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Reconstructing Amelia

Reconstructing Amelia

4.0 248
by Kimberly McCreight, Khristine Hvam

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When Kate, a single mother and law firm partner, gets an urgent phone call summoning her to her daughter’s exclusive private school, she’s shocked. Amelia has been suspended for cheating—something that would be completely out of character for her overachieving, well-behaved daughter.

Kate rushes to Grace Hall, but what she finds when she


When Kate, a single mother and law firm partner, gets an urgent phone call summoning her to her daughter’s exclusive private school, she’s shocked. Amelia has been suspended for cheating—something that would be completely out of character for her overachieving, well-behaved daughter.

Kate rushes to Grace Hall, but what she finds when she finally arrives is beyond comprehension.

Her daughter Amelia is dead.

Despondent over having been caught cheating, Amelia has jumped from the school’s roof in an act of impulsive suicide. At least that’s the story Grace Hall and the police tell Kate. In a state of shock and overcome by grief, Kate tries to come to grips with this life-shattering news. Then she gets an anonymous text:

Amelia didn’t jump.

The moment she sees that message, Kate knows in her heart it’s true. Clearly Amelia had secrets—and a life Kate knew nothing about. Wracked by guilt, Kate is determined to find out what those secrets were and who could have hated her daughter enough to kill. She searches through Amelia’s e-mails,
texts, and Facebook updates, piecing together the last troubled days of her daughter’s life.

Reconstructing Amelia
is a stunning debut page-turner that brilliantly explores the secret world of teenagers, their clandestine first loves, hidden friendships, and the dangerous cruelty that can spill over into acts of terrible betrayal.

Editorial Reviews

Jennifer McMahon
“McCreight captures the complexities, cruelty and angst of teenage girls so well my stomach was in knots. What really happened to Amelia? You’ll find yourself staying up all night to find out.”
“An elaborately plotted mystery. . . . A harrowing story. . . . McCreight does a fne job of building suspense and creating characters, notably Kate and Amelia, whom the target audience—both adults and older teens—will care about and empathize with.”
“Did Amelia Baron really get caught cheating and then commit suicide—or is the truth more sinister? A nail-biter for Gone Girl fans.”
Entertainment Weekly
Gossip Girl meets Gone Girl.”
New York Times
“[A] mystery with enough red herring to stock Lake Michigan…this is the novel most likely to be found in coming weeks not on the beach but on the F train. ”
USA Today
“Clever and scary . . . McCreight has her finger on the private school zeitgeist. . .and this disturbing tale will make older readers fondly recall the days when kids got in trouble for passing (print) notes in class.”
“Reconstructing Amelia will keep you hooked till the last page.”
Daily Candy
“We love a powerful debut, and this is just that.… It’s Mean Girls meets The Secret History meets the cyberbullying case of Amanda Todd––and it’s unputdownable.”
Jodi Picoult
“Just finished a fantastic novel–Reconstructing Amelia by Kimberly McCreight. So. Well. Done. If you liked Gone Girl, you’ll love this too.” Staff Pick
Wow! I was pulled in after reading the first page.… It’s sort of a thriller/prep school teen drama that is full of secrets.”
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
“Kimberly McCreight’s debut novel shines a light on teen-girl culture.…I wanted to keep reading.”
“A tale of elaborate mystery intertwined with the tenderness of a mother’s love, Reconstructing Amelia exudes suspense at every turn…. Gripping and tragic, [it] is a true page turner.”
Library Journal
Kate Baron, a single mother and partner at a Manhattan law firm, is astonished to get a phone call about the suspension of her 15-year-old daughter, Amelia, previously an excellent student at a prestigious Brooklyn private school. But by the time Kate arrives at the school to pick her up, Amelia is dead in a fall from the roof. While the police investigation rules Amelia's death a suicide, Kate soon receives an anonymous text saying that Amanda didn't jump. Grieving, guilt-stricken, and desperate to better understand her daughter, Kate starts looking into recent events in Amelia's life, aided by a seasoned detective who reopens the case and discovers that the cruelty of teenagers pales next to adult vengeance. VERDICT Debut novelist McCreight tailors her format to her subject, sprinkling text messages and blog postings into a narrative that zigzags in chronology over a period of several months. Alternating perspectives from Kate and Amelia reveal the inner lives of a woman trying to balance motherhood with a demanding career and a teenager struggling with her blossoming sexuality while dealing with severe bullying. Despite a plot heavily dependent on coincidence, this is a compulsively readable novel that will appeal to Jodi Picoult fans. [See Prepub Alert, 10/28/12.]—Michele Leber, Arlington, VA

Product Details

Blackstone Audio, Inc.
Publication date:
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Product dimensions:
5.20(w) x 6.96(h) x 1.44(d)

Read an Excerpt

Reconstructing Amelia

By Kimberly McCreight

HarperCollins Publishers

Copyright © 2013 Kimberly McCreight
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-0-06-222543-6

S E P T E M B E R 5 T H
Because there are 176 definitions for the word loser on
Don't Be a Statistic
Hey bitches!
Ah, the beginning of another school year. And I'm back with all the shit
that's not fit to print . . .
So while you've all been whiling away the summer in Southampton,
or on Nantucket or in the South of France, perfecting your tennis game or
your pas de deux, or training for your first marathon, or basking in your
latest chess championship, I've spent the summer keeping track of the back
and forth of our dear faculty members. Mr. Zaritski went out to UC Berke-
ley to teach at a science camp for crazy- smart kids. Word has it the parents
had him fired week two because he SMELLED. Mrs. Pearl took a Latin lover
and learned to pole dance in Miami. Kidding. She didn't actually have a
lover, of course. Who would ever want to sleep with her?
Ah, and sweet delicious Mr. Woodhouse. Who wouldn't have wanted
to see him in a Speedo somewhere? Alas, his whereabouts lo these sultry
months is unknown, though I have it on good authority that he spent at
least one long weekend snuggled up with our beloved English prof Liv. To
which I say, bravo.

2 K i m b e r l y M c C r e i g h t
As for all of you, I'll be covering a summer wrap- up as the updates flow
in over the next few days— and do send them along to gracefullyblog@ Because here we are, another year where every loser has the
chance to finally be cool and the fat kids might turn up skinny.
And the same old questions: Will lovely little Dylan ever come clean
about who she's screwing? Will Heather and Rachel ever admit they're
screwing each other? Will Zadie stay out of jail long enough to gradu-
ate? Which senior girl will our resident sophomore hottie Carter sleep with
first? And who is this Ian Greene and is he as sizzlin' as his meet book pic-
tures suggest? Outlook doubtful says my own personal eight ball. But y'all
will be the first to know.
In the meantime, keep those new shoes shiny and those smiles bright.
And buckle up. Because it's going to be one hell of a ride . . .


Excerpted from Reconstructing Amelia by Kimberly McCreight. Copyright © 2013 Kimberly McCreight. Excerpted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Meet the Author

Khristine Hvam studied acting for the theater and film. You can hear her in Pokémon, World of Warcraft, various television and radio commercials, and most notably in over one hundred audiobook titles. She has won two AudioFile Earphones Awards and earned her first Audie Award in 2012 for Daughter of Smoke & Bone.

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