REVIEW: BEFORE SHE WAS FOUND, BY HEATHER GUDENKAUF

 

For twelve-year-old Cora Landry and her friends Violet and Jordyn, it was supposed to be an ordinary sleepover—movies and Ouija and talking about boys. But when they decide to sneak out to go to the abandoned rail yard on the outskirts of town, little do they know that their innocent games will have dangerous consequences.

Later that night, Cora Landry is discovered on the tracks, bloody and clinging to life, her friends nowhere to be found. Soon their small rural town is thrust into a maelstrom. Who would want to hurt a young girl like Cora—and why? In an investigation that leaves no stone unturned, everyone is a suspect and no one can be trusted—not even those closest to Cora.

My Thoughts: Narrated via text messages, journal entries, and therapist notes, Before She Was Found probes beneath the surface into the disturbed psyches of three middle school girls in a rural Iowa town.

We learn about the secret and mysterious world of girls whose rivalries and fantasies unfold against a backdrop of an ordinary setting that turns out to be anything but ordinary.

A dark website binds them together, just as an urban legend tears them apart. Who can discover what has really happened? Just when I thought I had it all figured out, I was almost underwhelmed by what had actually happened…and a little disappointed. However, the book held me in its grip until the end, making the journey worthwhile. 4.5 stars.

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