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Children's LiteratureEmma has been avoiding Abby for a long time, but one day, she runs into Abby on the bus. Abby tells Emma about a game she is designing for her friends, a live-action "Dungeons and Dragons" game. Emma gets away from Abby as quickly as possible. Emma later learns that Abby is missing and she was the last person to see her. Everyone from the police to Abby's family and friends are putting pressure on Emma to recall every last detail of her last conversation with Abby. While Emma is very sad and worried about Abby's disappearance, she is hesitant to do anything that will connect her to Abby. At her old school, Emma was subject to very vicious teasing, party because of her friendship with Abby. Emma finally made a new life free of teasing and she does not want to go back to a very painful time. However, because of Abby's disappearance, Emma learns to not hide her imagination and love of writing. While Emma's reluctance to go to the police with information seems a bit contrived so as to put Emma in a hero's position, the overall plot is breathtaking and well-written. Weatherly's realistic portrayal of "Dungeons and Dragons," which has been subject to negative press throughout the years, is to be commended. I was unable to put this book down until I found out Abby's fate and how Emma would handle events. 2004, Random House, Ages 12 up.
—Amie Rose Rotruck