Don’t Try to Find Me
by Holly Brown
Summary: When a fourteen-year-old runs away, her parents turn to social media to find her—launching a public campaign that will expose their darkest secrets and change their family forever, in this suspenseful and gripping debut for fans of Reconstructing Amelia and Gone Girl.
Don’t try to find me. Though the message on the kitchen white board is written in Marley’s hand, her mother Rachel knows there has to be some other explanation. Marley would never run away.
As the days pass and it sinks in that the impossible has occurred, Rachel and her husband Paul are informed that the police have “limited resources.” If they want their fourteen-year-old daughter back, they will have to find her themselves. Desperation becomes determination when Paul turns to Facebook and Twitter, and launches FindMarley.com.
But Marley isn’t the only one with secrets.
With public exposure comes scrutiny, and when Rachel blows a television interview, the dirty speculation begins. Now, the blogosphere is convinced Rachel is hiding something. It’s not what they think; Rachel would never hurt Marley. Not intentionally, anyway. But when it’s discovered that she’s lied, even to the police, the devoted mother becomes a suspect in Marley’s disappearance.
Is Marley out there somewhere, watching it all happen, or is the truth something far worse?
Source: I purchased a Kindle copy
I enjoyed Don’t Try to Find Me. I liked that it was just as much about Marley’s reasons for disappearing and her adventure as a runaway as it was about the dynamic in their family and Rachel’s relationship with her. I found myself eagerly turning the page to see what would be uncovered or how Rachel and Paul’s handle on the situation was.
Marley ran away from home, but was relatively smart about it. Rachel, her mother, immediately wonders what happened and where she went wrong as a parent. Her relationship with Marley’s dad and her husband, Paul, was stressful and distant. However, Paul stepped up to the plate by organizing resources when the police were unwilling. As the social media fever escalated, Rachel realized their perfect family had some skeletons that were being discovered by curious do-gooders.
I’m not really satisfied with the reasons Marley ran away or what happened to her once she arrived at her destination and part of me wishes the book never strayed in that direction, but I realized that the author was attempting to tell a story about how social media is both a blessing and a curse and gave us another scenario, while also showing how isolated Marley was after giving up her social media in order to stay undetected. I can see why it turned out like that, but I think I wished it was something a little less scary and dramatic.
I loved the way Rachel’s secrets were unearthed and how her relationship with Paul evolved. The whole scandal and the issues with the therapist that Marley was seeing was interesting to me. I liked the idea that one person could put just enough seeds of chaos and doubt inside of others to change their entire view about something.
Overall, Don’t Try to Find Me was interesting and engrossing. There were various topics totally worth discussing in the book, making it a really good book club choice. I almost wish I had a book club to discuss some of the themes and issues!