Monday, December 27, 2010

The Missing Girl

Pages: 284

So as I promised this post is strictly Paper Mountain related. No pictures of the things I own, no random music videos, no nothing that does not involve reading or writing. This post is a review. Just a plain old review, no Wonderful Week musings, just a review. I got this book at the bookfair towards the end of November. I haven't been able to read any of my new books because of the Wonderful Week of Harry Potter. That's over now, though, and I've been catching up. I had never heard of this novel until I bought it so you'll get to hear about it from someone who has yet to set firm feelings about it. This ought to be fun.

This book is written from four different perspectives and all three different points of view. Beauty and the man's stories are told from third person. Then you have Fancy who is portrayed in the first person because she is talking to a tape recorder until the very last chapter when she is speaking to her class. Autumn is talked about in second person. At first it didn't stick with me why. I knew there must be a reason but I couldn't think of it. Then it struck me that the author was trying to make it so that I was Autumn, that Autumn's experiences were my experiences. But if this is a story, why does your face still smart from his slaps? Why do your wrists still burn like real life? And if this is a story, when do you get the happy ending? (pg. 176) These sentences make you feel what Autumn feels and I think that is what the author was trying to do.

The one thing that seemed slightly off in the plot of this book was part of the man's perspective. He thinks continuously about which girl is his favorite, finally, narrowing it down to Stevie and Autumn. I had a sense of what would happen when he decided, given to me by the title. He does end up taking Autumn but it never shows the moment when he decides that she is the one, his favorite. He may have not had to decide because she walked right up to him but the author made it seem like a large part of the story. Too large to just be discarded like that.

One of the scenes that feels particularly real to me is in the chapter 'The One Person in the World' (pg. 55). Autumn is trying to get the notebook that she keeps her thoughts in back from Fancy. Fancy, who is mentally challenged, found it and has gotten into her head that Autumn gave it to her. I completely understand Autumn's frustration that Fancy doesn't understand and won't give it back. Then when she finally gets it back, her sister Mim seems to take Fancy's side. She takes Fancy downstairs for hot chocolate. Autumn is very emotional. I don't know if it's because of her age or because of her personality. She starts to cry because on top of everything else, Mim didn't even ask if she wanted any. This is from Autumn's perspective so maybe that's why it feels so real to me. Or maybe it's because I can just relate.

Overall, this book was everything it could be. It showed how the man thought, how Autumn felt being kept prisoner, and how her family reacted to it all. It's very detailed and it gives you chills. It feels almost real, like a good book should. I highly recommend it.

The next book along the Reading Trail? The Juvie Three by Gordon Korman.