Friday, May 9, 2014

Review: Far From You by Tess Sharpe

Far From You Sophie Winters nearly died. Twice.

The first time, she's fourteen, and escapes a near-fatal car accident with scars, a bum leg, and an addiction to Oxy that'll take years to kick.

The second time, she's seventeen, and it's no accident. Sophie and her best friend Mina are confronted by a masked man in the woods. Sophie survives, but Mina is not so lucky. When the cops deem Mina's murder a drug deal gone wrong, casting partial blame on Sophie, no one will believe the truth: Sophie has been clean for months, and it was Mina who led her into the woods that night for a meeting shrouded in mystery.

After a forced stint in rehab, Sophie returns home to a chilly new reality. Mina's brother won't speak to her, her parents fear she'll relapse, old friends have become enemies, and Sophie has to learn how to live without her other half. To make matters worse, no one is looking in the right places and Sophie must search for Mina's murderer on her own. But with every step, Sophie comes closer to revealing all: about herself, about Mina and about the secret they shared.

My Review:

From the beginning, this book hooked me in and didn't let go.  The emotional aspects of this book were spot-on.  The mystery was unpredictable, with a killer that I wouldn't have originally suspected, and some complicated motives behind the murder.  I loved this book so much, and I highly recommend it.


Reading this book through Sophie's perspective was sometimes a painful experience because half of the book took place after she had been through Mina's death, and it was obvious how much it had hurt her, and how much she missed Mina.  The complexity of the relationship between Mina and Sophie is showcased throughout the book, both in their interactions before Mina's death, and in Sophie's thoughts after Mina's death.  Mina and Sophie were best friends, but they both also wanted to be more than that. Despite this, it wasn't that simple, because Mina was more reluctant to begin a romantic relationship than Sophie was.  Mina worried about the reactions of the people in their small town, and her own family's reactions as well.  It didn't help that her brother, Trev, liked Sophie, too.  After Mina's death, it is clear that Trev wants a relationship with Sophie, but she is still in love with Mina.  

Sophie's drug addiction aspect was dealt with in an interesting way in the book as well.  Sophie had become addicted to OxyContin, which was prescribed to her after she was in an accident at the age of fourteen, and was injured in her leg and back.  She had to take the pills so often to keep the pain away that she became addicted to them.  One of the most horrible things about her addiction is that it causes people to blame her for Mina's murder, because the killer had planted pills on her.  People think that they were there so that Sophie could pick up some drugs, but at that point, she had already become clean.  She had spent time with her aunt to kick her drug addiction, and she had not used once since then.  She told her parents that after the murder, but even they wouldn't believe her, so they her to rehab to stop a drug addiction that she no longer had.  It clearly hurt her to have her own family not even believe her about that.

The murder mystery is well-written and an important part of the story without detracting from the emotional character interactions and development.  The night Mina was killed, she told Sophie that she was meeting somebody for a news story.  When she got out of the car, the person waiting to meet her shot her.  Officials in the town aren't really actively looking for her murderer, since they all assume it was Sophie's drug dealer, and Sophie isn't naming any names.  Of course, it's not Sophie's drug dealer, since she doesn't even have a drug dealer.   The murderer and the motives are revealed by the end of the book, and they are complex, dealing with many hidden secrets that people have.  These would all be spoilers, though, so I can't really delve into them.

If you like YA contemporary and murder mysteries, read this book.


1 comment:

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