Tuesday, January 7, 2014
Emily's father emerges from the woods one evening carrying the dead body of one of her classmates. And not just any classmate, but a popular and well liked girl. He doesn't have any memory of what happened, and is soon the main suspect in her murder. He suffers from PTSD and terrible memories of the past which inhibit his understanding of the present.
But Emily doesn't think he did it. She holds out hope she'll be able to discover what really happened to Ashlee. She's lost her social standing and her friends over this (except of course the most loyal) and an event at school leads her to a fight with another classmate and into the orbit of Damon, Ashlee's ex-boyfriend. As these two young people spend time together, they feel attracted to each other despite their complicated background. Damon believes Emily's father murdered Ashlee and Emily is still determined to prove his innocence.
I enjoyed this book as a mystery which is primarily what it is. I think there's some marketing going around that makes a bigger deal out of Damon and Emily's attraction than the story itself does. But it is a good mystery with an intriguing history and I flew through the book quickly wanting to get to the end. I also like that the characters face really intense questions about themselves. It's hard for Emily to think her father killed Ashlee and it surprises her that she feels her own violence as a result. Both Emily and Damon have to face the ugliness inside of themselves so to say which is interesting.
A great mystery! Thanks to Scholastic for providing me with an ARC.
The Killing Woods by Lucy Christopher
Book Review|Young Adult|