novel that is especially easy to read in one sitting.

Not only do we see Kayla’s kidnapping as a real-life possibility, this book makes us aware of how grave, how incredibly serious this all is. We see faces on billboards, on TV, on milk cartons, but do we even notice anymore? Do we take the time to see if we recognize anyone? These millions of people who are missing, who have friends and families going through exactly the same thing these people are going through with Kayla, get lost in the statistics to never be seen again. Despite its size, this book sends out a big message. Take the time, SEE them!

A contemporary thriller that packs a punch, The Night She Disappeared is a novel that I think many readers will enjoy for its unique structure and spine chilling mystery. For such a short read – what have you got to lose?  

4 Hot Espressos
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Canadian blogger, wife, mother, coffee lover, and sarcastic at heart! She has had a love for all things bookish since before Amazon and eReaders existed *le gasp*. You can also find her organizing tours and other fun things at Xpresso Book Tours.
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28 Responses to “Review: The Night She Disappeared”

  1. Amy

    Glad that you liked this book. I was a bit disappointed that there wasn’t much of a mystery since we knew who the kidnapper was, but it was still a good story. I loved how we got to see the news articles, police reports, 9-1-1 calls, and stuff. It was really a neat idea to include those. Great review babe!! (It only took me like 10 times to actually comment lol. Stupid blogger errors.)

  2. Dija

    Great review, Giselle! Good to know this book actually has a lesson to teach the reader. I find that to be quite rare in the books I read these days, unfortunately. I’ll be sure to look into this one!

  3. Jen

    I love when books 1) HAVE original structures. and 2) manage to pull them off! I’ll have to give this a read sometime!

  4. Kat Balcombe

    I rarely read mysteries, but I really enjoyed this one. My favourite parts were also the ‘CSI’ type things, police reports, transcripts etc.

    Great review!

  5. Mary @ BookSwarm

    Oh, that’s intriguing! I like that the story’s told not just through typical prose but with the newspaper articles and clippings and other things. What’s wild to me is how many people really do just disappear each year–no explanation, no nothing. *shivers*

  6. Candace

    Ive read April’s other book about a girl who was kidnapped and really enjoyed it. I know April so I’ll pry pick up a signed copy next time I see her or go to Powell’s. It sounds pretty incredible and hard hitting.

  7. Sam

    Brilliant review, Giselle. It sounds like a great chilling story – I can’t wait to get started on my copy! 🙂

  8. Danny

    You know, before I found my love for YA and all things paranormal all I read were thriller and mysteries.. Maybe I need to get back to my roots because this one sounds awesome!

  9. Shellie

    I saw this around but was kinda iffy on picking it up but after reading this hellz yes I’m gonna add it to my list. I like how things change from one perspective to the other and the thing with the news clips makes it seem that much more real. When I die from too many books on my TBR pile I’m blaming you, Savannah and Amanda fyi LOL <3

  10. Maji Bookshelf

    Thats soo cool! I love it when a book includes more than just writing! It sounds so fun, and it makes the experience much more awesome! Great review Giselle!! Glad you liked it!

    Farah @MajiBookshelf

  11. the Vintage Bookworm

    Great review! I’ve seen this around a bit, but haven’t added it to my TBR list on Goodreads until now. I’m starting to really like mysteries as well! =)

    This one sounds really good. I’m definitely adding it now because of your review!

  12. Lexie

    I will have to look out for this one. I’ve been iffy on whether or not I should pick this one up when I can, but now, I’m fairly certain I will. I love it when books have all this extra stuff that really adds to the plot–here the paper clippings, evidence, etc. Makes me want to pick up my own copy.

    Awesome review. <3

  13. Tabitha

    This book sounds great! Just by reading the summary I was on the edge of my seat considering the possibilities. And I completely agree with you about how this is something that could really happen and that we just don’t pay attention to the kidnappings that happen as much as we should pay attention…

  14. Maja (The Nocturnal Library)

    Ohh, I was pretty sure I wanted to read this before, but your review was the final drop. I’m off to buy a copy right this second. It sounds so very refreshing, especially the format.
    Thanks, Giselle! I’ve been in a bit of a reading slump and needed something exactly like this to pull me out.

  15. Jessica A.

    I’ve had this one my Kindle for a while now but just couldn’t decide if I really wanted to read it or not since I haven’t seen a whole lot on it.
    Thanks to your review I can’t wait to get to it now. It sounds like a great mystery!