Plot: This dark and gritty novel is an exceptional, heart-pounding story full of raw emotion, deep-seated fear, and an undercurrent of hope and innocence.
Prose: Deeply atmospheric without extraneous detail, the prose leaves plenty to the imagination. Even though the story featured a young girl placed in very adult situations, she never lost that young freshness of voice.
Originality: The novel is without peer in contemporary mysteries/thrillers. Oddly—it’s neither of those, and both of them, at the same time. That contradiction is what makes it work so well. It calls back to movies like The Professional and Disney’s The Journey of Natty Gann while being wholly and freshly contemporary.
Character Development: Watching the the characters evolve (and devolve, in some cases) was absolutely amazing. Subtle nuances were plentiful and guided the reader into horrified admiration and a desire to protect them all.
Date Submitted: August 17, 2017