Obviously I’m a sucker for books where someone’s daughter is missing and the mother goes crazy trying to find her. But in Don’t Try To Find Me, I was surprised by the duel narration, which focused on both Marley, the teenage runaway, and her distraught mother, Rachel. By including Marley’s voice, the author really capitalized on the emotions of teenagers who are actual runaways. Marley’s objective to run away and live with a man she met online was enhanced when she began to explain the problems she experienced with her parents, which drove her to escape. By examining the impact that a marital relationship can have on a teenager, the author made the bold statement that nothing can be hidden from children.
What made this book unlike so many others with this same type of plot was Rachel. I sympathized with Rachel, who replayed her conversations with Marley to find the signs she previously missed that her daughter was unhappy. Although she hoped everyone thought she was a devoted wife and mother, Rachel had a bunch of secrets that threatened to destroy her life and may have been what pushed Marley away. Marley’s experience was told through a journal, and as each day passed, she reconsidered her decision to leave home for the man she barely knew with secrets of his own that placed her life in danger. Her storyline contained a psychological aspect as she talked herself into and out of each decision. I thought it was interesting that intimidation and mind games played a weighty role in this novel. The subplot of domestic violence was woven into the story in a way that empowered the characters, but wasn’t overbearing.
The easy writing made this a quick read I enjoyed.