Lauren has always known she was adopted but when a little research turns up the possibility that she was snatched from an American family as a baby, suddenly Lauren's life seems like a sham. How can she find her biological parents? And are her adoptive parents really responsible for kidnapping her? A family trip to the US gives her the chance to run away and try and find the truth. But the circumstances of her disappearance are murky and Lauren's kidnappers are still at large and willing to do anything to keep her silent...
I bought this book earlier on in the year as one of the teen choices for World Book Day. I'd been meaning to getting round to reading it for years as it seemed to be one of the staple teen reads and I thought the premise sounded really good. I can see why it was chosen: it's accessible to anyone, definitely more aimed at younger teens - the narrator being just 14.
The whole premise of the story astounded me. I couldn't quite believe that anything of what I was reading was possible. Let me clarify: I know that there are cases like this around the world but it all felt too easy. Lauren comes up against no difficulty in travelling around the US and I was gobsmacked.
I'm completely torn over this book. I read it in a day and I'm kinda glad I read it. It's a good story, but it seems wholly impossible. I know you're thinking, well that's the whole point of books right? To experience the impossible? Well, yes. But. Seriously? A 14 year old girl allowed to run off and travel through several different states.
It seems to mix its messages. Don't go off with strangers, they will kidnap you. At the same time it tells you there are people who will give you all the kindness in their hearts. As a young teen which of these are you supposed to believe? The book seems to straddle between a real lawful and psychological exploration of a girl who wants to find out where so comes from, but at the same time its wants to be an adventure story and for me the two subjects just can't mix for such young readers. It deals with the difficult subject of adoption or unknown heritage too easily. It's too neat and tidy.