Losing Brave

Bailee Madison and Stefne Miller. Blink, $17.99 (352p) ISBN 978-0-310-76054-2
High school senior Payton Brave struggles with the disappearance of her twin sister, Dylan, in this underwhelming first novel from actress Madison and coauthor Miller. Payton was present the morning Dylan vanished from a bus bathroom in their small Mississippi town, but she has no memory of what happened. An angry Payton rebels against her “good girl” persona, watching her car go up in flames, changing her name to “Poe,” and hanging out with the school misfits, including her sister’s boyfriend, Cole. When Payton learns that two other girls matching Dylan’s description have also gone missing, she feels the need to start her own investigation. Flashbacks to the preceding year let readers get acquainted with Dylan, but they will need to stay on their toes to keep track of the timeline as the narrative jumps around. Laden with extraneous detail and two-dimensional characters, this slow-moving mystery is further let down by clumsy writing (“It was Starr’s expectation that she should attract more attention than Payton ever could, that drove Payton up a literal wall”) and closing twists that are both predictable and strain belief. Ages 13–up. Agency: Legacy. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 11/13/2017
Release date: 01/01/2018
Genre: Children's
Paperback - 352 pages - 978-0-310-76066-5
MP3 CD - 978-1-5200-9063-4
Compact Disc - 978-1-5200-9062-7
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