Thanks so much to Nori @ ReadWriteLove and Natasha Friend for letting me a part of this tour! I got this book for free in exchange for being part of this book tour.
The first month of school, thirteen-year-old Anna Collette finds herself… DUMPED by her best friend Dani, who suddenly wants to spend eighth grade “hanging out with different people.” DESERTED by her mom, who’s in the hospital recovering from a suicide attempt. TRAPPED in a house with her dad, a new baby sister, and a stepmother young enough to wear her Delta Delta Delta sweatshirt with pride. STUCK at a lunch table with Shawna the Eyebrow Plucker and Sarabeth the Irish Stepper because she has no one else to sit with. But what if all isn’t lost?
Don’t ever say you’re too old to read middle grade books – this was adorable, and great no matter what age you are when you’re reading it.
Anna was so relatable, even though she was going things that I’ve never experienced. Her mum has tried to kill herself, so she’s stuck with her dad and step mum. As you’d expect, she hates it. Oh, and on top of that, her best friend has ditched her to become one of the ‘cool kids’. Haven’t we all been through that? Maybe not those exact circumstances, but everyone has fallen out with their friend over something, and been stuck with no one, or at least one person less. We got inside Anna’s head, and it broke my heart. This girl had nothing going for her, and she was really struggling trying to cope with it all. The book was told with that honesty only a middle grade girl can have, and it had me nearly in tears countless times. She didn’t dodge around subjects, discussing everything that needed to be discussed. It was sad, like I said, but it needed to be.
The one flaw was that it was a bit predictable. She thought the people she was forced to hang out with were losers, and hated her family. Hmm, I wonder where that’s going? I’ve read a hundred books like that, where we get taken through the journey of someone trying to accept and love themselves, and other people. But I guess it’s popular for a reason. It does work! Especially with the book being from Anna’s point of view, we got to learn to love the other characters at the same time as her. I did hate Dani while Anna was still trying to cling to their friendship, but how can you not? By writing it like this, it made the supporting cast really lovable. They were all screwed up, but that’s what made them close. It was so good for Anna to have people to turn to when she so needed to.
Despite the main point of this book being that Anna’s mother has tried to kill herself, it
didn’t focus on that as much as I expected it to. Instead, it was more about Anna. As terrible as it sounds, I think it was really good for her to get away from her mum. Her mum was always a little crazy, and Anna being away from that crazy made her more normal. With being normal, she got to be happy as well, which she so deserved. I just wanted to give her a huge hug at the beginning of the book, because her circumstances were so sad.
There’s not too much more I can say on this book without spoiling it for you. But go and read it! Yes, it’s predictable, but sometimes we all need that in our lives, right?
About the Author
Natasha Friend–wearer of silly hats, lover of press-on mustaches, admirer of Gloria Steinem, devotee of well-named nail polish shades–is also an author. When she is not writing books, you will find her playing Wiffle ball, turning cartwheels, making chocolate-chip pancakes, singing, dancing, and wishing she was in a talent show. Natasha lives in Connecticut with her husband, three kids, and dog. Where You’ll Find Me is her sixth novel.
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