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Customer Reviews for

If You Find Me

Average Rating 4.5
( 29 )
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5 Star

(20)

4 Star

(6)

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(2)

2 Star

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Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 29 Customer Reviews
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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 31, 2013

    Loved it

    I really hope theres a second book

    3 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 26, 2013

    I was lucky enough to win an advanced reader's copy of this book

    I was lucky enough to win an advanced reader's copy of this book, and it arrived in the mail a month ago. It was excellent timing, as I was running out of books. I figured I'd knock out a couple of chapters before bed, to relax me enough to get to sleep. Bad decision. I was sucked in from the first page, and couldn't stop until I had finished it. Carey and Jenessa are 'feral children', and have been living in the woods since their mother kidnapped them years ago. Carey does her best to take care of Jenessa, keeping her clean and fed, and teaching her how to read. Even though they live in near-squalor, Carey insists that they practice manners and adhere to a normal routine. When their drug-addicted mother abandons them, their father steps in to raise them. At first, they are very resistant to getting to know him, since their mother led them to believe that he was a horribly abusive man and that she had taken them away to protect them. Their transition from being isolated to attending school is fairly seamless, as they are both intelligent children. Slowly, the secrets of what happened in the woods start to surface. A beautiful novel about finding a family, this book broke my heart. Gripping and heartbreaking, it will stick with you for a long time. The writing is lyrical yet stark. Emily Murdoch is a fresh and evocative voice in fiction, and I am very much looking forward to hearing more from her.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 6, 2013

    Amazing book! The prose is beautiful and the story...I'll be thi

    Amazing book! The prose is beautiful and the story...I'll be thinking about it for a long time.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 2, 2013

    If you want me to tell you one characteristic of If You Find Me,

    If you want me to tell you one characteristic of If You Find Me, then it’s this. It’s EMOTIONAL. This book is so freaking sad I practically cried from start to end. And it’s beautiful too. Sad and beautiful, and sad again.

    Carey grew up in a broken-down camper in the middle of the woods, with her Mom and younger sister Jenessa. It’s clear from the start Carey’s Mom was mentally ill, or at least some of the time, and the girls struggled to survive, sometimes left alone for weeks on end. Their Mom disappears again, and this time around, longer than ever before. Carey grows worried something bad might’ve happened to her Mom. When she begins to suspect her Mom might never return, two strangers arrive at the spot, and even though they’re friendly, Carey doesn’t trust them. They take them away from the only home they’ve ever known. They go to live with their Dad and his new family, and they have to begin from scratch. They’ve never been to school, and are behind on nearly all subjects. Then there’s all those people, fancy restaurants, and all those things Carey and Jenessa aren’t used to. And most of all, they have to deal with the past and what happened the night Jenessa stopped talking.

    This book was haunting. Beautiful. Amazing. I have trouble describing it because it was so darn good. Then why only four stars? Because whereas the drama was complex and interesting, it kind of lost its touch halfway through, and then picked it up again toward the end. Also, at the beginning when Carey and Jenessa first meet their Dad, the pace is slow and the dialogue a bit repetitive. The flashbacks weren’t always clear either, and sometimes made me lose the connection with the story. I struggled to keep reading halfway through, but then the emotions of Carey and Jenessa’s journey sucked me back in. However, this lowered the rating from a five stars to a solid four stars.

    The best part about the book was Jenessa and Carey’s relationship, which is beautiful. I also liked how their Dad tried to make them feel at home, and his new wife did everything she could for them as well. Not all stepmoms are like that, but they aren’t all wicked either. I liked to see a nice stepmom for a change, especially since Jenessa and Carey hadn’t had much luck with their own Mom. I also liked how the flashbacks explained what happened before they disappeared, and how they showed more about Carey’s past. While I liked Carey, and her journey for self-discovery as she adapted to this new world, I liked Jenessa even more. Everything about what she went through broke my heart. And even though so, she was still a happy, lovely child.

    I liked the writing. Emily Murdoch has a natural-sounding but lyrical writing voice, which is an odd combination, but works wonders. The pace was decent most of the time although, like I mentioned, it dragged in the middle part. This book conjured all sorts of emotions within me, and I even cried at some point. That shows the book’s strength. It’s a debut novel, and there may be some small flaws, but it’s a strong, splendid, emotional read. I recommend this to everyone who wants to read a darker, rawer YA contemporary novel.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 26, 2013

    An ARC copy. this was a delight to be able to read this book be

    An ARC copy.

    this was a delight to be able to read this book before it is released to the public. It was a wonderful story with a happy ending.

    I am not very good at giving reviews but I will try.

    Cary was kidnapped by her mother and taken to live in the woods when she was 5. Her mother left her and her sister there one day and never came back. Now she's 14 and her father has found her and is taking bother girls home with him, and now she not only has to try to rejoin the real world again she has to get over what was done to her and her sister for all those years. It an easier adjustment for her 6 year old sister, where as Cary finds it harder to be in the open and not surrounded by all the trees that are in the woods where she can hide.
    Its a story of a girl who was abused and hurt one too many times. Relearning the world she barely remembers and the the best friend she had before she disappeared. But like all great stories there is a happy ending.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 26, 2013

    Wow. I always know I've just read a really great book if my head

    Wow. I always know I've just read a really great book if my head is still spinning around it long after I've finished. If You Find Me was such a strong, unbelievably impacting, emotionally beautiful story that I fell in love with from Chapter 1.

    Carey is taken by her mentally ill mother and forced to live in the woods in a camper, without running water, food, or heat. Her mother disappears for weeks, sometimes months at a time, off into the city leaving Carey alone and forced to fight for her own survival. Carey soon has a younger sister to help raise as well, all in these woods with no outside contact, other than the men her mother brings in for money or drugs. Carey is so protective over Jenessa, who depends on her sister completely for her survival. When finally their mother leaves for good, two people show up in the woods and find Carey and Jenessa... and little do they know these two people will change their lives forever. Carey and Jenessa will be forced to find truths that will be hard to handle, as well as learn to live a life unlike anything they've ever known.

    I really can't put into words how intense this story was. Trust me when I say you will want to have tissues available. It's heart-wrenchingly sad at times, immensely loving at others. This story is sure to tug at the heartstrings and leave your mind and emotions reeling when you're done. I have to mention too how much I loved all the references to Winnie the Pooh... from the "Hundred Acre Wood" to the cute little quotes at the beginning of the different parts to the book. I have already recommended this book to many people while reading it, and I will be sure to recommend it long into the future.


    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 21, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    I don't know how to put my thoughts into words when it comes to

    I don't know how to put my thoughts into words when it comes to this book. I really don't. If You Find Me broke my heart in tiny little pieces. As I reader, I always experienced this feeling of wishing I could dive in the book and save the day. I've never wanted to be able to do this more than with this book. Not to save the day but only to hug Carey and Jenessa. I wanted to adopt these girls and give them all the love they never got from their own mother. Even now thinking about it brings tears to my eyes. This part of the book was so hard to read. The abuse and neglect these girls experienced made me feel like I couldn't breathe and powerless because I couldn't help them.

    Even though my heart broke in parts of this book I just couldn't help but loving it. In all that darkness and sadness there was hope and healing. I didn't trust anybody just like Carey but in the end almost all of the people she crossed after she got rescued from the camper were so amazing to her and her sister. Her dad and stepmom were highlights in the book. These people wanted nothing else but to make the girls happy and comfortable. They showed the sisters love and what being a real parent is all about. Their relationship was just beautiful.

    This book is beautifully written and is definitely a fast read. I know it sounds like a depressing book, but it really isn't. It was so amazing and powerful. I hope you guys give it a try. I really do.

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  • Posted January 31, 2014

    Will raed again

    This was a great book great plot twist and amazing. Character development

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  • Posted January 19, 2014

    Truely enjoyed this book from start to finish. Read it in 1 nigh

    Truely enjoyed this book from start to finish. Read it in 1 night. It's a very sad story with a very happy ending. True, it is fiction, but it makes you think. This could really happen. Scary.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 5, 2014

    Keeps you wanting more!

    Easy reading and continues to spark your interest....never a dull moment!

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  • Posted December 8, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    If You Find Me is Emily Murdoch's debut novel. This story follow

    If You Find Me is Emily Murdoch's debut novel. This story follows fifteen-year-old Carey and her six-year-old sister Jenessa as they try to adjust to a modern life after being found living in the middle of Obed Scenic and Wild River National Park for the past ten years. Their mother, suffering from untreated mental illness and a meth addiction, has subjected the girls to a life of neglect and abuse. This lifestyle if the only one Carey can remember and the only one Jenessa has ever known. Events prompt child protective services to locate the girls and they are placed with Carey's father and thrust into a world foreign to them.

    "I'm like Ness's broken-legged chipmunk, which had to be shaken and poked out of the birdcage once it healed, preferring the familiar, even if the familiar was a jail. Home is home."

    "In Obed, I was queen of the world. In the zone, violin wailing, all the animals stopped to listen to a bow coax music from wood. Here, there's always noise. Pointless sounds. Electric lights humming, keyboards clicking, phones chirping, music playing, people chattering. My head is Thanksgiving Day-full, and I hate it."

    This story is told with such a poetic voice and the weight of the girls' past makes this story emotional and deeply moving. Although parts are difficult to read, themes in this story include a powerful sibling bond, friendship, and redemption, and I would recommend this book to anyone who believes triumph and healing are possible despite experiencing circumstances out of one's control.

    My favorite quotes:
    “We make attachments to what's familiar. We find the beauty, even in the lack. That's human. We make the best of what we're given.”

    “I answer her with my silence, understanding the full power of it for the first time. Words are weapons. Weapons are powerful. So are unsaid words. So are unused weapons.”

    "No one warned me that being close to people meant hurting sometimes, both them and you."

    "Funny how people know what shame is, even when you don't have a name for it. No matter. It feels the same."

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  • Posted November 25, 2013

    Rating: 4 Stars I am going to say this first: This is a tremendo

    Rating: 4 Stars
    I am going to say this first: This is a tremendous debut. It is. It was not only beautifully written but also made you root for Carey and I’m glad that this book was her debut. Emily Murdoch is an amazing writer with a fresh voice; I was hooked from the very first word to the very last.
    This book touches on a lot of sensitive topics and I think that she did a great job writing about it in a way that it matched the story well (compared to some of the other books out there).
    However, I will say that I was a little disappointed. I was expecting something a little more… mysterious/suspense and something less… what I got. At least that was the feeling I got based on the book flap and the book cover.
    I also thought that Carey’s memories “returned” a little too quickly for my taste. The beginning kind of dragged on forever and I was already close to 3/4 of the book when everything (including the difficult parts) started wrapping up much too quickly for my taste (especially how Carey came to a truce with her step-sister). It was almost like she knew that her story was coming to an end so the story universe started handing her answers after answers to make everything better within a couple of pages.
    All in all, this was a great debut and I am looking forward to her next book!

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  • Posted October 9, 2013

    (Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a re

    (Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to St. Martin's Press and Netgalley.)
    15-year-old Carey has been living in a caravan in the woods for years. Her drug-addict mother comes and goes, and Carey is left to look after her 6-year-old mute sister.

    One day a man and a woman turn up at their home in the woods, the man claims to be Carey’s father, and the woman is from social services – Carey’s mother has written a letter saying that she can no longer look after the girls and has asked social services to find them in the woods and take them into care.

    Carey’s father explains that he had custody of Carey because of her mother’s drug abuse, and that Carey’s mother kidnapped her and hid her in the woods so that he couldn’t take her away from her.
    Now Carey and Janessa will be going to live with Carey’s father.
    What happened in the woods though? Why doesn’t Janessa speak? And how long will it take for Carey and Janessa to get used to the real world?


    This wasn’t really what I was expecting, I thought there would be more about the ‘finding’ of Carey, than what happened after she was found.

    Carey seemed quite mature most of the time, but then quite immature at other moments. Obviously she had been forced to grow up as she had been left to look after her little sister since she was born. Carey was more of a mother to Jenessa than her real mother ever was, and it was pretty harsh that Carey’s mother had basically abandoned them.

    Carey’s mother was addicted to drugs, and made money to buy drugs through prostitution. Carey and Jenessa survived with very little clothing and very meagre food rations. I personally didn’t quite understand why Carey’s mother had bothered to kidnap her seeing as she then left her alone in the woods most of the time, I couldn’t decide if it was just to spite Carey’s father, because she was delusional from the drugs, or because she thought she could use Carey to make money.

    I never considered the fact that Jenessa didn’t speak to be such a mystery. I figured that it was in response to something bad that happened in the woods, but I personally was more invested in finding out what happened to Carey. She was a strong character, but to me it seemed obvious that this strength was hard won, and as much of a response to something bad happening as was Jenessa’s silence.
    I liked the storyline in this book, but I thought we would have had more time spent on the finding of Carey and Janessa, instead of going straight into what happened to them after they were found. I also wondered what exactly had happened to their mother, as this wasn’t really covered, we knew that she had sent a letter to social services and disappeared, but we didn’t know how or why.

    Overall; I enjoyed this book, but it wasn’t exactly what I was expecting.
    7 out of 10.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 16, 2013

    Amazingly written book, must read!!

    I was a little skeptical at first of what the book was going to be about, but i was in for a huge suprise, because i loved it!! I am so happy that i gave this book a chance, its amazing and i think that everyone over the age of 14 should read this. It totally opened my eyes and the authors writing style captured my attention and held it until the very last page. I only wish that it was a little longer.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 17, 2013

    Great but...

    The inconsistencies in the story drove me nuts.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 5, 2013

    So good!!!

    I recommend this to anyone and everyone. Sad it was over ):

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  • Posted August 3, 2013

    Check out the full review at Kritters Ramblings Carey is no ord

    Check out the full review at Kritters Ramblings

    Carey is no ordinary 14 year old, she has spent 10 years in the woods with her mother fighting for her and her younger sister's life each and every day with no help.  After being found after an unusual circumstance, she has to quickly adapt to a whole new and different world while helping her sister see the outside world for the first time.

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  • Posted July 21, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    This book killed me!  It brought out so much emotion in me that

    This book killed me!  It brought out so much emotion in me that I honestly didn’t know how to handle it!  I bawled like a baby in the touching moments, I saw red and cried angry tears when reading the horrendous ordeal that these girls had to go through, I shed nervous tears for their first days of school and witnessing Carey’s integration into school.  If You Find Me by Emily Murdoch ripped my heart apart, and made my soul cry.  This is one story that readers will never forget.

    Life in the Hundred Acre Woods is the only life that sisters Carey and Janessa know and remember.  And it’s routine for their mother to abandon them in the woods for weeks at a time with very little food.  But this time it’s different.  Their mother doesn’t return.  Instead, a surprise of all surprises finds them deep in the woods…Carey’s birth father.  But after being told by her mother that they ran away from their father because of his abusive ways, it’s not the happiest of all moments.

    It appears that Carey and Janessa’s mother finally did something right.  Relinquished her custody of the children and gave it Carey’s father.  But learning how to live in an actual home…with food that they don’t need to ration, clothes that they can pick and choose to wear, warmth, running water and toilet paper, and all other essentials…is a huge step for both girls.

    But with a deep, dark secret that looms over both Carey and Janessa, so deep and dark infact that it has caused Janessa to revert into not speaking, what would the consequences be should that secret come out?  Will they both lose the life that they have just become accustomed to?  Will they lose the family (their family) that has so readily opened their arms and accepted them?  Will love and acceptance ever be in their future?

    Oh. My. Feels. you guys… Even with the dark and disturbing content that is found in If You Find Me by Emily Murdoch, the possible light at the end of the tunnel…that little semblance of hope…kept me going.  I NEEDED to see if these girls were going to be okay.  I NEEDED to know if their drug addicted, abusive, neglectful mother was going to be out of the picture, or if she would re-appear and ruin what has just begun.  I HAD to know if there was going to be a happily ever after!

    Author, Emily Murdoch’s writing was amazing.  I could easily picture every single scene in this book.  I could feel the pain and hurt in every word written.  I could hear the crunch of the leaves in the forest, the rumbling of hungry stomachs.  I could smell forest surrounding these girls, and I could smell the filth that they had to live in.  I could almost feel the cold chill of the winters as they huddled together to keep warm.  The raw emotion that is poured out in the writing is so overpowering at times that I felt like I was on emotional overload.  I was so angry at one point, that I literally wanted to throw my reader against the wall and scream “WHY!”.

    I can’t even fathom how a mother could be the way Carey and Janessa’s mother is.  How low do you have to be to subject your kids to what these little girls had to go through?  To read about how they basically lived in fear…hungry and alone, except for the two of them.  And I absolutely love the character of Carey.  Against all odds, she fights to the bone and would do anything for her little sister.  She was courageous when she needed to be, on the inside and out… She put her sister before herself and ensure that Janessa wasn’t suffering as bad as she was.  I wanted to reach into this book and hug the living crap out of these girls, and shake the hand of a strong young woman who went above and beyond what was expected of her.

    And omg the father/daughter moments.  I couldn’t handle it!  I was sobbing and weeping for Carey and her father, and the life that they missed with each other…which only made me hate and despise the mother even more.  See!  Emotional rollercoaster ride.

    I recommend this read to fans who want to enjoy a contemporary read that will absolutely embed itself into your very being.  This is one read that readers everywhere will remember.

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  • Posted June 28, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Carey has lived in the forest with her sister Nessa, almost as l

    Carey has lived in the forest with her sister Nessa, almost as long as she can remember, ever since her mother ran away from her abusive father. They live in an old camper with no running water, electricity and very little food. Carey is able to hunt squirrels and rabbits, in order for her and Nessa to have enough food. Their mother spends most of her time in town trying to score her next meth hit. Things aren’t great for them, but at least Nessa and Carey have each other. One day, after their mom has been gone for almost 2 months, Carey’s dad shows up and wants to take her home.

    Carey was an amazing character – she took an awful situation and made it bearable. She was also kind of a paradox – mature far beyond her years in the forest, but when she was in the real world, she was naïve and innocent. She was a fierce mother-figure to Nessa, and saved her life in more ways than one. Nessa (also too mature for her age) was very lucky to have her. I can’t say much about the other characters without revealing too much of the plot, but I will say they were all very believable and authentic. And also, their mother rivals Nikki’s for the Worst Mother of the Decade award. Yikes.

    The writing was fantastic. The scenes were so vibrant, from the broken down camper to the forest to the farm, I could picture every little detail. Even the farm dog was described in a way that made it easy for me to picture is strolling down a dirt lane, or chasing a truck.

    The plot was a sad one, to be sure. The girls had lived such horrific lives, but once they were out in the world with clothes and electricity and all the food they could handle, Carey still wanted to be back in the forest, the only home she could remember. But as she learned to trust people and accept her mother for the douche canoe she truly was, her growth was practically measurable. She had to learn all about television and phones and even how to talk to other people.

    This was sometimes a hard book to read, the things that Carey and Nessa went through were awful. I wanted to hug them or slap someone or just make it all better. But it was also hopeful and sweet and heartfelt.

    The sum up: This is a hard one to read, but it’s worth it.

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  • Posted April 26, 2013

    This was great from the first page and never stopped being excit

    This was great from the first page and never stopped being exciting. A wee bit creepy, but the story creates a lot of tension and we follow Carrie and jenessa through to the end. Easy to get sucked into their world, so sit and relax awhile for a damn good read.

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