Count the Days

Lin Summerfield, Author Walker & Company $18.95 (206p) ISBN 978-0-8027-5796-8
An English village with its tightly knit, at times almost claustrophobic community provides the setting for this splendid mystery/coming-of-age debut. Eleven-year-old Cassie Wade's life changes drastically after the disappearance of her popular, spoiled classmate Margie Thoroughgood, last seen getting into a stranger's car. As police leads fail and the fearful residents of Upper Grisham hold their children close , Cassie, who lives with her overprotective grandmother, faces her own set of problems. Cassie's mother, who had left her husband and daughter years before, resumes an interest in the girl, much to Cassie's dismay; Margie's mother, whom Cassie dutifully befriends, becomes unhealthily dependent on the child; and Cassie's father, whose job takes him away from Upper Grisham much of the time, is viewed as an outsider and murder suspect by the villagers. When, nearly a year later, Margie's body is found, Cassie's close but sometimes uncomprehending observations of those around her lead her to a secret that puts her in grave peril and uncovers a murderer. Summerfield's finely tuned tale of innocence lost draws readers fully into Cassie's world. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 09/30/1991
Release date: 10/01/1991
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