Lizzie and Evie are thirteen, best friends, "body-close," and inseparable when Evie disappears on her walk home from school one afternoon. Lizzie, the last one to see her, is the key--in more ways than she realizes at first. Because as Lizzie examines the last moments she spent with Evie, the last months of their friendship, she sees that hindsight reveals that things were changing incrementally in their friendship and in Evie. Lizzie realizes that even though they may no longer have been "body-close," there are still things she knows bone deep. There are secrets Evie kept from her parents, from her sister, even from Lizzie, even as she tried obliquely and subtly to show these secrets to Lizzie, to make her know them, too, in the months leading up to her disappearance. Things and secrets that Lizzie was too innocent and naive to intuit at the time, but which later examination reveals.
Lizzie knows these things, knows who took Evie, knows why he took Evie, but she is still a child after all and these are heavy things for an innocent child to piece together to show the adults in her life and difficult, too, because most of what she knows is locked up in memories dredged up with intense introspection, furtive detective work completed in the darkness of night, and the bone deep, gut instinct that tells her that Evie still lives somewhere, somehow, waiting to be found. And Lizzie is the only one who still really believes this, while all the adults in her life prepare themselves for the worst as the investigation and Evie's disappearance drag on for over a week.
This is a haunting, nail biting mystery thriller wrapped up in the crucible of the months that forced Lizzie to come of age, to see that the world is complex and was never simple at all. This is a story about a friendship seen mostly through the eyes of one of those friends as much as it is about a child's disappearance and its effects wrought on that child's family and friends. I recommend you check this book out the next time you visit the library.
--Reviewed by Ms. Angie