"A dark, comedic mystery about a girl's quest for proof that ultimately helps her discover some truths about herself. We officially love Hawthorn. One minute, our heart was breaking with her raw, aching loneliness, then we were laughing with her crazy sideways wisdom. Like Thorny, this book is offbeat, smart and awesome.
" - Justine Magazine
"A solid coming-of-age novel with light spunk and individuality" - Kirkus
"Sedoti's debut offers an enlightening look at the dangers of relying on outward appearances to judge someone's character, and Hawthorn's first-person narrative, filled with obsessive thoughts and, eventually, meaningful reflection, is a lively, engaging vehicle for the story... Fans of character-driven novels will appreciate this.
" - Booklist
"Hawthorn's wildly creative imagination and humor drive this mystery's plot forward...Recommended for teens who appreciate a protagonist with a lively imagination and an acerbic tongue" - School Library Journal
"Sedoti deftly pulls readers into [Hawthorn's] head where her yearning for excitement, angst about the future, and insecurity bring further depth to her character. Hawthorn and Lizzie both emerge as surprising, intricate characters whose stories are resonant and memorable.
" - Publishers Weekly
"Hawthorn is one of the most relatable characters in recent young adult literature. Her unhappiness stems from her inability to connect to people her own age and her subsequent boredom. She lives mostly in her own head, choosing to find magic in movies, books and her imagination rather than the world around her. This mystery is less about finding a missing girl as it is about finding happiness and purpose in a complex, often contradictory world.
" - BookPage
"Hawthorn is an engaging young woman with a vivid imagination...With an interesting and diverse supporting cast, this novel is full of topics that are relevant to teens: bullying, self-esteem, family dynamics, and suicide. Highly recommended" - Shelf Awareness
Gr 9 Up—Lonely misfit high school senior Hawthorn Creely finds respite from pressure at school and at home by searching for a missing student: popular Lizzie Lovett. There are no clues, burning secrets, or great reveals surrounding Lizzie's disappearance. Instead, Hawthorn's wildly creative imagination and humor drive this mystery's plot forward. In a somewhat disturbing turn of events, she steps into Lizzie's life, taking the missing girl's old job and becoming involved with her boyfriend, Enzo. Hawthorn's insecurities and eventual self-discovery comprise the central themes of the novel as she navigates dates, dances, mean girls, and social isolation. Ultimately, Sundog, a visiting hippie, gives Hawthorn sensible spiritual guidance: "Some people are born knowing their paths from the start. The rest of us take a while to get there." Sage advice indeed. Some readers may be put off by the lack of a traditional whodunit story line as well as by Hawthorn's sometimes odd responses to situations, while other readers may find her eccentricities refreshingly honest and recognize an authentic teen voice. Some mature situations, including sex and drinking, are woven throughout. VERDICT Recommended for teens who appreciate a protagonist with a lively imagination and an acerbic tongue.—Eva Thaler-Sroussi, Glencoe Public Library, IL
Hawthorn Creely always hated Lizzie Lovett, so why is she distraught when Lizzie goes missing in this seamless blend of mystery and relationship fiction?Nothing big ever happens in small-town, blue-collar Griffin Mills (45 minutes from Pittsburgh), until once-popular Lizzie Lovett disappears while camping with her boyfriend. High school senior Hawthorn (named by her flower-child mother) knew Lizzie when she was a freshman and Lizzie was a senior dating her older brother. Hawthorn, ever the outsider, envied Lizzie’s happiness, but when she begins to learn tidbits about Lizzie’s much-different life after high school, she becomes obsessed with finding out more and even trying to find her. She turns to Lorenzo Calvetti, Lizzie’s boyfriend at the time of her disappearance (even though he could be her killer since…gulp, murder hasn’t been ruled out), to help collect clues and solve the mystery. In yet another Gone Girl variation, the story is less about the twists and more about the search. But Hawthorn’s search for Lizzie turns into a search for self as she yearns for adventure and love (and sex?). Adding to the seemingly all-white cast of characters, authentic given the setting, are an old friend, bullies, and a caravan of hippies, who offer more struggles and wisdom. Hawthorn tells it all with a realistic voice. A solid coming-of-age novel with light spunk and individuality. (Fiction. 14-18)