Wednesday, July 16, 2014

BLOG TOUR: Don't Try to Find Me by Holly Brown

Title: Don't Try to Find Me
Author: Holly Brown
Genre: Adult Mystery/Thriller Fiction
Publisher: William Morrow
Release Date: July 8/2014
Acquired:  Print ARC provided by publisher
Goodreads: ADD

When a 14-year-old runs away, her parents turn to social media to find her-launching a public campaign that will expose their darkest secrets and change their family forever, in this suspenseful and gripping debut for fans of Reconstructing Amelia and Gone Girl

Don't try to find me. Though the message on the kitchen white board is written in Marley's hand, her mother Rachel knows there has to be some other explanation. Marley would never run away.

As the days pass and it sinks in that the impossible has occurred, Rachel and her husband Paul are informed that the police have "limited resources." If they want their 14-year-old daughter back, they will have to find her themselves. Desperation becomes determination when Paul turns to Facebook and Twitter, and launches

But Marley isn't the only one with secrets.

With public exposure comes scrutiny, and when Rachel blows a television interview, the dirty speculation begins. Now, the blogosphere is convinced Rachel is hiding something. It's not what they think; Rachel would never hurt Marley. Not intentionally, anyway. But when it's discovered that she's lied, even to the police, the devoted mother becomes a suspect in Marley's disappearance.

Is Marley out there somewhere, watching it all happen, or is the truth something far worse?


There have been narratives, in my reading experiences, that have completely blown me away with it's exactness of voice-or at least , with it's extremely realistic attempt. Unfortunately, Don't Try to Find Me did not posses a narrative of the sort. I found the adult characters to be on point, but as for the 14-year-old main lead, her story-line could not have induced more eye-rolling on my part.

Marley Whittis has willingly disappeared, and her family has the whiteboard note to prove it. No one knows why she may have done so, her mother most of all. We needn't wonder for long, as plans are swiftly put into motion to bring Marley home, safe and sound. Her father, Paul, has collaborated with the police, and set up an impressively intricate media campaign, stocked with volunteers, a Facebook and Twitter page, and the icing on the cake, a website expertly named But of course, this isn't just a book about a missing girl, it also packs a suitcase full of secrets and lies, most of which belong to Marley's mother Rachel, our second female lead/the second narrator. In alternating views, we are treated to Rachel's state of mind in one corner, and in diary entries from Marley herself, find out exactly where she's disappeared to.

I didn't like the layout choice for Don't Try to Find Me. I almost felt as though it defeated the purpose of it's genre. This book wasn't so much a mystery/thriller, as it was a contemporary/drama with bits of hold-your-breath-for-a-second moments. There were little to no plots happening behind the scenes, and the only chance for a true "thriller" aspect was quickly squashed as readers found out, very early on, and from Marley herself, exactly where she's run off to. The "who dunnit" angle was also removed, and made the finger pointing pretty..well..pointless. I couldn't help but constantly *sigh*, and exclaim to her parents, out loud "uh..guys..I know where she is..can you both stop accusing each other of killing your daughter? THANKS".

I definitely enjoyed Rachel's chapters better, as it proved to be the one that made the most sense to me, realistically: an unhappy marriage, concerned parents, poor adult life choices. Don't get me wrong, Marley's situation was definitely a realistic concern, and one that, unfortunately, is still a problem today, despite caution and good parenting. However, what I couldn't get myself to believe, was Marley's voice. She was written as a 14-year-old, but I lost count of how many times I had to remind myself of that. Her mannerisms, and confusingly mature dialogue, and actions, had me wondering if the author wrote '14' by accident. From what the author provided, Marley lived a fairly quiet, and timid, existence. There was definitely some underlying angst, but not enough to match her actions. Though, I suppose that was the whole point of the book: teenage girl acts completely out of character, defies her parents etc. Sadly, I just wasn't buying it.

Don't Try to Find Me was every modern parent's nightmare. The fear of raising a child in this day in age, where issues that never existed in your childhood, are running rampant now. This book is perfect for parents with children of any age, it packs a powerful message underneath the sub-par narrative: don't ever stop trying to connect with your kids, no matter how old they get.
Recommended for fans of: Mystery, Thriller, Contemporary, The Book of You by Claire Kendal, Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn.


I live with my husband and toddler daughter in the San Francisco Bay Area, where I'm a practicing marriage and family therapist. Not to play favorites, but I especially love couples and family therapy, and have training in emotionally focused therapy (EFT.) My interest and expertise with family dynamics helped shape my novel, "Don't Try to Find Me." Hope you all enjoy it!

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Thank-you to Trish from TLC Book Tours for hosting this tour, and to William Morrow for sending me a print ARC to review!

CLICK HERE to follow the rest of the tour

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sharing your thoughts as part of the tour.


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