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Alluring Reads

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17 & Gone

17 & Gone - Nova Ren Suma After reading Nova Ren Suma’s Imaginary Girls last year she fast became an author to watch for me. After reading 17 & Gone she has solidified herself as an author that I will buy & read anything that she does. Her writing is remarkable; the eerie, dreamlike quality of her prose sucks you in and leaves you questioning everything that you read. 17 & Gone is a novel about missing girls, not only girls that are taken but also ones who have run away from their life. Lauren was someone that I really connected with. She struggled with what was happening to her and she wasn’t afraid to put what she needed to do ahead of the boy in her life. This was such a refreshing aspect to her personality because so often in YA the girls put the boys first, it was a breath of fresh air to see a girl who wasn’t afraid to throw her relationship in the back seat and do what she needed to do for herself. That being said, I also really did like her boyfriend Jaime. He was super supportive and I loved how he would go along with her and have very little questions. Their relationship was really sweet and as Lauren reflected on the path they had taken together and how they had opened up to one another I became invested in the relationship and where they would go. The real gem in the relationship department in this novel is between Lauren and her mother. I loved how her mother was portrayed as a completely unconventional mom; an ex stripper covered in tattoos who was always there for her daughter and really took an interest in the goings on in her life. The mother daughter relationship was fantastic and their openness with one another was exactly as it should be. While reading this novel you don’t only get to meet wonderful characters and experience their relationships, but there is also a mystery going on. Lauren is seeing missing girls not only in her sleep but in her waking hours as well. Throughout the novel I wasn’t sure what was real and what was not and it made reading every page that much more chilling. I was a little nervous that this would be one of those stories that doesn’t really wrap up in the end and leaves a lot for each reader to take from it what they will but I am happy to report that I loved how it wrapped up. I wish I could talk about that aspect of the story a little more but I don’t want to spoil anything.Much of this tale is Lauren working through the mystery as the elements just keep piling up. She meets more missing girls and as she meets each one we get snapshots of their stories leading up to their ultimate disappearance. Getting each girls story and realizing that no two circumstances are the same kept me absorbed in the story. This novel packs a punch and the writing is absolutely stunning. Once again Suma has come out with a story that I will be recommending to anyone who will listen. An Advanced Reader's Copy was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.--You can read all of my reviews at Alluring Reads.