When I recently took a trip south to visit my brother for spring break, I read The Girl on the Train and it reminded me how much I enjoy a good thriller (that is, if I'm reading it in the daytime). I recently went looking for more books along that same vein because I think it's the perfect genre for long days at the beach or the pool. I didn't find anything that caught my eye until I came across All the Missing Girls. I was so glad to receive a copy for advanced review, and let me tell you, this book absolutely satisfied my craving for a good thriller! If you're a fan of Gone Girl or The Girl on the Train, I highly recommend this to you when it's published on June 28th.
Like many books in this genre, I don't want to say too much for fear of giving it away, but I'll give you the basic rundown on the plot. Our protagonist, Nic, left her tiny hometown ten years ago after the tragic disappearance of her best friend, Corinne. Nic settled into the big city, found a job and a wealthy, handsome fiancé, and tried to forget about Cooley Ridge. She's forced to return, however, when her father's health declines and she's put in charge of selling his house. Shortly after she arrives back in her hometown, another young girl goes missing. Nic is forced to relive the disappearance of her best friend all those years ago as ties between the two cases are discovered and once again suspicion is cast on the few people that she cares about in her small hometown.
What makes this book stand out from others in this genre is not the plot itself -- missing girl, throwbacks to teenage romance and jealousy, a girl returned to the place that she fought so hard to leave -- but in the way that it's told. When the novel begins, we see Nic returning to her childhood home, but suddenly the book flashes forward and we're seeing the story unfold backwards, from Day 15 of the missing girl's case to the day she disappeared. You might think that this would be disorienting -- and it was, a little -- but I felt that it really enhanced my ability to experience that same kind of foggy confusion that the characters felt as they tried to identify the culprit. I was actually stunned when all was revealed, and because I read the book so quickly (as I tend to do with thrillers), I walked around with a dazed look for hours afterwards. I promise you, this book does not disappoint. I think this would make a great book club pick for this summer, and I'm using it to fulfill the "read one new bestseller" category of my summer reading challenge because I can bet you it'll climb the most popular list this year.
Bottom Line Rating: 5/5
Title: All the Missing Girls
Author: Megan Miranda
Publisher: Simon & Schuster, 2016
Price: $16 when you pre-order on Amazon
Format: Advanced Review Copy, E-book
Note: Top Shelf Text was provided with a copy of this text by the publisher in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own!