Google+ YA Romantics: Just Finished Reading ... Amelia Anne is Dead and Gone

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Just Finished Reading ... Amelia Anne is Dead and Gone

Amelia Anne is Dead and Gone
by Kat Rosenfield

Published by Dutton Juvenile
on July 5, 2012

Source: ARC swap with another blogger


My summary: Becca has just graduated from high school and can't wait to see the small town of Bridgeton in her rear view mirror. Of course she'll miss her boyfriend, James, and her family, but she's destined for bigger and better things. Then the body of a young woman is discovered at the side of a road, and the whole town's atwitter. The murder makes Becca look at her friends and neighbors in a whole different way and begin to doubt her own bravery.

My take: This book is a beautifully written murder mystery and coming-of-age story. Becca's chapters alternate with glimpses of the life of Amelia Anne.


I like swoony romantic stories as much as the next girl, but I loved the fact that the relationships in this book felt authentic, reflecting the reality that sometimes love isn't all sunshine and rainbows, that sometimes people who care about each other operate at cross-purposes. Becca stands on the brink of freedom and independence, and this both thrills and scares her. She loves James, but knows that she can't tie herself to him if she wants to follow her dreams. Amelia's story is a sadder and less complex one -- I sat on the edge of my seat, trying to figure out who killed her. 

Amelia Anne is Dead and Gone may be more literary in style than the typical YA, but I think it is a story that many readers will enjoy. I loved the way it showed both the serenity and claustrophobia of small town life and also the way it explored the way women sometimes face wrenching choices between love and ambition.

28 comments:

  1. I don't think I've seen any reviews for this but it sounds like something I'd like: mystery-check, contemporary-check, female protagonist-check. I also like the sound of exploring small town life as books do such a good job of bringing them to life.

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    1. I also love books set in small towns, even though I've never lived in one!

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  2. Ah, the ole' growing up and getting out story. I do love these stories when there done well, finding out why they want to get away so badly and what their willing to leave behind. A little mystery thrown in and it sounds like a good read!

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    1. Wow -- you describe this book so well without having read it. Yes, it is that kind of story, and done well!

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  3. This sounds really good. I like a more literary style. I think that style requires skill to pull it off well. I also love romantic suspense. Just started Timepiece by Myra McEntire today and so far am loving it!

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  4. Small town life...sounds like my life growing up! Excited to read this one (and that cover!!!). Great review. :)

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    1. See, I'm fascinated by small town life. It seems so cozy and so claustrophobic all at the same time.

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    2. It's pretty much exactly like that! Sometimes the whole "everybody knows everybody and also knows everybody else's business" thing (which is SO true) gets annoying...but on the other hand, you know you always have a whole lot of people (most that you've known for your entire life!) when things go badly. And to celebrate the good times, too. :)

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  5. I like that the chapters alternate between Becca and Amelia Ann. You get two separate stories and plenty of clues to the mystery. I really like how you describe this book, makes me want to read it a lot more than when I first saw it.

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    1. It's more Becca's story, but I do love books where two stories are woven together.

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  6. Wonderful review! I also loved how the relatioship wasn't shown as all rainbows and sunshine. I loved the realness of their issues. :)

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  7. This is one of the many awesome July books that I want to read this summer. I haven't read a good mystery book in awhile so this book is perfect!
    -JennyC

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  8. I really appreciate the relationships that are authentic too. Sometimes the swoon and instalove don't really keep us in the real world. But those stories rock my world too.
    Brandi from Blkosiner’s Book Blog

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    1. I like both too. Sometimes a romantic story is what I'm in the mood for, but when I read this, I really saw Becca and James' relationship through both of their eyes. I also really loved Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn. Not YA, but it charts a relationship from the swoony love stage through the "on the rocks" phase. It's sad that happens, but it does...

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  9. Another one that I haven't heard of before. I must admit it that I've seen a lot of new books on your blog. Now this book sounds really interesting. :)

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  10. This is literally sitting in my bed, calling out to me to come to it. I want to read it so bad.

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  11. Sounds good. I need to read a mystery.

    Oh, and I finished ASHES. How could she end a book like that?! NOw I have to read that teh next one.

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  12. If I just went by the cover, I would never pick this up, so thank you for your review.

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  13. And I'm sold on this book! ;) I love murder mysteries.

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  14. I love a good mystery and have heard that this is a very good book. Judging by your review I think I would really like it.

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  15. I almost bought this the other day, but I picked up a different book instead and I kind of regret that now.

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  16. I think I would like this one. I'm always up for murder mysteries and you know I am a fan of a well written book!

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  17. I discovered this awhile ago, and it's one of my "Must-Reads!!!!". I really never have gotten into the murder mysteries, or mysteries for that matter. But once in awhile, a book like this comes along that instantly hooks me and I NEED to read it.

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