Tuesday, September 10, 2019

A Girl Named Anna by Lizzy Barber

Anna doesn't question her mother. She doesn't break the rules. But now Anna is eighteen and her boyfriend has a trip to the popular Astroland theme park planned for her birthday. And for the first time, Anna is purposely going against her mother's rules. 

Oddly enough, Anna feels a sense of familiarity when they arrive at Astroland. But that doesn't make any sense—she's never been to the park. What's more, in this weird deja vu, Anna isn't Anna. She's Emily. 

Meanwhile, over in the UK, Rosie is facing the fifteenth anniversary of her older sister's disappearance. She's lived in the shadow of this incident her entire life and the case has never been resolved. Now, so many years on, it appears the family is running out of resources and may have to finally admit defeat. But Rosie wants to give it one more shot on her own. One more attempt to find out what happened to her sister all those years ago. 

A Girl Named Anna (aka My Name is Anna overseas) is a really excellently paced and plotted thriller.

From the start, the reader suspects Anna's and Rosie's stories are connected. So the mystery isn't necessarily who is Anna but what happened to her.

It's also a story about family and, in particular, sisters. Rosie is affected by her sister's disappearance every day. The media, the attention, the curious strangers, it never goes away. And yet, rather than become bitter and angry, she becomes more determined than ever to find out the truth.

This book was an emotional read. Much more so than I expected out of a thriller! I hesitate to say more because I don't want to ruin it for anyone, but I will say that I found this to a truly immersive book that sucked me in from the very start!

A Girl Named Anna is Barber's debut and winner of the Daily Mail First Novel Competition. A worthy winner for sure and one that makes Barber a must read for me moving forward.

No comments: