If You Find Me

If You Find Me - Emily Murdoch Carey and her younger sister Jenessa are taken from the camper in the woods that has been their whole life for the past decade and reentering civilization, forced now to deal with all the repercussions of their bipolar mother’s actions.She was barely there, the last year, and still not there, when she was. And that’s not counting the times she was there and a person wished with all her might she wasn’t.This YA novel deals with some heavy issues, and does it with a rather unique story line, of two girls returning from civilization after being kidnapped and hidden away by their bipolar, drug-addicted mother. It was well-written, with the backstory told gradually through flashbacks as Carey becomes more trusting and more willing to open up to others. I also really appreciated the literary references included (yay Winnie the Pooh!)This book will probably get many higher ratings than my own. I simply rated it such because I didn’t enjoy reading it. The subject matter is dark and sad, and honestly somewhat depressing, and that’s not normally the type of book into which I like to immerse myself. I can, however, appreciate the message the author was getting across and commend a book that pulls one in emotionally like this one does. There were a few very minor things that bugged or puzzled me about what Carey did and did not know from her years in the woods (handburgers? really? burgers and fries aren’t mentioned in any of those books she read?), but overall, I thought it was handled well.Heads up: This has all the big issues — heavy drug use, teen drinking, premarital sex, and murder, as well as physical, verbal, and sexual abuse.Overall: A gut-wrenching YA novel dealing with the heavy issues of abuse, blended families, and building trust.