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Girl Last Seen by Heather Anastasiu
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Girl Last Seen

by Heather Anastasiu

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The Story:

Kadence and Lauren, two talented teenagers, were on the cusp of stardom. Their music videos had gone viral, until an incident lands Lauren in the hospital with paralyzed vocal chords.

Now Kadence is striking out alone. But after a concert at a local coffee shop, she goes missing.

Who and what are behind her disappearance? The police and the public think Lauren is to blame, jealous over Kadence moving on without her. Lauren is determined to prove her innocence, and expose that Kady wasn't exactly who her adoring fans thought she was.

What I Liked:

I always like when books use different media forms. Girl Last Seen mixes in song lyrics, police interviews, vlogs, Youtube and Twitter comments, and first person narration.

There were also some great twists and turns to the mystery. The secrets that were revealed were major, with long-lasting impact.

Anything I Didn't Like?

The last few chapters felt rushed, as if the authors knew the resolution they wanted to reach, but weren't sure exactly how to make it happen. The motivation behind everything felt too simple in many ways, and, while intriguing and surprising, felt like it took away a bit of complexity from the main characters. The ending was almost too pat in parts.

So...?

This is a creative book that feels modern, a mystery you could see playing out between internet celebrities right now. The idea of exploring the person behind the public persona built a lot of suspense, and provided many of the twists and turns.

I just wish the ending to this quick and exciting read was stronger. ( )
  seasonsoflove | Aug 6, 2016 |
Eighteen-year-old Lauren DeSanto was loving the attention. She and her best friend, Kadence (Kady), were putting their songs on YouTube and they were going viral. Then, there was a lapse to the recordings. Lauren had succumbed to a throat infection and after several weeks, her beautiful voice had still not returned. Instead, it was now more of a croaking sound. Eventually, in order to keep their fans happy, Kady began singing solo. Lauren even talked her manager into allowing Kady to sing before their Cuppa Cuppa (coffee shop) crowd. But, by the time Kady took the stage, she and Lauren were no longer on good terms. Lauren put on a good front for the crowd, but Jude was watching her. He could tell she wasn’t happy. He used to know her well … back when they were friends.

When Kady goes missing, there is no shortage of suspects, but Lauren is a primary one because of a recent boyfriend double cross issue. All of a sudden Jude comes back into Lauren’s life. He was Nathan back when they were friends. Now he’s using his middle name, Jude. Nathan had severe acne. Lauren stood by him … until Kady ruined their friendship, even causing Lauren to harshly snub him. Jude, with the help of medicine, has overcome his acne and recovered from the physical scars. Lauren now finds him to be ‘exciting’. Can Jude help Lauren to clear the suspicion on her? She must solve the mystery of Kady’s disappearance.

This is a wonderfully twisty teen thriller (age range 14 – 18). The reader will wonder who is trustworthy; who is not? I liked the various narration shifts giving us different character perspectives. It allows us to see what each character was really thinking. Even teens can pretend to like someone. The author has constructed characters that are both likable and abhorrent. They are, by no means, cut and dry. However, a portion of the novel does require the reader to suspend believability. Rating: 4 out of 5. ( )
  FictionZeal | Feb 18, 2016 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0807581410, Paperback)

Kadence Mulligan's star was rising. She and her best friend, Lauren DeSanto, watched their songs go viral on YouTube, then she launched a solo career when a nasty throat infection paralyzed Lauren's vocal chords. Everyone knows Lauren and Kadence had a major falling-out over Kady's boyfriend. But Lauren knows how deceptive Kadence could be sometimes. And nobody believes Lauren when she claims she had nothing to do with the disappearance. Or the blood evidence… As the town and local media condemns Lauren, she realizes the only way to clear her name is to discover the truth herself. Lauren slowly unravels the twisted life of Kadence Mulligan and sees that there was more to her than she ever knew. But will she realize she's unknowingly playing a part in an elaborate game to cover up a crime before it's too late?

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 18 Feb 2016 14:06:08 -0500)

"Lauren DeSanto's best friend and bandmate goes missing and she's the prime suspect. Lauren must unravel her friend's tangled life to uncover the truth and clear her own name"--

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