From School Library Journal
Grade 8 Up—Ellie's beloved, artistic, and wild older sister disappeared two years ago. By chance, Ellie finds one of Nina's drawings in a donation box at a thrift store, and with the help of her friend Amanda, who works there, she tracks down the guy who donated the box, leading her on a chase all over the country to find her missing sister. At a party in town, she meets Sean, a guy from a local prep school who thinks fate brought them together. His brother died a few years ago, and he'd do anything to get him back, so he relates to Ellie, and the next thing they know they're driving from their suburb in Illinois to Nebraska, Colorado, and California, following clues. An unbelievable plot—Ellie's mom doesn't care that her daughter is missing for days, Amanda lets her friend run off with a complete stranger, and Nina has made no effort to contact her family despite the ability to do so with the help of police and the Internet—combined with sloppy writing—makes this one hard to recommend, despite the intriguing premise. The story takes an abrupt turn toward a Lifetime movie when Ellie figures out that Sean murdered his brother, who was, in fact, Nina's boyfriend, and that he plans to murder both her and Nina. This road-trip novel pales in comparison to John Green's Paper Towns
(Dutton, 2008).—Jennifer Barnes, Homewood Library, IL
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Ellie’s attempts to live a normal life since the disappearance of her beloved older sister, Nina, have been futile. Every time the 16-year-old manages to get it together, a new but ultimately worthless clue emerges, returning her to despair. Even her best friend, Amanda, is losing patience. So it is a relief that Sean enters Ellie’s life just as she discovers a drawing done by Nina with a phone number embedded in the design. Sean proposes a road trip to find Nina, and Ellie jumps at the chance in spite of having met him only days before. Murder, mystery, and romance all wrap into a road trip.Weingarten offers a fully dimensional story that even includes an occasional psychedelic tip of the hat to Francesca Lia Block. Readers will be jerked around from one clue to the next dead end, each time getting closer to the eerie truth. While the denouement is a bit too lengthy, this will be exciting recreational reading for teen mystery and romance fans. Grades 8-12. --Frances Bradburn