‘Girl, Missing’ by Sophie McKenzie

304p 2011 Simon and Schuster Children’s UK Borrowed

51ufmasecfl-_sx324_bo1204203200_When 14 year old Lauren has to do a ‘Who am I?’ project for school, she realises that she doesn’t know very much about her early life. Adopted at the age of three, Lauren has no idea who her birth parents are, and her British adoptive parents either don’t know or are reluctant to discuss it. Her curiosity on the subject, sparked by her close-lipped parents, prompts her to look into lost or missing children, as she feels that there was something strange about her adoption. When she comes across a picture of an American dark-haired little girl with blue eyes, who went missing a few months before she was adopted, Lauren begins to wonder where her true origins are and if her adoptive parents know more than they’re letting on.

Aided by her best friend Jamie, ‘Jam’, Lauren discovers that she was actually adopted from an agency in the state of Vermont, USA. Desperate to find out more, she pleads with her parents to go on a family holiday to the USA, not giving them her true reasons for wanting to go. When her dad drops out of the holiday due to work commitments, Lauren persuades her mom to let Jam come instead. The two plan to run away once they reach America and go to the agency Lauren was adopted from to try and find out whether she really is that missing child.

But as Lauren and Jam search for the truth behind Lauren’s adoption, their lives are put in serious danger. Her kidnappers will stop at nothing to keep her silent. Will she ever meet her true family?

Sophie McKenzie really knows how to write a good thriller! I thought Girl, Missing was wonderfully crafted and the plot kept me guessing until the very end. I grew to care for the characters and admired their bravery. The blossoming romance between Jam and Lauren was also very nicely written, not being one of the key points of the book, but still present. As soon as I finished reading Girl, Missing for the first time, I went straight back to page 1 and started again- it was that good- and I have read it over and over since that day. The next two books in the trilogy are also on-the-edge-of-your-seat reads that I really enjoyed. Fab book, fab author!

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