cover image Face On/Milk Carton

Face On/Milk Carton

Caroline B. Cooney, Bullock. Delacorte Press Books for Young Readers, $14.95 (0pp) ISBN 978-0-553-05853-6

The picture of a missing child printed on a milk carton attracts the attention of 15-year-old Jane Johnson. A glimpse of the girl's polka-dot dress causes memories to surface, and Jane begins to review her past and question her true identity. It is nearly impossible for Jane to perceive her loving parents as kidnappers; the task of gathering evidence and drawing conclusions proves less difficult than confronting the undeniable truth. As the novel ends, Jane has found the courage to contact her real parents, but Cooney cleverly leaves the events that follow to readers' imaginations. Although the book's plot is based largely on coincidences, Cooney's skilled writing makes even the most unlikely events seem plausible. The roller-coaster ride Jane experiences with her emotions is both absorbing and convincing. Strong characterizations and suspenseful, impeccably-paced action add to this novel's appeal. Ages 12-up. (Mar.)